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. • 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.

Retro-Proto-Electronica (MP3)

Sampling puts an interesting spin on the old axiom about how if you’re going to steal, then steal from the best. As Mystified shows with his Adventures of Plunderman album, available for free download at, much can be made with goofy retro pop. He describes the five-track collection as “a plunderphonic wonder uniting samples of vintage vinyl with the production techniques of contemporary electronica.” The idea of plunderphonics comes from John Oswald, an early copyleft-culture figure who used pre-digital cut’n’paste techniques to produce sonic collages from all manner of audio documents, high and low, pop and classical, musical and documentary. Where Oswald was chaotic, a kind of fast-forward button personified, Mystified’s approach is more populist — he adds beats to the original, space-age pop, bridging the time between the eras of exotica and electronica.

<a href="">Plunderman 3 by mystified</a>

The overall results have much in common with the more pop end of downtempo music, the modern-day lounge music that is often more useful in the background than the foreground — but rest assured that Park, ever the experimenter, uses repetition (there’s something almost maniacal about the lack of development in some of his themes) and peculiar little sonic cues (flies in the bachelor-pad ointment) to distinguish the work. As such, Plunderman has a conceptual aura that brings to mind Lifestyle Marketing, the release by Thes One (of People Under the Stairs) that took as its source material the commercial music of jingle composer Herb Pilhofer.

This Plunderman track’s original home is at More on Mystified, aka Thomas Park, at

By Marc Weidenbaum

Tags: , / Comments: 4 ]


  1. Thomas
    [ Posted July 12, 2010, at 5:58 pm ]

    Excellent, thanks! btw if you download the whole ep (free) at bandcamp, you also get a free music video.

  2. Disruptive Platypus
    [ Posted July 13, 2010, at 10:10 am ]

    Marc, I was interested in your comment that “. . . modern-day lounge music that is often more useful in the background than the foreground . . .”. I know you were speaking in general, however, as a fan of modern-day lounge, I’d say something like “like the weakest modern-day lounge music that is often more useful in the background than the foreground.” Yes, I know it is semantics, but to paint an entire genre as background music is not helpful. Imagine is someone wrote the same about Ambient or IDM, etc. Let me reiterate, that I understand your point completely as I detest anemic music by lazy musicians as much as the next person.

  3. Disruptive Platypus
    [ Posted July 13, 2010, at 10:11 am ]

    Forgot to mention that I enjoyed Mystified’s Plunderman as well.

  4. Marc Weidenbaum
    [ Posted July 13, 2010, at 11:18 am ]

    Thanks, DP — I am rarely one to single out entire genres. I’d hoped my employment of the word “often” made it clear I didn’t mean the whole realm of modern, electronified lounge. (And if you have names to recommend, please do so. I’d appreciate it.)

    And glad you dug the track. The whole set’s quite good.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>


Subscribe without commenting

  • about

  • Marc Weidenbaum founded the website 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

  • Field Notes

    News, essays, surveillance

  • Interviews

    Conversations with musicians/artists/coders

  • Studio Journal

    Video, audio, patch notes

  • Projects

    Select collaborations and commissions

  • Subscribe

  • Current Activities

  • Upcoming
    December 13, 2021: This day marks the 25th anniversary of the founding of
    December 28, 2021: This day marks the 10th anniversary of the Instagr/am/bient compilation.
    January 6, 2021: This day marks the 10th anniversary of the start of the Disquiet Junto music community.

  • Recent
    July 28, 2021: This day marked the 500th consecutive weekly project in 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

  • 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:

  • 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.

    Recent Projects

  • 0511 / Freeze Tag / The Assignment: Consider freezing (and thawing) as a metaphor for music production.
    0510 / Cold Turkey / The Assignment: Record one last track with a piece of music equipment before passing it on.
    0509 / The Long Detail / The Assignment: Create a piece of music with moments from a preexisting track.
    0508 / Germane Shepard / The Assignment: Use the Shepard tone to create a piece of music.
    0507 / In DD's Key of C / The Assignment: Make music with 10 acoustic instrument samples all in a shared key.

    Full Index
    And there is a complete list of past projects, 511 consecutive weeks to date.

  • Archives

    By month and by topic

  • [email protected]

    [email protected]

  • Downstream

    Recommended listening each weekday

  • Recent Posts