In 1974 Eno debuts with Here Come The Warm Jets

Eno - Recording Here Come The Warm Jets (

Eno – Recording Here Come The Warm Jets


In 1974 the long awaited debut album by Brian Eno (using the name Eno) was released. Here Come The Warm Jets was both praised and misunderstood.

Brian Eno

On May 15, 1948, Brian Peter George Eno was born in Melton, Suffolk, England. When he did his confirmation in 1959 at a catholic school, founded by the De La Salle Brothers, his full name became Brian Peter George St. John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno.

Around that time he started to listen to American black R&B, blues and doo wop. In 1964 Eno’s interest in arts and music had grown considerably, so much so that he entered the Ipswich School of Art. Two years later he switched to the Winchester School of Art, where he graduated in 1969. While at this school Eno attended a lecture by Pete Townshend (guitarist and composer for The Who), which made him realize he could create music without formal training.

Roxy Music - Eno live 03/17/1973 (

Roxy Music – Eno live 03/17/1973

Roxy Music

As early as 1964 Eno used a tape recorder, which he utilized as an instrument. Starting in 1967, Eno played in several combos rooted in avant-garde. Early 1970s Eno moved to London, met saxophone player Andy Mackay and joined the glam and art-rock band Roxy Music. Brian Eno shortened his name to just Eno and he would contribute to the first two Roxy Music albums: Roxy Music and For Your Pleasure. At first Eno didn’t play live, but after the band signed a record deal he started playing on stage. As if his VCS 3 synthesizer wasn’t remarkable enough, Eno dressed flamboyantly and used a lot of make-up. This led to resentment with Roxy Music leader Bryan Ferry, who didn’t like to share the spotlight.

After the For Your Pleasure tour, it was confirmed on July 21, 1973, that Eno had left Roxy Music. One week later he did his first interview as a solo artist. Read the announcement of July 21 and the interview published on July 28, 1973, in full in the sub article Roxy Music – For Your Pleasure – Eno Quits Roxy.


In November 1973 Eno and (King Crimson’s) Robert Fripp released the album No Pussyfooting, an album that featured Eno’s experiments with tape delay, with featured Fripp’s guitar on top. This technique was trademarked as Frippertronics. The result was the precursor what would eventually evolve in Eno’s ambient records. In 1975 the duo released the album Evening Star.

In September 1973 Eno recorded his first real solo album at the Majestic Studios in London. He invited 16 guest musicians and “got them together merely because I wanted to see what happens when you combine different identities like that and allow them to compete … [The situation] is organized with the knowledge that there might be accidents, accidents which will be more interesting than what I had intended”. The story goes that he tried to influence the musicians’ playing with dance and short instructions.

Eno - Here Come The Warm Jets (

Eno – Here Come The Warm Jets

Here Come The Warm Jets

On February 8, 1974, Eno released his first solo album. Here Come The Warm Jets represented everything Eno had wanted all along, full control over the music, the production and the presentation.

On the album he collaborated with all Roxy Music members, with the exception of Bryan Ferry. Not surprisingly, many reviewers compared the music with the band. The difference between the latest Roxy Music album Stranded and Here Come The Warm Jets is quite significant. Eno’s solo album is filled with a genuine desire to experiment and venture into avant-garde which is audible in almost every song. The songs are capricious, yet catchy, but above all unconventional and unique. That goes for the lyrics as well, which vary from bizarre to humorous to associative word play.

The production was distinctive and innovative as well. At times the album sounds like a cacophony of distorted guitars and keyboards, complex soundscapes and virtually alien sounds. It’s the result of Eno’s unique way of mixing and producing. Multiple musicians that collaborated on the album have stated that the music on the album doesn’t resemble the recorded music they played in the studio at all.


Eno’s pottery girlfriend was involved with the design of the album cover, which pictures one of her tea pots. The cover also contains a play card displaying a urinating woman, which led many to believe that the “warm jets” of the album title reference sprays of urine. In 1998 Eno addressed the misconception (see the end of this article).


Here Come The Warm Jets was generally well received by the press. The originality of the album was lauded and admired. But, the experimentation was questioned as well. Wasn’t it all a bit too much? If the reviews were bad, they were really bad, calling the album nothing but inflated air, or worse. By and large, the public let the album go by unnoticed. It did reach the album charts, but it was nowhere near a hit record.

Nowadays Here Come The Warm Jets is seen as a masterpiece and is a steady part of the many ‘best of all time’ lists. Rightfully so…

Eno - Here Come The Warm Jets - Ad (

Eno – Here Come The Warm Jets – Ad


Here Come The Warm Jets is not an album that makes friends easily. But its beauty is revealed with each turn. The album’s variety and its musical embellishments are breathtaking. How can the music itself be labeled? Avant-pop, art-rock, avant-garde, with some influences of funk, 1950s music, glam, pre-punk and pre new-wave? Whether the characterizations are correct or not is not that important, as it does convey the idea of the album’s diversity and urge to experiment.

Maybe accessible avant-garde is the right term. Here Come The Warm Jets is an exciting, modern album, which was far ahead of its time. For David Bowie and Roxy Music music lovers, this album is essential listening. But, as stated before, the album is an asset for all of those willing to make an effort and take their time with Here Come The Warm Jets. It’s an album that introduces Eno and his career very well. Idiosyncrasy that impresses and exposes Eno’s courage in experimentation and innovation.


All songs written by Eno, unless stated otherwise.

