Author Topic: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)  (Read 976 times)

The Mollusk

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Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« on: October 14, 2020, 05:03:52 PM »
I've been listening to loads of ambient music in the last week, more now than I think any other point in my life. Started with Cluster and Popol Vuh during my big Krautrock binge and then I think my brain just went "Actually mate this is pretty much all you can handle right now, stick with this just in case you put something else on and a drum beat comes in too high in the mix and sends you off down a manic fear spiral." Yeah, I'm not doing particularly grand at the moment.

Whilst I've been thoroughly enjoying soft-edged audio morphine like Stars of the Lid, GAS' Pop, and a bunch of Eno/Budd/Lanois collab stuff, I've also fallen even deeper in love with the more rough-edged side of ambient, a bit more open to melodic structure, rugged terrains, off-kilter loops, less clarity but still present is the encompassing bliss of "another place" I can just disappear into. Tim Hecker is a fucking genius and also I really like Forest Swords, and Kosmischer Pitch by Jan Jelinek, whose album cover art suits the music to perfection. I'd like more of this please!

Additionally I've been sucked right back into the vast and stunning sun-drenched expanses of Earth, particularly their rich and beautiful 2019 album Full Upon Her Burning Lips (king_tubby, if you're reading this, I've finally come around to seeing the merit of this one!) and I'd love to find some more stuff that's similar to this. It doesn't have to be right on the money, I just want some really slow, minimal or contemplative guitar music. I think The Books would probably suit what I'm trying to describe here but I don't really like the one album I've heard, The Lemon of Pink. Actually, For The Trees by Matmos is EXACTLY what I'm on about.

Sorry if this post is too vague. I hope it makes sense.

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2020, 05:25:44 PM »
Fennesz - Venice and Endless Summer spring to mind. Also Taylor Deupree - Stil, 1am, Shoals might fit the bill.

chveik

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2020, 05:31:01 PM »
your post is a bit confusing. maybe Ben Frost. and give Natural Snow Buildings a chance.

Brundle-Fly

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2020, 05:42:33 PM »

wosl

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2020, 05:51:22 PM »
Main?  I'm thinking stuff from the Hz box especially, but probably anything by them might well appeal. Firmament II doesn't appear to be on YT, but from memory strikes a good balance.  Beatless, mind (one of the slogans on early Main covers was "drumless space"), and done expressly and extensively using guitars in a non-rock way.

Famous Mortimer

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2020, 06:03:16 PM »
I recently heard Volume Settings Folder on Bandcamp and they're pretty good. Nice gentle ambient guitar sounds.

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2020, 06:05:58 PM »
There are some very good Jóhann Jóhannsson albums that are fairly ambient.

This is the first one that comes to mind, it’s about the manual for a printer but scored for (and recorded with) a the city of Prague orchestra:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_1401,_A_User's_Manual

Inspector Norse

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2020, 06:26:17 PM »
Fennesz is the obvious answer. Endless Summer and Venice are masterpieces, Black Sea is great too but less accessible (insofar as you can call Fennesz accessible). But you maybe know him already.

Tim Hecker has done some stuff in this vein though he also strays more towards harsher/whiter noise.

Hey what about Basinski’s Disintegration Loops? Several recordings, varying from a few minutes to an hour, of short taped melodies being played on a loop until they, yes, disintegrate. Very ambient and organic.

Or for something different, one I like late at night is Neel’s Phobos. It’s ambient and quirky and textural and organic, but it’s the ambience and texture and, um, organicness of an alien planet. The album actually sounds like space exploration. Not in a cheesy 80s synth-funk way (not that that’s necessarily a bad way to sound) but in a glistening, cold yet wondrous way.

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2020, 06:55:43 PM »
Yes to Basinski.

I like Fennesz' stuff with Jim O'Rourke and Peter Rehberg as FennoBerg. Actually there's loads of stuff on Mego.

I know you know all about Leyland Kirby

When I have the laptop on I'll refresh my memory!

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2020, 07:13:39 PM »
Godspeed you black emperor. Particularly F#A#infinity

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2020, 07:54:24 PM »
Cremation Lily. Specifically the albums In England Now, Underwater and The Processes and Instruments of Normal People.... A mixture of lo-fi tape sounds and digital processing, including cassette loops, field recordings, droney treated piano, bloopy synths, spoken word segments and occasional beats.


Valiska is worth a look if you like Tim Hecker. Piano, guitar, electronics, subtle (and occasionally not-so-subtle) distortion. Shifts is a good starting point, and the 25 minute A Day as a Blade of Grass is great if you want something dynamic and ever-changing.


