9 Ambient Albums I Wish Were On Vinyl
I recently wrote about how ambient music is such an incredibly misunderstood music genre.
Those not too familiar with the genre tend to think that ambient music is meant to be background music or simple, boring, “elevator music” or simply music to soundtrack yoga classes. They're wrong! But this time I wanted to write about something a bit different. Since I like a lot of ambient / ambient drone stuff that has never been released on vinyl at all, but that I wish was (for sound quality reasons, collector-ish reasons, etc.) I thought it would be cool to list a few of them. It’s unfortunate but totally understandable that some independent artists and small labels don’t have the budget for vinyl releases. This is the reality: Pressing vinyl is expensive, especially when compared to other formats like CDs, Cassettes or Digital downloads, so who knows...if this blog post gets shared by thousands of people, maybe someone from the labels listed in this post will read it and get some ideas. Anyway, here are nine ambient albums that should be pressed on vinyl.
Fabio Orsi– Winterreise
Release Year: 2010 / Record Label: Slow Flow Rec (Japan) / Format: CD
Fabio Orsi is an electronic musician from Taranto (Southern Italy) specialising in atmospheric ambient / drone music. Winterreise is a place of undying beauty, a place by the river, where trees are abundant and green, where life is simple and serene, and nature is in perfect harmony. Just press play and switch off.
Celer – The Everything And The Nothing
Release Year: 2008 / Record Label: Infraction (US) / Format: CD
Celer was formed in 2005 as a husband-wife ambient drone duo of Danielle Baquet-Long and Will Long. Will and Danielle started writing music for each other. Their music reflected their harmony and love. After Danielle’s tragic death in 2009 (Danielle passed away aged 26), caused by heart failure, Will continued to record music under the same name. In loving memory of his wife. What a beautiful tribute! So please take that into account when listening to The Everything And The Nothing. These 13 tracks of pure ambient bliss with dreamy tones are part of her legacy. Essential listening for fans of Taylor Deupree or William Basinski.
Hakobune – Away From The Lunar Waters
Release Year: 2011 / Record Label: hibernate (UK) / Format: CD
Yorifuji's music is characterised by beautifully textured sonic layers of guitar reverb. Japan has long been renowned as a home of experimental and ambient music excellence and Takahiro Yorifuji aka Hakobune continues this tradition in Away From The Lunar Waters. Essential listening for folks who love getting lost into droning, hazy atmospheres.
Robert Farrugia - Tines
Release Year: 2016 / Record label: Archives (Spain) / Format: CDr
ARCHIVES, a spanish ambient / dub techno label run by Warmth, was born only in 2015 but has already released so many great albums. But this Robert Farrugia album is an absolute essential for fans of moving ambient soundscapes and serene piano chords. The perfect soundtrack to your favourite book.
Imaginary Softwoods – Annual Flowers In Color
Release Year: 2016 / Record Label: Mineral Disk (2016) / Format: 2 x Cassette
Annual Flowers In Color is Emeralds’ John Elliott's first solo full-length release since 2011's The Path Of Spectrolite. It's a double cassette collection of demos and unreleased material from 2011 through 2015, which Elliott calls "a scrapbook documenting some of the fruitful experiments happening in private over the years." These wonderful gifts of sound span a few different directions, from synth, Kosmiche, tape collage, spoken word and ambient drone, but all seems to meld together quite nicely.
ASC - Time Heals All
Release Year: 2013 / Record label: Silent Season (Canada) / Format: 2 x CD
Listen: ASC - Time Heals All
This is emotional, timeless and pure music that really speaks straight from the heart. 'Time heals all' is so absorbing and addictive that I can't even remember the number of times I lost myself listening to it. Probably one of the best ambient albums ever made. From one of the most brilliant and underrated electronic music artists of our time, James Clements.
Emeralds - Ledges
Release Year: 2007 / Record Label: Gneiss Things (US)/ Format: CDr
Listen: Emeralds - Untitled #4
Emeralds were an Ambient / Drone / Electronic music trio from Cleveland, Ohio, United States. Musicians John Elliott, Steve Hauschildt, and Mark McGuire played a key role in modernising the 'Berlin School' of electronic music, by blending genres like ambient music, Kosmisch and Minimalism-based works. Ethereal and druggy ambient music, Ledges will make you fall into a deep coma.
Chihei Hatakeyama - A Long Journey
Release Year: 2010 / Record Label: Home Normal (Japan/UK) / Format: CD
I really love all of Hatakeyama's work, but if I would have to recommend one album as an introduction to his sound, this is the one. A Long Journey is a metaphor for life, Hatakeyama's image of the journey of birth to death, a collection of serene dreamscapes based on field recording material gathered in San Francisco during 2006, mixed with guitar-based pieces, as well as gorgeous piano elements, inspired by Shinto religion of Japan. According to Hatakeyama "Shinto teaches us that everything has a spiritual essence (a ‘Kami’). This loosely translates as a spirit, or god even. There being a myriad of these Kami, they reside in everything but some places are considered to have a more scared spirit within them. Quite often these are rocks, rivers, trees, mountains and other such calming natural places, hence why so many shrines are built in such unique areas."
Andrew Chalk - Time Of Hayfield
Release Year: 2007 / Record Label: Faraway Press (UK) / Format: CD
Listen: Andrew Chalk - Time Of Hayfield
The intimacy of Andrew Chalk’s Time of Hayfield is quite breathtaking. Throughout this journey you are taken through forests. Deep, serene and hypnotic ambient soundscapes will guide you on a trip to the unknown. Simply breathtaking.
Please give this some ♥ if you liked reading this post. Tweet it.
Posted by: Miguel Ferreira
Founder & Selector at That Special Record. Miguel writes interesting stories about outsider electronic music & vinyl culture.