Since the early 1970s Ed Ruscha has been an admirer of the British writer J.G. Ballard’s fiction. The text in this painting is from Ballard’s 1975 dystopian novel ‘High-Rise’. The work juxtaposes a beautiful landscape and serene skyline layered with the dark and unsettling quote “The Music from the Balconies Nearby Was Overlaid by the Noise of Sporadic Acts of Violence”. Ruscha could be said to be enacting an act of violence himself in this painting, overlying the tranquil landscape with the wordy Ballard quote.