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Disquiet Junto Project 0018: 3×3

The Assignment: Explore relative prominence as a compositional tool.

Each Thursday evening at the Disquiet Junto group on Soundcloud.com a new compositional challenge is set before the group’s members, who then have just over four days to upload a track in response to the assignment. Membership to the Junto is open: just join and participate.

This assignment was made in the afternoon, California time, on Thursday, May 3, with 11:59pm on the following Monday, May 7, as the deadline.

These are the instructions that went out to the group’s email list:

Disquiet Junto Project 0018: 3×3

Deadline: Monday, May 7, at 11:59pm wherever you are.

This project is about how a simple matter of sequence can provide a sense of development and compositional momentum.

First step: Construct three simple, self-contained sounds (or sonic elements) that are distinct from each other. For example, don’t use three similar drones, or three tones that are the same note value, or three interchangeable percussives. Use one of each, or some other assortment of three distinct sonic elements: a snippet of a field recording, a bit of static, a short melodic segment, a spoken word or phrase.

Second step: Make a three-minute track out of these sounds, based on the following rules. For each of the three minutes, one of the three sounds should be prominent, and the other two should be less prominent. By the end of the complete three minutes of your track, each of the three sounds, thus, will have been prominent for one full minute and will have served a background purpose for two full minutes.

You can transform the individual sounds, certainly, but they should still be somewhat recognizable even in their transformed state.

Length: By definition, your piece will be three minutes long.

Information: Please along with your track include a description of your process in planning (what sounds you selected, for example), composing, and recording it.

Title/Tag: When adding your track to the Disquiet Junto group on Soundcloud.com, please include the term “disquiet0018-3×3”in the title of your track, and as a tag for your track.

Download: As always, you don’t have to set your track for download, but it would be preferable.

Linking: When you post your track, please include this information:

More details on the Disquiet Junto at:

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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