April 22nd, 2017
"Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives."
- Carl Sagan
I have always loved Carl Sagan's "Pale Blue Dot" essay. It's even better hearing his voice reading it. In the Cosmos reboot from a couple of years ago, when they played a clip of Carl I actually cried. Yes, I am a huge dork. So needless to say, Sagan reading about the pale blue dot gets me every time.
There are a ton of videos on youtube combining his quotes with music & images. Some are quite good, some use horrible cheesy music or hokey stock photos. I thought, heck I'm a video editor, I'll make my own video. But then I realized how sometimes the images can detract from the prose.
So I decided to combine Sagan's Pale Blue Dot with one of my all-time favorite pieces of music - Max Richter's "On the Nature of Daylight." The next step was to use that mashup to lead off a mix dedicated to Earth Day 2017 & the coinciding March for Science. If you look at the track titles the theme is obvious.
I eventually did make a video to go with the mashup. But it's just one image. It's a pic taken by the Cassini spacecraft from just beyond Saturn. It's Pale Blue Dot 2.0 if you will. The video is just one long slow pull from earth out to the full image.
Take a look here...
Enjoy the mix, Earth Day and remember - Science not Silence.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Carl Sagan & Max Richter - Pale Blue Dot & On the Nature of Daylight
- 05:05 Jim Cole & Spectral Voices - Hear Earth
- 08:00 Steve Roach - On This Planet
- 15:20 Map & Diagrams - Particles of Earth
- 18:10 A Small Good Thing - Scorched Earth
- 23:15 Adam Pacione - Warming Trend
- 25:27 Shuttle358 - Melt
- 30:10 Jeff Greinke - Changing Skies
- 32:50 Brian Eno - Climate Study
- 35:30 J. Ralph - The Glaciers Are Telling
- 37:20 Michael Brook - Earth Alone
- 39:20 Mathias Grassow - Planetary Consciousness
- 43:45 Lav & Purl - Earthship
- 49:50 Robert Scott Thompson - Pale Blue Dot
- 65:00 end
April 1st, 2017
One of my favorite things about making these mixes for ten years is the people I've come in contact with. I stay in touch with folks from Ireland, The Netherlands, Canada, Brazil or just down the road in Chicago.
This mix comes from one these online friends, Josh Furey. He did a previous guest mix for Low Light Mixes called Cartridge, which you can find here...
I'll let Josh tell you about it...
As a relative newcomer to ambient music in 2012, I was immensely lucky to stumble across Low Light Mixes. It can be pretty overwhelming when you start to explore a new genre of music and over the years Low Light Mixes has supplied me with a wildly diverse mix of ambient music to enjoy while also serving as an amazing resource for the genre music that now dominates any playlist I put together.
If you are a frequent listener to Low Light you will recognize a lot of the artists I chose for this mix and hopefully there are some new names for you to check out as well. Off Worlder is my way of saying thank you to Dave for introducing me to so many amazing artists over the years and keeping Low Light going for over 10 years.
I hope you enjoy.
