DIMUZIO REMIX MP3: The initial noise doesn’t so much swoop up as it seems to simply proceed from that mysterious time before the track began; it’s as if by starting to play the song, you’re opting to enter into a cramped room where a rock band is in the final throes of a performance, that denouement during which riffs decay into texture, when the rigorous alternation of verse and chorus finds sweet release. And then, just as suddenly, the noise subsides, not into silence, or into the next track on the set list, but into a heady, steady controlled tone that is like an orchestra put on hold. If the volume has gone one direction, from loud the quiet, then the sense of space has gone the other, from rock club to concert hall, from cramped to spacious. The track in question is “Never Steven,” by the San Francisco-based electronic musician Thomas Dimuzio, and it’s the lead item on Slew, Dimuzio’s recent retrospective album, on ReR Megacorp/Gench. The album collects material he has released previously on compilations from such labels as Tzadik, Alku, Realization, Digital Narcis, Self Abuse and Cuneiform, and “Never Steven” is available as a free promotional download. The song, as if to emphasize its meta-compilation context, seems like three tracks in one: from that burst of noise, to that deep orchestral holding pattern, to a closing period of digital chatter even more compressed than the track’s opening. All the source material comes from Nick “Dr. Nerve” Didkovsky, and the track originally appeared on the Transforms: The Nerve Events Project compilation, which also featured Nerve-based work by Dave Douglas, Henry Kaiser, Neil Rolnick, Larry Polansky, Tom Erbe and others. Download “Never Steven” here, and visit Dimuzio at thomasdimuzio.com and gench.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.
• 0473 / Placebo Effect (2 or 3) / The Assignment: The Assignment: Record the second third of a trio that others will complete.
• 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.
And there is a complete list of past projects, 473 consecutive weeks to date.
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