The British trio Red Snapper helped define the Warp Records label in the mid-1990s with a series of singles and collections, sets marked by lessons learned from U.S. hip-hop and European club music and good old guitar-oriented soul. Some called it fusion, others acid jazz. And then the Snapper called it quits. And now, almost as suddenly, they’re back — well, sorta. Lo Recordings has released two Snapper sets in 2003: a self-titled album and a subsequent remix collection, titled Redone, that features versions of material from the self-titled record reworked by an eclectic rogues gallery of studio mavens, including Depth Charge, Blue States, Pedro and Rothko. (Any talk of a full-fledged Snapper reunion requires a Day-Glo asterisk. According to the label, if the question is whether the group has truly split up, the answer is the ambiguous statement: “Well they have as far as playing live and spending months in recording studios.”) To promote the new albums, Lo had Jay Burnett, an early Def Jam Records artist and Beastie Boys colleague, combine material from Redone into a single, 12-minute extended meta-remix, the “Super Snapper Mash Up.” To recap, the track is a mash up of remixes of various work by a single artist. Truth be told, it’s less of a “mash up” than it is a montage, less a jamming juxtaposition of dissimilar sounds than a steady flow of compatible ones. The extended track is available for free as a relatively compact MP3 (here), and also as a stream (pick Windows Media or Real Audio). These links were made available in conjunction with Lo Recordings (more info at lorecordings.com).
Marc Weidenbaum founded the website Disquiet.com in 1996 at the intersection of sound, art, and technology, and since 2012 has moderated the Disquiet Junto, an active online community of weekly music/sonic projects. He has written for Nature, Boing Boing, The Wire, Pitchfork, and NewMusicBox, among other periodicals. He is the author of the 33 1⁄3 book on Aphex Twin’s classic album Selected Ambient Works Volume II. Read more about his sonic consultancy, teaching, sound art, and work in film, comics, and other media
• February 5, 2020: The first session of the 15-week course I teach at the Academy of Art about the role of sound in the media landscape.
• April 15, 2020: A chapter on the Disquiet Junto ("The Disquiet Junto as an Online Community of Practice," by Ethan Hein) appears in the forthcoming book The Oxford Handbook of Social Media and Music Learning (Oxford University Press), edited by Stephanie Horsley, Janice Waldron, and Kari Veblen. (Details at oup.com.)
• December 13, 2020: This day marks the 24th anniversary of Disquiet.com.
• January 7, 2021: This day marks the 9th anniversary of the start of the Disquiet Junto music community.
• There are entries on the Disquiet Junto in the forthcoming book The Music Production Cookbook: Ready-made Recipes for the Classroom (Oxford University Press), edited by Adam Patrick Bell. Ethan Hein wrote one, and I did, too.
• At least two live group concerts by Disquiet Junto members in the San Francisco Bay Area are in the works for 2020.
• I have liner notes for a musician's solo album and an essay in a book about an art event due out. I'll announce as the release dates come into focus.
• The Disquiet Junto series of weekly communal music projects explore constraints as a springboard for creativity and productivity. There is a new project each Thursday afternoon (California time), and it is due the following Monday at 11:59pm: disquiet.com/junto.
• My book on Aphex Twin's landmark 1994 album, Selected Ambient Works Vol. II, was published as part of the 33 1/3 series, an imprint of Bloomsbury. It has been translated into Japanese (2019) and Spanish (2018).
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Since January 2012, the Disquiet Junto has been an ongoing weekly collaborative music-making community that employs creative constraints as a springboard for creativity. Subscribe to the announcement list (each Thursday), listen to tracks by participants from around the world, read the FAQ, and join in.
• 0472 / Jam Time (1 of 3) / The Assignment: Record the first third of a trio that others will complete.
• 0471 / Phase Transition / The Assignment: The Assignment: Record the sound of ice in a glass and make something with it.
• 0470 / Calendar View / The Assignment: Create a sonic diary of the past year with a dozen (or more) super-brief segments.
• 0469 / [Missing in Caption] / The Assignment: Make music that pushes the constraints of descriptive television captions.
• 0468 / Mirror Rorrim / The Assignment: Create a new persona for yourself, and record a duet together.
And there is a complete list of past projects, 472 consecutive weeks to date.
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