tom_day.jpgPhoto Credits: Facebook - Tom Day

In a novel* I read last summer, the sociopathic main character tried to understand human emotions and feelings. When he was asked about the reason why he did not listen to music, he used words similar to `Music does not make you understand human emotions; instead it makes you feel them, and that I do not wish.`

Music, in all of its genres, indeed has the ability to touch human feelings, from melodies that put you in a variety of hues of emotions to lyrics that tell unknown stories.

Still, in not all genres does a song ask people to listen to its words. The majority of pieces in classical music, for instance, are within a genre that does not use words to communicate with the audience. Instead, classical music creates a shared medium through music in its purest form to let each individual in the audience write their own stories.

Similarly, the ambient (or atmospheric) music genre, which dates back to the ’70s, demonstrates such emphasis on rhythm and melody itself.

What I am sharing is the piece that introduced me to the beauties of the atmospheric genre.  The album 2012 (2012) is composed by a not-so-well-known Australian artist named Tom Day, who makes music while also doing his PhD in Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry.

Tom Day is a significant figure in atmospheric music because of his ability to create sounds and non-lyrical ambient music pieces that make the audience take a step back from the chaos of daily life. His music invites you to spend a moment with yourself. This gives you a chance to watch the world around you moving, to turn back and watch yourself from another perspective.

When I texted Tom via Facebook Messenger (yes, really), he told me that people come to him asking if he can compose more pieces like the song “Who We Want to Be” off of the album. He thinks that he probably cannot, saying, “[I] feel like it really captured what headspace I was in at the time” and that the song was “a one-time-only piece.”

So yeah, I guess that’s enough of an advertisement. I will leave you alone with this, though. During this part of the semester, term tests are approaching and you will most likely be brought to an existential crisis … it may be of assistance to turn your faces away from the Instagram stories of friends and to the self, thinking of whether the path you are following is the one you planned to and trying to figure out who you really want to be. If that sounds appealing to you, you may want to give ambient music a chance.

Favorite Track:
“Who We Want to Be”

Also from the album:
“New Beginnings”
“Love Your Life”
“Going Home”
“Our World”

*The book is called Kardeşimin Hikayesi (or, My Brother's Story) (2013) by Zülfü Livaneli.
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