By Jesse Silbert

When you put on a pair of headphones, your entire auditory world becomes dominated by the music. This immersion allows for artists not just to catch one’s attention with a vocal melody or synth lead, but to craft an intricate sonic space. The ability to manipulate a listener’s world of sound for a few minutes is a powerful one. Ambient music is minimalist in that it perhaps does only this — shape a listener’s sonic headspace in a way that a rock or pop song may not. Listeners of ambient music can choose to let the sounds drift into the background of their minds or focus on every minute change or detail, and the ambient musicians themselves can tell stories, entrance the listener with a drone, create an entire world with their sounds, and more.

This compilation includes some of my favorite ambient work on SoundCloud from artists all over the world.