The Ambient mixtape update #001

Notes on update #001 of The Ambient mixtape.

Reflection is the latest ambient project of Brian Eno. It is both an album and a app. In the app the music will change so it, for instance, is brighter in the morning.

It is based on probability with rules that dictate the how likely something will happen. That way the piece will be different each time it is performed. You get a certain freedom in the music that reminds me of John Cage. Especially the number pieces where the pitches are chosen with the help of I Ching and the performer are left a lot of freedom on how to perform the pieces.

Brian Eno defines Ambient music as something that is always the same but changes all the time. Like looking at a river. I totally agree with that definition. He sees his ambient music as a continuous project that started in 1975 with Discreet Music and Reflection is the latest stage. It’s a very good piece. In my opinion one of the best that he has done so far.

At first glance the Snd album by Microstoria might seem disparate and ugly. But, the more you listen to it you discover it’s beauties. The sounds fit together and make up a small but very beautiful world of it’s own.

the-ambient-mixtape
Click to open in Spotify

 

 

 

 

 

Minimalism: Harold Budd

Minimalism is a Spotify playlist with minimalist, post-minimalist and ambient music.

Harold Budd is an American composer and pianist, born 1936. His music is characterized by slow and beautiful ambient music, often with piano. He has been an recording artist since the seventies.

He is most famous for a number of ambient recordings he has made with Brian Eno. Notably The Pearl and Ambient 2/The Plateaus Of Mirror.

In 1972 he made the groundbreaking album The Pavilion Of Dreams. Jazzy, Minimalistic and Ambient. It was his first album that was produced by Brian Eno.

Avalon Sutra from 2004 was supposed to be his last recording. He had trouble getting someone to release it but David Sylvian came to the rescue and released it on his label.

Lucky enough, he have done albums after Avalon Sutra. For instance, his collaboration with Jane Maru in Jane 1-11 and Jane 12-21.

An interview with Harold Budd in The Guardian can be read here, The most surprising thing is that he don’t own a piano and think that they are ugly. “Architecturally speaking, and in other ways. So to actually live with a piano? Well, that would really insult my aesthetic sense.”

Click to open in Spotify

Ambient I

This is the first in a series of ambient pieces. It has three distinct parts and intros that lead into each part. In the broadest sense I see ambient music as music that stands still. Sort of like seeing water floating by in a river. Feldman is, in my opinion, ambient music with that definition. It is music that has no progress or forward motion. The source-code for this piece can be found at https://github.com/danielstahl/ambient-i.