Saturday, December 10, 2016

Cinematic Headspace

I've been on a big Johann Johnnsson kick lately.  He released one of my favorite albums of the year "Orphee" a few months ago and now he has scored the excellent film "Arrival."  It is a wonderful soundtrack that really adds to an already fantastic film.

Johannsson tells the story of how he made the first track in this mix, "Heptpod B," at Song Exploder here...

That new soundtrack is the jumping off point for this cinematic mix.  All the music used was released this year with the exception of tracks from "The Martian" & "The Revenant" which are 2015 recordings.  All these soundtracks are superb and I hope you will seek out the full albums.  I've included the name of the film in the tracklist.


[ s t r e a m ]   [ d o w n l o a d ]   [ i t u n e s ]

T R A C K L I S T :

⦁ 00:00    Johann Johannsson - Heptapod B(Arrival)
⦁ 03:25    Nick Cave & Warren Ellis - Daedalus(Mars)
⦁ 06:15    Harry Gregson-Williams - Message from Hermes(The Martian)
⦁ 08:50    Adam Bryanbaum Wiltzie - Bring This Place to Life(Salero)
⦁ 11:30    A Winged Victory for the Sullen - Metro, pt.3(Iris)
⦁ 15:05    Mac Quayle - leavem3here.flac(Mr. Robot)
⦁ 20:10    Starkey - Ticks(Charting Stardust)
⦁ 24:15    Paul Haslinger - Security is a Myth(Halt & Catch Fire)
⦁ 26:45    Ramin Djawadi - Something I Can Never Have(Westworld)
⦁ 32:10    Adam Bryanbaum Wiltzie - Lithium, the new era(Salero)
⦁ 35:20    A Winged Victory for the Sullen - Flashback Antoine(Iris)
⦁ 37:15    Dustin O'Halloran & Hauschka - Memories(Lion)
⦁ 38:40    Adam Bryanbaum Wiltzie - end credits(Salero)
⦁ 41:25    Johann Johannsson - One of Twelve(Arrival)
⦁ 44:05    Riuichi Sakamoto - Glass & Buffalo(The Revenant)
⦁ 45:40    Nick Cave & Warren Ellis - Mama's Room(Hell or High Water)
⦁ 47:55    A Winged Victory for the Sullen - endless battle of the maudlin ballade, pt. 3(Iris)
⦁ 50:25    Ramin Djawadi - Exit Music(Westworld)
⦁ 54:47    end

Friday, November 25, 2016


I'm not sure where this mix began.  Possibly late at night, glass of whiskey on the table, slow jazz playing in the background.  Arve Henriksen probably came up & got me thinking about dark, atmospheric jazz.  Which sends me to Spotify to investigate more jazz noir, which leads to the discovery of Shadowdream & Dead Combo, which leads to a new mix.

As you've probably guessed by now this is a late night, atmospheric jazz set.  I knew when I started this mix that I'd have to include something from the Twin Peaks soundtrack because that is the first thing I think of when contemplating noir jazz.  The Angelo Badalamenti & David Lynch cut that I picked works nicely because also used it for the title of the mix.

I really like the mood and feel of this entire mix and I hope you do too.  Grab a scotch and give it a spin in the dark.


T R A C K L I S T :
  • 00:00    Angelo Badalamenti - Mysterioso 2
  • 04:37    Arve Henriksen - The Sacristan
  • 07:45    The Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble - Avian Lung
  • 12:45    Triosk - Awake in the Deep
  • 14:18    Harold Budd - Emboldened-My Dreams Perish
  • 16:30    Shadowdream - The Obsession Begins Tomorrow
  • 20:40    Daniel Lanois - Sketches
  • 24:40    Dead Combo - After Peace Swim Twice
  • 27:55    Povarovo - Methro Nome
  • 31:03    Arms And Sleepers - Atelier
  • 33:05    Cliff Martinez - Ask him why he killed my brother
  • 35:04    Shaqdowdream - The Hour of the Wolf, Alfa and Omega
  • 37:25    Bohren & Der Club Of Gore - Karin
  • 40:50    Julien Neto - V Rivers
  • 45:25    Arve Henriksen - Recording Angel
  • 47:25    Pjusk - Dempet
  • 50:10    Jon Hassell - Light on Water
  • 57:40    Nick Cave - Magneto
  • 62:45    end

Saturday, November 12, 2016

endless ambient

I've always been a fan of long form ambient.  It's goes all the way back to side-long cuts on Fripp & Eno's No Pussyfooting and Eno's Discreet Music.  And more recently to the many full album cuts from Steve Roach.  He's got a number of long form tracks and I'm not sure how many he has released.

