Space Music: Bernard Szajner's 'Visions of Dune'


"Visions of Dune" by Z, AKA Bernard Szajner Image via Bleep.com

I hold Frank Herbert's "Dune" right up there as one of my favorite books of all time. It's psychedelic, philosophical, ecological and succeeds in crafting a universe of intrigue unparalleled by almost any other single volume of science fiction.

So when I read that a French electronic artist's 1979 "Dune" concept album was set for re-release -- no doubt to capitalize on the success of the documentary "Jodorowsky's Dune" -- I knew I had to hear it.

The album is the work of Bernard Szajner, known in some circles as "the French Brian Eno." While Szajner's discography is fairly miniscule compared to Eno's, the two artists certainly share a passion for electronic experimentation and nonexistent film scores. For "Visions of Dune" is a score without a movie, a futuristic soundscape for the "Dune" playing in every reader's head. Always futuristic and spacey, the album moves from jazzy, prog-rock freakouts to brooding syth loops. Like the book itself, "Visions of Dune" takes the listener to another world.

But don't take my word for it. Sample the album below, then consider buying it up at Amazon or Bleep. Oh, and I've also included a brief interview with Szajner himself.


About the Author: Robert Lamb spent his childhood reading books and staring into the woods — first in Newfoundland, Canada and then in rural Tennessee. There was also a long stretch in which he was terrified of alien abduction. He earned a degree in creative writing. He taught high school and then attended journalism school. He wrote for the smallest of small-town newspapers before finally becoming a full-time science writer and podcaster. He’s currently a senior writer at HowStuffWorks and has co-hosted the science podcast Stuff to Blow Your Mind since its inception in 2010. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling with his wife Bonnie, discussing dinosaurs with his son Bastian and crafting the occasional work of fiction.