Tag Archive: instrumental


The Beyond are presently Rob Warner and Uwe D’Rose. Rob Warner started The Beyond in 1986 when the band originally comprised Rob Warner, Matt Russel and Nick Ralph. They released Episcense in 1987, and tracks from this still appear on YouTube. According to their Bio (see below), several CD’s were released and then the band stopped making music. A couple of years ago The Beyond was reinvigorated through the collaborative work between Rob Warner and Uwe D’rose when they released a new album called Exploring Imagined Spaces.

According to Rob Warner ‘every track includes a base frequency that effects the listener in a different way’. More on this later. It’s all about soothing, pleasant atmospheres. If you want to relax, listen to Exploring Imagined Spaces.

The album begins with 528hz Ascension. The gentle sound of waves sussurating from the speakers introduce this track. A synth voice gently flows over them while a light melody supports the ensemble. About half-way through a short classic ‘Berlin Style’ synth melody makes a brief appeareance, picking up the pace slightly before fading. Bright and airy. Following on from this is Memories Like Dust which begins with a melancholy piano. Light melodies gently wash across the background resulting in a sad, quite evocative tune that epitomises the ephemeral nature of memories and how flimsy they become over time.

The third track, Under Ancient Skies comprises a wonderful bit of guitar work that evokes a mystical Eastern paradise. Uwe D’Rose’s guitar work dominates this track with long drawn out echoing melodies with an unmistakable Eastern flavour. A male voice from long ago softly chants phrases from some forgotten language. The Alchemist, which follows on from this is great. Music like drops of ambient fall around you, bouncing around and gently settling . The essence of this track is ‘relax’. It truly flows with such a relaxing style that you’ll want to close your eyes and smile. It enourages laziness 🙂 Just lay back and put your feet up.

The Innerworlds is a beautiful uplifting ambient track that echoes with a bright scattering of minimal guitar, sparkling and lazy. The Big Freeze is a reserved piece of music – slow and contemplative, hinting at sadness while Flo, the final track, darts brightly here and there to a light tempo with not a care in the world.

Overall this is a true synthesis of keyboards and guitar. They work so well together that the whole is a masterpiece of sound. An amazing ambient album that uses Solfeggio frequencies as indicated by the title of the opening track.  These tones were supposedly used centuries ago in Gregorian and Sanskrit chants (though there is no concrete evidence for this – if anyone does have any references let me know and I’ll add them), and were believed to impart spiritual blessings during religious ceremonies. One thing is for certain, the overall effect is one of peace and relaxation. Get it. This album is guaranteed to work magic.

Buy the album from the dedicated online shop and you get an extra 25 minutes of music comprising The Innerworlds, The Big Freeze and Flo.

The Beyond are the other side of Harkonnen. You can read a short bio of The Beyond here where you will find further information and photos.

Kundar : The Ghosts Still Haunt Me

Kundar is a project by the same person responsible for The No-Tone Project and Descent Into The Void. The track ‘The Ghosts Still Haunt Me’, available via Soundcloud is a wonderfully immersive piece of ambient music with blunt dark edges. By that I do not mean that it is raw or without finesse, but that the music has a palpable, almost physical effect. It is heavy and you get the feeling that it is trying to push against you, to smother you.

This is one of those pieces of music that can be described as a ‘soundscape’. As such, it is best enjoyed through headphones and should be played Loud. As the track plays out, you can almost feel those vibes buffeting you, as if you were stood in a windy place. The dense bass rumble hovering in the background suggests that something huge is there, keeping its distance, but supporting everything you hear. As the track nears completion, you can hear the sounds of something trying to speak, to escape. It is a great effect and the track is highly recommended. The latest news is that we can look forward to more music from this project. That will be a treat!

 

WMRI : Dark Passage

Album Cover

WMRI’s Dark Passage, released by Jamendo in 2009 is a well structured album that does not always rely on the ‘perception’ of sounds to build an atmosphere but creates an electronic backdrop against which dark ambient elements are overlaid. Anyone familiar with WMRI will know they have released a lot of music that comprises classic ‘electronic’ sounds: instrumental electronic ambient melodies. Dark Passage certainly represents a diversion from that trend.

