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Monthly Archives: December 2015

Disquiet Junto Project 0209: Audio Journal 2015

The Assignment: Create a sonic diary of the past year with a dozen five-second segments.

20151231-BarrySilver

Each Thursday in the Disquiet Junto group on SoundCloud.com and at disquiet.com/junto, a new compositional challenge is set before the group’s members, who then have just over four days to upload a track in response to the assignment. Membership in the Junto is open: just join and participate.

Tracks will be added to this playlist for the duration of the project:

This project was posted just before noon, California time, on Thursday, December 31, 2015, with a deadline of 11:59pm wherever you are on Monday, January 4, 2016.

These are the instructions that went out to the group’s email list (at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto):

Disquiet Junto Project 0209: Audio Journal 2015
The Assignment: Create a sonic diary of the past year with a dozen five-second segments.

This week’s project is a sound journal, a selective audio history of your past year.

Step 1: You will select a different audio element to represent each of the past 12 months of 2015. These audio elements will most likely be of music that you have yourself composed and recorded, but they might also consist of phone messages, field recordings, or other source material. These items should be somehow personal in nature, suitable to the autobiographical intention of the project; they should be of your own making, and not drawn from third-party sources.

Step 2: You will then select one five-second segment from each of these dozen audio elements.

Step 3: Then you will stitch these dozen five-second segments together in chronological order to form one single one-minute track. There should be no overlap or gap between segments; they should simply proceed from one to the next.

Step 4: In the notes field accompanying the track, identify each of the audio segments.

(Level Up: Alternately, you can use more than 12 audio segments — do two a month, or one a week, or one a day. Whatever you choose, just keep them evenly distributed across the year. You might make the segments shorter, to keep the full track length to 60 seconds.)

Step 5: Upload your completed track to the Disquiet Junto group on SoundCloud.

Step 6: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Deadline: This project was posted just before noon, California time, on Thursday, December 31, 2015, with a deadline of 11:59pm wherever you are on Monday, January 4, 2016.

Length: The track should be 60 seconds long.

Upload: Please when posting your track on SoundCloud, only upload one track for this project, and be sure to include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto. Photos, video, and lists of equipment are always appreciated.

Title/Tag: When adding your track to the Disquiet Junto group on Soundcloud.com, please in the title to your track include the term “disquiet0209-journal2015.” Also use “disquiet0209-journal2015” as a tag for your track.

Download: It is preferable that your track is set as downloadable, and that it allows for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution).

Linking: When posting the track, please be sure to include this information:

More on this 209th weekly Disquiet Junto project (“The Assignment: Create a sonic diary of the past year with a dozen five-second segments”) at:

Disquiet Junto Project 0209: Audio Journal 2015

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

http://disquiet.com/junto/

Join the Disquiet Junto at:

Subscribe to project announcements here:

http://tinyletter.com/disquiet

Disquiet Junto general discussion takes place at:

http://disquiet.com/forums/

Photo associated with this project by Barry Silver used via Creative Commons license:

journals

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Japanese Tufts and Flares

Hirotaka Shirotsubaki, from a split release with Sleepland

The beautiful track “Kalte Luft,” German for “cold air,” comes from Kobe, Japan–based Hirotaka Shirotsubaki. It’s a nearly eight-minute drone with a loose, organic tonality. By “organic” is here meant that there are enough layered elements that the texture is ever changing, the effort throughout evident in a micro-scale level of detail, all tiny, incremental shifts and alterations. At a more macro level, the piece is a sequence of tufts and and flares, billowy, morphing waves and sharp, piercing grace notes. It’s a highlight of the album Étude 1, available for free download from Bandcamp, which is a four-song split between Shirotsubaki and his fellow Japanese electronic musician Sleepland:

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/infection. More from Shirotsubaki at hshirptsubaki.bandcamp.com and twitter.com/tubakihiroki. More from Sleepland at soundcloud.com/sleepland and sleepland.bandcamp.com. (Found via a repost by Mexico-based Autumn Clouds, soundcloud.com/autumnclouds.)

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Aphex Twin Holiday Treat

The freely downloadable track “pianopkupt1 [norm]” appears via user18081971.

With the cheerful and characteristically gobbledygook sign off “spladgyklax,” Aphex Twin yesterday posted, as a holiday gift, a freely downloadable percussive little piece titled “pianopkupt1 [norm].” Accompanying it is this short message: “thanks for all your lush messages on here and the PM’s.” At least the track was there as of this typing, which I’ve set to post early on Friday, California time. Tracks have been coming and going on his slightly concealed, pseudonymous user18081971 account for months now. At one point there were more than 250 tracks, and then the cupboard was suddenly bare, and in recent weeks some older tracks have begun to reappear, along with some new ones, like “pianopkupt1 [norm].” (This past Monday, the 21st, I happened, around 4:30pm California time, to see all 269 tracks listed as available, and then a few minutes later they were gone, reduced to 9. As of today there are 10.) Of course, “new” is a qualified term, as much of the music Aphex Twin has been posting as user18081971 appears to be archival material, providing peeks into his process and alternate takes on familiar music, like “Avril 14th” and aspects of the Selected Ambient Works Volume II album. The newly arrived “pianopkupt1 [norm]” track has no year associated with it. It’s possible that the “pkupt” in the title refers to the use of pickups inside a piano, hence the exceptionally echoey sound of the keys. (Update 2015.12.27: pickup theory confirmed in comments below.) The continuum between the evident piano and the more neutral beats is a gentle reminder that the piano is, in essence, a well-tuned and mechanically complicated percussion instrument.

