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. • Disquiet.com 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.

twitter.com/disquiet: novels, HVAC, pencils

From the past week

I do this manually each Saturday, collating most of the tweets I made the past week at twitter.com/disquiet, which I think of as my public notebook. Some tweets pop up in expanded form or otherwise on Disquiet.com sooner. It’s personally informative to revisit the previous week of thinking out loud.

▰ “Things never sounded like what they were: guns, fire. Everything terrible sounded much more innocent.”

I finished Alison Stine’s novel Road out of Winter. I read too many books where plot takes precedence and there’s barely a memorable phrase. Stine layers description meaningfully. The above is a good example, in that the narrator (on the road during anarchic societal breakdown following intense climate change) herself employs description to communicate, not just to set to scene but to connect back to earlier moments in the telling.

▰ “I think it’s gonna be a long long time”

Nothing like being trolled by hold music.

▰ Quality customer service from Empress Effects:

▰ Only upon returning home did I fully appreciate how friggin’ loud the hotel’s HVAC was.

▰ Hears sound from other room.

Thinks, “Huh, I don’t listen to a lot of music with singers, but that sounds pretty great.”

Goes into room.

Learns the “singer” I heard was, in fact, an electric pencil sharpener.

▰ I’m fairly certain Silverview is the first John le Carré novel with a smiley face emoji in it. (As someone replied via Twitter, we’ve moved from George Smiley, who first appeared exactly 60 years ago in Call for the Dead, to a smiley face.)

▰ This week’s Disquiet Junto project is about, in a sense, serial composition, though not in the sense that we generally mean serial composition (that is, not in the Schoenberg sense). Instructions went out, as always, via tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto.

▰ Thanks to my friend Bart Beaty for having alerted me to this. I love when an Onion headline is arguably even more interesting when you get past the humor: “Composer Surrounded by Discarded Sheet Music Suddenly Perks Up at Sound of Rhythm of the City” (theonion.com).

▰ It’s barely rained in years here.

I’ve watched endless hours of YouTube videos of people walking around in the rain over the past few years.

It’s raining right now.

So, somewhere in the back of my head, I feel like there’s a large YouTube video shoot going on outside.

▰ Four albums you were obsessed with in high school: King Crimson’s Discipline, Fun Boy Three’s Waiting, Violent Femmes’ debut, Talking Heads’ Remain in Light. Limiting to four was hard ’cause I was so obsessed. The pool for obsession was small compared to today. Those are what came to mind before bed. I slept on it before posting. Also: Let It Be, Double Fantasy, Face Dances, Security, Mr Tambourine Man, 90125, and on and on.

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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    • December 13, 2022: This day marks the 26th anniversary of the founding of Disquiet.com.
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    • April 16, 2022: I participated in an online "talk show" by The Big Conversation Space (Niki Korth and Clémence de Montgolfier).
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    • 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.
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  • 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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