In these strange times, it’s important to have a pretty moment of chill.
And I’m here to help you with that via five recent, Spring 2018 albums that will afford you just that. These albums vary on the spectrum, aren’t exactly ambient (a cop-out sometimes, for chill), but will put you in an escapist, feel good, beautiful mood.
Mary Lattimore‘s Hundreds Of Days
Lattimore is a harpist whose musical works clashes experimental classical with the comforts of ambient synths leaning to underscore her layered, stretched harp work. Her music is always so gentle, always so touching, and her latest album embraces this with a dash of fun, in a way only a person with a harp can do. Put this on during a sunny afternoon, grab a smart cocktail, and gaze out to the world.
Jean-Michel Blais‘s Dans ma main
Blais is known for his piano music underscored by electronics and, while this may sound boring, it rarely is. He’s similar to Lattimore in that there is a tension between classical instruments and futuristic music machines. This album isn’t necessarily an upper but it does draw one in, to look at yourself, to really engage and love.
Skee Mask‘s Compro
This album has been getting raves from just about everyone. It’s a nice long wander around blurry ambient techno that bubbles and gurgles along the thoughts of the German artist. There’s a simplicity here that is quite laudable in that it is both dynamic without doing that much. Unlike minimal works, Skee Mask offers textures and melodies without using any words. Then again, no one on this list uses words.
DJ Healer‘s Nothing 2 Loose
This may be bold to say but this album, from the mysterious artist known as Traumprinz, has the same density and intellect as the now-classic Midtown 120 Blues from DJ Sprinkles. No, there aren’t meditations on what it means to be queer. No, there aren’t history lessons. Instead, there is an expanding vision, a look outward, as you are drawn closer to yourself. Songs like “We Are Going Nowhere” stretch for over ten minutes, chugging along in a way that gets inside of your body, chattering away like someone mumbling to themselves as they escape a difficult past. Brief moments of language – like the devastating “The Interview” – offers up examination of the self by way of a Whitney Houston interview. This album is maybe my favorite of the year because it is so painfully pretty while also affording you the ability to travel around the world of your mind, to lighten up and live life.
100% Silk‘s Silk To Dry The Tears
This compilation was created for and released in honor of those who died in the Oakland Ghost Ship Fire in 2016. The label 100% Silk was mainly hit by the event since a handful of their artists were in attendance and were lost in the event. This collection of 31 songs features alumni and current artists on their roster creating emotional, beautiful house music intended to uplift and meditate on the event. It typically get bored with compilations but this is perhaps one of the most captivating in years.