For this mix I decided to feature a bunch of long tracks and to also let a large chunk of each to play.  Most cuts in the mix play for about 20 minutes or so.  Which is why this ends up easily being the longest mix I've ever done, clocking in at 6 hours and 15 minutes.  The version on Mixcloud is 5 1/2 hours because I needed to get the file size under 500mb.

This mix should work well as an all night sleep aid.


[ s t r e a m ]   [ d o w n l o a d ]   [ i t u n e s ]

T R A C K L I S T :
  • 00:00    Alio Die - Ultima Latet
  • 19:15    James Johnson & Stephen Phillips - Lost at Dunn's Lake
  • 43:15    Disturbed Earth - Butterfly
  • 58:15    Brian Eno - Neroli
  • 1:11:15    Sonmi451 - Ruis
  • 1:30:15    Steve Roack - Etheric Imprints
  • 1:43:55    Aloof Proof - The Ghost Ship
  • 2:03:20    Harold Budd - As Long As I Can Hold My Breath
  • 2:27:30    Seaworthy - Sleep Paths
  • 3:04:00    Robert Rich - Somnium
  • 3:53:15    Jim Cole - Astral
  • 4:10:30    Steve Roach - The Delicate Beyond
  • 4:39:20    Alio Die - In The Labyrinth Garden
  • 5:08:15    Brian Eno - Lux 4
  • 5:22:50    Paul Vnuk - Silence Speaks In Shadows
  • 6:15:21    end

Sunday, October 16, 2016

still falls the rain 2016

Back in 2009 I did a guest mix for Subversion called Still Falls the Rain.  When a regular listener/downloader was looking for a replacement file for one that he had lost I realized that I'd never properly uploaded it to my own archive or to Mixcloud. 

So I dug up the file from 2009, added a few more tracks and uploaded for your listening pleasure.  Good timing too, because it's been raining a lot here so it fits perfectly.


T R A C K L I S T :

  • 00:00     August Stars – Inland Rain
  • 04:25     Part Timer – Rain on My Window
  • 06:50     Letna – Raining Day
  • 09:30     Jon Hassell – Delta Rain Dream
  • 12:55     Manual - After the Rain
  • 14:00     Mark McGuire – A Pocket Full of Rain
  • 15:20     Sense - Early Rain
  • 19:00     Cyber Zen Sound Engine & Matt Borghi – Endless Rain
  • 22:10     Foxx & Budd – Raindust
  • 27:55     Jeff Pearce – Rainshadow Sky
  • 30:22    Giovanni Guidi Trio - The night it rained forever
  • 37:40    experiments in silence - as gentle rain falls
  • 47:56    Ryuichi Sakamoto - After the Rain
  • 48:43   end

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Stranger Synths

I'm sure by now that most of you have seen or heard about the TV show "Stranger Things" on Netflix.  If you haven't seen it, definitely check it out. It totally rips off Close Encounters, ET, Poltergeist, Stand By Me, Firestarter, etc. but it doesn't matter because it's ripping them off in a loving way.

The same is true for the soundtrack.  It's got a great analog synth sound reminiscent of Tangerine Dream and John Carpenter soundtracks.  The minute I heard the Stranger Things theme I knew I had to make a mix featuring the new retro sound.

Even though the music in this mix sounds like it's from the 70s or 80s all of it is new, with most cuts being from 2015 and 2016.  In addition to the Stranger Things theme I of course had to include the Tangerine Dream remix of it. Thanks to Mike of Ambient Music Guide for the heads up on the soundtrack from Halt & Catch Fire by Paul Haslinger. It's fantastic!  Another soundtrack that made it's way into the mix is from Mac Quayle music for Mr. Robot - more analog loveliness.

I hope everyone enjoys the mix, I know had a ball putting it together.


