Ambient Dream Folk & Beyond

While little on this playlist would otherwise be deemed “folk,” everything here retains that genre’s elegant simplicity—all shot through a moody ambient soundscape. Justin Vernon of Bon Iver is the absolute king of this sparse, lonely sound, ever-enhancing it through velvety guitars, samples, and fragmented beats, while his cohort James Blake creates such fragile atmospheres from a whole different angle: bass music and hip-hop. But they blend seamlessly together (just see their “I Need a Forest Fire” collaboration), alongside Radiohead (who can lift you into a dream-like state like no other), Daughter (whose hushed electro-folk is absolutely gut-wrenching), and a few of their most notable IDM and ambient influences.