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The Most Breathtaking Ambient Music Ever Conceived

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  • The Most Breathtaking Ambient Music Ever Conceived

    OK lay it on me. What are, in your mind, the most beautiful pieces of Ambient ever created? I'm talking rich textures, heart-wrenching emotion, deeply introspective atmospheres, anything that stops you in your tracks or brings a tear to your eye.

    A few of mine:

    Julianna Barwick - Pyrrhic
    Loscil - Endless Falls
    Olafur Arnalds - Raein (not strictly ambient, sorry)
    Ital Tek - Blood Rain (great video)
    Sorrow - 21.12.2012
    r beny - spring in blue
    falls - 07022016

    Looking forward to hearing yours!

  • #2
    Too subjective, in my opinion. Sorry.
    I may not post anything useful, but at least I do it often

    Bandcamp // SoundCloud // YouTube

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    • #3
      Okay, I've changed my mind and I'm going to chip in with,

      Gustav Holst - Mars, the Bringer of War
      I may not post anything useful, but at least I do it often

      Bandcamp // SoundCloud // YouTube

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      • #4
        Originally posted by synkrotron View Post
        Too subjective, in my opinion. Sorry.
        That's why I specified "in your mind" ;) Everyone no doubt has pieces that stop us in our tracks, and I'm keen to hear what they are.

        Thanks for your input. Not Ambient of course, but pretty magnificent. I've let the album run on and I'm really enjoying Venus, the Bringer of Peace.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by synkrotron View Post
          Okay, I've changed my mind and I'm going to chip in with,

          Gustav Holst - Mars, the Bringer of War
          I like that one!

          My favourite Ambient of the past months might be Mathias Grassow & Closing The Eternity's album of the same name. I like Grassow's work in general a lot, also the stuff he did with Agalloch singer John Haughm. Alio Die is another artist that I like a lot. The last Northaunt albums were really good, as well. A classic for me is Biosphere's Substrata.

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          • #6
            At first, this thread just seems like another way of asking "what's your favorite ambient music?". But I guess from reading your post, you are interested in music that is very emotionally moving and outwardly beautiful... which isn't necessarily the same as my personal "favorite" ambient music (since I also like a lot of minimal, understated, dark, or experimental ambient). So with that in mind, here's a few that fit that description imo:

            Steve Roach | A Few More Moments
            Steve Roach | Australian Dawn - The Quiet Earth Cries Inside
            Jeff Pearce | Angels of the Ocean Calm
            Aphex Twin | Stone in Focus
            Hammock | City in the Dust on My Window
            Stars of the Lid | Requiem for Dying Mothers
            Benn Jordan | Looking into the Past

            I think all of these tracks share an ethereal and melancholy kind of beauty. Hope you enjoy!

            EDIT: I'll throw this in too, though maaaybe not technically ambient. One of my all time favorite pieces from a movie score: Jóhann Jóhannsson | Heptapod B
            Last edited by dreamware; 09-16-2019, 01:25 PM.
            Bandcamp | Youtube | SoundCloud

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            • #7
              Yes this is what I'm talking about, not just favourites but specifically emotive or personally meaningful pieces. I'd really like to see how diverse people's perspectives are (which I'm starting to see already).

              Stars of the Lid would definitely be in mine too, and as one of my earliest Ambient loves, Tired Sounds and Their Refinement hold a special significance in my emotional being, it seems! There's actually a certain uneasiness I experience with those albums sometimes, though I couldn't tell you why. As if it verges on too significant.

              This Hammock track has just made its way onto my 'breathtaking' playlist.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by zonderziel View Post
                Stars of the Lid would definitely be in mine too, and as one of my earliest Ambient loves, Tired Sounds and Their Refinement hold a special significance in my emotional being, it seems! There's actually a certain uneasiness I experience with those albums sometimes, though I couldn't tell you why. As if it verges on too significant.
                I am with you on this 100%. I listened to The Tired Sounds Of a while back when I was still very new to ambient music. I hadn't explored much ambient outside of Steve Roach until then. It was probably my first introduction to drone music and it really blew my mind.

                There's a kind of edge to their music; it's often tinged with a sense of grief or pain. If I want to listen to ambient music to calm my nerves or soothe my anxiety, I won't usually be listening to Stars of the Lid. There's a profound emotional complexity that elevates their music above simple relaxation or new age ambient. However I need to be in the right state of mind for it.
                Last edited by dreamware; 09-19-2019, 12:23 PM.
                Bandcamp | Youtube | SoundCloud

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                • #9
                  Ha yes exactly! It's clear there's more of a compositional approach to their output, compared to simply producing (which, as you touch on, has its place). Not unlike A Winged Victory, etc.

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                  • #10
                    This morning, listening to an ambient radio show for the fist time which I recorded back in 2017, my ears perked up when I heard what I later found to be Stars of the Lid, a name I've heard over the yrs but never took any time to investigate. I came into AO to post 'The Atomium Parts 2 & 3' my fave from Parts 1,2&3 from the show. On doing so I came onto this thread, had a look in and see talk about SOTL...haha some coincidence.
                    Anyway then, here they are;


                    "The dumbest of people are the first to tell you."annodeMy Music
                    Check out my ambient radio show list @ recommended listening

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                    • #11
                      Ha! Spooky! Thanks for sharing. Definitely two of their more sedating pieces, but still incredible sound their able to get out of the strings.

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