My 33 1/3 book, on Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II, was the 5th bestselling book in the series in 2014. It's available at Amazon (including Kindle) and via your local bookstore. • F.A.Q.Key Tags: #saw2for33third, #sound-art, #classical, #juntoElsewhere: Twitter, SoundCloud, Instagram

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Monthly Archives: April 2018

Disquiet Junto Project 0330: Wax Off

Make a piece of music by erasing aspects of a pre-existing track.

Each Thursday in the Disquiet Junto group, 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 in the Junto is open: just join and participate. (A SoundCloud account is helpful but not required.) There’s no pressure to do every project. It’s weekly so that you know it’s there, every Thursday through Monday, when you have the time.

Deadline: This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, April 30, 2018. This project was posted in the afternoon, California time, on Thursday, April 26, 2018.

Tracks will be added to the playlist for the duration of the project.

These are the instructions that went out to the group’s email list (at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto):

Disquiet Junto Project 0330: Wax Off
Make a piece of music by erasing aspects of a pre-existing track.

This project was proposed by frequent Junto participant Zero Meaning.

Step 1: Make a piece of music by erasing aspects of a pre-existing track. You’ll be taking an earlier audio track of your own and reworking it. Select a track. It might help to read through these instructions in full before making the selection.

Step 2: The theme of this project is “erasure.” You will be removing material from the track you selected in Step 1. Consider what “erasure” can mean in terms of sound: removal, texture, fragments, artifacts, etc. What techniques would erasure entail?

Step 3: Apply the concepts and techniques you came up with in Step 2 to the track you selected in Step 1. The new track should remain the same length as the source track. That is, the canvas is to be the same, and only the contents are to be altered. One additional note: even if multitracks/stems are available, they shouldn’t be employed for this project; only the “final” version of the track from Step 1 can be used for this project.

Six More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0330” (no spaces or quotation marks) in the name of your track.

Step 2: If your audio-hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to also include the project tag “disquiet0330” (no spaces or quotation marks). If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to subsequent location of tracks for the creation a project playlist.

Step 3: Upload your track. It is helpful but not essential that you use SoundCloud to host your track.

Step 4: Please consider posting your track in the following discussion thread at llllllll.co:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0330-wax-off/

Step 5: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 6: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Other Details:

Deadline: This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, April 30, 2018. This project was posted in the afternoon, California time, on Thursday, April 26, 2018.

Length: The length of your finished track should equal to the length of the source track.

Title/Tag: When posting your track, please include “disquiet0330” in the title of the track, and where applicable (on SoundCloud, for example) as a tag.

Upload: When participating in this project, post one finished track with the project tag, and be sure to include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto. Photos, video, and lists of equipment are always appreciated.

Download: It is preferable that your track is set as downloadable, and that it allows for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution).

Linking: When posting the track online, please be sure to include this information:

More on this 330th weekly Disquiet Junto project (Disquiet Junto Project 0330: Wax Off / Make a piece of music by erasing aspects of a pre-existing track) at:

https://disquiet.com/0330/

The project was proposed by frequent Junto participant Zero Meaning. More from whom at:

https://www.twitch.tv/zeromeaning/

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

https://disquiet.com/junto/

Subscribe to project announcements here:

http://tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto/

Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0330-wax-off/

There’s also on a Junto Slack. Send your email address to twitter.com/disquiet for Slack inclusion.

The photo associated with this project is by Erin Vermeulen, used via Flickr and a Creative Commons license:

https://flic.kr/p/MVLqr

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/

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The Loops of the Flies

An accompaniment album by Rupert Lally

It’s about the beginning, not the end. That’s a hallmark of the ongoing Disquiet Junto series of community music projects. The work that musicians create as part of the Junto isn’t necessarily intended to be considered “complete,” nor should it be. There is no pressure in the Junto to finish anything. There is only the communal mutual encouragement to start something.

The goal of the Junto is to spur creativity, to explore unfamiliar approaches to music, not to record an album. We do this by embracing constraints. The main constraint, besides the given project’s instructions, is time. You have from each Thursday, when the project goes out, until the following Monday at 11:59pm. Whatever you’ve finished by then is your finished track. Your Junto track isn’t done when it’s done. Your Junto track is done when the time runs out.

That said, Junto projects often yield tracks that end up on albums, and sometimes the projects turn out to be the starting point of subsequent independent efforts on the part of individual Junto members.

Such is the case with the excellent new album Notes from the Island, by longtime Junto member Rupert Lally. The “notes” in the title are, one might take it to mean, musical notes, and the “island” is the fabled place where William Golding set his classic novel Lord of the Flies. Lally’s album is an expansion on Junto project 0320, which took place from February 15 through 19 of this year. The project was titled “Table of Contents,” and its subtitle was “Make a composition containing loopable background-music segments for each chapter of one of your favorite books.” Lally chose Lord of the Flies, and the new record has 12 tracks, one for each of the book’s chapters.

