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Composing in code.

tag: live-performance

Guitarist Ben Greenberg Live from the Clocktower

Aka Hubble, recorded on March 24, 2016

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How this is the first mention I’ve made of Clocktower on Disquiet.com is beyond me, since I listen to the website — specifically its Clocktower Radio, founded in 2003 — a lot. I did express concern back in 2008 when its founder, Alanna Heiss, left the museum she founded, MoMA PS1 (previous PS1, originally Institute for Art and Urban Resources Inc.), but far as I can tell that’s the only mention of it here. In any case, Clocktower Radio is a long-running Internet audio series based in New York City.

Recently posted on the site is a half-hour live performance by guitarist Hubble (aka Ben Greenberg), recorded live on March 24, 2016, as part of an evening of quadrophonic pieces. It moves comfortably from expansive atmospherics to dense, tribal minimalism, the layers of (presumably live-looped) material gathering like fierce shadows. The antic momentum brings to mind early Battles, while the orchestral timbre naturally connects to the work of Rhys Chatham and Glenn Branca.

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Track originally posted for streaming at clocktower.org. More from Greenberg, who is based in New York City, at missionhubble.blogspot.com, soundcloud.com/hubbletrouble, facebook.com/missionhubble, and twitter.com/missionhubble. Images by Anice Jee from the post at clocktower.org.

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Disquiet Junto Project 0223: Layered Sameness

Record multiple, slightly varying takes on the same looped composition in this project by Monome's Brian Crabtree.

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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. There’s no pressure to do every project. It’s weekly so that you know it’s there, every Thursday through Monday, when you have the time.

Tracks will be added to this playlist for the duration of project 0223:

This project was posted in the morning, California time, on Thursday, April 7, 2016, with a deadline of 11:59pm wherever you are on Monday, April 11, 2016.

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

Disquiet Junto Project 0223: Layered Sameness
Record multiple, slightly varying takes on the same looped composition in this project by Monome’s Brian Crabtree.

This week’s project was developed by Brian Crabtree, who along with Kelli Cain makes the Monome, the adventurous grid music interface.

The project is an exploration in repeatability, phasing, and density.

Step 1: Compose a relatively simple, short(ish), performable moment to be repeated as a loop, such as notes on a guitar, or clapping, or vocalizing, or some other live performance technique.

Step 2: Choose how many times you’ll play the loop in a row. Aim for a total duration of a minute or two, but feel free to deviate from this suggestion.

Step 3: Record yourself performing this loop, without a metronome.

Step 4: On a new track, record yourself again performing the same number of loops for roughly the same amount of time without listening to the previous take(s) or to a metronome.

Step 5: Repeat step 4 between 4 and 40 times.

Step 6: Adjust master levels. If desired, pan each track randomly.

Step 7: Upload your completed track to the Disquiet Junto group on SoundCloud.

Step 8: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 9: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Deadline: This project was posted in the morning, California time, on Thursday, April 7, 2016, with a deadline of 11:59pm wherever you are on Monday, April 11, 2016.

Length: The length is up to you, though between one and two minutes feels about right.

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 “disquiet0223-layeredsameness.” Also use “disquiet0223-layeredsameness” 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 223rd weekly Disquiet Junto project (“Record multiple, slightly varying takes on the same looped composition in this project by Monome’s Brian Crabtree”) at:

http://disquiet.com/0223/

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

http://disquiet.com/junto/

Join the Disquiet Junto at:

http://soundcloud.com/groups/disquiet-junto/

Subscribe to project announcements here:

http://tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto/

Disquiet Junto general discussion takes place at:

http://disquiet.com/forums/

The image associated with this project is by Teresa Alexander-Arab and is used thanks to a Creative Commons license:

https://flic.kr/p/7WgxWg

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Looped and Delayed Viola

From Brooklyn-based Jeanann Dara

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Jeanann Dara plays viola and she works in electronic music, two directions that often combine toward appealingly unfamiliar ends. “RSVN” is a live performance for looped and delayed samples of her viola. It isn’t just the strings, bowed slowly or plucked concertedly for maximum tension, that make their way through her battery of technology — though squiggles and flurries and truncated snippets are the core of the piece. So, too, are the slaps against the wood, and tiny little fractures of happenstance sound.

The result is a rhythmic meditation on the tonality inherent in her instrument. To hear bits of the viola on repeat is to hear the organic turned into a machine, as nuances are frozen into employment as compositional elements.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/jeananndara. More from Jeanann Dara, who’s based in Brooklyn, New York, at jeananndara.com and at twitter.com.

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DJ Krush at Dawn

A live performance at the Zōjō-ji​ Temple in his native Tokyo, Japan

This short performance video captures DJ Krush doing a solo turntable-and-laptop set at the site of the Zōjō-ji​ Temple in his native Tokyo, Japan. The footage captures not just the turntablism itself, but Krush walking to the temple and setting up his equipment. As the sun slowly rises, the seeming black and white of the setting lets in hints of blue and Krush’s music gains depth and complexity. Fittingly his raw audio includes wooden flutes, finding a commonality with the ancient traditions of the venue. Simple beats are layered amid echoing effects. As a sonic artifact, the video documents not just the sound of his performance but the sound of his preparation: cables being snapped into place, equipment being arranged. The multi-camera shoot moves easily back and forth between framing Krush’s stage setup and providing extended glimpses of his fingers in action. Later, in the open-air setting, bird calls provide an uncanny parallel to Krush’s own vinyl manipulation.

Video originally posted at youtube.com. More on the set at thump.vice.com. The video was directed by Toshihiko Morosawa. More from Krush at sus81.jp/djkrush.

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Lesley Flanigan Sings to the Machine

A preview of her forthcoming album, Hedera

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In advance of the album’s release, Lesley Flanigan has posted one track off Hedera for streaming. “Can Barely Feel My Feet” is a layering of her voice, the soft, insistent, prayer-like vowels starting off as a handful of parallel processes but then gathering in denser and denser substructures. At times the intonations bead against each other, the slight variations creating hushed, genteel moiré patterns.

By the end, all that remains is the moiré, a buzzing electronic field where once there was were human voices. The album is due out April 8. The main track on the album, the title piece, has yet to be provided for streaming, but there’s a segment of it in this video, in which Flanigan’s electronically processed vocals are heard against a rhythm provided, apparently, by a malfunctioning tape deck.

Track originally posted at lesleyflanigan.bandcamp.com. More on Hedera at physicaleditions.com. More from Flanigan, who is based in New York, at lesleyflanigan.com.

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