[ s t r e a m ]   [ d o w n l o a d ]   [ i t u n e s ]

T R A C K L I S T:
  • 00:00    Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things
  • 01:04    Tangerine Dream - Stranger Things Theme Remix
  • 03:17    Harry Gregson-Williams - Hexadecimals
  • 05:30    Paul Haslinger - Macmillan Utility
  • 06:55    Pye Corner Audio - Approach
  • 08:40    John Carpenter - Utopian Façade
  • 12:04    Mac Quayle - trustyourself
  • 15:15    Prins Thomas - B
  • 22:30    The Analog Roland Orchestra - Lay Down
  • 24:36    20SIX Hundred - Collapse of Classical Reality
  • 27:07    Panabrite - Sunlight Dive
  • 29:33    Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Hanging Lights
  • 30:48    Nonkeen - Happy Juno
  • 33:15    Paul Haslinger - A Wolf in Unix
  • 34:21    Jean Michel Jarre - The Heart of the Noise
  • 36:54    Mac Quayle - m0rphine
  • 38:40    Pye Corner Audio - Vorsicht
  • 41:02    Cliff Martinez - Son of Placenta Previa
  • 43:15    Qluster - von weiter ferne ganz nah
  • 49:45    Pye Corner Audio - Sleep Chamber
  • 52:00    Bop - Odd Meaning
  • 55:21    Panabrite - Dune
  • 59:15    Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Cops are Good at Finding
  • 60:12    Paul Haslinger - It Speaks
  • 64:15    end

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


Two of my favorite albums this year are from Icelandic composers, Jóhann Jóhannsson - Orphée and Ólafur Arnalds - Islands.  How does the tiny country of Iceland produce so many incredible artists? I don't know how but I'm happy every time new music comes from that mysterious place.

The moment I heard these two recordings I knew I'd have to make a new modern classical mix. All of the music here is fairly new and most of it has an accessible classical take with an ambient touch.


[ s t r e a m ]   [ d o w n l o a d ]   [ i t u n e s ]

T R A C K L I S T :
  • 00:00    Johann Johannsson - Flight From The City
  • 06:06    Ólafur Arnalds - Oldurot
  • 10:27    Kenneth James Gibson - Poured Semi Silently Upon You
  • 16:27    Matt Dunkley - Cycle 6
  • 21:12    Johann Johannsson - A Sparrow Alighted Upon Our Shoulder
  • 23:36    A Winged Victory for the Sullen - Atmos VII
  • 26:00    Ólafur Arnalds - 1995
  • 29:48    Sarah Neufeld & Colin Stetson - And Still They Move
  • 32:23    Nick Cave & Warren Ellis - Casino
  • 34:00    Kenneth James Gibson - Long Gone Canadian Summer
  • 40:30    Johann Johannsson - Good Night Day
  • 44:22    Matt Dunkley - Cycle 5
  • 48:06    Ólafur Arnalds - Doria
  • 51:11    Dustin O'Halloran - We Move Lightly
  • 54:02    Nils Frahm - The Shooting
  • 58:26    Ryuichi Sakamoto - Hell Ensemble
  • 61:01    end

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Ambient Decades: 1980s

This is mix #2 in the Ambient Decades series. As the titles says, this mix focuses on ambient music in the 1980s.

There were some great ambient albums in the 80s, albums that go down as some of the best ambient of all time.  That would be Brian Eno - On Land, Steve Roach - Structures from Silence and Brian Eno & Harold Budd - The Pearl. Beyond those 3 there are more great 80s recordings from Roach & Eno and other classics & worthwhile music.

I was definitely happy to include a cut from Gone to Earth by David Sylvian, one of my favorite albums of all time.  It's such a great recording and at the time it blew my mind.

Next up - the 90s.


T R A C K L I S T :
  • 00:00    Steve Roach - Structures from Silence(1984)
  • 10:40    Brian Eno - Lantern Marsh(1982)
  • 15:20    David Sylvian - The Wooden Cross(1986)
  • 19:20    Michael Brook - Midday(1985)
  • 24:30    Michael Stearns - As The Earth Kissed The Moon(1981)
  • 31:00    Vangelis - Empty Streets(1982)
  • 36:00    Thom Brennan - Moosoon(1987)
  • 44:10    Steve Roach - A Circular Ceremony(1988)
  • 51:58    Brian Eno & Harold Budd - An Echo of Night(1984)
  • 54:00    Jeff Greinke - Island Arc(1986)
  • 56:50    Harold Budd - Sandtreader(1986)
  • 61:45    David Sylvian & Holger Czukay - Mutability(1989)
  • 72:45    U2 - 4th of July(1984)
  • 74:33    Peter Gabriel - Slow Water(1985)
  • 77:08    end

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Perfect Perseid Playlist

This mix is a couple of weeks late. It is a soundtrack for meteor watching, specifically the annual August Perseid meteor shower.  I uploaded it to Mixcloud on Aug. 12th but totally forgot to make it available here as well.  That has now been corrected. 

