Emergency Help: Sleeping Music
March 14, 2016 10:32 PM   Subscribe

I'm on a long-planned vacation with my mom and it's great but we are sharing a hotel room and have learned that she snores. I'm a bad sleeper under the best of circumstances. This is not great.

We're in expensive cities and only have four nights left so I am trying to buckle down and get through without paying for my own hotel room. Earplugs are working for the first half of the night but it really seems to ramp up around 4:00 am and then I'm turning to Spotify on earbuds to block out the sound. So, my question: what kind of droney, low key music can you recommend that I can zone out to enough to sleep with it on? Beck's new album is working pretty well, as are Coldplay and Radiohead, but sometimes those can get a bit jazzy. I think something without lyrics would be better but I'm not familiar with trance/electronica artists (or whatever the kids are calling it these days). Ideas? THANKS!
posted by something something to Media & Arts (21 answers total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: My number one recommendation for sleeping music is Geotic. Start with the album Mend.

Other than that, Chopin's piano Nocturnes have never failed to induce sleep in me or my children.
posted by sleeping bear at 10:38 PM on March 14, 2016 [1 favorite]

Best answer: If you're open to downloading an app I cannot recommend the White Noise Free app highly enough. The problem I have with music is that it eventually stops, which wakes me up. Spotify has white noise playlists too, but they're variable and they wake me up when they change pitch. This app has been a lifesaver, download and pick your noise. Brown noise works best for me but there's lots to choose from. Plus you can set a sleep timer and alarm if you like! Good luck!
posted by stellaluna at 10:42 PM on March 14, 2016 [13 favorites]

I recommend anything under the banner of "post rock". Mogwai, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Red Sparowes, etc. it's generally crunchy, lyric-light, and abstract. Great for zoning.
posted by TheNewWazoo at 10:56 PM on March 14, 2016 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Like stellaluna, I'm all about the white noise when I sleep! I use the Calm app pretty much every night to get to sleep.
posted by radioamy at 11:04 PM on March 14, 2016 [2 favorites]

Also if you can get them Amazon Prime overnighted, SleepPhones are a godsend
posted by radioamy at 11:11 PM on March 14, 2016

Best answer: +1 to brown noise. It's been a game changer for me staying in hotels.
posted by town of cats at 12:10 AM on March 15, 2016 [2 favorites]

Brian Eno makes ambient music that's intended to be half-listened to.

Music for Airports (also time stretched!)
Music for Films
Music for Prague
posted by cotterpin at 2:41 AM on March 15, 2016 [2 favorites]

Seconding Brian Eno! I'm also really enjoying this v. chill Moodymann DJ-Kicks mix. But for me the gold standard for relaxing sleep music is Gigi Masin's 'Talk to the Sea.
posted by nerdfish at 3:09 AM on March 15, 2016

I have a couple of nice books on tape (audible app really) I've heard a zillion times.
posted by tilde at 3:12 AM on March 15, 2016

Post-rock. No lyrics to draw attention too, enough noise to drown out other sounds. Especially recommended: Mono, Explosions in the Sky.
posted by gakiko at 3:58 AM on March 15, 2016 [1 favorite]

I listen to a BBC philosophy podcast to go to sleep. I think a podcast may work better here bc your mind engages with it less.
posted by emkelley at 4:21 AM on March 15, 2016

My husband snores plus I'm just super sensitive to noise in general. My new go-to white/misc noise generator is myNoise. There is an iPhone app if you have one. I mix a few noises together to cover up ambient noise while I'm studying/sleeping. Distant thunder and the railroad sound blocks so much noise. It's incredible. Seriously. It will change your life/vacation.

For me it's the sudden, gasping apneic breathing that I hear and that wakes me/keeps me from sleeping. A constant snore wouldn't bother me as much. I think myNoise calls it anti-noise? Anyway I think what happens is it makes more noise which sounds counter-intuitive but causes the snoring to blur into the background. It makes it more of a constant amount of noise instead of quiet, quiet, quiet, SNOREGASPGRUNT, jesushchrist, quiet, quiet, SNORE, goddammitstomptothelivingroom.

Good luck!
posted by Beti at 5:58 AM on March 15, 2016 [3 favorites]

Oh man, if I'm around a snorer, I need earplugs, non-negotiable. I ordered these awhile back for concerts, but have also had good luck with them as sleep earplugs in noisy environments.

If earplugs are a no-go though, I downloaded the Sleep Cycle app for my iPhone (I think it was like $0.99?), and I like it a lot. Not only does it track how good your sleep is, it has a "Sleep Aid" setting you can turn on with a nice little line up of different white noise options, and they can go up as loud as your phone speakers can go.
posted by helloimjennsco at 7:07 AM on March 15, 2016

Try the Grizzly Bear album Veckatimest.
posted by purpleclover at 9:07 AM on March 15, 2016

I can’t listen to pop music when sleeping, but there are tons of streaming ambient stations just for this purpose, more than I can list. Sleepbot, Drone Zone, MOPS Radio, Cryrosleep, zzzone(dot)net,are just some of the names, and many have been around for years.
posted by bongo_x at 10:25 AM on March 15, 2016

There’s also http://mynoise.net/ which has tons of options and doesn’t stream beyond the initial setup so you don’t have to worry about that part.
posted by bongo_x at 10:32 AM on March 15, 2016

We use the aforementioned White Noise app to keep our dogs quiet at night. You can blend different looping sounds to play indefinitely.

If I listened to GY!BE overnight I'd probably wake up covered in blood and with the house on fire.
posted by a halcyon day at 12:23 PM on March 15, 2016

Response by poster: Thanks so much, guys. stellaluna's app got me a couple hours early this morning and I've also made several playlists based upon music recs for tonight. Wish me luck!
posted by something something at 12:43 PM on March 15, 2016 [2 favorites]

Not music, but you might like the Sleep with Me podcast - long, rambling, pointless stories told in a weird-but-oddly-comforting monotone by a dude who calls himself Scooter, that sounds like he's propping up a bar somewhere. It's a persona the creator puts on, but man, it'll knock you right out.
posted by Happy Dave at 1:09 PM on March 15, 2016 [1 favorite]

Earplugs without OSHA noise reduction ratings are a waste of money. I started using these after moving to an apartment 200 yards down the street from a fire station. They've worked against snoring girlfriends too. The plugs are intended for single use. Reuse is possible but effectiveness drops each day.
posted by Homer42 at 6:43 PM on March 15, 2016

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