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Ambient House

electronic music genres
sound of electronic music

Here we have ambient house, and as you may have guessed, it's a fusion genre of house music (more specifically acid house) and ambient music in general. It grabs some stylistic properties from electro as well (not to be confused with electro house or electrofolk), and has a very funk-like sound. This is the main characteristic that makes this music what it is.

It will typically keep the rhythm of house music and the standard kick drum on every fourth beat; however it also maintains the atmosphere of ambient. Vocal samples will be used and incorporated into this atmosphere, along with synth pads to mix in well with the overall sound. And since ambient music in general usually has a focus on atmosphere, rather than dancing, you won't find much of a high energy feel to it.

While the typical instruments usually include what was just mentioned (the samples of vocals a.k.a. a sampler, and the synth pad), some artists will use almost any instrument, of any variety to get the effect they're looking for.

One of the most influential bands of this genre is also one of the oldest (and overall influential) groups in electronic music history, and that's Yellow Magic Orchestra. Yellow Magic Orchestra has helped to define the sounds of many genres, such as house, techno, hip-hop, synthpop, electronica (big one), EDM, chiptune, and several others.

history of electronic music

Ambient house rose up during the late 1980s, nearly 20 years after the original came into the world. It was developed and produced both in the United Kingdom and Japan during this time.

During the late 1980s, a nightclub called "Heaven" ran a night for acid house music, and in another section of this nightclub ran a much more chilled out type of music, featuring music from artists like Pink Floyd, 10CC and others. The music was played at a low volume with video projections.

During the same time period in London, another type of party was going on. They called these "Spacetime" parties. In these clubs, the music was very mellow, and had a much calmer atmosphere than most others. The guests were more prone to talk to one another and mingle, rather than dancing to what is normally a pounding rhythm in the background.

And this is where it comes in... During the same time, when people were wanting something much softer and calmer after a night of raving, this house variant of ambient stepped up to the plate. The group called "The Orb" was formed by Alex Paterson (the same guy who was holding the chill sessions in the nightclub "Heaven").

After one of the member of The Orb (Jimmy Cauty) split from the group, he finished an album called "Space," and The Orb released a single called "Little Fluffy Clouds." They are both considered to be a big part of ambient house's development.

And finally, in 1992, The Orb released another single, titled "Blue Room" which was their most successful. And finally (really this time) in 1993, they released one last album, which was a live one titled "Live 93." After that, they stopped producing this music, to concentrate on a new sound, one that has a much more "metallic" feel to it.

Ambient House Specifications

Average Beats Per Minute: Slow usually, varies a lot so can't give estimation.

Where It Originated: United Kingdom

Stylistically Similar To: Electro, House Music, Acid House

Year Developed: Late 1980s


General Ambient - Back to the overview of ambient.

Dark Ambient - Dark sinister sounds, You'll feel scared just listening to it.

Drone Music - Long sustained notes make the core of what this music is.

Illbient - Get a note from your doctor, this requires a prescription.

Ambient House - A fusion of ambient and house music. What more could you ask for?

You are at ambient house.

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