Three albums to listen to when you’re home alone

Andrew Critchelow

Sometimes the best method of winding down after a long day of academics and Hilltopping is through staying home and getting lost in a good record. Below are three albums perfect for an evening away from it all.

“Pink Moon” by Nick Drake:

Though late singer-songwriter Nick Drake still isn’t exactly a household name, the impact he left on modern folk and indie music is immeasurable. Known for his fusion of folk sensibilities with lush arrangements, Drake’s final record “Pink Moon” of 1972 was a stark and stripped-down goodbye to an audience that, unfortunately, was modest at best. At a time when much of popular music was championing lavish arrangements and operatic concepts, Drake dared to make a 30-minute album of soft crooning and gentle guitar arpeggios. Despite the record’s subtle production, “Pink Moon” is a testament to the fact that sometimes the most transcendent art is also the most immediate.

 “Music Has the Right to Children” by Boards of Canada:

It’s easy to listen to the first few notes of 1998’s “Music Has the Right to Children” and label the music as ambient. Vintage synthesizer sounds twinkle in what seems to be an eternal void, channeling a blueprint created by the likes of Brian Eno. But though ambient influences are apparent in this album, the songs seem to demand something more. Esoteric field recordings and retro voice samples embellish this record, creating a soundscape that channels tackiness and camp into the ethereal. A purely electronic work, this record somehow manages to sound warmer and more comforting than most music made by conventional means.

 “Black Foliage: Animation Music Volume One” by The Olivia Tremor Control:

Though this maximalist exploration into musique concrete and sunny psychedelia doesn’t scream relaxation, “Black Foliage” of 1999 is definitely a record to get immersed in. The album is every bit as much of an experiment in the world of sound collage as it is a tribute to 60’s psychedelic music. The Olivia Tremor Control seamlessly transitions between Beatles-esque pop tunes and random flashes of surreal noise on this record, sometimes allowing both elements to be present on a single track. This album explores sonic lucidity in a way few albums have done before, but don’t expect to get any sleep while you listen to it.