Lux is 75 minutes long. For quite a few of those minutes you’ll hear emptiness between each note. Imagine a ‘plink’, lazily counting to four, and then a ‘plonk’ – that’s how dull Lux can be. Ah, but famed sonic guru Brian Eno invented the beatless, mood-over-melody genre of ‘ambient music’, you may say.
A fair point, but what made his great pieces of the ’70s (such as Ambient 1: Music for Airports) so vital was a pioneering use of electronic instruments. By contrast, the dominance of pianos and violins here fails to excite in comparison. Ambient music wears a bulletproof vest – its aim of lingering in the background makes it hard to criticise for being boring. But Lux is boring, and if you make it through all 75 minutes, the only sound you’ll take away is the smug crunch of a man resting on his laurels.