Introvert theme songs (with no vocals)?
July 23, 2012 6:13 AM   Subscribe

Introvert theme songs with no vocals or lyrics? (previously)

I want to make a playlist about introversion and/or being alone - but not necessarily about loneliness!

Instrumentals, Post-Rock, Jazz, Classical/Soundtracks, etc, please post your recommendations (no vocals!). I'll start off with:

Clint Mansell - Welcome To Lunar Industries
posted by querty to Media & Arts (24 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
The Lonely Man
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:47 AM on July 23, 2012

Not totally sure what you're asking for here; could you enlarge? In what sense do you want instrumental songs to be "about" introversion and being alone? Are you just asking for a subjective mood judgement here? Something in the title or, as in the example you give, an association with a movie?
posted by Decani at 6:47 AM on July 23, 2012

From his live record "Revenge!" Alt-country singer/songwriter Robbie Fulks has his very amusing "I Like Being Left Alone."
posted by Sunburnt at 6:53 AM on July 23, 2012

Introversion calls for austere works and instrumentation, so more chamber music and solo pieces than epic symphonies.

Dmitri Shostakovich comes to mind, take his last string quartet (No. 15). Many of his works, especially some of the quartets, touch on introspection, what choice do you have when you are alternately celebrated and denounced by the USSR regime? Once you get away from the bombastic propaganda works, his music turns to something closer to his heart and more despairing. He was a man who often stood alone, and it shows.

The Bach sonatas and partitas for solo violin can also be interpreted as introverted, they are methodical in structure and melody, and are played by only one person.
posted by Hollywood Upstairs Medical College at 7:33 AM on July 23, 2012

Not totally sure what you're asking for here; could you enlarge?
If you walked into a bar for introverts (do these even exist?) and everyone was drinking by themselves and rarely socializing, what music would the bar be playing?
posted by querty at 7:47 AM on July 23, 2012

Music for Airports
posted by Daily Alice at 8:05 AM on July 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

whale & wasp
still dreamin
posted by cashman at 8:34 AM on July 23, 2012

My Name is Nobody – theme
posted by avocet at 9:25 AM on July 23, 2012

A bar? You need to listen to Closing Time by Tom Waits.
posted by dry white toast at 9:49 AM on July 23, 2012

...and everyone was drinking by themselves and rarely socializing, what music would the bar be playing?

Bill Evans and Chet Baker - Alone Together
posted by Beardman at 10:23 AM on July 23, 2012

Philip Glass - Solo Piano
posted by obscurator at 10:58 AM on July 23, 2012

First thing I thought of has vocals but no lyrics--there's just something about it that feels right for what you're describing: R.E.M., "Endgame."
posted by dlugoczaj at 12:20 PM on July 23, 2012

Mogwai - I know what you are, but what am I?
posted by multivalent at 1:38 PM on July 23, 2012

Satie's 3 Gymnopedies. Here's #2, the underrated middle child of the bunch.
posted by nebulawindphone at 2:12 PM on July 23, 2012

I sort of feel like any somewhat melancholy instrumental music can work for"introversion/loneliness" if you listen to them that way.

Try some of these:

Orbital's The Box
Deceptikon's Bossanovastyle A
Plaid's New Family
Bonobo - Nothing Owed

If any of these are the sort of thing you're looking for, say so - I've got a million more.
posted by aubilenon at 3:34 PM on July 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

Boyd's Journey
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 3:44 PM on July 23, 2012

You know what, though? I'm not sure all this melancholy stuff really makes sense. I mean, yes, in movies, "introversion" and "loneliness" and "quietness" all sort of get conflated, and if I wanted to make a movie soundtrack for introversion I'd probably use some quiet melancholy bit of Satie to get the point across, because that's the standard movie-soundtrack way to do it and why be deliberately obscure?

But my own personal experience of being an introvert? Has less to do with loneliness, and more to do with the fact that working on my own projects is really awesome. Not having time for other people is basically just a side effect of how great it is to do shit on my own.

So okay, this is what being intensely interested in a solitary project sounds like. Or maybe this. It is peppy and motoric and precise and intricate, all layers-on-layers and wheels-within-wheels, and it just zips and whirs thrillingly right along. That is what introversion actually sounds like.
posted by nebulawindphone at 3:59 PM on July 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

Squarepusher's My Sound sort of gets you both: the loneliness and the "hang on guys I'll be there in a sec I've just got a few more pieces of this to put together so don't distract me." Builds slowly; worth listening to the whole thing.
posted by nebulawindphone at 4:03 PM on July 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

In fact, yes, that's my final answer. The oh-so-appropriately-titled My Sound is what introversion sounds like. End of story.
posted by nebulawindphone at 4:04 PM on July 23, 2012

The Assassination of Jesse James soundtrack by Nick Cave & Warren Ellis.
Here is Song for Jesse.
posted by at the crossroads at 4:32 PM on July 23, 2012

Google Nick Drake instrumentals
posted by BWA at 5:08 PM on July 23, 2012

múm - Finally We Are No One
posted by at the crossroads at 7:28 PM on July 23, 2012

Just about any solo piano music (except the waltzes!) from Brahms will do the trick. The recordings by Glenn Gould emit a sense of quiet resignation and solitude (without sadness) that will blow you away. Plus, it makes a great gift too.
posted by Napoleonic Terrier at 9:42 PM on July 23, 2012

Sounds like Mogwai might fit the bill.
posted by delicate_dahlias at 11:08 AM on July 27, 2012

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