Certain Songs #130: Brian Eno – “Burning Airlines Give You So Much More”


Album: Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy).

Year: 1974.

There is a subcategory of “Certain Songs” that I’m going to call “The Prettiest Songs Ever Recorded” and I’m of the firm belief that this lead track from Brian Eno’s masterpiece Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy) is among those songs.

Eno? Really?

With Phil Manzanera playing a ghostly rhythm guitar while haunting and lovely keyboards frame a background chorus of Enos, I swear on all that’s true and holy that the second half of every verse of “Burning Airlines Give You So Much More” is as beautiful as anything that Brian Wilson ever put together. And ten times as weird.

When I got back home I found a message on the door
Sweet Regina’s gone to China cross legged on the floor
Of a burning jet that’s smoothly flying
Burning airlines give you so much more

Of course, there is almost no universe where a song like this would become a hit single, but I’ve loved it from the first time I heard it in the early 80s. Like nearly all of Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy), “Burning Airlines Give You So Much More”  has been massively influential to just about anybody who wanted to make unconventional pop that is clearly both.

Video for “Burning Airlines Give You So Much More”

My Certain Songs Spotify Playlist:

Every “Certain Song” Ever

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