Each track is well crafted. Overall, an authentic dark ambient environment is created. I’m not talking about an atmosphere with a ‘dark’ feeling but a tangible menacing environment. What really helps this stand out is that there is often a rhythm in the background that enhances that feeling of menace. The tracks are heavy and deep with supporting bass sounds that build the soundscape into something nightmarish.

The album begins with Dark Passage I: a series of vocal exhalations that originate from some dark abysmal depth. A pulsing bass synth adds tension as the vocals become extended and tormented. A sound like cracking/falling rocks and alien tech dominate about half way through and then the tormented voices are back. Serious stuff…

Dark Passage II places the listener in the centre of a wet, dank enclosed space. Strange things are flitting around the space, flickering into view for a few moments before disappearing. As it ends there is the distant sound of industrial factories which fade to a low thumping flat bass which introduces the third track. This brings to mind a massive gothic cathedral. Imposing, daunting huge spaces where you fear to think the slightest deviant thought. Almost orchestral, Dark Passage III still retains the menace that has been carried along in its various forms by the previous tracks and crafts another space through which you have to pass.

Dark Passage IV  tips the listener off the edge into something nasty… This is the longest piece at nearly 24 minutes. 24 minutes of echoing sounds with an edgy background buzz that keeps you alert. Two more tracks await your pleasure, but as ever you should discover these for yourselves.

You have to listen to this album with the volume turned UP! One hour and twenty minutes of excellent atmospheric music. A massive surprise from WMRI. Perhaps the reason it is so good is that they deviate from the traditional dark ambient formula that is so prevalent at the moment. They use their experience with ‘traditional’ electronic instruments to create something that, while conforming generally to the dark ambient genre, is different enough to stand out. Also, like Rituelle, you feel as though you have actually passed through these places, there is a sense of journeying. I’ve listened to this several times now and have enjoyed it each time. I hope you do too.

Joe McMahon : Ocean Music

Album Cover

Ocean Music by Joe McMahon was released by Earth Mantra in 2009. This is one of those albums that stand alone and stand out at the same time.

An incredibly evocative track introduces the 56min album. The Trilobite Pool dances around you and sets the tone for a great ambient experience. Light Through Water is astonishing. Even without knowing the title of the track images of sun glint spring to mind, or liquid sunshine dripping into water, slowly swirling into the depths, leaving bright tracers as it descends.

A Sea Of Liquid helium hints at strange properites, just like the superfluid itself. Just as liquid helium evidences a frictionless property, the track gives the impression of liquid moving effortlessly, sucking you along in its wake.

The track Gamelan Dream dispenses with the light nature of the previous tunes and is more subdued and Ascension Island takes that theme further by introducing slightly discordant piano work.

Trieste 1960 represents the dive of the bathyscaphe Trieste to the bottom of the Marianas Trench in January 1960. The track can be interpreted as a record of Trieste’s journey to the depths of the Challenger Deep. Long drawn out high tones and the occassional deeper ‘thrum’ evoke a sense of the loneliness of the depths and the pops and creaks that must have have been heard by the two man crew as the pressure on the vessel gradually increased (one of the windows cracked on the way down). Overall, you get a feeling of cold space and how strange it must have been down in those dark, black depths.

An excellent release, and the artwork really does reflect the tone of the music – sparkling, fresh and clean. It is an upbeat ambient album and if you enjoy ambient music with low key abstract elements it will certainly entertain you and lighten your mood.

Dentist : Accidents

The Ep Accidents by Dentist was released by Rural Colours earlier this year. ‘Lost Track’ is light and airy and has a dream-like quality that lulls the listener into a wonderfully relaxed state. The second track, ‘Gliding’, begins with a slow repetitive drone that provides a mesmeric back-drop to isolated swirls of sound that gently announce themselves, provide a short performance and then fade away before being replaced by the next set.

‘Spirals’ is a slower paced track, where lush drones wash over the listener like a gentle tide, cleansing the mind and leaving you feeling fresh and clear. As ever, the last track, ‘Spray’ is yours to discover on your own.

A really nice set of ambient tracks by Dentist (part of Bengalfuel), it is obvious that this artist is certainly one to keep on your radar. Download the Ep (link on the release page) and set aside 20 mins and let the music turn you horizontal.

