Ambient: one of most fascinating and beautiful genres of music. Over the years, countless amazing producers have released fantastic ambient pieces, and it won‘t stop by now. With the sheer volume of new ambient music currently being released, it could be easy to forget masterpieces from days gone by. Here at Monument, we feel it’s time for us to show you 10 classic ambient tracks that touch our hearts and melt our minds. We hope you enjoy the list!
Artist: Brian Eno
Track: An Ending (Ascent)
Known as the father of modern ambient music, Brian Eno’s track An Ending (Ascent) shows exactly what it needs to take us far away from everything. Emotional melodies and beautiful female vocals transform the track into a four and a half minute piece of pure melancholy.
For most DJs, Biosphere’s Startoucher is a powerful tool to open a set with, but it is more than just an opening title. The track begins with a very subtle and dark melody and evolves to beautiful and deep soundscapes. Biosphere creates the sonic sensation of drifting away from our planet into the vastness of space and the universe. Minimal sounds and sparse vocals intensify this unique feeling.
UK – based duo Autreche are pioneers of the scene and they loving to explore all facets of electronic and experimental music. Autreche’s Foil is a perfect example of their unique style of production. The track combines eerie melodies with warping sound elements to a surreal and hypnotic trip to dive in.
Artist: Asmus Tietchens
Track: Rasch und mäßig bewegt
The track title „Rasch und mäßig bewegt“ comes from german and means „moved quickly and moderatly“. Sounds weird, right? If you take a listen to this old gem, you can hear why the name fits. The track jumps between the different moods of deep & slow elements and fast broken sounds. It has no clear textures and listening to it allows the listener float away into a world of pure surreality.
Artist: Zoviet France
Track: Dream Hole
Zoviet France’s Dream Hole, from the year 1987, is one of the most beautiful gems of the ambient genre today. With minimal elements, gloomy echos and a eerie melody, this track creates a dark place where you feel a little bit scared but still fascinated.
Artist: Aphex Twin
Of course, veteran producer and passionate musician Aphex Twin should not be missing on this list. His productions are milestones in the history of electronic music. One of his greatest release is Selected Ambient Works Volume II with our favorite magical piece #3. The track is an ambient beauty with a bittersweet, melancholic melody which creates sadness and happiness simultaneously.
Track: Immer Weiter
Immer Weiter is a ambient classic from the field recording compilation Immerland (1997), produced by Klangwart. The beginning is very quiet and soft, with beautiful melodies. The piece then turns into fascinating combination of unique field records and experimental sounds with no clear direction of where it is going.
Artist: Mike Parker
Track: Voice Three
In a previous interview we spoke with Mike Parker, one of the legends of hypnotic techno. His productions are timeless and show his wide knowledge of the deep and hypnotic genre. Voice Three, from his EP Voiceprint, is a very short but great ambient piece. The combination of noise elements and low-key sounds is mesmerizing and clearly displays Parker’s style of production.
Artist: Surface 10
Track: Live Latitude
California based producer and Artist Dean DeBenedictis, AKA Surface 10, is known for ambient soundscapes in his productions. His track Live Latitude is a beautiful trip with unique melodies and spacey elements in the beginning. These sounds prepare us for a smooth transition to crystal clear textures which make the listener feel like an astronaut going on an expedition. The track ends with a beautiful outro which renders the listener speechless.
The death of Mika Vainio was a shock for the world of electronic music, but his legacy still lives on. If you want to get a slice of his style of production than you should listen to Radio from his Album Metri (1994). A few vocals and gloomy noise elements mark an eerie beginning. With minimalistic tones and melodies , the track creates Vainio’s unique type of dark and mysterious atmosphere that invites the listener to get lost in the shadows.
Below is a video playlist with all of our classic ambient tracks. Enjoy!