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 - Exerpt from Blade Runner
- 00:19 - Vegyn - Unknown (https://soundcloud.com/Vegyn)
- 03:19 - Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein- In Pursuit (https://survive.bandcamp.com/)
- 0:4:30 - 36 - Shadow Play (http://3six.net/album/shadow-play)
- 08:23 - Goldmund - Turncoat (https://goldmund.bandcamp.com/track/turncoat)
- 11:29 - Suplington - Love (https://soundcloud.com/suplington)
- 15:27 - Julie London - Bouquet Of Blues (https://www.discogs.com/Julie-London-bout-The-Blues/release/1378929)
- 16:14 - Burial - Forgive (https://burial.bandcamp.com/track/forgive)
- 17:48 - Mark Pritchard - ? (https://markpritchard.bandcamp.com/)
- 22:15 - In Aeternam Vale - Drones (https://dement3d.bandcamp.com/track/drones)
- 24:17 - Ben Salisbury & Geoff Barrow - Ava (https://www.discogs.com/Ben-Salisbury-And-Geoff-Barrow-Ex_Machina-Original-Motion-Picture-Soundtrack/release/7007937)
- 26:35 - Vangelis - Spiral (https://www.discogs.com/Vangelis-Spiral/release/1493684)
- 27:11 - Biosphere - Sphere Of No-Form https://biosphere.bandcamp.com/track/sphere-of-no-form)
- 29:29 - Thore Pfeiffer - Good Life (https://kompakt.bandcamp.com/album/pop-ambient-2017)
- 34:53 - Aphex Twin - Stone In Focus (https://boomkat.com/products/selected-ambient-works-volume-ii-limited-triple-vinyl-reissue)
- 36:55 - Corey Allen + Marcus Fischer - Two/Twenty-Two/Eighty-Two(https://twotwentytwo.bandcamp.com/album/two-twenty-two)
- 39:27 - Murcof - Una (https://murcofmusic.bandcamp.com/album/martes-utop-a)
41:02 - Offthesky & Pleq - A Thousand Fields https://infraction.bandcamp.com/album/a-thousand-fields)
- 43:02 - 2814 - 新しい日の誕生 (https://dreamcatalogue.bandcamp.com/album/--18)
- 44:10 - Marsen Jules - Through Blood and Fire (https://marsenjules.bandcamp.com/track/through-blood-and-fire)
- 46:40 - The Beautiful Schizophonic - Prayers (https://dynamophone.bandcamp.com/album/belkiss)
- 48:22 - Nils Frahm - Says(https://nilsfrahm.bandcamp.com/album/spaces)
- 51:57 - Synkro - Overture (https://synkro.bandcamp.com/track/overture)
March 9th, 2017
I haven't had time lately for new mixes but I wanted to get something up on Mixcloud so I thought I'd resurrect an old mix. This mix was originally done 10 years ago. Yikes! I can't believe I've been doing this that long.
There were a few tracks in the original mix that I didn't really like anymore so I added a few new ones and took out a few old cuts. The new tracks are by Tilman Robinson, Loess, Murcof & Venessa Wagner, and Delia Derbyshire Appreciation Society.
I hope to get back on track with new mixes coming more frequently. There's also a guest mix coming very soon.
T R AC K L I S T :
- 00:00 Tilman Robinson - Bathed in Her
- 05:55 Michael Brook - Earth Alone
- 07:25 Windy & Carl - Akimatsuri
- 12:25 Underworld & Gabriel Yared - St. Pancras
- 15:45 Loess - Striae
- 20:15 Oblong - Rendevous
- 23:22 Rafael Anton Irisarri - Waking Expectations
- 29:25 Green Kingdom - Autumn Toadlick
- 35:15 Xela - Bobble Hats in Summer
- 40:20 Chihei Hatakeyama - Granular Haze
- 43:10 Daisuke Miyatani - Yu
- 44:10 Eluvium | Requium on Frankfort Ave.
- 46:25 Dollboy | Hatterjax
- 51:25 Murcof & Vanessa Wagner - Aphex Twin Avril 14th.
- 55:10 Delia Derbyshire Appreciation Society - Half Light
January 9th, 2017
I think the last time I posted a snow mix I said that when I think of music to go with snow I think of piano music. Maybe it's from years of hearing Vince Guaraldi's Peanuts Christmas album or George Winston's December album. Whatever the reason, I immediately go to the piano for snow music.
So that is again the dominant instrument in this mix. Most of the music here is fairly new which includes the Roedelius tune from 2015 - "Gently Falling Snow." Obviously I stole the title for this mix but I think this collection really does have a nice feeling of "gently falling snow."
