What is Ambient? Judging from the submissions I receive it seems there is a bit of a span between what each of us call ambient. And not being one who intend to elevate me up to some final judge on the matter, my personal perception of ambient is something that is very, very calm. Absolutely no beats. If a track even remotely triggers a dance foot, it’s not ambient. If you can’t fall asleep to the track, it’s not ambient.
If, on the other hand, a track carefully dozes you into a state of trance, now that might be ambient. And if it also unveils corners of your own imagination you’ve not yet explored, mental images not before drawn, it’s bloody good ambient too.
For our ambient playlist, “The Ambient Universe”, this is exctly the critera to be included. And I test the additions to the playlist almost every night. If there’s a track in there that is too energetic or with too abrupt dynamics, then they’ll not stay on the list for long.
And here’s three excellent examples of what I would call ambient:
Justin Robinson – Flurries (First Snow)
We start out with this kind, light and tender piece of work, that so perfectly captures the atmosphere of snow flakes falling. What an excellent piece for this time of year.
Mike Costaney – J
We go deeper and darker with this next track, created by the american gentleman Mike Costaney. I don’ tknow about you but I’m taken straight into my favourite place to linger: In deep space. I don’t think I’ll ever grow tired of evolving pads like here. So soothing, so calming, so… Out there.
If there ever was a perfect track for my aforementioned playlist, this must be it. One could say it’s maybe almost so “typical” ambient that it becomes a bit generic, but damnit – this is stuff for the good trips. That’s never wrong.
Paul Christian – Foreign Lodge
I round off this post with a return to good old Europe again. In Germany we find Paul Christian, and here’s an exciting piece of work from this artist. Quite original.
Very dark, dramatic, and with a lot of movement – so much so that it barely manage to avoid breaking the energy threshold of mine. It builds up to a point dangling dangerously close as tipping over towards the end there, though.
But man, this is good stuff! So many interesting sounds and details to drift off to, and I particularly like the use of voices in this piece. I miss that in ambient music. Voices, not for the words but for the atmosphere. And it’s excellently utilised here.
So there you have it, three quite different pieces of ambient, real ambient – all according to me, of course. 🙂
All of these tracks are to be found on our excellent ambient playlist “Ambient Universe“, oh and by the way: This is a list that celebrates more than 1500 followers now! Steadily climbing and with good reasons – if the above three tracks are your kind of ambient then there’s little reason to have more than our particular playlist in your library. Regularly maintained and updated with new great tracks as we discover them.