  • Needles In The Camel’s Eye (Eno, Phil Manzanera)
  • The Paw Paw Negro Blowtorch
  • Baby’s On Fire
  • Cindy Tells Me (Eno, Phil Manzanera)
  • Driving Me Backwards
  • On Some Faraway Beach
  • Blank Frank (Eno, Robert Fripp)
  • Dead Finks Don’t Talk
  • Some Of Them Are Old
  • Here Come The Warm Jets

The album didn’t produce any singles.

Eno - Here Come The Warm Jets - Ad (2) (

Eno – Here Come The Warm Jets – Ad


  • Brian Eno – vocals, keyboards, synthesizer, ‘snake guitar’, ‘electric larynx’, ‘treatments’
  • Chris “Ace” Spedding – guitar on Needles In The Camel’s Eye, The Paw Paw Negro Blowtorch
  • Phil Manzanera – guitar on Needles In The Camel’s Eye, The Paw Paw Negro Blowtorch, Cindy Tells Me
  • Simon King – percussion on Needles In The Camel’s Eye, Baby’s On Fire, Driving Me Backwards, On Some Faraway Beach, Blank Frank, Here Come The Warm Jets
  • Bill MacCormick – bass on Needles In The Camel’s Eye, Blank Frank
  • Marty Simon – percussion on The Paw Paw Negro Blowtorch, Baby’s On Fire, Cindy Tells Me
  • Busta Jones – bass on The Paw Paw Negro Blowtorch, Cindy Tells Me, On Some Faraway Beach, Dead Finks Don’t Talk
  • Robert Fripp – guitar on Baby’s On Fire, Driving Me Backwards, Blank Frank
  • Paul Rudolph – guitar on Baby’s On Fire, Here Come The Warm Jets, bass on Baby’s On Fire, Driving Me Backwards, Here Come The Warm Jets
  • John Wetton – bass on Baby’s On Fire, Driving Me Backwards
  • Nick Judd – keyboards on Cindy Tells Me, Dead Finks Don’t Talk
  • Andy Mackay – keyboards on On Some Faraway Beach, saxophone and keyboard on Some Of Them Are Old
  • Sweetfeed – background vocals on On Some Faraway Beach, Blank Frank
  • Nick Kool & the Koolaids (Eno pseudonym for ‘multi-tracking’) – keyboards on Blank Frank
  • Paul Thompson – percussion on Dead Finks Don’t Talk
  • Lloyd Watson – slide guitar on Some Of Them Are Old
  • Chris Thomas – bass on The Paw Paw Negro Blowtorch

After Here Come The Warm Jets

Eno planned a tour with backing band The Winkies, but the tour had to be canceled, due to Eno suffering from a collapsed lung. In November 1974 Eno released his second solo album, Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy), in 1975 followed by Another Green World.

In December 1975 Eno, for the first time using the name Brian Eno, released his influential album Discreet Music, his first album with ambient pieces of music. His first ambient album from his Ambient Series was released in March 1978: Ambient 1: Music For Airports. In February 1981 Eno released another influential record, this time with David Byrne: My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts.

Eno’s career has always remained highly special and varied, up to this day. Late 2023 Brian Eno organized his first ever solo tour. It brought him to Utrecht, where I was one of the lucky ones to see Brian Eno at work: impressive.


Besides his many influential solo albums and collaborations, Eno is also known for his productions, which, given his work on Here Come The Warm Jets, comes at no surprise. Once again, Eno showed he had a sixth sense for albums that would prove to be important to (the development) of (pop)music. He produced albums like:

  • David Bowie – Low, “Heroes”, Lodger and 1.Outside
  • Talking Heads – More Songs About Buildings And Food, Fear Of Music, Remain In Light
  • Devo – Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!
  • U2 – The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby, Zooropa

The list of productions is virtually endless.

Eno - Here Come The Warm Jets - Ad (3) (

Eno – Here Come The Warm Jets – Ad

Eno about Here Come The Warm Jets

So what does Eno himself think of his debut album? He addressed it in a 1998 interview.

What I wanted to do was focus on this new way of making music in the studio, so I started making my own records, which in retrospect sound pretty weird as well. I saw the studio as a place to study sound, invent sound, craft it in ways you couldn’t do with live instruments. The main thing on Needle In The Camel’s Eye, for instance, is Phil Manzanera playing a riff on rhythm guitar; meanwhile, I’m banging his whammy-bar, beating it in rhythm. We did three or four tracks of him and I doing exactly the same thing, so you’re getting four rippling guitars pulsing against one another. That was one of the things I learnt about multitracking at the time: that rather than add different instruments, it was much more interesting to layer the same instrument several times, maybe changing the pitch slightly – you can get some really amazing ringing sounds, and a lot of the tracks on the first album were done that way.

The title Warm Jets came from the guitar sound on the track of that name, which I described on the track-sheet as “warm jet guitar”, because it sounded like a tuned jet. Then I had the pack of playing cards with the picture of that woman in there, and they sort of connected. That was one of the other things that was going on at the time: this idea that music was still tied to some idea of revolution, and that one of the revolutions was a sexual revolution. I wasn’t making a big political point, I just liked having fun with those things. Most people didn’t realise for a long time – it was rather deeply concealed!

Mojo Magazine 55, June 1998

In closing

What do you think of (Brian) Eno and Here Come The Warm Jets? Let me know!

This story contains an accompanying video. Click on the following link to see it: Video: In 1974 Eno debuts with Here Come The Warm Jets. The A Pop Life playlist on Spotify has been updated as well.

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