When I look through my iTunes library, some of the ambient records that consistently rate the highest are courtesy of the Texas duo of Adam Wiltzie and Brian McBride, whether working together as Stars of the Lid, or solo as The Dead Texan and Brian McBride, respectively. The records all kind of endlessly drone on without sacrificing a consistent melodic theme. Traditional instruments are blended together and back onto each other to create some really, really great tracks that reward deep listening as well as they provide comfortable, inconspicuous background music. All of the below are highly recommended.
Stars of the Lid The Tired Sounds of Stars of the Lid, 2001 Avec Laudenum, 1999 Gravitational Pull Vs. The Desire For an Aquatic Life, 1997 The Ballasted Orchestra1997
Stars of the Lid/ Jon McCafferty Per Aspera Ad Astra, 1998
Brian McBride When the Detail Lost its Freedom, 2005
The Dead Texan The Dead Texan, 2004