Posts Tagged ‘ Ambient ’

Biosphere – Substrata

Biosphere – Substrata

11 songs, 58 minutes long

Biosphere (real name: Geir Jenssen) is a well known and well respected ambient artist from Norway. He has released a notable catalog of music and is an essential listen for anyone who enjoys ambient music. He has many good releases, but his 1997 album Substrata really shines among them as a true classic in ambient works. Substrata is a cold, lonely, distant album, but among all that it is beautiful and relaxing. The whole album has a very arctic feel, and its easy to imagine sitting on a glacier viewing the northern lights completely alone for miles and miles while listening to this album. The album is full of looping strings and distant drones with detail and diversity that keeps the listeners attention (which is a feat for an album as ambient as Substrata). And on that note I must mention that this is a very ambient album. There is very little beat or rhythm and most of the focus is on creating a sound scape and atmosphere. If you are looking for something with just a little more beat, check out Biospheres album Microgravity, it is also fantastic and contains the same arctic feel, but with more techno beats and rhythm.

Substrata at Amazon



Alva Noto – Xerrox, Vol. 2

Alva Noto – Xerrox, Vol. 2

11 songs, 1 hour 6 minutes long

Xerrox, Vol. 2 is an ambient masterpiece. One of my all-time favorite sleeping albums, Xerrox, Vol. 2 is ambient enough to sleep or work to, but also enjoyable to simply sit and listen to. There is never much rhythm or melody; Xerrox, Vol. 2 is probably closer to being interesting noise than it is truly music. That being said, Xerrox, Vol. 2 is beautiful and will have you questioning the definition of music itself, as the album is most certainly minimalist music. Full of buzzes, hums, and bleeps, Xerrox, Vol. 2 sounds like what I thought industrial would sound like when I first heard of it. It’s like listening to the thump-thump-thump of a dryer that is spinning off of its axis, and then a steam generator, and then a satellite. Xerrox, Vol. 2 has to be heard to be understood, and for any fans of ambient music, it’s high on my recommendation list.

Xerrox, Vol. 2 is available in vinyl on Amazon.


Koan – When The Silence Is Speaking

Koan – When The Silence Is Speaking

9 songs, 1.3 hours long

Koan’s 2009 album When The Silence Is Speaking is a chill adventure. The album is fairly ambient, and this is an album I don’t mind throwing on to drown out noise from neighbors when I’d like to sleep. The album is full of empty sounds, lots of echoes over a slow but steady rhythm. Fans of Bluetech should definitely check this one out. Like Bluetech and other ambient works, it’s easier to talk about the atmosphere of When The Silence Is Speaking than other aspects of the album, and like Bluetech’s work, When The Silence Is Speaking has an aquatic feel. However, Koan’s work is less layered and more ambient than Bluetech. This isn’t a bad thing, it just leaves the album with a more lonesome feeling. Altogether, it’s a cool listen, and one I definitely recommend. Apologies to those who don’t know Bluetech for leaning so heavily on the comparison between the artists.

When The Silence Is Speaking in mp3 at Amazon.


Lullatone – Songs That Spin in Circles

Lullatone – Songs That Spin in Circles

10 songs, 38 minutes long

Lullatone is a husband and wife  group from Nagoya, Japan, and their latest effort, Songs That Spin in Circles, is a beautiful and soothing ambient album. The group refers to their music as “Pajama Pop” because of the lullaby-esque sound that encompasses their music and thus makes this a perfect bedtime album. The songs are diverse and complex while remaining minimal and ambient. The album contains everything from basic keyboards, to guitars, to glockenspiels combined in a beautiful ambient harmony that will conjure nothing but good emotions and a tranquil state.  One of my favorite aspects of this album is the female vocals. The vocals are sparse and come in a mix of Japanese and English, but it is an amazing voice that only adds to the relaxing feel of the album and the overall lullaby feel.

This album is perfect for anyone looking for something beautiful and peaceful to listen to while trying to slip away in to sleep, or for anyone looking for non-invasive, beautiful background music.

Songs That Spin in Circles at Amazon