On Music, Sound and Us

by Michel Faber

On Sale: 11/28/2023


Enlarge Book Cover


On Music, Sound and Us

by Michel Faber

On Sale: 11/28/2023


About the Book

"I'm not here to change your mind about Dusty Springfield or Shostakovich or Tupac Shakur or synthpop. I'm here to change your mind about your mind."

There are countless books on music with much analysis given to musicians, bands, eras and/or genres. But rarely does a book delve into what's going on inside us when we listen.

Michel Faber explores two big questions: how do we listen to music and why do we listen to music? To answer these questions, he considers a range of factors, which includes age, illness, the notion of "cool," commerce, the dichotomy between "good" and "bad" taste and much more.

From the award-winning author of The Crimson Petal and the White and Under the Skin, this idiosyncratic and philosophical book reflects Michel Faber's lifelong obsession with music of all kinds. Listen will change your relationship with the heard world.

Critical Praise

"Great, smart fun, and full of theses to provoke arguments and pointers for new ways to, yes, listen.“—Kirkus STARRED review
"[I]nsightful and engaging."—The Media Tourist

"Michel Faber wrote this book just for you."—Robert Fripp
“An extraordinary and compelling ‘journey into sound’ which examines close and distant listening in all its myriad ramifications, mainly in the form of music both popular and otherwise—and it’s particularly good at evaluating music's intrinsic worth from a commercial and aesthetic viewpoint… Michel Faber writes beautifully, non-condescendingly and provocatively about something as basic and fundamental to human existence as oxygen, and which like oxygen would be exceedingly hard to do without… I found this, Michel's first non-fiction book, brilliant and a joy to read… He’s obviously listened and thought long and hard about the act and art of consuming sound/music—essentially, electrochemical reactions in the brain—in all its multitudinous splendor, and he raises many compelling points along the way… Listen is right up there with Richard Meltzer’s The Aesthetics of Rock and Geoffrey O’Brien’s Sonata for Jukebox at the top of my mental music shelf.” —Gary Lucas

Product Details

  • ISBN: 9781335000620
  • ISBN 10: 1335000623
  • Imprint: Hanover Square Press
  • On Sale: 11/28/2023
  • Pages: 448
  • List Price:37.00 CAD
  • BISAC1 : MUSIC / History & Criticism
  • BISAC2 : MUSIC / Instruction & Study / Appreciation
  • BISAC3 : MUSIC / Philosophy & Social Aspects
  • BISAC4 : MUSIC / Genres & Styles / General

Listen by Michel Faber

The broadest selection of online bookstores. The links will take you to the web site's home page.

Other Booksellers

The broadest selection of online bookstores. The links will take you to the Web site's home page.


Specialty Booksellers

Interest-specific online venues and gift accounts that offer books for purchase. The links will take you to the store’s home page.

International Customers

If you are located outside Canada, the best way to order online is to choose from the following bookstores listed by region and country.