New Disquietude podcast episode: music by Lesley Flanigan, Dave Seidel, KMRU, Celia Hollander, and John Hooper; interview with Flanigan; commentary; short essay on reading waveforms. • Disquiet.com F.A.Q.Key Tags: #saw2for33third, #field-recording, #classical, #juntoElsewhere: Twitter, SoundCloud, Instagram

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

Tangents (Basie, Tenori-On, Triggerman)

Quote of the Week: “It is hard to leave the subject of Minimalism without mention of Count Basie, master of the art of leaving out.” That’s Bernard Holland in his entry as part of a roundup, last week, of the New York Times’ classical-music critics’ take on recorded milestones in minimalism (nytimes.com). The list of composers is repetitive enough (Reich, Adams, Glass, repeat) to constitute a minimalist piece of its own, though Poul Ruders, John Cage and Terry Riley get mentioned, too. But no Michael Nyman, no Janice Gitek, no Arvo Part, no La Monte Young.

News, Quick Links, Good Reads:
David Byrne talks, on his blog, journal.davidbyrne.com, about the learning experience of composing his score for the TV series Big Love: “increasingly I wrote less overtly melodic pieces, and more pieces that could play as underscore and gently create a mood or add some tension without resorting to melodrama. I wrote tunes that were less busy and that tried not to draw attention to themselves.” … Business Week on Theodore Watson‘s interactive video designs that include a human-scale turntable (businessweek.com). More on Watson at his website (muonics.net) and on open-source code he’s working on with Zachary Lieberman (openframeworks.cc, thesystemis.com). … The Last.fm website has teamed with Yamaha to create a web hub for users of the Tenori-On, a musical instrument created by Toshio Iwai, also known for his Nintendo DS cartridge, Electroplankton. … The New Statesman covers sound art: “It helps that technology has finally caught up with the imagination of the artist” (newstatesman.com). … The Disquiet project Our Lives in the Bush of Disquiet, which features a dozen remixes based on open-source samples from Brian Eno and David Byrne’s album My Life in the Bush of Ghosts, is coming up on its year anniversary, and has been downloaded just shy of 5,000 times as of this writing (disquiet.com, archive.org). … Speaking of Eno, the Nokia 8800 Sirocco Edition has ringtones he composed (mobilebee.com, nokia.com). … The new issue (September/October 2007) of the great magazine Scratch (scratchmagazine.com) has a solid piece by Oliver Wang on the overlap between hip-hop and techno (Kanye West snatching from Daft Punk, Africa Bambaataa having built “Planet Rock” on a Kraftwerk foundationg). There’s also a lengthy history, by Andrew Noz, of the way a sample of single song, the Dragnet-themed “Drag Rap” (aka “Triggerman”), became the wellspring for an entire genre of Southern hip-hop; according to one tally, the Cash Money record label sampled the song 34 times on its first 19 albums. … R.I.P., concert-hall acoustician Russell Johnson (1923-2007), who is quoted in a 1998 interview as having said, “you have to work very carefully to get the silence right”(nytimes.com, latimes.com).

Score Keeper: Cliff Martinez (Solaris, Traffic) is on Vice, by director Raul Inglis. … Clint Mansell (Requiem for a Dream) is on Definitely, Maybe, from director Adam Brooks. … Michael Nyman (The Piano, Gattaca, countless Peter Greenaway productions) is on Genova by director Michael Winterbottom (24 Hour Party People, Code 46). … Jeff Rona (the Traffic TV series) is on Jonna’s Body, Please Hold, by director Adam Bluming. … All via imdb.com.

Heavy Rotation: Kristin Miltner‘s recent album, Grains (Praemedia), is built largely from eviscerated samples of her voice, which is so melodious that even the most purposefully torturous processing can’t erase its inherent appeal. ”¦ At the website of the Getty Museum, getty.edu, there is a significant amount of streaming audio to complement its Evidence of Movement exhibit, a broad-ranging overview of performance-based art, which is on display through October 7, 2007; the “Close Radio” jukebox includes some 111 tracks, including material by Pauline Oliveros and Fluxus figure Allan Kaprow, all drawn from KPFK radio broadcasts between 1976 and 1979. (Via the blog of Jeff LeVine, jefflevine.blogspot.com.) … The Disquiet Downstream entry of the week is Pe Lang‘s single, half-hour drone, available from the Term netlabel (MP3, 12k.com/term, disquiet.com).

By Marc Weidenbaum

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  • about

  • 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

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  • Current Activities

  • Upcoming
    • December 13, 2022: This day marks the 26th anniversary of the founding of Disquiet.com.
    • January 6, 2023: This day marked the 11th anniversary of the start of the Disquiet Junto music community.

  • Recent
    • April 16, 2022: I participated in an online "talk show" by The Big Conversation Space (Niki Korth and Clémence de Montgolfier).
    • March 11, 2022: I hosted a panel discussion between Mark Fell, Rian Treanor and James Bradbury in San Francisco as part of the Algorithmic Art Assembly (aaassembly.org) at Gray Area (grayarea.org).
    • December 28, 2021: This day marked the 10th (!) anniversary of the Instagr/am/bient compilation.
    • January 6, 2021: This day marked the 10th (!) anniversary of the start of the Disquiet Junto music community.
    • December 13, 2021: This day marked the 25th (!) anniversary of the start of the Disquiet Junto music community.
    • There are entries on the Disquiet Junto in the 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.
    • A chapter on the Disquiet Junto ("The Disquiet Junto as an Online Community of Practice," by Ethan Hein) appears in the 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.)

  • 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).

  • disquiet junto

  • Background
    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.

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  • 0548 / Drone Vox / The Assignment: Make a drone using just your voice.
    0547 / Genre Melee / Combine two seemingly different genres.
    0546 / Code Notes / The Assignment: Make music that includes a secret message.
    0545 / Unself-Awareness / The Assignment: Learn from feedback intended for others.
    0544 / Feedback Loop / The Assignment: Share music-in-progress for input from others.

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