Postcards from slow places - a lines compilation of long-form ambient music


This is close to how I recorded my track, Timothy G Taylor ‘Dreams of Organization’…

It was a dry run of improvisational tape loop style music set I’m trying to put together. The underlying “drone” voice is a Morphagene sampling who knows what. The main voice is a Mother 32 played on a midi keyboard. I run the M32 into the top section of a Cold Mac for panning, the stereo outs each going into their own W/ which have loops set up in different lengths. A slow triangle LFO is patched to cold Mac survey. Sounds like the W/s are running in reverse. I mult a +/- 5v offset from Maths to each of the W/ to control feedback level and work this knob throughout.

In the later sections I turn the VCA of M32 on, turn the filter down and then use the LFO to open the filter up. I patch the square wave of the LFO into the LFO rate which changes the triangle wave into a saw, essentially emulating a Decay envelope. I spend a while slowly messing around with different drone notes, the LFO speed knob, filter settings on the M32. Building up and tearing down through the W//.

There may be more happening, but this is the basic idea. I regret not capturing the patch on video.


Some notes from my song The Hue of Q.
I started in Ableton at work on my lunch break and used a lot of max for live devices to create to program cords and arps in a in a particular scale and heavily lfo ed lfo’s into lfo’s into perimeters with the operator being the source of the sound. I did this over and over across a week and took the content and cut it up and arranged it. I then took the project home and moved what I created into Ableton and ran it through some delays and filters and laid it down on a 4 track. I then did one full improve track over it with a korg polly 800 ran through my modular to add some extra movement to the polly 800’s pads. I captured this all back into Ableton to mix because and do some light mastering. I focused mostly on tonality and shape of sound. After completing the song I created a sort of generative visual video for the whole song. The amplitude/frequency of the song is leading particle generators around the frame and feedback is creating a vortex, and there is also added randomness with hue and other setting. I am launching that tonight for all the lovers out there.


I’ve slowly started listening through everything, and everything I’ve heard so far has been amazing! Really happy to have participated

As for my track, the idea for it originated from a conversation I had with a friend about long-form ambient music: he told me about a youtube video titled Blade Runner Meditative Ambience that he often used to fall asleep. Listening to it, I recognized the familiar washes of Paulstretch, which turned out to be bits of the original soundtrack, with rain and other incidental sounds mix in.

I decided to see what I could come up with using a similar approach. I dug up an experiment I made a few years ago that used ableton’s clip envelopes modulating several midi pitch devices to sequence a 303 in a chaotic manner. After a few tests, I made a some adjustments to optimize the original for best results and then bounced a 90 second segment that I stretched to about 60 minutes. For the natural sound part, I wanted something that didn’t repeat and was more subtle than rain, so I simply set up my recorder near a window and went for a long walk. Threw on a few effects (including some pretty intense tape saturation), and it was done!


This was such a beautiful experience! We should do a part 2 for 2019!!! I am also very curious to listen to the tracks “unstretched”


Postcards from fast places?


This turned out amazing everybody! Was listening to it all weekend.


making gradual progress through the compilation. so much variety on offer and these tracks stood out for me so far:

@dnealelo powerful use of silence before the emergence of voice, as if the composition were modeled on a conversation (listening >> speaking)

@3Keay beautiful guitar line and flowing rhythm tracks which sustained each other really well

@Benjamin_Mauch a warm, lush, giving environment which made me imagine new life growing in the womb. the crackling that emerged around 9m55s was both unexpected yet perfectly timed


Thanks so much @howthenightcame! Very glad you enjoyed it.
I also loved your track- the length was perfect and I liked how it had distinct movements- reminded me of Jordan De La Sierra’s Gymnosphere in the best way possible.


Thanks, @howthenightcame! One of my compositional interests is in use of silence and “negative space.”

I think your piece is next in where I’m at listening to the collection. I’ve really enjoyed your contributions (discussion-wise as well as musical) and just pulled up your Bandcamp page the other day: I plan to dive into that this week.


Still working my way through this in shifts as I work - such an eclectic mix of styles, and yet somehow quite coherent, which makes for an amazingly engaging listen.
The stand out track for me so far is @DeDe ‘Treinta Minutos Con La Realidad’ - totally captivating.


thanks a lot @ikjoyce you’re very kind.


I’m loving everyone’s track so far!


My contribution is quite simple, its called ‘Live from a Cambridge Hotel Window’ and it was basically just that.

I had a played a gig in Cambridge (UK) with Theo Sayers who does a show on Resonance FM. I had a few fine ales after the gig. Woke up at 6am the next morning and opened the window in my travelodge (a cheap basic hotel chain).
Couldn’t fall back to sleep and lay there slightly hungover and just listened to the morning birds and traffic. It sounded good so I got up and set up my computer. Then set up my omni-mics hanging on a metal coat hanger from the open window and fed this straight into Ableton. I selected sound sounds without much thought and once I got a few I liked I just hit record and just improvised the additional sounds over the sounds from out the window. Nothing more and nothing less.

I didn’t listen back for some days later but liked what I got. It sat on my hard drive for a few months and when this long form album was suggested this seemed a perfect fit.


@AudioObscura I’m listening to your track now. It’s fantastic: hypnotic, embryonic, dark, warm.

It sounds very carefully composed but your commenta suggest otherwise. Did you record yourself playing live over the birds and traffic? If so, how?

I really, really like this track!!


Cheers! Thanks for listening.
I had an old channel mixer where I could have a line coming in which was just the mic picking up the birds and traffic and could have this fed into my external soundcard and this fed into one channel on Ableton. I could only here it through headphones. Some of synth playing was recorded in an armed track - in arrangemnet view on Albeton - so later in the track I simply replayed some of the recorded synth lines but edited some of the midi notes as it was playing back. I had the Ableton Push device so was also controlling some of the effects and the sort of Orb-ish spacey ambient sound which was just loops of pre-prepared ambient sounds I had used the night before at the gig.