Do you ever feel anxious? Stressed? Overwhelmed? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of people around the world suffer from anxiety daily. While there are many ways to deal with stress, relaxing music may be what the doctor ordered.
What is the best music to listen to while relaxing?
This blog post will recommend relaxing music for stress relief and sleep. Each track in our relaxing music list below has been carefully selected to help ease tension and promote tranquility. So sit back, close your eyes, and prepare to relax.
Marconi Union created this song in order to assist with anxiety reduction, and it was written in collaboration with sound therapists. It has an intricate piano, bass, and electronic composition that work together to create a sense of peace and calm. The song has been reported to lower heart rate and blood pressure and reduce overall anxiety levels. 65% of those who listened to the piece said they felt less overall anxiety, while 35% saw a decrease in their average resting rates, according to a study by Mindlab International.
As someone who does deal with chronic anxiety, I gave this a shot, and I must say, as a whole, I felt a lot calmer afterward. It is best experienced with headphones on, in a quiet space, with no distractions and your eyes closed.
This eight-and-a-half-hour concept record by Max Richter was explicitly designed for sleep. It was targeted to fit a whole night’s rest and was created based on research Richter gathered while composing the album. During the creation process, Richter spoke with American neuroscientist David Eagleman to learn how the brain functions during sleep. The result? An eight-hour album with 31 compositions of relaxing music, some of which are up to 30 minutes in duration. The album has been critically acclaimed and praised for its calming and sleep-inducing qualities. If you’re interested in trying it out for yourself, the album is available on Spotify and Apple Music.
Silence & Air (Entire Discography)
As mentioned in our article about the group here, Silence & Air creates purpose-made music intended to help combat insomnia, stress, and anxiety. They do this by joining their love of music with research into the science behind what causes these issues. For example, the band’s track Zero Point was (in the words of band member Andy Gbormittah) “the first [track] that has been designed from the ground up with the latest cognitive neuroscience and music psychology in mind.”
Millions swear by the group’s brand of relaxing music, with over 30 million streams on Spotify.
Mike Shinoda’s “Cognition” is an hour-long ambient track released exclusively through the Calm app. It was explicitly created with the purpose of helping people sleep, relax, and de-stress. Leaked under its original title, Sleep For Students in 2020, the track saw an official release on the Calm app with some added length and slight changes (including white noise).
Calm is an app designed to help with sleep, meditation, and anxiety. It has a wide variety of content to choose from, including articles, videos, and relaxing music. “Cognition” is one of the many contributions by musicians available on the app.
World Sleep Day Compilations
The World Sleep Day compilations are relaxing music playlists that are compiled yearly to recognize the significance of sleep. Listeners can find the 2021 version of the playlist here, and the 2022 playlist is available for streaming on the service as well.
These playlists, which include both original music and slowed-down instrumental covers of famous artists such as Billie Eilish, are a great choice if you are looking for extra help in getting some rest.
Brian Eno – Music for Airports / Brian & Roger Eno – Mixing Colours / Virtually anything in Brian Eno’s Ambient Series
Released in 1978, Brian Eno’s Ambient 1: Music for Airports was one of the first albums of its kind. The godfather of ambient music, Brian Eno, is credited for coining the term ambient music, creating the term to describe music that is as ‘ignorable as it is interesting’. The album, which is made up of four tracks that are desired to be continuously looped, was created with the intent of defusing anxiety within airport terminals.
However, it was also intended for use in other situations. Music For Airports has since been recognized as the originator of the ambient genre and is widely regarded as the greatest ambient recording ever made. Since then, Brian has gone on to make several widely acclaimed ambient albums. Many people swear by Eno as their go-to choice for relaxing music.
In 2020, Brian would join forces with his brother Robert Eno (himself a well-respected pianist/multi-instrumentalist and singer) to release Mixing Colours. The brothers had first collaborated on Brian’s 1983 record Apollo, but Mixing Colours was the first time the two brothers had recorded an entire album together. Both albums are perfect for relaxing or drifting off into dreamland.
Kitarō is a Japanese composer, multi-instrumentalist, and new-age musician. One of his most atmospheric releases was his Silk Road album, which was composed for the NHK Tokushu documentary series The Silk Road: The Rise And Fall Of Civilizations. The Silk Road was a Eurasian network of trade routes that were active from the second century BC to the 15th century. Kitarō’s work on the score resulted in millions of sales, and lead to Kitaro receiving a Galaxy Award.
Full of Japanese influences and instrumentation, this gorgeous soundtrack takes listeners on a musical odyssey and is the perfect kind of relaxing music for meditation.
Island Songs is a series of seven songs, each one representing a different area in Iceland. The album and its accompanying film came from a collaboration between modern classical pianist and composer Ólafur Arnalds and film director Baldvin Zophoníasson. The project was born out of Arnalds’ desire “to make a nice musical portrait of Iceland and the artists of Iceland you don’t hear about that often”.
Arnalds worked with seven different Icelandic musicians, each from a different part of the island, to create the EP. The result is a collection of beautiful and relaxing music, perfect for any time you need to relax.
Many different types of relaxing music can help reduce anxiety. However, what works for one person may not work for another, so finding what works best for you is essential.
Do you have any go-to songs for reducing anxiety? Please share them with us in the comments! We could all use a little more peace and calm in our lives. 🙂 Until next time!