Harold Budd has died aged 84, of complications arising from Covid. He was a master of ambient music, a composer, pianist and guitarist who played an enormous role in developing what ambient music sounded like in the 1970s and 80s, often with Brian Eno (their joint albums Ambient 2: The Plateaux Of Mirror and The Pearl are incredible works, Harold's soft, atmospheric piano playing at the centre of the sound. If ambient music has a centre). Eno, Budd and Daniel Lanois made The Pearl in 1984, a highlight in the back catalogue of all three men, an album reprising the piano textures and treated electronics of Plateaux along with nature recordings. He worked with Cocteau Twins and then later with Robin Guthrie- their 2007 Before The Day Breaks album is a beautiful blend of treated guitars, FX and piano pieces. Ambient music, by definition, is supposed to be background music. Budd's works carry emotional weight that make it much more than wallpaper to chill out to.