Biosphere's Shenzhou might be worth a listen, largely made from loops of crackly old Debussy recordings, some processed beyond recognition into weird digital nether-realms ('Gravity Assist' is the king here - it's a quiet but stunning monolith of isolationist sound).


Alva Noto's Xerrox 2 is maybe the best 'noisy ambient' album I've ever heard. It's all sample-based, largely digitally altered orchestral recordings. It gets quite loud and distorted in places, but then check the 'Monophaser' tracks for pure beauty.


Stephen Hess and Christopher McFall's The Inescapable Fox is a beautiful scuzzy piece of treated piano and field recordings which gets quite mangled in places. Similar is Elegi's Varde, which gets into really quite fucking creepy territory at times.




edit: a few tracks that might suit your instrumental guitar search:
The Future Sound of London - Wooden Ships
Six Organs of Admittance - Saint Cloud
Do Make Say Think - Goodbye Enemy Airship
Michael Hedges - Spare Change
And Mark McGuire's Get Lost album.

The Mollusk

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2020, 09:19:20 PM »
I forgot to also add that I’d prefer it if the music was more bright and optimistic and not bleak void-staring sadgasm stuff. Sorry. That probably narrows the criteria down pretty strongly.

Will still try and check out a lot of this tomorrow though.

Captain Crunch

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2020, 09:40:07 PM »
Maybe more riffy than you wanted but Soden are pretty sweet:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQIpJ7-Lz6M

And there’s always the much-missed magical wonder of WHIT:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yKXpJ2gAAYg

SpiderChrist

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2020, 09:43:16 PM »
Threads like these are why I love CaB

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2020, 09:51:40 PM »
check out Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, she makes some lovely organic sounding stuff using modular gear, the kind of music that would make an ideal soundtrack to hypnagogic visions of cambrian lifeforms wiggling about on the ocean floor

Wetlands

Tides II

I Will Make Room For You

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2020, 10:03:13 PM »
I forgot to also add that I’d prefer it if the music was more bright and optimistic and not bleak void-staring sadgasm stuff. Sorry. That probably narrows the criteria down pretty strongly.

Will still try and check out a lot of this tomorrow though.
In that case, go for Alva Noto of my suggestions first, the others aren't all bleak but definitely on the minor key end of things. I'll be back tomorrow once I've thought of warmer stuff.

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2020, 12:02:44 AM »
Elgaland-Vargaland National Anthem

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NEwc8uIuQk

Nurse With Wound in a playful mood

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IrXihhWW5Do

Keith Fullerton Whitman

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1ZnHFviZRo

Famous Mortimer

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2020, 12:07:18 AM »
Local (to me) tape label Distant Bloom would be right up your street, I think. I'm just listening to "Future Void" by Norah Lowray and it's fantastic (all their stuff is on Bandcamp).

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2020, 12:18:06 AM »
Tom Recchion

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aLwIYGNQ7rM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1uIaqqKjSuE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0vg0tRuqyQ

For some reason I only own one Windy & Carl album, this one. They sound right for the guitar stuff

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ho8INWVGwDk


This is all ancient

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #19 on: October 15, 2020, 12:26:31 AM »
Ok, so here's some brighter sounding stuff. Some of it isn't quite as weird as the last post but it's hopefully all beyond straight-up drone and repetition:

Christopher Bissonnette - Periphery. Processed piano and strings. Has a huge, open feel, slow moving spaces, but the sounds are all oddly glitched and looped meaning it never feels static or too droney. Not all pieces are explicitly uplifting, but it has a certain gentleness that makes it soothing without being at all cloying.

Krzysztof Orluk & Bai Tian - Structure Of. Sound sculptures with a range of moods and tones. All excellent, but the warmest are 'On the Way', 'Sense' and 'Inside', which should definitely appeal to your current demands.

Simon Scott - Below Sea Level. Slowdrive drummer soundtracks the fens. Layers of gurgling and fuzzing sounds accompanied by guitar and electronics. Abstract and very pretty.

Biosphere - Dropsonde. Warm synth tones and oddly looped, softly shuffling jazz drums. His more recent release The Hilvarenbeek Recordings is a field recording-based work that starts in conventional drone territory before throwing in layers of unusual and surprising sounds, whilst retaining a certain hypnotic ambience.

Porya Hatami - Land. He works largely with field recordings, which are turned into this blissful textural pillow. 

Akira Kosemura - It's On Everything. Mostly piano and electronics. A really warm, bright album that has quite a lot of variety given its small range of sounds.

