Geotic – [2009] Hearth

Minimal guitar drone ambience. Soothing instrumental music based almost completely on subdued, soft, echoing guitar melodies.

It is surprising how much can be accomplished with only long, soft chords, without any percussion, in terms of structure and rhythm. While most artists that employ these drone tones work without a discernable short-term rhythm, Geotic succeeds in giving his bars a certain punch. Interesting! Continue reading “Geotic – [2009] Hearth”

Tony Mahoney – [2013] Dark Blue

Faux antique trip hop. Twenty songs, over one hour of vinyl samples, including dust specks, enhancing the faux antique sound, replaying against the backdrop of subtle modern beats. Great instrumental hip hop with trip hop influences. The tracks are loopy on the surface, but the repetitions slowly evolve time, new samples fading in or out throughout. Continue reading “Tony Mahoney – [2013] Dark Blue”

M-PeX – [2017] Carianae

Portuguese electro ambient guitar. Excellent mostly instrumental guitar and contrabass, just with a tiny bit of electronic ambience in the background. The release for me has an incredibly intense cinematic touch. Highly recommended for headphones to capture the subtle effects. Already a modern classic, I would say. Continue reading “M-PeX – [2017] Carianae”

Frenic – [2011] Lessons From The Past

Melodic instrumental hip hop. Soft beats and beautifully aranged samples make this album a very special and very seductive entry into the instrumental hip hop genre. The tracks are not completely free of repetitive arrangements, but they have less repetetive arrangements than this sentence contains repetitive arrangements… 😉 Continue reading “Frenic – [2011] Lessons From The Past”

Stephan Siebert – [2012] 10 Songs of 28 Years

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Beautiful, easy listening Jazz. While there is no single smashing hit among the 10 songs, this release offers a consistent listening experience for almost an hour. Instrumental pieces, ranging from piano solo to a richly orchestrated saxophone jam. Only occasional hums are the only vocal parts. Recording and mixing are excellent, and is for my untrained ears up to par to excellent live recordings of Jazz concerts.
Continue reading “Stephan Siebert – [2012] 10 Songs of 28 Years”

JT Bruce – [2005] Anomalous Material

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Instrumental progressive rock at its best. This over 10 year old album by JT Bruce contains just over one hour of meticulously produced music. No lyrics, but attention to detail throughout the 16 tracks. If you like this classic, you might also enjoy his 2015 release Vandal of Fortune (Jamendo). Continue reading “JT Bruce – [2005] Anomalous Material”

Crepusculum – [2009] Sing on in Silhouettes

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Ambient guitars. Many of them. Strange, uncommon harmonies that sound uncannily familiar. Multiple acoustic guitars, all recorded by Fred Baty (aka Crepusculum), create a rich soundscape. Rhythmic chords and melody patterns render percussion unnecessary. Continue reading “Crepusculum – [2009] Sing on in Silhouettes”

Just Plain Ant – [2009] Dig Deep

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Fresh hip hop. I don’t listen to a lot of rap music. In fact, this is the first review to populate the tags hip hop and rap here. This album has it all: opulent instrumental tracks, multiple vocalists, detailed music backdrops. It shows what hip hop can be like: fresh, so fresh… Continue reading “Just Plain Ant – [2009] Dig Deep”

Skaj Da Waidah – [2013] The Most Epic Chillout Album Ever! (EP)

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Loopy funk grooves. If you ever wished during a rap song for the rapper to stop talking over the lovely background music, the Bulgarian netlabel Dusted Wax Kingdom is just for you. It specialises in that groovy sound sometimes called instrumental or abstract hip hop. This short 5 track release is an especially funky example of this craft. Continue reading “Skaj Da Waidah – [2013] The Most Epic Chillout Album Ever! (EP)”