isolation, introspection, relaxation
ambient, folk, drone, acoustic, vocal, field recordings, early music, spiritual
Beautiful ritual ambient from the Aural Hypnox family. As always, I’d say. Arktau Eos put out a very subtle work with Erēmos in 2018. Classic synths, melodic percussions, field recordings. Order here: https://www.auralhypnox-shop.com/releases/20-arktau-eos-eremos-cd.html
Taking time for myself with two gems from Chihei Hatakeyama’s oeuvre. Both works are extensive, minimal, deep, and supremely calming.
You’re still in it (2016, Constellation Tatsu)
Journey to the End of August (2018, Hidden Vibes)
We expected melancholic black metal, got melancholic acoustic guitar instrumentals instead. It’s a classic switch for a black metal band to make, but I enjoy it when done well, and DEAFEST most certainly do it well. Relaxing, contemplative, subtle. Tape out through Tridroid.
Ecovillage’s Arrived (2020, Dronarivm) is lush new age ambient music for the newest age where the promise of salvation seems further away to the young generations than ever.
A shimmering thing, and another one, and another one. An artificial garden—aren’t they all?—filled to the brim with familiar-sounding beauties. It’s so full it almost feels aggressive.
It overshoots its mark, but in that process makes me realise that this place, this bloated garden, truly is as good as any. Any place can be your place of relaxation and recentering if the circumstances and the connections in our brains and the stars align somehow. And so it hits the target full on anyway. That too is a beautiful thing.
Gorgeous, gorgeous. Lake Mary & the Ranch Family Band start off Sun Dogs (2019, Full Spectrum) with the warmest instrumental alt-country, and they don’t let off from there. Further along the album we also find calm acoustics, and the whole thing ends in an intense guitar romp.
I was tempted to call the sound on this album the “quintessential” Full Spectrum Records sound, but that would not be fair towards the label’s actual diversity. However, I will say that this is the best place to find that particular sound, even if there’s much more to it than that.
A bit older but on repeat: Rashida Prime’s Damaged Interface is a flawless piece of ambient, combining calm sci-fi-esque atmospheres with moments of dynamic synth intensity. We can’t get enough of this. (2016, Blud Honey / Cyber Dream)
Rhucle focuses on minimalism here: water, birds, soft synths, even tones. Time flows by before you know it, revealing a gentle perfectionism of sound. Photosynthesis is out on Patient Sounds on cassette and digital.
Sangam, Music for Sleep, Rhucle, and No Death unite on a delicious/nutritious four way ambient split. Minimal, bright, and perfectly calm. Divine, if the context is right. Many thanks and blessings extended. Out on Alien Garage.
ᔕᙡᓮᙢ ᔕᗢᘎᒪᔕ’ debut album ??????? is the absolute finest new agey vaporpop you’ll hear in quite a while. Gentle beats, vaguely ‘oriental’ melodies, and the sweetest haze over everything.
And through it all a glimpse of genuine worship. Allow yourself to be soothed by the Goddess. She takes many forms. ??????? is out through Business Casual and as a digital VR experience called Sacred Siren on itch.io: jamesont.itch.io/sacred-siren.