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Imogen Heap- First Train Home

Who exactly is Imogen Heap? In this midterm project for Gen110 at Adelphi University we will explore who Heap is, explore her life and style, and take a closer look at one of her works entitled "First Train Home". Something I find interesting about Heap is that she was able to engineer her own music. It is pretty impressive that she is talented in multiple areas of music production. I have always been interested in engineering, so music engineering is something I would like to learn more about.

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Biography and some Background Information on Heap


Imogen Heap was born in Havering North East London on December 9th 1977. Heap has had an interest for music from an early age, and began playing the piano, cello, and clarinet all by age 13. This was around the same time her parents divorced. It is like that music was a coping mechanism for Heap during this time.

Heap took a music class at her private boarding school, yet taught most of her skills to herself. Some of these skills include music engineering, production, and sequencing. This event influenced Heap's work since she and the music teacher did not get along. This inspired Heap to explore the world of music on her own, and today she continues to engineer music on her own. Heap attended a prestigious music college in England called the BRIT School for Performed Art and Technology. Later on, Heap’s agent arranged her to collaborate with other artists, but with little success. Heap soon started recording and engineering her own albums. Her work was featured as background music for numerous popular television shows, and she won a Grammy in 2010 for Best Engineered non-classical music.

Featured Work: First Train Home


Bodies disengaged our mouths are fleshing over.
Is this an echo game irises retreating
To ovals of white.
The urge to feel your face
And blood rushing to paint my hand print
A Frisbee one by one
Your vinyl on laminate
Desperate for some kind of contact.

First train home I've got to get on it
First train home I've got to get on it
First train home I've got to get on it
To Catch to catch to catch catch catch.
First train home I've got to get on it
First train home I've got to get on it
First train home I've got to get on it
First Train home

Temporal dead zone where clocks are barely breathing
Yet no one cares to notice for all the yelling
All night clamor to hold it together.
I want to play don't wait forms in the hideaway
I want to get on with getting on with things
I want to run in fields paint the kitchen
And love someone
And I can't do any of that here can I?

First train home I've got to get on it
First train home I've got to get on it
First train home I've got to get on it
First Train home

So what? You've had one too many.
So what? I'm not that much fun to be with
So what? You've got a silly hat on
So what? I didn't want to come here anyway.

What matters to you doesn't matter matter to me.
What matters to me doesn't matter matter to you.
What matters to you doesn't matter matter to them.
What matters to them it doesn't change anything.

Got to get on it first train home
Got to get on it first train home

First train home I've got to get on it
(I've got to get on it)
To catch to catch to catch-catch catch.
(First train home)
First train home I've got to get on it
First train home.
(First train home)

To go to go to go
Get get get get
Out out out out
Now now now now

Elements of First Train Home

Color: Mostly black and white/ neutral colors

Rhythm: Has a beat in the background which resembles everyday sounds

Shape: The shapes throughout the video are blurred and geometric yet her outfit is more abstract which draws the viewer's attention.

Scale: All backgound/surroundings are much larger than Heap. This symbolizes how large the world and a journey is compared to ourselves.

Other Elements: Circular background which can symbolize a never ending cycle and journey.

Style, Comparing, and Contrasting

Heap's style is very techno, modern, and original. It is difficult to fit Heap into one specific genre. As you can tell from her one-of-a-kind Grammy outfit in the thumbnail for the article, she is unique and stands out. Heap is different from most of the artists we looked at since she utilizes mostly digital technology and is a musician. She would be most similar to Aaron Koblin since he created "Flight Patterns" using digital software. An aspect unique to Heap is that she creates all aspects of music from by producing the music, creating the lyrics, singing, and even synthesizing music for various movie and television soundtracks.



I chose this quote by Heap because everything you do should be for you! You shouldn't be dancing, buying certain clothes, or try to impress certain people in order to have a specific image. You should be doing all of these things for yourself and to make yourself happy, and not because you are trying to fit a certain mold.

Another Quote


This quote stuck with me since personally I find music releases energy no matter what your mood. It is something that everybody can relate to, and everyone can connect with some form of music.

Extras: Questions, Discussion, and Commentary about Heap,

I personally enjoyed studying Heap and her work since she is not just an artist, but an engineer and scientist of music. Heap recently worked with scientists to engineer music that will make babies happy. I am more of a science and innovative type of person than an art person, so I appreciate that her work involves STEM and not just music. I also respect the fact that she produces and works with her music on her own, and at one point wasn't even on a record deal.

Work Cited


Berman, Robby. "Scientists—and Imogen Heap—Construct a Perfect Song for Babies." Big Think. N.p., 7 Feb. 2017. Web. 1 Mar. 2017

"Imogen Heap." IMDb., n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2017

ImogenHeapVEVO. "Imogen Heap - First Train Home." YouTube. YouTube, 24 Oct. 2009. Web. 03 Mar. 2017.

West, Naomi. "Imogen Heap: Fully Connected." The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group, 14 Oct. 2010. Web. 03 Mar. 2017.

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