The original project followed somewhat quickly on Lally’s previous solo album, Solid State Memories, which was a score to a novella he wrote himself. He was primed for the Junto project when it began, and he was eager to extend the idea when it was over. In an essay accompanying the new release, Lally charts his experience with Golding’s book back to the age of 12, when his father encouraged him to read it, and to his recent experience of re-discovering it. The original Junto project called for short loops. For these extended versions — these reimaginings — those loops are simply starting points, in this case for a mix of tribal percussion, modular synth, and orchestral instrumentation.

The album is available at rupertlally.bandcamp.com.

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What Sound Looks Like

An ongoing series cross-posted from instagram.com/dsqt


I couldn’t live here, but it’s sure cool to visit. The clock repair person says, understandably, that he keeps most (not all, but most) of the (many many) grandfather clocks turned off.

An ongoing series cross-posted from instagram.com/dsqt.
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Disquiet Junto Project 0329: Extended Version

Make a piece of music in which you expand the functionality of an instrument — and document your technique.

Each Thursday in the Disquiet Junto group, 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 in the Junto is open: just join and participate. (A SoundCloud account is helpful but not required.) There’s no pressure to do every project. It’s weekly so that you know it’s there, every Thursday through Monday, when you have the time.

Deadline: This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, April 23, 2018. This project was posted in the morning, California time, on Thursday, April 19, 2018.

Tracks will be added to the playlist for the duration of the project.

These are the instructions that went out to the group’s email list (at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto):

Disquiet Junto Project 0329: Extended Version
Make a piece of music in which you expand the functionality of an instrument — and document your technique.

Step 1: This week’s project is about unintended techniques applied to musical instruments. You can come up with a new idea, but better still to use the opportunity to document a technique you have employed in the past.

Step 2: Think about concepts like “expanded cinema” and “prepared instruments.” Think about how an instrument can be used to do things it wasn’t necessarily designed to do.

Step 3: Record a track employing a technique that arose from your thinking in Steps 1 and 2.

Step 4: When posting the track, be sure to document your technique so that others might try it.

Six More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0329” (no spaces or quotation marks) in the name of your track.

Step 2: If your audio-hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to also include the project tag “disquiet0329” (no spaces or quotation marks). If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to subsequent location of tracks for the creation a project playlist.

Step 3: Upload your track. It is helpful but not essential that you use SoundCloud to host your track.

Step 4: Please consider posting your track in the following discussion thread at llllllll.co:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0329-extended-version/

Step 5: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 6: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Other Details:

Deadline: This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, April 23, 2018. This project was posted in the morning, California time, on Thursday, April 19, 2018.

Length: The length is up to you. Around three minutes seems about right.

Title/Tag: When posting your track, please include “disquiet0329” in the title of the track, and where applicable (on SoundCloud, for example) as a tag.

Upload: When participating in this project, post one finished track with the project tag, and be sure to include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto. Photos, video, and lists of equipment are always appreciated.

Download: It is preferable that your track is set as downloadable, and that it allows for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution).

Linking: When posting the track online, please be sure to include this information:

More on this 329th weekly Disquiet Junto project (Extended Version / Make a piece of music in which you expand the functionality of an instrument — and document your technique) at:

https://disquiet.com/0329/

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

https://disquiet.com/junto/

Subscribe to project announcements here:

http://tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto/

Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0329-extended-version/

There’s also on a Junto Slack. Send your email address to twitter.com/disquiet for Slack inclusion.

The image associated with this project is by David Cosand, used via Flickr and a Creative Commons license:

https://flic.kr/p/9mUv8P

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/

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The Muffled Classicism of Christina Vantzou

A track off her new album, No. 4

“So, when you play this live, you just have to figure out a way to construct a huge bell jar to put over the entire orchestra except the cello player.” That is how a friend of Christina Vantzou’s described her aesthetic back to her, per Vantzou’s own recollection when I interviewed her a few years ago on the occasion of her third album, Nº3 (Kranky). It’s an apt comparison. There is a restraint, a sense of sounds emanating down a dark hall, music heard through thick fabric, to Vantzou’s recordings, and the approach holds strong on her new album, No. 4, released earlier this month.

This No. 4 track, “Staircases,” exemplifies Vantzou’s approach. Traditional classical elements, heavy on sedate strings and a minimal piano line that descends like the title subject, are heard in a quiet but intense echo, one in which space — whether real or virtual, physical or a matter of post-production — is as much an instrument as the instruments themselves.

Album posted at christinavantzou.bandcamp.com. More from Vantzou at her youtube.com channel and at christinavantzou.com.

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