Bruton Brutoff | The Ambient, Electronic and Pastoral Side of the the Bruton Library Catalogue

Bruton Brutoff | The Ambient, Electronic and Pastoral Side of the the Bruton Library Catalogue


Trunk Records
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Over the last three decades Jonny Trunk has collected and written about library music. But he’s never had a great deal of luck with the Bruton catalogue. By this he means that he’s never stumbled across a massive stash, or lucked-out buying a huge run for practically nothing –that’s the kind of thing that used to happen in the 1990s and the early noughties if you were out there looking hard for library music. But he did manage to get about 25 in one hit about 20 years ago when the BBC shut down their “TV Training Department” near Lime Grove and also when a box of Brutons ended up being dumped at a hospital radio, and they didn’t want the records, so Jonny got a call.

There are lots of Bruton albums in existence – over 330 LPs in the vinyl catalogue, issued between 1978 and 1985. That’s a lot of music to wade through if you are looking for sublime modern day sounds. For many years now the “trophies” from the Bruton catalogue have been the beat or action driven LPs – the two Drama Montage albums (BRJ2 and BRJ8) have always been the big hitters, and others such as High Adventure (BRK2) too.

But Jonny has always found himself drawn to the lime green LPs, the pastoral, peaceful albums (The BRDs), which were full of the kind of gentle, lovely music that would turn up in Take Hart as Tony was painting a woodpecker or a badger or an Autumn tree. The other Brutons he likes are the orange ones (The BRIs) simply because they are full of experimental futuristic electronics and would remind him of 1980s ITV backgrounds. This LP series includes Brian Bennett’s cosmic classic Fantasia (BRI 10). Jonny has been knows to refer to this style of library music as “Krypton Factor library”, because it’s exactly what that strange but successful 1980s TV quiz show sounded like.

In recent years as interest in library music has expanded, we’ve watched
the price of a handful of Brutons really going through the roof - not the just the action and drama ones, but the more esoteric and experimental LPs too – like the BRDs and the BRIs. Jonny gets the vibe that people finally want to hear this other more interesting and experimental side of the Bruton catalogue. So what better time than now to put together a compilation of such sublime period sounds.

Not only does this album bring together a set of fabulous cues that would cost the average man in the street a month’s wages (if the originals were all wanted and if you could even track them all down), but it also chops out the need to listen to other tracks on library albums that are nowhere near as good.

The cues here all date from between 1978 and 1984. They come from the BRD, BRI, BRH, BRJ, BRM, BRR and BRs catalogues.

The composers are all legends within the genre, and here, were doing what great library composers do best – fulfilling a brief and utilising modern studio equipment to both commercial and beguiling effect.

Vibes - BRS 6 – Frank Ricotti 1981
Utopia Revisited - BRJ 18 – Johnny Scott 1980
Trek - BRM 9 – John Cameron 1981
Tropic 2 - BRM 9 – John Cameron 1981
Reflections - BRM 2 – Frank Reidy / Eric Allen 1978
Stargazing - BRI 2 – Francis Monkman 1978

Drifting - BRI 3 – John Cameron 1978
Dissolves - BRI 3 – Les Hurdle / Frank Ricotti 1978
Floatation - BRI 9 – John Cameron 1980
One Language - BRR 18 – Orlando Kimber / John Keliehor 1984
Saturn Rings - BRI 6 – Alan Hawkshaw 1979
Billowing Sails - BRD 20 – Steve Gray 1982
The Swan - BRD 19 – Brian Bennett 1982

Album mastered by Jon Brooks.