Analog Adventures: Remain in Light

Talking Heads

Remain in Light

(Original pressing 1980, multiple reissues)

About the Band

A group of art students came together in 1975 to become one of the most influential and significant new wave bands.Songs such as Psycho Killer became a hit. Talking Heads hit their stride with their fourth album, Remain in Light. The album is their third collaboration with famous composer Brian Eno. It is a massive departure from previous albums due to the prominence of heavy Afrobeat style beats. This is directly due to Brian Eno and his admiration of Nigerian musician Fela Kuti.

The Album Itself

Remain in Light starts strong with Born Under Punches. Polyrhythms and layered vocals dominate the track. Adrian Belew’s guitar playing is a new addition to the band’s sound. Belew is known for his work with Frank Zappa and King Crimson. His abilities shine on this album, using strange textures and tones throughout to create a bizarre yet coherent guitar melodies. Drummer Chris Frantz and bassist Tina Weymouth lock down some of their best grooves and stay steady as a metronome through out. David Byrne’s vocal and lyrical approach is a complete 180 from his previous work, opting for a more free flowing style based on the emerging hip-hop genre.

The inner sleeve of the album.

The album itself features timely yet timeless art. Weymouth thought of the concept behind the now famous cover, and contacted MIT to digitally manipulate photographs of the band. The color palette is limited to black, blue, white, and red. The back cover has red World War II era P-51 Mustangs super imposed over a mountain range. These planes also appear on the inner sleeve over the credits.

The rear cover

Is It Worth It?

This album is widely available with many different additions. Original pressings are fairly common, weighing less than 180 grams which can feel a little flimsy. Newer pressings are on 180 gram discs which feel satisfying to hold. Prices start at around $15, and is absolutely essential for any record collection.

Outstanding Tracks

  • The Great Curve
  • Once in a Lifetime
  • Houses in Motion


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Jose Diaz

Collector of analog media.

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