Ambient music is typically defined by soothing, psychedelic beats that have the goal of relaxing the listener. In producer Kutiman’s newest single “Sun Don’t Shine”, he urges the listener to sit with their feelings before moving on from them.
When it comes to the production, a looped electronica beat with a smidge of hip-hop evokes a feeling of stagnancy. Supplementing the beat are a line of lyrics droning like a desolate chant: “Why, why the sun don’t shine when I’m down.”
At the same time, the song also urges the listener to move, to try and stop being stuck. The hip-hop portion of the song combines with a more frantic electronica beat to convey someone taking a more active role in their life despite their hopelessness.
The dual moods presented in this song shows that it can be hard to feel hopeful about life sometimes, but that you can also take the first steps to continue on. In this way, this song is good for casual listening.
Kutiman’s career began in 2007 with his debut album, which received praise from esteemed individuals such as Gilles Peterson, Jamie Cullum and Tom Ravenscroft of 6 Music. It also received rave reviews in news outlets such as Uncut, The Wire, and The Guardian.
In 2009, he released his pioneering music video mash-up series “Thru You’, which received ten million views on YouTube in two weeks and dubbed by TIME magazine as one of the “50 Best Inventions of 2009.”
Kutiman’s subsequent music releases showcased eclectic musical influences. His 2016 album 6am, combined Middle Eastern and African styles with psychedelic rock, electronica, soul, folk and jazz was called “a scuzzy desert epic” by The Guardian. In 2019, he was commissioned by Greenpeace International to create the EP ‘Antarctica’, which featured ambience, drone music, and new age inspirations.
Currently, his newest single “Sun Don’t Shine” is set to be the first single off his upcoming album Dense, which explores emotional heaviness and hope with drone music, electronica, hip-hop, and a sprinkle of atmospheric jazz.