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Organic ambient

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  • Organic ambient

    Hi all.

    Now I'm sure we all agree that there many forms of ambient in existence now, but I wanted to discuss one rare form that I have been thinking about a lot lately. Don't know if it has a proper name yet, but I'm calling it Organic ambient; it sounds more like a landscape than actual music, if you get what I mean. In essence, there's more focus on natural sounds such as field recordings than on electronic sounds. The natural world is something that amazes and fascinates me, so that's why I really like this style. So I wanted to make a thread to start discussion and to share any recommendations with others.

    Some example releases in this style, in no particular order, are:

    Steve Roach - Early Man
    Robert Rich - Somnium
    MetaDronos & Scott Lawlor - The Ancient Glaciers of Mars
    Alio Die - Suspended Feathers
    Almost all the music of Andrew Lahiff
    Oƶphoi - Amnios
    Brian Eno - Ambient 4/On Land

    If anyone knows of any other such music, do let us know. Cheers.

  • #2
    This is the only TRUE ambient, the others are posers.

    I kid, but this is my favorite area of ambient music by far, and I feel like a lot of what I do falls in this category (given that the artist is usually the worst person to categorize his own music).

    Shameless plug:

    (would have put it in here but despite the fact I know how to, it won't let me--I get a blank SC player).....not any more :maniac:
    Last edited by seismic1; 12-01-2014, 04:43 PM.


    • #3
      This is an area I have become more and more interested in lately. I love working with field recordings and natural elements, in fact, I haven't touched a synth in nearly 2 months now.

      As far as recommended listening goes I definitely second the Metadronos/Scott Lawlor album (I may be sightly biased).

      Another great one I discovered last week was "Field Recordings from the Edge of Hell" by Dirty Knobs

      My record label


      • #4
        Great discussion underway. I did enjoy Evolution of the Evening. Not sure about Field Recordings from the Edge of Hell; that sounds like it's been made using only the audio stretching software.

        Since we're self-promoting slightly, The Sleeper's Night Journey gets like this on some tracks particularly towards the end.

        Not to mention, I'm working on stuff currently that is organic turned up to 11.


        • #5
          I use a lot of field recordings for background drones and ambience. Sometimes they are manipulated so much that one would be hard pushed to recognise them as, say, birds or traffic. Sometimes I leave them as is. I've got forty-odd field recordings I can plunder when need arises. Probably more than that, really, if I include all the things around the house I've hit, crunched, smashed and otherwise abused. I like listening to Organic Ambience (a good name by the way) but also like making music by it.


          • #6
            Hey Ian, thanks for contributing. That's pretty much how I work too, not just with the field recordings, but also with my electronically sourced sounds, processing them until them they cannot be recognised anymore, so much so that the listener has no idea how such a piece of music could have been made. Hope that makes sense.


            • #7
              Yes, that makes sense. Most of the fun, for me, comes from manipulating sound. I've always been fascinated by sound and, as far as I'm concerned, everything you hear is music. Take the sound of a washing machine and see what comes from it - all sorts of wonderful stuff!


              • #8
                The first truly ambient song I ever made was a custom thunderstorm to help a girlfriend sleep easier. I downloaded a bunch of rain and thunder claps, made my own rain with a fountain recording I made and ran it through Live's grain delay, and then arranged it all, did some filtering to make it all blend together like they belonged, and added a little reverb. It was great sounding Actually, when I used Reason I was making a playable thunderstorm with NN-XT but never finished it, that was pretty cool, too.

                I haven't touched a synth in a long time either, Negative Spectrum. Actually sold my Blofeld recently, and have other gear to sell as well. I'll keep my OP-1 and MicroBrute, but everything else is going hardware-wise. I work better for ambient with software and effects on samples. I'd started building a modular with a plan to record drones, but there's so much out there soundwise it's just an un-needed expensive for me

                And my Mogees turns anything that vibrates into an drone machine anyway. In the case of my computer, I can control the evolution of the drone by playing f'ing video games lol. Push the computer hard enough for the fans to kick in higher, etc. That's just amazing. But I digress a bit from the topic at hand.

                Natural! Organic! Yeah!


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ian Haygreen View Post
                  Take the sound of a washing machine and see what comes from it
                  in the late 80's I used a sneaker in a dryer as a quasi-rhythmic source for a percussion track.


                  • #10
                    I think I need to wash clothes tonight...


                    • #11
                      True Analog Washing Machine Music.


                      • #12
                        Hey all.

                        I have just discovered that Robert Rich has made an 8-hour sequel to Somnium. It sounds great. Hooray.