Best New Chill Out

With the first weekend of spring fast approaching, why not breathe new life into your playlists this Friday with the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Music, featuring M83, SG Lewis & Clairo, Plastic Toy & DJ Snake, and more?
We all have our ways of relaxing. Yoga, meditation, taking naps. For those of us here at We Are: The Guard, however, our preferred method of calming the nerves after a long, hard week of grinding at the office has to be listening to music.
Hello, everyone, and thanks for joining me for the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Songs! With the weekend fast approaching, the team and I have once again filtered through the highs and lows of Spotify and YouTube in order to bring you the most soothing sounds for your listening pleasure.

What Is Chill Indie Music?

The term chill as a musical descriptor came to prominence in the '90s, as information technology was really getting going in earnest. If 'chill music' is a genre, of any kind, it may be the first postmodern musical genre. Which is to say, it doesn't have a hard-and-fast definition, or even a consensus on its musical characteristics. So let's go ahead and dig into its etymology a bit in search of a definition. 

The word 'chill' is the variable that's going to help us solve this equation. Because it's been used to describe legit musical movements, as well, that have some defining aesthetics we can expound upon. 

Chill music is a shortened version of 'chill-out music,' which was an honest-to-goodness musical style in the late '80s and '90s. Chill-out music stemmed from the chillout rooms in raves and dance clubs. London's Heaven Nightclub featured the first high-profile chill-out room, where ambient music like Brian Eno would mix with progressive House, Techno, and Trance, from artists like The Orb, Orbital, or The KLF. These chill-out rooms were meant as a respite from the overwhelming stimulation of the big rooms. Which is also where we get our first hint why this music's so vital. And why it seems to be spreading.

If you're looking for some laid-back sounds to while away the warmer days ahead, then, look no further than this week's edition of We Are: The Guard's Best Chill Music. Featuring Manila Killa, San Holo, Summer Walker, Petit Biscuit, Kygo, and more, this playlist has something for everyone!
With the warm weekend fast-approaching, breathe new life into your playlists with today's edition of We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Songs, featuring Wet, Stanaj, SG Lewis, and plenty of others.
If you're feeling a little sore after getting rejected by your Valentine, then (I feel your pain!), let me help to heal your heartbreak with the following chill tracks from Cuco & Dillon Francis, RY X, Son Lux, SOAK, Toro y Moi, and even more.

Starting off as a mood, chill vibes started to permeate other genres. Most musical styles have some form of chill variant, especially if they've been around for a while. Downtempo/Trip-Hop is one variant, blending chilled hip-hop beats with noirish, jazzy vocals. Jazz, 'world music', hip-hop, and pop are all serve chilled, at times. Looking at this aspect of indie chill out also starts to illustrate some of its darker aspects. 

One aspect of indie chill focuses on the relaxing, mellow, soothing, sometimes hypnotic aspects of a style. The other showcases how nearly any style, sound, or genre can be subverted, polished into sanitized, sterilized safety. This is kind of chill with digeridoos looped over stale house beats, looped ad nauseam. In our more enlightened, culturally-sensitive times, we'd like to think this style would've fallen out of fashion. 

Not everybody's super adept at introspection, unfortunately. New Age-sounding beats paired with generic chanting samples are just as prevalent as they've ever been, if not more so. 

Seeing as how we've made a case for chill being more of a mood or a feeling that a proper genre, per se, let's delve into some of the most popular variants of chill indie music.

As 5 p.m. edges ever closer, feel free to join me in easing into the weekend with yet another edition of We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Songs, featuring Naughty Boy, RY X, Bibio, and plenty of others!
If you've had to scrap your Friday plans due to the arrival of the polar vortex, well, fear not as We Are: The Guard is here to keep you company while you wait for the thaw this weekend with the latest edition of Best Chill Music.
As another working week draws to a conclusion, join me in hunkering down with We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Music, featuring a brand new selection of winter warmers from James Blake, American Football, HONNE, Vancouver Sleep Clinic, Lolo Zouaï, and more.


One variant of chill music that is actually a genre in and of itself is 'chillstep.' Beginning in 2009, chillstep is a sub-genre of dubstep, toning down the bassy machismo of American dubstep and fusing aspects of more atmospheric genres, like Future Garage and Liquid Funk. 

Of course, anyone who listens to non-American styles of dubstep realize its European counterparts were much lighter and more graceful, more romantic, even seductive. In a way, chillstep is just bringing that aspect to the forefront. This makes chillstep more suitable for your bedroom mixtapes, for the 'chill' part of 'Netflix and Chill,' which is, no doubt, what a lot of the genre is alluding to. 

Chillstep is a breath of fresh air for those who love dance music but get burned out on constant low frequencies and blaring volumes. Much like the best love, the best dance music can be slow, subtle, delicate, and nuanced. It just makes it that much more satisfying when the climax comes.

If you're starting to feel a touch of the winter blues, then fear not, as We Are: The Guard is here to help you hunker down and get through the next few weeks of cold weather with the chillest vibes to arrive on the blogosphere over the last seven days.
As another weekend approaches, join me in trying out a different kind of New Year's resolution this Friday with help from the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Songs, featuring Girlpool, Billie Eilish, Rhys Lewis, D'Angelo, Mike Posner, and more!
Treat yourself to some much-deserved me time this weekend with help from We Are: The Guard's Best Chill Songs, featuring A.CHAL, 6LACK, xxyyxx, Möwe, Shallou, and more!
Ahead of the 2019 celebrations, why not continue to take time out from adulting this Friday with the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Top Chill Music, featuring the following soothing sounds from Maya Jane Coles, Crywolf, The-Dream, and seven other favorites?!