Kai Gittos' 9 records for melancholic inspiration
With an inaugural release from Inhmost and a new album from Tarotplane, the immersive sound palettes and warm familiarity of the releases by Tonight’s Dream Records evoke promise that the label is well worth keeping tabs on in the future. We eagerly reached out to Kai Gittos to learn more about his musical inclinations and what records keep him going behind-the-scenes. He put together a list of 9 records that capture a mood of melancholic inspiration:
“The albums in the list are ones that I always rely on in moments of sadness or depression. These albums have somewhat of an ethereal, melancholic feel to them, but for me, they also inspire and uplift. With these moments of inspiration, passion projects like Tonight’s Dream are created and developed. I hope everyone can find these moments in the albums below and in all music.”
Image: Jonny Edmund-Jones
Jan Jelinek - Loop-Finding-Jazz-Records
I remember a housemate bringing an original pressing of this back (long before the repress had landed), sitting down with a glass of red (probably how most of these albums have been consumed), and being completely blown away by how something so stripped back and minimalistic could be so engaging. I find this album effortlessly flows through slightly melancholic tones to more of an elevating sound from track-to-track.
Slowdive - Slowdive
The first time I heard this album, I was unfortunately on my way to a close friend’s funeral. However, this album is a perfect example of the melancholy but uplifting sound, and offers this throughout. It will probably go down as one of my all-time favorites, which may be odd for something that reminds you of a funeral. However, the album provides something of peace and inspiration.
Illuvia - Iridescence Of Clouds
This has to be one of my favorite albums from the last few years, on one of my favorite labels, A Strangely Isolated Place. The album is incredibly fresh and uplifting and constantly offers up inspiration with each listen. Illuvia managed to take two genres that you would not expect to be able to merge and create something as beautiful.
Sigur Rós - Valtari
I remember seeing Sigur Rós a few years back at Glastonbury Festival and was nearly brought to tears by their unique, ethereal sound. This album especially moves me due to its range of using sounds and production techniques from the classical, ambient, and rock genres. It’s beautiful, engaging, peaceful, and uplifting, and it’s a perfect example of the melancholic inspiration mood.
E.V.A. - Extra Vehicular Activity
Annoyingly like a lot of ’90s ambient techno, this is only available on CD. I hope it gets picked up for a reissue at some point, as a few labels have been tapping into the “chill-out room” sound (big-ups re:discovery records and Music From Memory’s Virtual Dreams series). The album offers so much by constantly building with deep ambient textures and a classic ambient techno sound. This particular track slowly builds into dreamy breaks with a beautiful melody that will easily transport you away.
Hiroshi Yoshimura - Music For Nine Post Cards
Such a beautiful album that probably sits up there in my most played. If I cannot sleep with too many thoughts racing around, I always find myself putting this album on as a meditation track. It makes me feel completely lost in the music and isolated from the outside world.
Shuttle358 - Chessa
Perfect song title for what this album will do to you. I found the album through a long, deep wormhole Internet scan for new music several years ago and thankfully picked up the vinyl reissue a few days ago. Like Jan Jelinek, its minimalistic nature is engaging; yet it’s the looping samples and drones, a complete shift in feel between each track, that really draws me in.
Boards of Canada - The Campfire Headphase
It definitely has less of an IDM feel than the other records Boards of Canada released on Warp. However, it does offer somewhat of a psychedelic rock aspect to it with its use of guitars accompanied by a perfect balance of downtempo beats and ambient tones. It is these elements that make it an incredibly emotional and inspiring album.
Burial - Untrue
If you have listened through the albums/tracks and have understood the mood that I have been describing, then I’m sure you can predict that this album would be on the list somewhere. The production is incredible, and I always catch something new with every listen! It takes me back to (as I’m sure it does for a lot of people) getting trains/buses home after a rave or party, headphones in, sunglasses on (to avoid the “I know what you have been doing” looks), and just allowing yourself to be transported away.