Soothing and wholesome ambient from THE GAYE DEVICE – ingress egress is a powerful cinematic synth journey.
Stretched over 8 luscious tracks, the album wanders through retro cyberpunk vibes, floating through a glowing synthetic haze.
Sometimes hopeful, sometimes brooding – yet always satisfying on a deep level. There is a mystical and ethereal flavor to the soundscapes while remaining quite synthetic – like a holodeck of lush wonder.
The tracks are long and thoughtful. Blissful even. Perfect to listen with a cup of coffee or light rain-showers outside.
Pick up the digital album via Bandcamp and explore the rest of the discography while you’re there!
I was very excited to find a new release from Vivarium Recordings in my feed – I recognized the name Bro Biden instantly and hopped over to the band camp page. When I arrived, before I could click play, I discovered another blurb had already been written – while not exactly high praise, the final words of the author read “good luck“. I read this and immediately took it as a challenge. What could be inside that is so gnarly that it would warrant such a warning? Intrigued, I dove in, and what I discovered was a nearly bottomless pool of beautiful creativity.
Calm and collected ambient from producer Colonial Skyway
Landline is an album built from 6 long-form drone tracks that, for the most part, dwell in the realm of subtle darkness and brooding nostalgia, drifting occasionally into warm hopefulness. There is an atmosphere of intimacy to the songs – often invoking imagery not dissimilar from the albums artwork – wide open fields, sprawling and epic – yet alone. Churning, fuzzy synths are abundant – leading the listener into a realm that is organic and expansive.
This one is perfect for ambient listeners who want a bit more of a passive experience – whether to fall asleep at night or have a soundtrack to your morning meditation. Be sure to check out Colonial Skyway’s other projects on their bandcamp page – and pick up the album for yourself, pay what you want style!
The gang at Vivarium Recordings in collaboration with the self-proclaimed Brone Hivemind present us with a collection if bizarre yet satisfying drone and ambient tracks.
Brobient is a unique concept in itself – ambient and drone tracks created and constructed from love-hate realm of Bro-Step. For those not familiar with the style, it sits in between oversaturated modern dubstep and overproduced EDM. You might be thinking HEY that sounds like a weird place to trawl for ambient material – but all the producers involved in this project were quite up to the task.
The thick 11-track playlist brings the listener on a strange and wandering journey through harsh noise, atmospherics, and general deconstructed sonic sensations. Though the sounds are stretched and manipulated, the raw energy of the Bro-Step shines through, with ripping oscillations shredding through the mix. It’s all got an atmosphere of mysterious dankness, wrapped up and delivered hot-and-ready to your earholes via drone delivery.
Big recommendation on this one if you’re looking to spice up your ambient playlist – or if you need something less structured to start your day. Definitely explore Vivariums page for the album for links to all the artists, and to learn more about the Brone Hivemind…
Somewhere inbetween the tops of clouds and the beginning of the starry sky exists “Dream Mediations” – an album by Covolux released by Earthrid Records.
Beautiful ambient-drone compositions with a big emotional injection. Often such ethereal productions can lean in one direction or the other, being steeped in nostalgic melancholy or otherwise totally void of humanity opting for a more studious view – here in Dream Mediations I find a wonderful balance of the two.
With the bulk of the sounds being triumphant and compassionate, Covolux lulls the listener into a comfortable state – the perfect de-arming to swoop in and take control of our minds, steering us around the landscape and showing us personal highlights. Atmospheric turns into a too-good descriptor, as I found each composition instilling me with a sense of flight, as if I were in a waking dream – able to launch off and glide above my surroundings at any moment…
Overall the album is a very relaxing listen, and would be quite at home during a personal meditation session or calm rainy mornings. Blissful drones give way to more energy and movement in tracks such as “Acts of Kindness”, which fully embraces the orchestral instrumentation of the project and steers head-on into modern classical territory – while slightly out of place with the rest of the tracks, it’s turned into one of my favorites!
Supremely satisfying sonic experiments from xas abra – brought to us by Engram Recordings.
Surgical is a 10-track album, curiously with each track weighing in at exactly 4 minutes and 34 seconds. Is there an underlying purpose to this? Does it signal that these sounds are perhaps generated, or trimmed from larger improvisational recordings? It’s all quite curious and, in the end, it really does not matter, as the sounds themselves are deeply interesting and engaging to consume.
From fuzzy lo-fi glitches to off-kilter synthetic shredding, xas wields a sonic toolkit of extravagant diversity and force, as layer upon layer of textural waves overlap and merge again and again. With the heavy rhythmic elements added to what could have easily been a pure-drone experiment, the tracks float into “deconstructed club” territory as the warbled synths are consumed by powerful hissing percussion. Don’t underestimate this one as it’s a dense and delicious project!
Beautiful experimental vapornoise, brought to us by Vacuum Noise Records. 2 tracks drifting around melancholy dreampunk drones, slushy vocals resting ontop of plump, fuzzy and cavernous atmospherics. A brief yet satisfying study of sounds, headphone listening highly recommended! Especially getting into the second track, devolving into nearly musique concrete tonal wandering as things become stretched around the listener in 4 dimensions.
The ever-delicious dronegaze ensemble of Nonconnah is back at it with a sleek 4-track project titled Transcription of Headstones. The EP in itself is a microcosm of the Nonconnah sound and aesthetic – perfectly packaging lo-fi melancholy mood that their songs so often dance within. Featuring a plethora of lush atmospherics paired and layered with sublime string noodling, the sounds draw the listener in, beckoning them to stick around a while…..
And if you’re like me, 4 tracks just isn’t enough – and thankfully it does not have to be! Nonconnah has a thick and delicious back catalog that is worthy of exploration and appreciation. Do have a poke through their bandcamp and support when you can!
The ever-intoxicating sounds of 36 are coming back to us on fresh waves – this time in the form of a so-called “mini-album” Wave Variations.
A collection of short flowing compositions – Wave Variations features 12 tracks (2 of which are exclusive to the vinyl release) presented as Sequences One to Twelve. Now that would typically seem like a full-length album, but I understand what the producer is going for when they dub it a mini-album. Each track floats around 3 minutes in length, which is a definite oddity in the world of ambient music. 36 explains…
‘I feel like a lot of ambient music (including my own) is often unnecessarily long and these small vignettes work as a nice counter to that. Don’t expect long build-ups or over-extended crescendos”
It may seem like a negative and/or blanketed statement, but it’s quite spot on. And in the case of this album, the brevity definitely plays to its advantage. I actually think this is a fantastic introduction of sorts to 36 in general, with each track highlighting different aspects of their signature sound – melodic and melancholy, expressive yet relaxing.
Wave Variations takes cues from it’s own name, with each track having pulsing hypnotic qualities. Tracks like “Eighth Sequence” masterfully coaxing the listener into a pensive state, floating in time for a brief reflective moment. The tempo and pacing of the noodling synthesizers and humming pads translate across the project, whether taking a more playful approach or sinking back into a numbing melancholy.
The album was originally released back in July by Past Inside The Present – and although the physical editions are currently sold out, we are lucky to have access to this digital edition. Support the artist directly via Bandcamp.