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      Tor Lundvall's New Box Set Is an Ambient Celebration of Stillness and Solitude

      October 31, 2016 5:40 PM

      Photo courtesy of the artist

      The music that the New Jersey-born ambient composer and visual artist Tor Lundvall has made over the last 20 years reflects the muddled headspaces you find yourself in when you let yourself be alone. With shuddering found-sound samples, droning synthesizers, and affected ambience too spectral to name, the enigmatic musician has made pieces that echo his own seclusion. They're distant, shadowy compositions that feel at turns placid, melancholic, and anxious, the sort of dizzying wash of emotions you feel when you quiet the voices of the modern world and sit in your own head, staring at the world outside.

      Today he's reemerged from his own solitude with word of a new 5-CD box set called Nature Laughs as Time Slips By—if you had any doubt about its creeping concerns consider the working title, which Lundvall mentions in a press release: "Observations of a Misanthropic Recluse." The new set—composed of the albums The Park,The Violet-Blue House, Rain Studies, Field Trip, Insect Wings, Leaf Matter & Broken Twigs Vol 2—is out on Dais on November 18. And based on the five pieces he's sharing today (one from each disc), it seems in his usual mode of plaintive, otherworldly ambience—music composed in moments of deep self-reflection in order to inspire the same in its listeners.

      In the press release, Lundvall says that this new set is reflective of his music's longtime relation with the world around it. "As far back as I remember, I have always felt the most inspired and at peace in the company of Nature," he writes. "My strongest and most meaningful memories revolve around a park, a field, a quiet room or an empty beach. Wherever I've been or wherever I may go, I always seek out the hidden places. Places I often wish I could remain forever, far removed from a troubled world."

      Listen to "Open Spaces," "Wall Clock," "Lavender Twilight," "Girl Through a Rainy Window," and "A Field in Spring Rain" here—alongside the box set's art—in advance of the set's release on Dais.

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