Microsoft commissioned music legend Brian Eno to develop a “piece of music” to play when the Windows 95 operating system started up. Eno is probably most renowned* producing the Talking Heads, U2 and Coldplay and for his ambient music — long tracks with deep sound beds and drifting melodies. But this track had to be a little shorter. Eno related the story: The thing from the agency said, “We want a piece of music that is inspiring, universal, blah-blah, da-da-da, optimistic, futuristic, sentimental, emotional,” this whole list of adjectives, and then at the bottom it said “and it must be 3.25 seconds long.”And, of course, Eno solved the problem, creating a supremely iconic sound. But when you take his micro-music and stretch it out to two and a half minutes, it becomes suspiciously like the music we hear on his ambient albums – slow, ethereal, moody, beautiful in a very different way.
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