Onirojenik - Onirojenik World. A side project of Ishq, it retains some of that project's new age tendencies, but filters them through various stutters, delays and effects, leading to a weirdly structured, abstract, ever-changing soundscape.

Motionfield - Luftrum. I've linked to part 4 as I think it might appeal most at the moment, although the whole thing is beautiful. It's pretty synth-based in comparison with the previous suggestions, but it's texturally very thick and hazy in a way a lot of ambient music isn't. It always makes me feel like I'm half asleep on a sunny day, a very vivid sensation.

The first album by Autumn of Communion. Maybe more conventional than some of the other stuff, but it's bright and has lots of nice textures, and is structurally much more dynamic than typical ambient.

And a couple of straight-forward warm droney ambient albums you might not know, just because. Off Land - Field Tangents and Lee Anthony Norris & Porya Hatami - The Longing Daylight.


edit:
Not the usual Tangerine Dream sound, but some of Thorsten's compositions will fit.
Persistence of Memory Part 2
Metaphor Part 1

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2020, 10:44:07 AM »
I forgot to also add that I’d prefer it if the music was more bright and optimistic and not bleak void-staring sadgasm stuff. Sorry. That probably narrows the criteria down pretty strongly.

Will still try and check out a lot of this tomorrow though.

Since you mentioned Earth, check out Growing's albums maybe, particularly their first one.



Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2020, 11:21:21 AM »
Best current ambient labels, (especially for the more rougher edged type, non bleak stuff).

West Mineral
https://www.discogs.com/label/1404673-West-Mineral-Ltd
Experiences Ltd
https://www.discogs.com/label/1752559-Experiences-Ltd
Motion Ward
https://www.discogs.com/label/938908-Motion-Ward

The Mollusk

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2020, 11:23:38 AM »
Gradually making my way through all this stuff at the moment, replies incoming.

Or for something different, one I like late at night is Neel’s Phobos. It’s ambient and quirky and textural and organic, but it’s the ambience and texture and, um, organicness of an alien planet. The album actually sounds like space exploration. Not in a cheesy 80s synth-funk way (not that that’s necessarily a bad way to sound) but in a glistening, cold yet wondrous way.

This isn't what I was looking for here, but it is fucking great. I wanted to dip in for the first track to scope it out but can't bring myself to turn it off. Did some reading and am now very eager to check out his other project Voices From The Lake. Tangentially, it's been ages since I initially checked it out but I reckon Roly Porter's Life Cycle of a Massive Star might also fit this bill, being a spacious deep ambient concept album about outer space, if you weren't already aware of it?

The Mollusk

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #23 on: October 15, 2020, 12:09:35 PM »
check out Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, she makes some lovely organic sounding stuff using modular gear, the kind of music that would make an ideal soundtrack to hypnagogic visions of cambrian lifeforms wiggling about on the ocean floor

Wetlands

Tides II

I Will Make Room For You

This is fucking mint, really enjoying the EARS album.

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.

Roy*Mallard

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #25 on: October 15, 2020, 01:43:59 PM »
For a bit of drone, try Chihei Hatakeyama....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqnpPVy4fjc

Some krauty-ambience (fetauring Steve Schroyder from early Tangerine Dream)...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z2XoSuKqC9g

Lights Dim with Gallery Six
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oqro47-y1nA

Jon Mark - new agey ambience
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWI-4bAZfyE

And a classic....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqQ59i4PmGE



Edit....and why not some Dead Voices On Air (Or Zoviet France)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rcua-yJvJVo&list=OLAK5uy_lt-bgHjCPQpofBp46YKMC9ITRSeCvqclg

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #26 on: October 15, 2020, 02:07:49 PM »
Obvious choice but KLF - Chill Out

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #27 on: October 15, 2020, 02:08:56 PM »
Tangentially, it's been ages since I initially checked it out but I reckon Roly Porter's Life Cycle of a Massive Star might also fit this bill, being a spacious deep ambient concept album about outer space, if you weren't already aware of it?
Incidentally (though if you want more optimistic sounding stuff it won't be what you're after) Roly Porter's recent album 'Kistvaen' is one of my favourite records of the year.

Famous Mortimer

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Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #28 on: October 15, 2020, 04:43:24 PM »
I love Tim Hecker but he's not one to be listening to if you want some warmth in the room. I just popped on "Mort Aux Vaches" and while I can admire its beauty, it also didn't improve my mood much.

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith is great, though. Thanks for bringing them to my attention.

Re: Gimme some organic quirky textural ambience (please)
« Reply #29 on: October 15, 2020, 06:56:49 PM »

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