William Gibson once noted that the future is already here, but just isn’t evenly distributed yet. William Faulkner noted, further back, that the past isn’t dead; it isn’t even past. On the web, what’s past isn’t necessarily readily accessible, but when it is, broad distribution happens quickly. The Internet is filling up with documentation of times gone by, case in point a pair of deeply trippy Tangerine Dream concert recordings from 1976. Reportedly recorded on February 9 of that year, the two MP3s showcase the group when it was a keyboard trio of Edgar Froese, Christopher Franke, and Peter Baumann. If you tend to avoid Tangerine Dream, do understand that there is here none of the turbo-charged momentum or florid exhibitionism that led to the pervasive negative associations with the group’s name, virtually making it a synonym for everything wrong with synthesized pop music. No, this is heady stuff, rarely grounded in any sort of melody — it’s all free-flowing, an analog-synth stream of consciousness. [Update June 20, 2009: There had been a link here to the Zip files, which were hosted elsewhere, but I received what appeared to be an email from Edgar Froese of Tangerine Dream (an attempt to reply got an error message) that appeared to be asking me to delete the link, so I’ve done so.] By coincidence, the concert was recorded in Brussels, as was the live Amon Tobin show posted last week here (disquiet.com). (Found via justanothergarden.blogspot.com, via synthtopia.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
• July 28, 2021: This day marks the start of the 500th consecutive weekly project in the Disquiet Junto music community.
• December 13, 2021: This day marks the 25th anniversary of the founding of Disquiet.com.
• January 6, 2021: This day marks the 10th 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.
• 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.)
• 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.
• 0490 / In Conversation / The Assignment: Compose a piece of music structured like dialog.
• 0489 / The Prestige / The Assignment: Apply some magic to ABA form.
• 0488 / Reverse Delay / The Assignment: Do something you've been putting off.
• 0487 / Carillon Quotidian / The Assignment: Turn a recurring sound from your life into music.
• 0486 / Earths Days / The Assignment: Celebrate Earth Day on or for another planet.
And there is a complete list of past projects, 490 consecutive weeks to date.
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