Kirill Platonkin : Psychic Transport

Kirill Platonkin  creates amazing ambient drone in different flavours. Various netlabels and labels have released his albums, including Darkwinter, Biodata, Umpako, ADX Records and more… He also releases his work via his own Tukuringra Netlabel.

Psychic Transport is full of dreamy drones. The album begins with a light airy piece named ‘Effervescent Light Of Beyond’. It wafts around like fog, swirling gently about your speakers and sets the tone for the rest of this incredibly relaxing album. ‘Exfoliation of Illusions’ is a little harder and reading the description of the album in which Kirill describes the journey that souls might take when searching for a form of nirvana, or simply a better life, it is apparent that this track is intended to convey the sense of stripping off superflous material concerns, exposing a purer form that can move on the next incarnation of existence.

Metempsychosis describes the ermergence of the soul after it’s ‘exfoliation’. Clinical yet soft drones introduce the track and slowly transform into stronger, richer sounds levelling out to a comfortable drone that itself devolves into a sigh of wind.

The title track is awesome and is, I think, one of Kirill’s best moments. It begins with a slow rhythmic rushing and a supporting light tone that gently wavers. The two exist independently to begin with but slowly recognise each other and gradually work together to form a harmony that is so soft you are left with a feeling of having felt something quite special.

‘We Fly’ takes this concept further. Gentle drones that give a sense of true relaxing ambience, almost as if the characters portrayed feel they are close to their goal – attaining a sense of true self.

I have to admit to being a big fan of Kirill Platonkin’s work. Psychic Transport is a very good album and well worth listening to. You can let the discussion guide you and consider the concept of liberation through hearing (Bardo Todol – a guide for the spirit as it passes through the experience between death and rebirth), or simply enjoy its wonderful ambient sounds for what they are.

From the release page:

The idea of “Psychic Transport” was born in a dream, where people were like shiny beams, moving to and fro in space, reincarnating in different worlds and in different forms. Men and Women turned out to be the portals for new spirits’ arrival on Earth. Furthermore, the whole atmosphere is much influenced by Bardo Todol, a guidebook for released souls, who should seek for effervescent and dazzling light, and avoid soft light sources – to get closer to really Better World. So, this album is an attempt to look into the unknown depths of the Other Side.

Descent Into The Void : Cancer

I saw this video today ‘We Know It Will End’ by Descent Into The Void. Four minutes of melancholy drone that carries you along like a leaf gently bobbing along the surface of a slow stream. Ambient drone! Need to investigate this! Especially as Descent Into The Void is a project by the same person responsible for creating The No-Tone Project.

The track is taken from the EP Cancer and the track listing reflects the terrible aspects of the disease. The first track, Hemangioblastoma, is a dark journey through desolate places. It has a feeling of emptiness and sadness. This leads into Scapel, a stronger track with deeper lightly pulsing drones. You can hear the occassional hint of something trying to break through which is overlaid by sudden rushes of tones that seem to be lashing the edge of your perception.

Platinum is quite different – busier, and here you can really hear the guitar work. Still quite ambient, but with hints of doom creeping in.

Featuring three more tracks, this EP, coming in at just under 30 minutes is nice piece of ambient drone. It is used to great effect, as the overall feeling of the album captures the names of the tracks.

If you enjoy listening to this check out other work by DITV and TNTP.

Dark Rumblings

Recent quality dark ambient/drone/experimental/atmospheric music that has pleased my ears 🙂

Cybernetic Recursion

OVDK & Bunk Data’s Cyberntic Recursion has been released on Endless Ascent, a netlabel specialising in the lighter side of ambient music. The OVDK & Bunk Data collaboration has also released material on Endless Ascent’s sister netlabel Darkwinter. Both are well worth checking out. This album leans towards a more experimental and ambient approach than was seen in Discourse Of The Other and is well worth checking out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dark ambient masters, Inade, have released Antimimon Pneumatos at a reduced price until the end of November. Inade are renowned for their high-quality dark ambient music, and this does not disappoint. Several of the tracks contain a fair amount of dialogue that has been intelligently woven into the music. Atmospheric backgrounds designed to make you feel that little bit edgy abound, contributing to a soundscape that I found excellent.

More to come as and when – I have a large amount to share.