There’s no didgeridoo on the five-track album Altered Signals by Mystified (aka Thomas Park), but there may as well be. Much of the music heard here has the slow, otherworldly onomatopoeia of that aboriginal device. The collection opens with the title cut: the crackle of data, the ping of noises echoing in a long, narrow chamber (MP3). Then comes “Bell Cloud,” which is all industrial chatter (MP3). In “Vocal Tremors” you can hear the deeply submerged speaking amid the crumpled metal (MP3). “Octavepus” is a heavenly drone, a kind of android Tuvan singing (MP3). And “Science of Change” is like some unimaginably large prayer bowl, its resonance echoing at an extravagantly sedate pace into the distance (MP3). According to the set’s release notes, much of the source material originated in some form of broadcast, suggesting there was already some aural decay at work before Park got his hands on the elements from which Altered Signals was built. More info at the website of the releasing netlabel, darkwinter.com, and at Mystified/Park’s mystifiedmusic.com.
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• February 6, 2019: First day of the new semester of the 15-week "Sounds of Brands" course I teach once a year at the Academy of Art in San Francisco.
• March 22, 2019: I'm giving a talk at the Algorithmic Art Assembly, two days of events in San Francisco: aaassembly.org.
• 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.
• Ongoing: 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, published as part of the 33 1/3 series, an imprint of Bloomsbury, is now in its second printing. It has been translated into Spanish, and is due out soon in Japanese, as well. It can be purchased at amazon.com, among other places.
The Disquiet Junto is an ongoing weekly collaborative music-making space in which restraints are used as a springboard for creativity. Subscribe to the announcement list at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto. There is an FAQ. ... These are the 5 most recent weekly projects:
• 0372 / Honeymoon Phase / The Assignment: Record a piece of music with (only) your most recently obtained instrument or music/sound tool.
• 0371 / Concrete Ambience / The Assignment: What could concrete wallpaper music sound like?
• 0370 / Through Lines / The Assignment: Follow a single strand in the accumulated material resulting from a multi-part, multi-thread collaborative endeavor.
• 0369 / Final Solo / The Assignment: Record the final third of a trio, adding to a pre-existing track, based itself on a prior pre-existing track.
• 0368 / Engage Duo / The Assignment: Record the second third of a trio, adding to a pre-existing track.
... And there is a complete list of past projects.
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