I've been wanting to use a track from Robert Scott Thompson's album "Pale Blue Dot" and a stargazing mix was the perfect opportunity with Skyway being a great opener for this collection.  I was also happy to include an old favorite - Thom Brennan.  I've always been a big fan of his music and much of it is perfect for star/space themed mixes.


[ s t r e a m ]   [ d o w n l o a d ]   [ i t u n e s ]

T R A C K L I S T :

  • 00:00    Robert Scott Thompson - Skyway
  • 05:20    Forrest Fang - not forgotten
  • 09:40    36 - Miserere
  • 15:05    Aglaia - after midnight
  • 21:40    Markus Guentner - baryon
  • 26:50    Diatonis - one starry starry starry night
  • 31:36    Underworld - simple peal
  • 35:15    Thom Brennan - the fog unveils
  • 41:00    Arovane - Nostalghia I
  • 56:20    Tau Ceti - Cydonia Plains
  • 62:15    Jeffrey Koepper - Distant Light
  • 73:20    Robert Scott Thompson - Shimmer Upon The Mirror Pond
  • 78:14    Brian Eno - Stars
  • 85:05    Sonmi451 - Rigel
  • 93:33    David Wenngren & Christopher Bissonnette - Burn Like a Meteor and Leave No Dust
  • 1:43:37    end

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Ambient Decades: 1970s

This is the first in a series of mixes featuring ambient music from each of the past 4 1/2 decades.

Ambient music came to it's full expression during the 1970s with Eno's Discreet Music & Music for Airports. This mix explores those albums and other electronic gems. This mix/list is by no means definitive. It's music from my collection that is a representation of the emergence of ambient in the 1970s.

As I was sorting through tracks for the mix I realized that I'm definitely going to have to make a mix of 70s berlin school & kraut music electronic tunes. That way I can use Jean Michel Jarre, Can, Holgar Czukay and more rhythmic Tangerine Dream & Klaus Schulze.


T R A C K L I S T :
  • 00:00    Michael Hoenig - Voices of Where(1978)
  • 04:20    Harmonia - By the Riverside(1976)
  • 07:15    Klaus Schulze - Wahnfried 1883(1975)
  • 12:50    Wendy Carlos - Fall(1972)
  • 18:00    Gavin Bryars - The Sinking of the Titanic(1975)
  • 23:25    Tangerine Dream - Sequent C(1974)
  • 25:00    Brian Eno - Discreet Music(1975)
  • 33:33    Kraftwerk - Heimatklänge(1973)
  • 36:45    Tonto's Expanding Head Band - Tama(1971)
  • 41:37    Cluster - In Ewigkeit(1976)
  • 48:30    Ashra - Deep Distance(1976)
  • 53:30    Steve Hillage - Garden of Paradise(1979)
  • 62:25    Tangerine Dream - Rubycon(1975)
  • 65:50    Klaus Schulze - Some Velvet Phasing(1974)
  • 71:50    Brian Eno - Two Rapid Formations(1978)
  • 74:36    Brian Eno - Music for Airports 1/1(1978)
  • 91:09    end

Saturday, July 16, 2016

The Color of Space - guest mix by Mike G of Ambient Music Guide

I've done a lot of mixes over the last ten years.  Obviously I try to have a theme or mood for each mix.  It can get difficult come up with new motifs.  That's why I love the idea that Mike G of Ambient Music Guide had last year.  We decided to trade guest mixes and he suggested we each send each other a few mix titles and that we select one and build the mix off of that title.  It really gets me thinking differently and can help get me out of a rut when looking for mix inspiration.

This mix is the second guest mix from Mike.  I love getting these mixes because so often there are artists or genres I normally don't use but that I love listening to.  This mix exemplifies that perfectly.  I don't listen to as much "space" music as I used to and as I lost myself in this mix I realized that I really need to revisit this style of ambient more often.  I am looking forward to using this as a stargazing soundtrack when I vacation in northern Wisconsin later this summer.

This is what Mike had to say about The Color of Space...
"Space is a theme with multiple meanings and is woven throughout much 
modern ambient and downtempo instrumental music. My mix The Color Space 
is a soundtrack of the cosmos.  All the music has a cosmic feel, whether 
it be one of inner space, outer space or the indefinable regions between."

Thanks Mike!

[ s t r e a m ]   [ d o w n l o a d ]   [ i t u n e s ]

T R A C K L I S T :