Track originally posted to soundcloud.com/user18081971.

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Disquiet Junto Project 0208: In Situ

Record a composition in place using only the sounds around you.

20151224-davidkidd

Each Thursday in the Disquiet Junto group on SoundCloud.com and at disquiet.com/junto, a new compositional challenge is set before the group’s members, who then have just over four days to upload a track in response to the assignment. Membership in the Junto is open: just join and participate.

Tracks will be added to this playlist for the duration of the project:

This project was posted in the early afternoon, California time, on Thursday, December 24, 2015, with a deadline of 11:59pm wherever you are on Monday, December 28, 2015.

These are the instructions that went out to the group’s email list (at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto):

Disquiet Junto Project 0208: In Situ
Record a composition in place using only the sounds around you.

Step 1: The goal of this project is to make a composition in a short period of time, just one single sitting, from start to finish. You’ll only use the tools you have on hand (a laptop, an iPad, an OP-1, what have you). And you’ll only use sounds that you record on site. The first step is choose a time and place, preferably not at home or work, though those are certainly OK, too.

Step 2: At the appointed time, go to the place where you will make the composition. Sit for awhile and listen. Make some short source-audio recordings, preferably while remaining seated. Use only those recordings – snippets of room ambience, of overheard chatter, and so forth – as the raw material for your composition. Transform the sounds as you see fit, but do retain some recognizability. For example, if you record on a bus, then the finished track should retain something unique to the sound of a bus.

Step 3: Bonus round: use a photo of your setup/location as the image associated with your recording.

Step 4: Upload your completed track to the Disquiet Junto group on SoundCloud.

Step 5: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Deadline: This project was posted in the early afternoon, California time, on Thursday, December 24, 2015, with a deadline of 11:59pm wherever you are on Monday, December 28, 2015.

Length: The length is up to you, though between one and three minutes seems appropriate.

Upload: Please when posting your track on SoundCloud, only upload one track for this project, and be sure to include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto. Photos, video, and lists of equipment are always appreciated.

Title/Tag: When adding your track to the Disquiet Junto group on Soundcloud.com, please in the title to your track include the term “disquiet0208-insitu.” Also use “disquiet0208-insitu” as a tag for your track.

Download: It is preferable that your track is set as downloadable, and that it allows for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution).

Linking: When posting the track, please be sure to include this information:

More on this 208th weekly Disquiet Junto project (“Record a composition in place using only the sounds around you”) at:

Disquiet Junto Project 0208: In Situ

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

http://disquiet.com/junto/

Join the Disquiet Junto at:

Subscribe to project announcements here:

http://tinyletter.com/disquiet

Disquiet Junto general discussion takes place at:

http://disquiet.com/forums/

Image associated with this project by David Kidd, used thanks to a Creative Commons license. Note: modification and commercial use aren’t allowed, and attribution is required:

Around Louisville: SignPorn at Magnetic Tape Recorder

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Stephen Vitiello Revisits His Molly Berg Collaborations

A new reworking of their 2013 Between You and the Shapes You Take

20151223-bergvitiello

Sometimes one step backward allows for two steps forward. Stephen Vitiello has peeked back inside the inner workings of one of his best albums, Between You and the Shapes You Take (12k, 2013), for which he collaborated with Molly Berg, and rendered something new from it. The original featured Berg on clarinet and vocalizations — that is, on vocal sounds, rather than lyrics — with Vitiello on guitar and an array of electronic processing. Here the source audio is whittled to a short five minutes of percussive, jittery vowels, bouncing like balls in a pixelated pachinko machine. At times it’s hard to tell where her sounds end and the featured bell-like tones begin. What’s especially beautiful about Vitiello’s processing is that even as he pushes her utterances deeper into a fractured zone, he retains some textural essence of her tone, her delivery, her presence.

Hahn Rowe, violinist long ago of the band Hugo Largo, whose quiet sound was an important precursor to today’s pop-minded ambient minimalism, guested on Between You and the Shapes You Take, though it’s unclear if any of his efforts surface — or are subsumed — here in this Vitiello reworking.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/stephenvitiello. More on Between You and the Shapes You Take at 12k.com. More from Vitiello at stephenvitiello.com. Above image of Vitiello (center) and Berg (right), performing with Steve Roden (left), courtesy of 01sj.org.

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