If there’s anything the world needs right now, it would be compassion, empathy and dedication, love for short. Cologne’s Ambientfestival has always carried the claim “Zivilisation der Liebe” in its title. However urgent this may sound in times like these, the music remains subtle. With acts like the young pianist Carlos Cipa, Krautrock legend Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Dub Techno overlord bvdub or plush aficionado Charlemagne Palestine, this year’s edition will explore the many possible interpretations of what the term Ambient might imply between January 28th to 30th. Simon Scott has already performed several times in the stunning basilica St. Aposteln and also returns this year despite being quite busy with the reunion of his old band, Shoegaze legends Slowdive, for a concert as well as a field recording workshop which will take place on the afternoon of January 29th. Even more so, he additionally recorded a mix for us and took the time to answer some questions about Ambient, love and future projects. Additionally, we are giving away tickets to his concert at Ambientfestival “Zivilisation der Liebe”!
How and when did you record the mix?
I simply made an iTunes playlist of some tracks I thought would be suitable for the mix and put them all into Logic Pro and mixed them together.
This year’s edition of Ambientfestival has the motto “Civilisation Of Love: Sapientia et Bonitas (Wisdom and Kindness)”. How do you and your music fit into this?
I’ve had an eventful two years since I last played this beautiful festival, many changes have taken place personally, but I actually made the mix before I knew the theme. However, this mix does reflect the overall theme as it is reflective and but also hopeful of what the future holds. It is also very kind to your ears, perhaps with the exception of the Pita track (editor’s note: be careful around 46min!), as it flows calmly and will hopefully turn a few people on to some of the music within it.
While the festival’s title suggests a rather narrow stylistic frame, the line-up is actually quite diverse. Where do you see the lowest common denominator, or rather: What exactly is Ambient music anyway?
I don’t really define music by genres but I naturally gravitate towards ambient sounds and away from Pop music. I actually don’t think of my work as Ambient but as “environmental” and I consider Ambient in terms of spaces filled with sound or music with a lot of space for the listener to go deep inside it. I love the fact that ambient music can trigger, through deep active listening, a past event or, even better, soundtrack to a moment that is forever stored inside our minds. I have only included a small snippet of my work in here and none of the other artists who are playing are on this mix. There are plenty of places to listen to music on the internet and I wanted the mix to be personal to me.
2015 has been a busy year for you: Besides touring with Slowdive, you have also released a new LP on Ash International, Insomni. What are your plans for 2016 with both the band and your solo project?
I am now published by Touch and I’m recording and editing a new album that follows on from 2012’s Below Sea Level concept that explores the soundscape of The Fens in East Anglia (where I live right now). There will also be a lovely 7” single too but haven’t got a release date worked out for that yet. In May I play dates in the US with Philip Jeck and around then the cassette label Tapeworm are releasing a live tape that was recorded in Belgium on 13th November last year at STUK which is dedicated to the victims of the terror attacks in Paris that happened on the night I played. Slowdive are currently finishing a new album, I am currently mixing a live Slowdive concert that we hope to release this year.
We are giving away 2×1 tickets for the first day of Ambientfestival “Zivilisation der Liebe”: Sapientia et Bonitas on January 28th with Mario Hammer, Carlos Cipa and Simon Scott. Please send us an e-mail with the subject line Love until Wednesday, January 27th!
Stream: Simon Scott – Ambientfestival “Zivilisation der Liebe” 2016 Podcast
Download (MP3, 320 kBit/s, 60:00 Min., 137,8 MB)
1. David Darling – In November
2. Dino Saluzzi – Winter
3. Bill Fontana – Satelliten-Klangbücke/Satellite Sound Köln-Kyoto
4. Eric La Casa – Zone Sensible
5. Akira Radelais – Gymnopédie No. 1
6. Simon Scott – Below Sea Level (TouchLine edition)
7.Anthony Moore – Mu Na H-Uile Ni
8. Pãrt -Spiegel Im Spiegel
9. Hildur Guðnadóttir – Erupting Light
10. A.C Marias – Just Talk
11. Pita – Untitled 3 (Get Out)
12. Russ Garcia – Sophisticated Lady
13. Entourage Music and Theatre Ensemble – Michael’s Song
Ambientfestival “Zivilisation der Liebe”: Sapientia et Bonitas
January 28th to 30th 2016
Line-up January 28th: Mario Hammer, Simon Scott, Carlos Cipa
Line-up January 29th: bvdub (per live stream), Masayoshi Fujita, Hans-Joachim Roedelius
Line-up January 30th: Max Würden, Federico Albanese, Charlemagne Palestine