Dawn Secrets (Mix)

What exactly happens at the moment night changes back into day again, when darkness slowly retreats and light comes back in? 
Are we aware of what happens outside, at that time of day most of us are still sleeping? 
What sort of animals or creatures are hiding from the light, and what sort finally dare to come out again? 
Would we discover “Dawn Secrets” when we’d leave our own safe and familiar surroundings?

To be honest, I did not start this mix with this theme in mind…it just ‘dawned’ on me when listening to it when it was almost finished…But from the start, I wanted this mix to have a strong ‘environmental’ feel (but not only include field recordings).

Secret Chords and Apparitions (Mix)

Imagine yourself in deep sleep. Very deep sleep.
Unaware of your surroundings, unable to control images built from memories, unable to distinguish your dreams from impressions originating from the outside world. 

At times, following a gentle sleep cycle, your consciousness slowly raises – almost up to the point of waking up. At these moments, the outside world is more perceptible, you’re vaguely aware of what’s happening around you.

But not for long, because you gradually sink back to the realm of subconscious deep sleep.  

This mix was created in november, 2010. It was ‘premiered’ on Fluid Radio Mixcloud

Invisible Ink (Mix)

Though the title of Arve Henriksen’s opening track (Stille Veg, Quiet Road) was the working title for this mix, I finally decided to call it “Invisible Ink” – referring to the quote from Laurie Anderson’s track from “Homeland”, which may describe the confused global state (and – if you wish –  the political state of Holland in particular):

Was the Constitution written in visible ink?
Has everybody here forgotten how to think? 
Is this great big boat starting to … sink?”

But apart from this, this journey along the ‘Stille Veg’ may present some interesting encounters – some dark and mysterious, others enchanting and optimistic…

VorteX (Mix)

Since 1995, X-Rated (a weekly three hour radio show on dutch alternative music radio channel Kink FM) has been a “platform for ‘difficult’ music”. Experimental, avant-garde, poetry, soundscapes: uncensored and uncompromised.

(The FM in the channel’s name is somewhat misleading, since it’s a cable radio station that can also be received via internet or satellite).

X-Rated‘s existence for more than 15 years is nothing short of remarkable, because Kink FM (daughter of Veronica Broadcasting company) is a commercial station, while the music X-Rated features is about the opposite of “commercial”. Since dutch public radio has ended (almost) all of the experimental radio shows, X-Rated is about the last dutch program hosting experimental electronic music.

Needless to say that I’m very very proud to have X-Rated broadcast a full one-hour mix, especially created for this occasion. This mix was broadcast on the May 23, 2010 show (the first day of Pentecost).

Vortex was especially created for X-Rated. Thanks to Bob Rusche for broadcasting this on his show!

Fluid Radio Mix

fluid radio

If you check out the Fluid Radio Mixcloud playlist,you’ll find a lot of familiar names: it seems that almost all artists working in the contemporary electronic experimental music field have contributed one or more mixes themselves. Most of these have appeared somewhere in one of my earlier mixes.
These mixes (which are also broadcast on the  ) make Fluid Radio one of the most popular channels on Mixcloud. Fluid Radio Webchannel

Apart from that, Fluid Audio represents a label that has released some impressive music in equally impressive packages…!

The mix presented here was created specifically for Fluid Radio. It is no ‘head-tail’ mixtape, but a collage of fragments that are represented in a different context and, doing so, get a different musical meaning.
Like all of my other mixes, there are a lot of details presented in layers, creating new perspectives – ‘enhanced’ landscapes which sometimes may not be too comfortable but hopefully will be as fascinating to you as they are for me…

This particular mix was especially created for Fluid-Radio in march 2010. It was broadcast on Fluid Radio on May 20, 2010.

[R]ecyclopedia [R]emix

Let me begin with a warning: this mix is quite unlike the previous ones!
Though there are quite a lot ‘ambient moments’ to enjoy, it cannot be qualified as ‘ambient music mix’ because it contains a lot of other musical elements too.

This mix was created especially for Frans Friederich – a dutch musician currently working on a megalomaniac project he started in 1997: Recyclopedia.
One single full CD for each letter in the alphabet.
26 CD’s recycling and rewriting musical history associatively…!

Frans Friederich’s musical history shows a variety of styles: he played in jazz-, ska-, and big-bands, but also in experimental acts like Dull Schicksal and Trespassers W.  This musical diversity is also heard on the Recyclopedia albums: it’s a musical roller coaster ride with Friederich himself joining the musical extremes in his own personal style.

In 2009, Friederich completed the Recyclopedia Qalbum – which contains beautiful ambient music created together with soundscape artist Robert Kroos. 
(So, by now, about 65% of this project is finished – with this average output the entire Recyclopedia will be completed around 2017!)

When I started this Recyclopedia mix, I originally wanted to focus on the many ambient music pieces throughout the series, creating an ambient mix and leaving out all other music. But the nature of the project decided otherwise.

Subversion Guest Mix

Not long ago, Muttley’s “Isolate” mix was published on Ambientblog as a guest mix.
Muttley’s own Subversion weblog hosts a lot of his mixes, as well as the 15 Minutes of Fame series. 

