Monday, November 10, 2008
Instrumentals for Relaxation and Studying.
If you're like me, you like to listen to music constantly, but get easily distracted by music when trying to complete schoolwork (assignments, blogs, papers, etc.). I have an annoyingly short attention span and get distracted easily. Some may call this A.D.D. My solution to this? Instrumental music. There's a lot of good stuff out there, some yet to be discovered. Here are some of my favorites, in no particular order.
I love anything from this French electro-pop group, but some of my favorites are "Moon Safari," "Talkie Walkie" and "Pocket Symphony."
2) The Album Leaf
Not all of their songs are instrumental, but I particularly love the ethereal, soothing instrumentals on "In a Safe Place."
I just recently discovered this dance rock combo. Love it. I really like their self-titled debut album. It makes me want to dance while doing school work!
4) Sigur Ros
I know that this band is not entirely instrumental, but singer Jónsi has invented a new instrument with his voice, not to mention a new language called Hopelandic. Beautiful music. One of my favorite bands. I saw them at Bass Concert Hall not too long ago. Amazing.
5) Explosions in the Sky
This Austin band plays hauntingly beautiful melodies equipped with intense crescendos and echoing guitars. I love everything they have put out, but "The Earth is Not a Cold, Dead Place" and the soundtrack for the movie "Friday Night Lights" are my favorites.
6) Booker T. and the MG's
Old school all-instrumental soul band from the 1960's and 1970's. Several members were part of the legendary house band for imprint Stax records, backing Otis Redding, Sam and Dave and Wilson Pickett, among others. This music is soothing and fun. You can sit back and enjoy the exceptional musicianship and soulful sounds. My favorites include the seminal "Green Onions" and Beatles cover album "McLemore Avenue."
7) The Bad Plus
Avant-garde jazz trio that likes to infuse jazz with pop and rock influences. They've done jazz covers of "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana and "Heart of Glass" by Blondie, among others. My favorite album is "These Are the Vistas."
8) The High Llamas
Also, not an entirely instrumental band, but I do enjoy their instrumental songs, especially off of their 1996 release "Hawaii." With its lush sound, borrowing a wee bit from the Beach Boys "Pet Sounds," "Hawaii" is a classic on its own.
This Scottish post-rock band has been making beautiful and frightening music for some times. With slow, reverb-drenched soundscapes that sometimes abruptly burst into loud distortion, this band doesn't disappoint. My favorite albums? "Young Team" and "Rock Action."