Comment: As suggested by his moniker, Aonian (real name: Alkis Livathinos) is originally from Greece and you can certainly perceive a Greek influence in his music. This London-based electronic music musician has composed pieces for brands such as Louis Vuitton and will soon release his debut full album. A problem I have with electronic and chill-out music is that many of the tracks tend to sound similar to each other but that’s not the case with Hideout, Aonian‘s second single. This piece is testimony of the artist’s talent and creativity. Listening to it will transport you to a beach bar in Mykonos.
Two friends from Sweden, one a house music producer, John Dahlbäck, and the other one a 3D animator, Erik Ande, decided to work together on a music/motion art project as a way to abstract themselves from their hectic lives that involve, according to them, too many children and dogs around. This project is heartaake, and as you can probably guess already, its music style is basically #lofichillout. John and Eric say that their biggest influence is the silence that surrounds them when they make music.
However, unevershowmeløv –I got no clue what it means but the song is about taking it easy– is not your typical chill out tune. It has personality. Sounds and a melody that make it easily identifiable, which is not something I can say of many chill-out tracks. Also, at just 01:46 minutes, it does not overstay its welcome. As implied by the animation below, unevershowmeløv is a great track to listen to while driving. The artists behind heartaake say that this music is their chill zone and I think they manage to transport the listener to that place as well. What else could we ask for? Welcome to the chill zone!
Gilead may mean, among other things, “hill of testimony” and that is the meaning The Broken Cradle had in mind when he decided to use it as the name of his latest EP. It is supposed to tell the journey of our respective roads to Gilead in our search for happiness and purpose. The EP is a neoclassical and ambient album that starts with the aptly titled Road to Gilead, a piano-centered track with atmospheric pads that create a mesmerizing soundscape. Listening to the multiple textures in the song feels like scratching an itch and not wanting to stop.
The Broken Cradle is the solo work of Eric McLean, a musician from North Carolina with over 20 years of experience. With influences such as Brian Eno and Olafur Arnalds, it is not surprising that his music could fit so well in an album from any of those renowned artists. He is that good.
Kyrie Eleison is a transliteration of Ancient Greek meaning “Lord, Have Mercy”, which is an important prayer of Christian liturgy (thank you, Wikipedia). This is as far as I can tell you about the meaning of this song without guessing (I think it is about someone who is down on his luck), but the good news is that we don’t need to know more in order to enjoy it. The low-key vocals, electronic soundscape and synths give the tune a soothing effect that I find very appealing. There is comfort in sound and Kyrie Eleison is proof of it.
Julien Zeno Bitter is the man behind Kafka Kaya, a solo act that he started in 2015 after his previous band split up. With origins in the quiet but beautiful countryside of Switzerland but based now in Berlin, Kafka Kaya has a background in electronic music with a predilection for authentic acoustic sounds. As many other independent artist, Julien produces his music himself and is getting ready to release a new EP in April, which will include Kyrie Eleison too. Check him out below.
Parra for Cuva is definitely one of my favorite electronic music artists. Originally from Germany, I discovered him when the song being featured here today, his cover of Chris Isaak‘s popular Wicked Games, was featured on a now-extinct Youtube channel I used to follow. The track was a real hit, even reaching number 6 in UK’s official Top 40 in 2014, but, nevertheless, he remains relatively unknown. I mean, he should be more famous by now after that success and also because he has consistently released great track after great track (he’s already released one this year).
Nicolas Demuth, Parra for Cuva‘s real name, grew up in the same small town in Germany as singer-songwriter Anna Naklab and, naturally, they ended up working together in a number of releases, including Wicked Games. Her stunning voice is one of the reasons this song is so good. Event though it was a cover of a really well-known song, they managed to make it sound fresh. By the way, while we are talking about Parra for Cuva, check his remix of Mazzy Star‘sInto Dust (not available on Spotify). Simply outstanding.
Far Away is a really captivating track. Musically, it is reminiscing of the works of acts like Morcheeba, Massive Attack, and even Mazzy Star; which makes sense because Canada-based singer/songwriter BILYK grew up listening to all of them in Western Ukraine. She has been collaborating with Ukrainian ambient/downtempo project Endless Melancholy, resulting in several stunning songs. One Day You Will Be Free, one of their previous collaborations, got featured in one of the renowned Buddha Bar compilation albums. I honestly think that Far Away is even better.
The combination of Endless Melancholy‘s chill ambient electronic background and BILYK‘s gorgeous and soothing vocals result in a truly spellbinding tune. I should also mention the equally outstanding music video, filmed on the shore of the Baltic Sea on Rugen Island by Roman Hense, which you can find below. Watching the beautiful cinematography with Far Away playing in the background is indeed a fascinating experience.
Just like importmedia, Low Detail is a Venezuelan lo-fi music producer who happens to be friends with fellow countryman Blure. I also discovered his music when I wrote about Blure back in September. He started releasing music since 2020 and according to his songs’ credits on Spotify, his full name is Manuel Espinel. That’s about all the personal information that you will be able to find about him online. He lets his music speak for itself.
The picture above is the cover art from Low Detail’s EP, Sunny Days, one of the many releases he made in 2020. My favorite track from it is Pôrto Alegre, a charming track whose only drawback is that it is too short. That’s not a big deal though, as the problem can be easily solved by playing this great tune on repeat. Alternatively, you could simply continue with the rest of Low Detail’s musical catalogue. Totally worth it.
Seafei is a musician and producer from Ohio who lives in Singapore. Naturally, this mix of Western and Eastern cultures get reflected in his work, resulting in ambient and electronic tracks that don’t sound like your typical chill-out tunes. Mountains, his latest single, is a great example of that. It is low-tempo Western electronic music that manages to transport you to the Himalayas at least for a couple of minutes.
By all means, check Seafei‘s engaging music out. He got the talent, creativity and skills to become a renowned name within the genre.
importmedia is a Venezuelan lo-fi music producer who happens to be friends with fellow countryman Blure. In fact, I found his music when he liked a post I made on social media when I wrote about Blure back in September. He has been releasing music since 2018 and his last name is Gómez. Other than that, there is no much information online about him. Just his music, which, by the way, you will love if you like the lo-fi genre, even casually like me.
Last year, importmedia released the third entry into his Lovely Bumps series, which consists of 14 mesmerizing tracks, highlighted by –in my opinion– Playa São Paulo, which is a collaboration with Mexican music producer, Key One. This outstanding piece got some Brazilian vibes (as suggested by its title) that complement the electronic beats wonderfully. If you are looking for a soothing track to chillax to during these crazy times, this is as good as it gets. Enjoy!
Jake Atlas, better known by his stage name Thriftworks, enjoys life outdoors and is a self-proclaimed ornithologist and pteranodon enthusiast. So, naturally, this experimental electronic music producer named his latest EP after a large, crested, and toothless pterodactyloid pterosaur from the Early Cretaceous period, the Tupuxuara. His goal is to make music that is not quite danceable yet impossible to listen to without moving some part of your body. That is exactly what you will find in that 5-track EP.
Braided and Faded is just the track I chose from Tupuxuara. All of them are pretty consistent in terms of innovation, enjoyability and rhythm, but that doesn’t mean that they all sound the same. On the contrary, each song has its own personality. If you enjoy downtempo electronic music from time to time, Thriftworks will be a perfect addition to your library of that kind of music. Check it out and enjoy your Saturday.