The SubVersion 15 Minutes of Fame format dictates that any mix should contain no more than 10 tracks and last no longer than 40 minutes. That’s an average of 4 minutes per track.
So, when asked to do a guest mix for this weblog, I had to change my usual approach.

In the ‘collage’ mix format I mostly use, 4 minutes is about the maximum time any included sample gets played – usually far more tracks overlay at any single instance.
So I had to restrict myself in that matter, to create a ‘mixtape’ mix format for this particular issue.

Miserere (Mix)

First, let me give my best wishes for 2010 to all of you!!

What better way to start the new year than with a brand new mix ánd a brand new design (thanks Ingmar from Planet KL!)?

The design change is symbolic, in a way: after publishing a lot of mixes in 2009, all of wich were created for radio broadcast, it is now time to take a further step and start publishing new mixes.
Miserere” is the first of these brand new mixes to be published. 

Miserere” has taken its name from the concluding piece: Gregoria Allegri’s Miserere, as performed by the Tallis Scholars.

Mark Tamea Mix

A special mix to conclude 2009.
This also is the last upload of the mixes that were created for radio. 
2010 will start off with new mixes exclusively created for this weblog.

tessellation cover

Like “Sounds of Spellborn” (published last week) this mix is different from most previous mixes, in that it does not include many different artists, but concentrates on the music of one single artist: Mark Tamea.

Tamea is a composer from England, currently living in Nijmegen (Holland).
His music is a fascinating combination of electronics, environmental sounds, musique concrête, acoustical and modern classical music.

When I hear the music he creates, I can imagine the wondrous feelings Alice must have had when exploring Wonderland: landscapes vaguely familiar yet alienating, a new surprise at every corner…

Sounds of Spellborn – Alternate (mix)

The Chronicles of Spellborn‘ came with so much interesting soundscapes, that I decided to create a second mix, an alternate version to the first one published last week.

Basically, the ingredients and the atmosphere are the same, but different tracks and samples are chosen.
In fact, both of these mixes can be played together and be listened to as one (two-hour) mix.

Read the information in the previous podcast entry for more details about this mix and about the Chronicles of Spellborn game.

Sounds of Spellborn (mix)

If you have listened to previous mixes on this weblog, you may have grown accustomed to the kind of format that they share. This one has a different approach.

I noticed that a lot of people are unfamiliar with ambient music, but still get exposed to it more than ever: in movie soundtracks, and even more: when playing games. It may not be recognised as ‘music’ at all, but more as sounds to create/enhance an environment – but still: that’s what ambient music is about, isn’t it?

When The Chronicles of Spellborn was released early 2009, I decided to create a special mix from a selection of the sound and music that comes with it.

Dream Calibration (mix)

Nonstop Ambient Montage: from Alva Noto to Arvo Pärt, via Arve Henriksen and Jacaszek, with short stops at Christopher Bissonnette, Entia Non, Kraken, Goldmund, and many, many others.

This mix was created may/june 2009.
Image by Weirena

This is the last of the ‘ambient montages’ that were created for radiobroadcast. 
Until now, 24 mixes are published on this weblog, counting 26 hours of continuous ambient/electronic/experimental music.  

In the remaining weeks of this year some ‘different approach’ mixes will be published additionally: one focussing on game music and another focussing on the work of one composer. 

Then, in 2010, on to the next phase….

Utsura – Utsura (mix)


Utsura-Utsura” is a japanese expression indicating the ‘fluctuation between alert wakefulness and a state of half-sleep’. Or at least: I was told that it means something like that…can anyone confirm this?

True or not, this is exactly what this hour-long mix is about: between being awake and half asleep. Sigur Rós, Arve Henriksen and Helios may be your grip to reality in this somewhat abstract, sometimes hallucinatory sound.

True (mix)

Like it’s companion mix (“Strange Birds“, published last week) this mix was also broadcast in April 2008.

It’s a further walk in the same landscape. Sometimes the tension may rise somewhat, but the view remains spectacular.

This mix is concluded by the Soccer Committee song ‘True’ that also gave this mix it’s title.
In her search for quietness, Mariska Baars (Soccer Committee) has proven that ‘ambient’ music does not necessarily involves ‘electronics’.

Strange Birds (mix)

The central thematic piece in this mix is Christina Kubisch‘ “Tea Time (Autumn Leaves Mix)“, from Gruenrecorder’s “Autumn Leaves” – male singers communicating as if they were birds, twittering words like “Who’s awake?“, “Me Too!” and “Who cooks for you?“.

This spring-like chatter evokes a strange and hypnotic landscape sometimes unnerving, sometimes comforting.

This mix was created february – march 2008, together with “True“.  It was definitely an early spring that year!

Allegaar (mix)

According to my dictionary, ‘Allegaar‘ translates to ‘Hotchenpotch‘ – but I can imagine there may be a better word for that!?

Just like the previous mix (“Leftover Mix“), this 2008 mix has no special theme, it’s just a collection of tracks mixed together fairly randomly. But in their new context the tracks seem to start to tell their own new story!