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 Sonmi451 - I Didn't Know That Cats Could Grin
- 05:00 Olafur Arnalds - Dalur
- 08:10 Johann Johannsson - The Drowned World
- 10:12 Rachel's - NY Snow Globe
- 12:30 Roedelius - Gently Falling Snow
- 14:33 Jason Van Wyk - Kept
- 17:50 Olafur Arnalds - For Now I Am Winter
- 21:35 Chihei Hatakeyama - Coastal Railroads in Memories
- 27:10 Andrew Heath - Requiem
- 34:15 James Murray - Particles
- 39:21 Sonmi451 - Oh My Ears & Whiskers
- 43:30 James Murray - Eyes to the Height
- 47:39 Mike Lazarev - Absent
- 50:00 Taylor Duepree - Snow(dusk dawn)
- 55:20 Jason Van Wyk - Stay
- 58:18 Nils Frahm - Less
- 63:40 end
December 20th, 2016
Every year I make two lists of my favorites albums of the year. One list is generally indie music and the other is ambient/instrumental. Even though I have a difficult time deciding on the final group it is easier coming up with the indie list than it is for ambient. Maybe it's because after a year of music they all tend to blur together and sound the same. There are definitely some stand outs, like the two releases from Johann Johannsson this year. But generally it's tough to make a list because there are a lot of quality recordings every year.
As hard as it is, it's still a lot of fun digging through a ton of releases to find my favorites and then out them together in a coherent mix. The tracks don't appear in any particular order. I just figured out what cuts sounded good together. Not all the tracks from my best of list made into the mix because that's just the way mixes go sometimes.
Here's the list, I'd love to hear about your favorite albums of the year, tell me about them in the comments.
BEST AMBIENT/INSTRUMENTAL OF 2016:
- 1. Johann Johannsson - Orphee
- 2. Ryuichi Sakamoto And Alva Noto - The Revenant OST
- 3. Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith - Ears
- 4. Paul Haslinger - Halt & Catch Fire OST
- 5. The Green Kingdom - Harbor
- 6. Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things Season 1, Vol. 1
- 7. Olafur Arnalds - Island Songs
- 8. Huerco S. - for those of you who have never (and also those who have)
- 9. Yagya - Stars And Dust
- 10. Johann Johannsson - Arrival OST Coppice Halifax - Green Shape
- 11. Coppice Halifax - Green Shape
- 12. 36 - The Infinity Room
- 13. Loscil - Monument Builders
- 14. Oddisee - The Odd tape
- 15. Olan Mill - Land Cycle
- 16. Pye Corner Audio - Stasis
- 17. Piers Faccini - no one's here
- 18. Voces8 - Winter
- 19. Marconi Union - ghost stations
- 20. Mac Quayle - Mr. Robot, Vol. 1 OST
- 21. AXX - Command Z
- 22. Rezo Glonti - Budapest
- 23. Riverrun - Romer Shoal
- 24. Daniel Lanois - Goodbye To Language
- 25. Spheruleus - Sundials
T R A C K L I S T :
- 00:00 The Green Kingdom - Haze Layers
- 06:46 Huerco S. - The Sacred Dance
- 12:10 Yagya - Motes in the Moonlight
- 16:25 Piers Faccini - no one's here 1
- 20:00 Marconi Union - Shadow Scheme
- 22:30 Johann Johannsson - A Song for Europa
- 24:34 Olan Mill - Part 2
- 27:35 Loscil - Weeds
- 32:58 Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith - Existence in the Unfurling
- 43:36 Paul Haslinger - It's Not Right
- 44:41 Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - This Isn't You
- 46:50 Ólafur Arnalds - Raddir
- 50:00 36 - Room 8
- 52:25 Coppice Halifax - Green Shape phase 4
- 57:10 Rezo Glonti - Pulse Added Two
- 62:10 Heavenchord - Night Waterline
- 67:13 Daniel Lanois - Time On
- 72:10 AXX - Prelude
- 73:31 Riverrun - Weehawken
- 76:00 Ryuichi Sakamoto & Alva Noto - The Revenant Theme(Noto remodel)
- 79:33 Johann Johannsson - Arrival
- 81:33 end
November 12th, 2016
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.
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
October 16th, 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
September 11th, 2016
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
August 23rd, 2016
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.
T R A C K L I S T :
August 4th, 2016
This is the first in a series of mixes featuring ambient music from each of the past 4 1/2 decades.
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.
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)