For the last year I’ve been working on standalone electronic album in my spare time. The basic concept is this: dreamy, thoughtful and groovy electronica made for those who like that kind of thing. Something you might listen to while you work or study. Some of it might be good road trip music. Here’s a preview track:
There are more tracks like this, some minimalist synth tracks, some trance-like stuff, and stuff that sounds a little like my soundtracks. I’m going to write about it more as I get closer to its release. This first entry will be about what, specifically, inspired the making of this album.
Yes, the FTL fans themselves were a major inspiration. Messages from fans that said something like, “I love listening to the FTL soundtrack while I study”, or “listening to the FTL soundtrack helps me get through my workday” were so incredibly common I figured I must be on to something. What if I made something specifically for those people? An hour of dreamy, thoughtful electronic music is something I know I would love, and would probably make lots of listeners happy.
Favorite albums from my youth
Have you heard of William Orbit? He’s one of the biggest influences on my musical style. Specifically his first three Strange Cargo albums and the first Pieces In A Modern Style were a staple of my teenage years. Have a listen to this neat track from Strange Cargo III:
William Orbit taught me that worrying about genre is unnecessary. The first Strange Cargo goes effortlessly between creepy ambient, 80’s pop, and upbeat latin guitar. Orbit knows that his genre hopping needs no explanation or justification. It may seem like a simple lesson, but understanding that I could just make whatever I want and use any instrumentation available to me was an important step in becoming the musician I am now.
I could seriously discuss William Orbit’s output in great detail for several blog posts, (I didn’t even mention the beautiful warmth of his Hello Waveforms album) but I’ll spare you the misery and move on.
Another big inspiration for Color Sky was Aphex Twin’s Selected Ambient Works Volume II. This album is legendary. Some of it is calm, some of it incredibly unsettling, but all of it is atmospheric and worth studying. Supposedly inspired by the artist’s own lucid dreams, this collection of minimalist synthesis is something every aspiring composer should listen to.