Ambient music

Ambient is a variant of electronic music dominate the spherical, smooth, elongated and warm sounds. Rhythm and percussion are at the ambient music in the background or are not present at all, they appear as subtle percussion textures, as arpeggios or in rhythmically introduced melody and bass progressions. It is often also experimented with spatial effects, soundscapes and field recordings, many electronic organs (keyboards) and wind instruments are used. Also, natural soundscapes, speech and vocals have their place. The music pieces are usually very slow and long build often leisurely and may overlap, where they rarely follow a classic song structure.

Significant representatives who produce or produced in this genre, are Harold Budd, Pete Namlook, Bill Laswell, Thomas Köner, Steve Roach, Robert Rich, Jean Ven Robert Hal and Vangelis.


The Futurist Francesco Balilla Pratella joined his technical Manifesto 1911 for atonality and irregular rhythm in music. Luigi Russolo announced as music of the future in his 1913 manifesto L' arte dei published futuristic rumori to the art of noise and wrote as Pratella appropriate music pieces. Russolo is now considered pioneers of synthetic music. 1920 Erik Satie composed the "Music as Furniture " ( Musique d' ameublement, furniture music), which can be regarded as an early form of ambient music.

As the founder of Ambient applies but the former Roxy Music member Brian Eno, of the style with the release of his album Ambient 1: Music for Airports coined. The publication was actually intended as music for public buildings such as airports. She had claimed to be pleasant and interesting both for travelers and for people waiting, even if the waiting time is so long that the album is played several times in succession.

Related styles

The boundaries between ambient and other styles of electronic music are flowing. Closely related to Ambient example, Muzak, which is commonly used in elevators, department stores, hotels and some work environments and sometimes referred to as " elevator music ".

Also related to Ambient Space Music is, as its most famous representative of Americans Jonn Serrie applies.

Sometimes Dark Ambient is a genre that tries to produce especially dark and gloomy atmospheres, as a subgenre of Ambient categorized. Despite the name, many artists of the Dark Ambient have their roots primarily in the industrial environment. A related genre is the Illbient particularly well-known DJ Spooky has become. Some representatives of Black Metal have changed their style in (Dark) Ambient or combines both styles. Examples are Burzum, Dark Space and Vinterriket.

Live Ambient

Live Ambient is similar to the live electronics in the electro-acoustic music and jam sessions in the jazz and rock a variety of ambient music. In contrast to the other in the studio arranged by individual artists compositions, the focus in Live Ambient is located in the group improvisation. In contrast to bands both the staffing and the allocation of tasks among the participating musicians is open and variable, there is no fixed main cast in the usual sense. The individual sessions are public.

In addition, the Live Ambient puts a focus on the musical and social experience during the group improvisation, both for the musicians and the audience. The commercial marketability of the musical results, however, plays a minor role. Instead of albums are recordings of a session that may be post-processed and divided into (named) pieces, and made ​​their often multi-media documentation usually freely accessible.

In 2002 founded Karsten Koch and Enzo Cage in Munich Live Ambient project noise test. In 2004, from this arose the project Spheric Lounge. This project developed by its open structure into a forum for the Munich-based electronics music scene and moved to video artists and improvisation dancers. By end 2009, Spheric Lounge produced well over 500 live ambient music tracks as part of 100 sessions.

Inspired by Spheric Lounge came other regional Live Ambient projects since 2006. Among the Ambient Circle in the Ruhr, which was awarded in 2009 with the sound wave Award as Best Newcomer. Through multiple live Ambient Festival and the networking of the various projects, a German -language live ambient scene was born.