When the track reaches 22 and a half minutes, there is a brief piano figure, very brief, just a few notes. These few notes trace a downward arc. There’s a pause afterward. It’s long enough to make the listener wonder if the sound of piano was overheard from somewhere else, somewhere apart from the recording, somewhere unrelated to the underlying sound that had preceded it — perhaps through a wall, or an open window, maybe emanating from the listener’s own memory. But repeat it does, and then again, and then there’s a modulation at some stage of this repetition of the piano, enough to a suggest formal compositional approach and not merely sound for its own sake, which has been the effect up until now. Up until now it has been a low-level drone. The piece shifts as time passes, it grows. The piano is exchanged for a deeper, orchestral swell. This is “Score to a Quotidian Experience” by Collin Thomas. It’s an hour-long piece recently released on the always excellent restingbell.net The description here can come across as breathless, because the unanticipated developments, ones that both challenge and reinforce the concept of ambient music (challenge by veering from stasis, reinforce by providing a non-invasive framing structure), are so promising and enjoyable. The track is anything but breathless — it’s slow, subdued. It’s sonic breath.