Music you can listen to whilst reading - or studying, drawing, etc.

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WEEDle

kiwifarms.net
I've been reading a lot of books lately and find that listening to music can make the experience more enjoyable and enhance my concentration.

Not all music is fit for this purpose though. For me at least, the music must not contain any lyrics or vocals, as I find this distracting.

The music itself must not be too distracting. So far I've found music that is at a slower, relaxed tempo to be most appropriate. I usually listen to it at a slightly lower volume than I usually would.

The qualities I seek for this purpose are vastly different, perhaps even diametrically opposed, to the kind of music I would consider to be good music to exercise to (perhaps there's potential for another thread there).

So this disqualifies a lot of music I regularly listen to, but thankfully I'm left with quite a lot of options.

So far I've had a lot of luck with Drone/Doom music. Particularly Earth, Sunn O))) and certain Boris albums. The music is non-obtrusive, relaxing, atmospheric, the kind of stuff you can just zone out to.

I'm sure there are a lot more bands and albums in the Drone genre that would be perfect for background ambience whilst reading.

Although I haven't gotten around to reading to them yet, I imagine other genres that would be perfect for this are dark ambient, instrumental post rock and ambient electronic.

So my request of you, my fellow Kiwi music lovers, is to post music you use as background music when you're getting stuff done that requires some degree of concentration (reading, drawing, studying, etc) or simply music you think would be fit for that purpose. Thank you for your time.

This Boris/Merzbow collaboration is a great example.


Then there's the classics.


 
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Marco Fucko

I fantasized about this back in Chicago
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
LO-FI HIP HOP BEATS TO CHILL/STUDY TO

Trance music can work for that purpose, but you need to sift through it yourself, since much like the aforementioned lo-fi, there is sometimes meaningless dialogue thrown in and that can take you out of your book.

EDIT: Actual recommendations.

Both the Deus Ex and System Shock soundtracks are lyricless electronic, give those a try.

I vetted this album, there's no lyrics at all:

2hu Cafe:
 
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A Useless Fish

A Fish with literally no value, whatsoever.
kiwifarms.net
When it comes to writing, it depends entirely on the nature of the scene, but when it comes to reading, there's usually a few collections I go back to. My current favourite is a compilation of piano music done by Debussy. It's beautiful, but not so intrusive that you can spend more time focusing on it than on what you are reading.

 

Pocket Dragoon

you're disturbing my calm.
kiwifarms.net
Gotta go deep.


Also, a heaping helping of LSG.

 

Wooper

the spooky big dick gee Pokemon
kiwifarms.net
I like reading about history mainly & I guess comics as of late, & I listen to rap, jazz & light rock. I know nothing about neural systems in the brain, but I think that has something to do with about music we can listen to while working because I nod off if I'm listening to someone like Bach. As I'm writing this I'm listening to Kanye while reading about the Pacific Theater.
 

Kamiii

Aaron Rodgers is a fag
kiwifarms.net
For some reason I've never had a problem with lyrics in music whilst reading. Maybe it's because my brain doesn't even register any audible words. It's in the background.
 
P

PL 001

Guest
kiwifarms.net
Lyrics/singing has never distracted me. Only thing I can't really listen to while reading is more heavier sounding music. No metal or anything like that. I usually have some Jethro Tull or Bauhaus going while reading. Maybe some of Blind Guardian's more slow paced melodic songs.
 

Gordon Cole

Yep, he's dead
True & Honest Fan
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I have a playlist whenever I'm reading/studying/working on a project that I always play. It's mostly made up of jazz and electronic, and almost none of them have lyrics. Here's some songs that came up when I hit shuffle:




 

The Opera Ghost

Ugly underground simp
kiwifarms.net
Lyrics and heavy percussion tend to distract me. I favor film scores, classical, and game soundtracks when reading. Usually tailored to the genre I'm reading.
 

JosephStalin

Vozhd
True & Honest Fan
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I like a variety of music - smooth jazz, oldies, and New Age. Singing is fine with me.

Have you considered listening to the sounds of rain or a thunderstorm? Can be pleasant.
 

Pocket Dragoon

you're disturbing my calm.
kiwifarms.net
Have you considered listening to the sounds of rain or a thunderstorm? Can be pleasant.

Even better, is when there's artillery.
(Some of the sound-effects are a bit extraneous, but for the most part it's close).


I have no idea why, but this shit chills me out far faster than anything else.
 

WEEDle

kiwifarms.net
A lot of great suggestions so far! Thanks guys.

LO-FI HIP HOP BEATS TO CHILL/STUDY TO

Trance music can work for that purpose, but you need to sift through it yourself, since much like the aforementioned lo-fi, there is sometimes meaningless dialogue thrown in and that can take you out of your book.

EDIT: Actual recommendations.

Both the Deus Ex and System Shock soundtracks are lyricless electronic, give those a try.

I vetted this album, there's no lyrics at all:

2hu Cafe:

Ah yeah I've tried those lo-fi hip hop beats videos/playlists/stations with the anime pictures before with mixed results.

Trance music is an interesting suggestion though. I could see that working with certain tracks. I was listening to some acid music the other day, stuff without vocals, some of that could work as well. Funnily enough I think certain trance and acid tracks would be just as good for reading to as for working out.

I think there's something about the repetition and in certain aspects the simplicity (in a good way) of some of those tracks that makes great background music for reading.

When it comes to writing, it depends entirely on the nature of the scene, but when it comes to reading, there's usually a few collections I go back to. My current favourite is a compilation of piano music done by Debussy. It's beautiful, but not so intrusive that you can spend more time focusing on it than on what you are reading.

This seems like it would make great background music for reading as well. One of my old English teachers from high school would always claim classical music helped you concentrate when reading/writing, but would then put on this crazy, noisy stuff I found distracting. Wish she'd played this instead.

Speaking of solo piano music, Eluvium is one of my favorite ambient electronic artists and great background music for reading, but also released a solo piano album in 2004 that is a perfect fit for this thread.


I have a playlist whenever I'm reading/studying/working on a project that I always play. It's mostly made up of jazz and electronic, and almost none of them have lyrics. Here's some songs that came up when I hit shuffle:

Heck yeah! Tim Hecker!

Vaporwave music in the "mallsoft" style seems to work quite well, since it's intended to be just ambient background noise and passively consumed.

Also Palm Mall Mars and Yes! We're Open

A few other tracks that would be worth adding to a reading playlist:

(anything from Eluvium is perfect for this)
 

Trilby

Sorry, but not sorry!
True & Honest Fan
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I find the soulful tunes of Keith Mansfield helps me out....
 
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