Judging by a recently uploaded example, Chris Herbert‘s forthcoming album on Kranky is to be looked forward to. At six and a half minutes, with little to no contextual setting by Kranky, the song, titled “Chlorophyl” (MP3), opens a narrow sliver of a glimpse into another, considerably private realm. Utterly quiet, with a pulse-soothing beat, it takes several listens to reveal itself, like a dark room slowly brought into focus. First come the contours: a crackle that suggests old vinyl, a warm blanket of earthly hush, and that unwavering but organic beat. Then come the details: little snaps in the sound bed, the vinyl crackle transforming into more of a door creak, thin layers of wisps as simultaneously compact and flaky as fine phyllo. And then there’s that beat, so steady that over time, as the other sounds make themselves more apparent, it softens and recedes, becoming the equivalent of invisible. Kranky and Herbert encoded the track at 192kbps, relatively generous for a promotional download, but necessary given how much aural information is buried in there. Kranky explains that Herbert lives in Birmingham, England, and is a member of a collective called Modulate AV. More info, though not much more, at kranky.net.
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
• Autumn, 2019: I'll have a new piece in The Wire.
• December 13, 2019: This day marks the 23rd anniversary of Disquiet.com.
• January 7, 2020: This day marks the 8th anniversary of the Disquiet Junto.
• March 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.
• 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.
• 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).
Most Recent Posts
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.
• 0414 / Mod Cons / The Assignment: Compose one or more sounds for an appliance/device/gadget of your own choosing.
• 0413 / Objective Thankfulness / The Assignment: Highlight one piece of musical equipment for which you are particularly grateful.
• 0412 / One Chord Wonder / The Assignment: Play an extended chord where the instrumentation of each note changes as the piece proceeds.
• 0411 / Wrapped Up / The Assignment: Record a piece of music as a gift for someone special to you.
• 0410 / Op Audio / The Assignment: What does the sonic equivalent of Op Art sound like?
And there is a complete list of past projects, 414 consecutive weeks to date.
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Most Recent Comments
Patrick Glynn: "Hello, I’m looking forward to hearing what you’ve been listening to. Thanks, Patrick "
Michael Mennell: "ok, glad I could help. Do you have a link to that MicroFreak video btw? I had posted it to our..."
Michael: "Yesterday, this post had a video (mistakenly?) linked at the top featuring a MicroFreak. What was that?..."
Marc Arsenault: "Are you saying, it’s like a smurf’s arm with a plum in its fist? "
David Neale-Lorello: "Would Thomas Dolby be one of the heroes or the mascot? "