From the Vault...


Laurie Anderson
"Big Science"

© Warner Bros. Records

track listing
  • From The Air
  • Big Science
  • Sweaters
  • Walking And Falling
  • Born Never Asked
  • O Superman
    (For Massenet)
  • Example #22
  • Let X = X
  • It Tango

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    Laurie Anderson Website
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    Hugh Masekela--The Promise Of A Future
    Laurie Anderson
    "Big Science"

    I was watching the infamous One-Hit Wonders on VH-1, and one of the songs covered was Laurie Anderson's "O Superman." With it's hypnotizing new wave melody, it was obvious to read up on Anderson, and how popular she was. Well, popular she wasn't, but her "O Superman" song made her noticeable in the early 1980s, and in the midst of new wave/electronic music.

    "From The Air" has the electronica sound, mixed with new wave rock, as the early Blondie could be compared to Anderson's vocal style. "Big Science" could compete in today's styles, the choruses has her voice sounding similar to female artist Dido. The main instrument heard throughout this song is the organ; haunting in some instances, it keeps your attention.

    Strangeness best describes "Sweaters," as the high-pitch vocals could be from a Yoko Ono influence. "Walking And Falling" is mostly a spoken voice piece, the music itself is quite interesting. "Born, Never Asked" has a spoken voice intro, as the rest of the song is instrumental, providing an interesting listening of soft, electronic music.

    Strange and weird as some of Yoko Ono's songs, best describes "Example #22". "Let X = X" combines the electronic/computerized voice of Anderson, with very impressive soft, electronic music, which blends into the last song, "It Tango." It starts out upbeat in a somewhat reggae/ska style, then returns to soft, pleasant electronic music, with Anderson's spoken voice.

    Laurie Anderson's Big Science may not be for some, but it is quite interesting. It's very different than the standard new wave music that emerged in the late 1970s, and continued throughout the 1980s. Avant-garde is another description for Anderson's music. She used electronic music, with computerized vocalization. "O Superman" is her most popular hit, and with it's hypnotizing electronic music, most of the other songs on Big Science are just as hypnotizing and draws attention to the listener. Agreeing that her music is definitely different than others, fans of electronica music and even new wave could spark an interest. She released five more albums after Big Science and an anthology. Yet, Big Science stands out, due to her biggest hit "O Superman." Are there any other major hits that stands out for Laurie Anderson? I doubt it, and even if she did have more albums, her one-hit wonder signature song, "O Superman" will definitely be interesting to those who enjoy electronica and new wave music.

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    Previous Review: #875
    Mario Lanza--Be My Love: Mario Lanza's Greatest Performances At M-G-M
    Next Review: #877
    Hugh Masekela--The Promise Of A Future