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Ambient:
Ambient music, unlike other forms of "background music", is intended to enhance acoustic and atmospheric idiosyncracies in the sound environment. Whereas conventional background music is produced by stripping away all sense of doubt and uncertainty from the music, ambient music retains these qualities. And whereas their intention is to "brighten" the environment by adding stimulus to it (thus supposedly alleviating the tedium of routine tasks and leveling out the natural ups and downs of the body rhythms), ambient music is intended to induce calm and a space to think.
"Ambient Music must be able to accommodate many levels of listening attention without enforcing one in particular; it must be as ignorable as it is interesting." As a genre it originated in the United Kingdom at a time when new sound-making devices such as the synthesizer, were being introduced to a wider market. Robert Fripp and Brian Eno invented ambient music in 1972 while experimenting with tape loop techniques. The Orb and Aphex Twin gained commercial success with ambient tracks. Ambient compositions are often quite lengthy, much longer than more popular, commercial forms of music. Some pieces can reach a half an hour or more in length.

Developing in the 1970s, ambient stemmed from the experimental and synthesizer-oriented styles of the period, while being influenced by nurse with wound , Kraftwerk and Klaus Schulze; nevertheless, the dance and techno music of the 1980s also played an important role in the genre. Brian Eno is regarded as ambient's founder. The concept of background or furniture music had already existed some time before, yet Eno created ambient by fusing elements of environmental music with electronic music. Ambient's sound was additionally influenced in part by space rock and Krautrock. As a genre, ambient music focuses on creating a mood or atmosphere through synthesizers and timbral qualities. It often lacks the presence of any net composition, beat, or structured melody. Due to its relatively open style, ambient music often takes influences from many other genres, ranging from House, Dub, industrial and new age, amongst several others. Since it is a relatively ambiguous term, ambient has no distinct characteristics, and its style can vary a great deal. In essence, it is a term to describe forms of music that put an emphasis on tone and atmosphere over traditional musical structure or rhythm. Ambient music is often highly conceptual and experimental in style, while it is said to evoke an "atmospheric", "visual" or "unobtrusive" quality.
Ambient did not achieve large commercial success, being criticized as having a "boring" and "over-intellectual" sound. Nevertheless, it has also attained a certain degree of acclaim throughout the years. It had its first wave of popularity in the 1970s, yet saw a revival towards the late-1980s with the prominence of house and techno music, growing a cult following by the 1990s.
John Cage (right) with David Tudor at Shiraz Arts Festival 1971
As an early 20th-century French composer, Erik Satie used such Dadaist-inspired explorations to create an early form of ambient / background music that he labeled "furniture music" (Musique d'ameublement). This he described as being the sort of music that could be played during a dinner to create a background atmosphere for that activity, rather than serving as the focus of attention.
Brian Eno is generally credited with coining the term "Ambient Music" in the mid-1970s to refer to music that, as he stated, can be either "actively listened to with attention or as easily ignored, depending on the choice of the listener", and that exists on the "cusp between melody and texture". Eno, who describes himself as a "non-musician", termed his experiments in sound as "treatments" rather than as traditional performances. Eno used the word "ambient" to describe music that creates an atmosphere that puts the listener into a different state of mind; having chosen the word based on the Latin term "ambire", "to surround".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ambient_music

Ambient:
Ambient ist eine Variante der elektronischen Musik, bei der sphärische, sanfte, langgezogene und warme Klänge dominieren. Rhythmus und Perkussion stehen bei der Ambient-Musik im Hintergrund oder sind überhaupt nicht vorhanden, sie erscheinen als subtile Perkussionstexturen, als Arpeggien oder in rhythmisch eingebrachten Melodie- und Bassverläufen. Häufig wird auch mit räumlichen Effekten, Soundscapes und Feldaufnahmen experimentiert, vielfach werden elektronische Orgeln (Keyboards) und Blasinstrumente eingesetzt. Auch Naturgeräuschkulissen, Sprache und Gesang haben ihren Platz. Die Musikstücke sind meist sehr langsam und lang, bauen sich oft gemächlich auf und gehen ineinander über, wobei sie selten einer klassischen Songstruktur folgen.
Bedeutende Vertreter, die in diesem Genre produzieren oder produzierten, sind Harold Budd, Pete Namlook, Bill Laswell, Thomas Köner, Steve Roach, Robert Rich, Jean Ven Robert Hal und Vangelis.

Der Futurist Francesco Balilla Pratella trat in seinem technischen Manifest bereits 1911 für Atonalität und irreguläre Rhythmik in der Musik ein. Luigi Russolo kündigte als Musik der Zukunft in seinem 1913 veröffentlichten futuristischen Manifest L'arte dei rumori die Geräuschkunst an und schrieb wie Pratella entsprechende Musikstücke. Russolo gilt heute als Wegbereiter der synthetischen Musik. 1920 komponierte Erik Satie die „Musik als Möbel“, (Musique d’ameublement, furniture music), die als Frühform von Ambient angesehen werden kann.
Als Begründer des Ambient gilt aber das frühere Roxy-Music-Mitglied Brian Eno, der den Stil mit der Veröffentlichung seines Albums Ambient 1: Music for Airports geprägt hat. Die Veröffentlichung war tatsächlich als Musik für öffentliche Gebäude wie Flughäfen gedacht. Sie hatte den Anspruch, sowohl für Durchreisende als auch für Wartende angenehm und interessant zu sein, selbst wenn die Wartezeit so lange ist, dass das Album mehrere Male hintereinander gespielt wird.

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ambient




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