My 33 1/3 book, on Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II, was the 5th bestselling book in the series in 2014. It's available at Amazon (including Kindle) and via your local bookstore. • F.A.Q.Key Tags: #saw2for33third, #sound-art, #classical, #juntoElsewhere: Twitter, SoundCloud, Instagram

Listening to art.
Playing with audio.
Sounding out technology.
Composing in code.

Grid Across Generations

A live video from Sudden Language

The Tenori-on is almost 15 years old, but it still looks like an instrument from the future. It was an early progenitor of the grid-based instruments that blanket the music-making world these days. Here it is heard sequencing sedate exotica beats, as filtered by an offshoot of another matrix instrument. That’s a Norns Shield on the left, a little music computer from the makers of the Monome Grid. The video is from a musician who goes by Sudden Language.

The Tenori-on was developed by Toshio Iwai and Yu Nishibori. Video originally posted at YouTube. More from Sudden Language at suddenlanguage.bandcamp.com.

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Details to Follow

An ongoing series cross-posted from instagram.com/dsqt

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Cecilia Tyrrell on Radius

For the series' 93rd episode

The long-running Radius broadcast/podcast series has reached episode 93. This current entry, which was released today, features a piece by Cecilia Tyrrell.

It overlays field recordings of the coastline with jittery spoken word, the latter like a public address system sent through the shredder. A brief description lends context:

“Sonic topography inspired and partly arranged from recordings made at a sound mirror on the South East coast of England (UK). The mirror itself stands dormant as it waits, facing out away from land. Sound markers and siren warnings, still it listens, quietly detecting.”

The sound mirror is pictured up top, a presence obscured by fog. Bells that bop around like buoys on a wave mix with appropriate burbling as the piece comes to a close, but up until then it’s a much more complex undertaking. The water sloshes like it’s underfoot, the sound taking on the semblance of a journey, either in search of or in avoidance of what remains unclear. The garbled voiceover sounds like a warning, but for whom? It’s an abstract audio drama, a thriller that replaces plot with pure sensation, as ambiguous as it is deliberate.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/theradius. More on the piece at theradius.us/episode93. More from Tyrrell at ceciliatyrrell.com.

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Current Listens: Recent Faves on Repeat

Heavy rotation, lightly annotated

A weekly(ish) answer to the question “What have you been listening to lately?” It’s lightly annotated because I don’t like re-posting material without providing some context. I hope to write more about some of these in the future, but didn’t want to delay sharing them.

This week, some recent favorites to which I keep returning:

Awesome hour-long Loraine James laptop set of glitchy, club-borne IDM, even more intense, more shattered, than the session she recorded for Fact back in mid-August. (Thanks, Bradley Allen for the alert.)

Lloyd Cole recorded an economical little album of modular synthesizer music with one little noise source, from which the record takes its name, Dunst, as its focus:

Mike Weis translates grief into the beautiful, moving 49 Days (Music for a Transition), two quarter-hour tracks of bell field recordings pushed nearly beyond recognition. I’ve been returning to it daily.

The highly talented Jeannine Schulz has been releasing a steady stream of music at a pace in inverse proportion with how slow and placid is the music itself. Much of that has been on her own Bandcamp page, but the label Stereoscenic, of Cleveland, Ohio, released Ground . The Gentle, as a 10-track CD. Start with the aptly named “Heaven-Sent,” all cautious chords and dirty-windshield textures.

▰ In the interest of conversation, let me know what you’re listening to in the comments below. Just please don’t promote your own work (or that of your label/client). This isn’t the right venue. (Just use email.)

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Grace Notes: Phantom Zoom + Yuichi Yokoyama

From the past week

I do this manually each week, collating the tweets I made that I want to keep track of (and sometimes some stray thoughts that didn’t appear earlier). For the most part, this means ones I initiated, not ones in which I directly responded to someone.

▰ Yes, I just waved at someone on a Zoom call who has clearly joined by phone

▰ Third round of stuffing, one Black Friday purchase (a MIDI controller)

▰ Hey, there is now a synth shop in the Mission: missionsynths.com.

▰ I’m glad they translated the sound effect though I’m not sure what the sound is though this is a Yuichi Yokoyama manga so that may be the point.

▰ That thing where you’re reading a Yuichi Yokoyama book and you’re like oh yeah this totally makes sense and then you realize you’re two or three pages into the next story and despite paying close attention you totally missed the prominent “END” at the end of the previous story.

▰ Interview with manga artist Yuichi Yokoyams whose comics very much are very quiet and very loud at the same time sorta like when you are deep in nature.

▰ It apparently feels inappropriate to use commas when writing about Yuichi Yokoyama. (Two images above from the book Outdoors. It was published by Kodansha in Japan in 2009 and Breakdown Press in England in 2018.)

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