Iowa City Ambient (MP3)

Earlier this year, this site’s Downstream department output was increased to daily from weekdaily, to seven days a week from five days a week. The goal wasn’t so much to increase the number of recommended free downloads, though that was an obvious result. The goal was to free up space for repetition. In other words, I wasn’t as interested in increasing the number of musicians I highlighted as I was in increasing opportunities to repeat appearances by specific musicians. The thinking was, the more slots available, the less stingy it will feel to focus on more than one occasion on the same musician.

Mark Rushton is such a musician. Based in Iowa City, Iowa, he has produced an extensive array of ambient music that has a rural intent, due in large part to its frequent rootedness in field recordings. A recent track added to his account, two minutes and twenty two seconds titled “Machine Shine,” veers from the lush haze common to his work in favor of something, per its title, more mechanical. Despite which pulsing mathematics, it still retains a simplicity and elegantly threadbare quality that marks it as clearly his own.

Track originally posted at More on him at

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