Sometimes it’s hard to keep track of an artist’s various endeavours. So many have made forays into more challenging genres, producing music that often gets overlooked in favour for the more accessible material they normally release. Here we’ve looked at three albums put out by artists who aren’t necessarily known for their ambient adventures within the field of electronic music, yet have undoubtedly made some worthy additions to the ambient canon throughout their careers;
Terre Thaemlitz – ‘Soil’
Originally released in the mid-90s on Instinct Ambient, Soil showcases Terre Thaemlitz moving at her most slow and meditative pace. A world away from much of the deep house which was apparent when Thaemlitz first made a name for herself as a respected DJ, Soil incorporates many classic ambient traits into its beatless soundscapes, so as to help create a genuinely intriguing album of subtly nuanced tracks. The highlights are many, but fan favourite ‘Elevatorium’ is most certainly worth mentioning; samples ranging from birds chirping to muffled Hispanic music can be heard underneath its beautiful keys and overarching repetition, lending the track a very much transporting quality.
David Moufang – ‘Solitaire’
As one of the best and most highly renowned German producers of the past 20 years, it comes as no surprise that David Moufang, AKA Move D, has dabbled in the world of ambient electronics at some stage in his ridiculously extensive career. Put out by the Fax label in 1995, which was founded by the very influential Pete Namlook, Solitaire finds Moufang exploring the ambient realm from a downtempo-oriented perspective, with plenty of percussion to boot. Its minimal rhythms leave more than enough room for experimentation, and tracks such as ‘Indian Mantra’ really tap into an unrivalled sense of simplistic beauty – the central melody is captivating from the get-go, and is accompanied by many unique flourishes to help emphasise its lazy, yet happy-go-lucky feel.
Jack Jutson – ‘Mother’
Jack Jutson has been making some serious waves. Spearheading the Vancouver invasion, the Mood Hut collective he’s part of have won the hearts of many with a foggy, new age-referencing brand of stoner house. They recently dropped an ambient four-tracker under Ian Wyatt’s Slow Riffs alias, but a fascination with abstract, beatless music dates back to the label’s cassette-only days. Having previously released music as one third of No Gold – alongside Wyatt and Pender Street Steppers conspirator, Liam Butler – Jutson’s first solo outing also happened to be the first time we were invited into the Mood Hut. The first of six cassettes from the Vancouver label, Mother opens gently enough, slowly enveloping you in a blizzard of snow blind ambience. It’s easy to lose yourself in the subtle shifts and before you know it the whole room is submerged in a white sea of soft noise.