Chill Lo-fi Music Recommendations
The tracks from these musicians can offer a sense of calm. (Illustration By Emmalia Godshall, Columbia University)

4 Chill Ambient and Lo-fi Recommendations To Enhance Your Inner Peace

Listening to gentle tunes during quarantine may provide consolation to those in need of comfort. Here are some artists to get you started.

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Chill Lo-fi Music Recommendations
The tracks from these musicians can offer a sense of calm. (Illustration By Emmalia Godshall, Columbia University)

Listening to gentle tunes during quarantine may provide consolation to those in need of comfort. Here are some artists to get you started.

For many students, the high COVID-19 infection numbers mean another semester with asynchronous or synchronous online learning. However, fret not. Listening to ambient and lo-fi sounds may reduce the nerves that come with indoor education and quarantine conditions. Listed below are some recommendations that may make the end of 2020 and the start of 2021 easier to cope with.

1. In Love With A Ghost is an ambient and lo-fi sounds classic

Looking for some soft aesthetics and beats mixed with immersive ambient sounds? Then perhaps In Love With A Ghost would be one of the best options. Like the composer’s quirky alias, many of their song titles and pieces exude originality — a few examples being “we’ve never met but, can we have a coffee or something?” and “i was feeling down, then i found a nice witch and now we’re best friends.”

Unlike traditional song titles with an eye-catching phrase or two, In Love With A Ghost brings a fresh and creative way to secure an individual’s undivided attention as they scroll through any media platform. With two full-length digital albums, three EPs and countless singles, they tell a story about life and the array of feelings that come with it.

During a time like this, their album “healing” may be the most appropriate to listen to, because taking some time to heal and relish in the power of music can be beneficial in the long term.

In Love With A Ghost can be found on YouTube and Spotify.

2. City Girl adds a city twist to ambient and lo-fi sounds

For those who live in the city, taking some time to relax with City Girl would do more good than harm. The bustling atmosphere of urban life can be taxing without a proper outlet, and instead of listening to loud sirens that do not have rhyme or rhythm, City Girl provides an alternative. Using the same energy someone may get from a city’s rush hour, they convert it into gentle yet lively tunes, capturing city life from an entirely different perspective. Full of passion, while also having the potential to be peaceful.

With eight digital albums, one EP, many singles and beautiful poetic descriptions for each one, City Girl implies that urban life may not be so different from a traditional one after all. “Neon impasse” offers the silence of a city shrouded in mist — the everchanging color of lights and the thoughts that come with it causing you to lose track of time — whereas “somnolent nova” explores the feeling of loneliness in a city full of light, where time never stills even when you remain motionless.

If you are looking for relaxing yet vibrant lo-fi with poetic verses embedded in the videos and descriptions, City Girl can satisfy that desire.

They can be found on YouTube and Spotify.

3. j’san integrates quotes into relaxing soundtracks

Not every ambient and lo-fi piece is wordless or purely instrumental. J’san finds quotes from shows and movies to mix into his tracks or implements what sounds like real-life ambient and lo-fi noises, which sets the mood right off the bat. Although some may argue it takes away the relaxation that comes with purely instrumental compositions, I believe that it only enhances that feeling further. It gives the listener something to think about, while also being ambiguous enough to leave it to their interpretation.

In “i am in love with u, sorry,” the iconic quote from 2014 film “The Fault In Our Stars” is used at the very beginning of the track: “I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I am in love with you, sorry.” The passion and longing in Augustus Waters’ voice carefully and artistically set the tone for the instrumentals that come in immediately afterward.

One of j’san’s famous tracks, “cozy winter,” starts out with the sound of snow crunching underneath footsteps and the soft clink of keys before shifting into an instrumental section. The crackle of the fireplace can be heard throughout the piece, allowing the listener to place themselves inside the setting, while not telling them where through words.

If you are looking for some chill beats with a touch of real life, j’san’s abundance of albums and tracks is more than satisfactory. He can be found mainly on Spotify.


4. Ambient Worlds can transport you to another reality

A touch of magic may be needed during dark times. Ambient Worlds can remind those of some of our fantasy favorites or simply bring us to a different world using ambiance. Remember the iconic whistling theme from “Hunger Games”? Ambient Worlds reminds some fans through their three-hour track centered around the forests of District 12. Ever wanted to imagine yourself sitting by a river and surrounded by the force of nature? A track with the chirping of birds and the rush of water can do just that.

Instead of using electronic instruments or words, Ambient Worlds exploits natural sounds taken from movies and real-life settings. They can be found on YouTube.

Ambient and Chill Lo-fi Sounds Are Food for the Soul

Everyone needs a break at some point in time—not only physically, but also emotionally and mentally. Ambient and chill lo-fi music can always provide that comfort, even when it is not needed. Whether you are looking for simple enjoyment, study tunes or some help thinking deeply, ambient and lo-fi music does it all.

Writer Profile

Sammi Looi

Baruch College

Sammi is a SEEK student at Baruch College, majoring in psychology and minoring in English. Currently, she serves as a copy editor for her college newspaper, The Ticker.

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