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

Listening to art.
Playing with audio.
Sounding out technology.
Composing in code.

Kat Estacio’s Ambient Ceremony

A live recording from Toronto

Kat Estacio is a member of Pantayo, an all-women Filipino ensemble that explores kulintang. Kulintang is a Southeast Asian musical form involving numerous gongs, and it has a cultural presence in the Philippines. Estacio, who is based in Toronto, also performs her own music solo, some of which can be heard in a live performance from this time last year titled I Made a Mess. It’s comprised of three live recordings from the Toronto venue the Music Gallery, which I only had a chance to visit once, well over a decade ago, but I’ve kept track of ever since. The first piece, “Debris Kiss (Movement 1 & 2),” is a splendid thing, insinuating light percussion intonations amid a tonal field of high-pitched drones. The result is ceremonial and contemplative.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/kat-estacio. More from Estacio at katslexic.tumblr.com. More from Pantayo, Estacio’s kulintang collective, at pantayo.bandcamp.com.

Tags: , / Leave a comment ]

Disquiet Junto Project 0301: Parts > Sum

Artfully reduce an album to something less than itself.

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.

This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, October 9, 2017. This project was posted in the early afternoon, Manhattan time, on Thursday, October 5, 2017.

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 0301: Parts > Sum
Artfully reduce an album to something less than itself.

Step 1: Download the album 5 Minute Meditations by Lee Rosevere. It’s available here from the record label Happy Puppy Records:

https://goo.gl/Wn5t1r

Step 2: The album has 11 tracks. You’ll be focused solely on tracks 1 through 10. Review the material to get a sense of the music.

Step 3: Create a five-minute track of your own using audio extracted from each of the first 10 tracks on the album 5 Minute Meditations. Important: The goal for your track is that while it will contain material from all of those 10 tracks, the end result (the sum) will be less than total of the constituent parts. In other words, your own 5 Minute Meditation will take Rosevere’s source ambient recordings and produce from them something even more ethereal, more ambient, more artfully threadbare.

Five More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: If your hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to include the project tag “disquiet0301” (no spaces) in the name of your track. If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to my locating the tracks and creating a playlist of them.

Step 2: Upload your track. It is helpful but not essential that you use SoundCloud to host your track.

Step 3: In the following discussion thread at llllllll.co please consider posting your track:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0301-parts-sum/

Step 4: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 5: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Deadline: This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, October 9, 2017. This project was posted in the early afternoon, Manhattan time, on Thursday, October 5, 2017.

Length: The finished track should be roughly five minutes long.

Title/Tag: When posting your track, please include “disquiet0301” 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 required, per the source audio’s Creative Commons license, 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 301st weekly Disquiet Junto project (“Artfully reduce an album to something less than itself”) at:

https://disquiet.com/0301/

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-0301-parts-sum/

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

Image associated with this project is the cover of the Lee Rosevere album 5 Minute Meditations, which was the source audio. The music and image are used thanks to a Creative Commons license:

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/

More from Lee Rosevere, who is based in Vancouver, BC, at

https://twitter.com/LeeRosevere
http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/
http://happypuppyrecords.ca

Tags: , , , , / Leave a comment ]

Disquiet Junto Project 0300: The 300th Project

3 chords x 100 seconds

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.

This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, October 2, 2017. This project was posted in the late morning, San Francisco time, on Thursday, September 28, 2017.

Tracks will be added to the above 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 0300: The 300th Project
3 chords x 100 seconds

Step 1: For the 300th consecutive weekly Disquiet Junto project, choose a chord. Read the 6 steps of these instructions all the way through before making a decisions about instrumentation (Step 2) or recording (Steps 3 and 4). Understanding the intended end result will potentially influence those decisions.

Step 2: Choose three different instruments on which to play the chord selected in Step 1.

Step 3: Record yourself playing for 100 seconds that chord on the first of the instruments you chose in Step 2. You may want to record slightly longer than 100 seconds and edit back. Not every instrument has infinite sustain. You may need to use different techniques (strumming, sequencing, preparing, etc.) to achieve the 100 seconds. Consider those different techniques and the role they’ll have in the resulting sound.

Step 4: Repeat Step 3 for each of the other two instruments from Step 2. Consider how the three instruments, as well as the techniques you employ to play them, will correlate with each other.

Step 5: Layer the three tracks you have recorded. Perhaps fade in at the start and out at the end.

Step 6: Bonus round: Your piece is completed, but if you have the time and interest, consider subtly tweaking with filters and other means one or more of the three track you recorded.

Five More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: If your hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to include the project tag “disquiet0300” (no spaces) in the name of your track. If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to my locating the tracks and creating a playlist of them.

Step 2: Upload your track. It is helpful but not essential that you use SoundCloud to host your track.

Step 3: In the following discussion thread at llllllll.co please consider posting your track:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-the-300th-consecutive-weekly-project/

Step 4: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 5: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Deadline: This project’s deadline is 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on Monday, October 2, 2017. This project was posted in the afternoon, San Francisco time, on Thursday, September 28, 2017.

Length: The finished track should be roughly 100 seconds long.

Title/Tag: When posting your track, please include “disquiet0300” 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 300th weekly Disquiet Junto project (3 chords x 100 seconds) at:

https://disquiet.com/0300/

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-the-300th-consecutive-weekly-project/

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

Image associated with this project is by Greg Williams is used thanks to a Creative Commons license allowing for non-commercial use and adaptation:

flic.kr/p/9U68Ep

creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/

Tags: , , / Leave a comment ]

Augmented Japanese Neo-Classical

From Shinji Wakasa, straight outta Yokosuka

The neo-classical piano at the start of Shinji Wakasa’s track “Swimmy” is lovely enough unto itself, a gentle line heard as if through a felt screen, not so much muffled as it is coddled and framed, softened and nestled. And then the light transformations are introduced, wisps of synthesizer flourishes, backward masks that merge with the sound source, fibrous shoots of sound that for mere moments seem to fix the nostalgic melody in something more proximate to the present. And then the past forges back into the foreground. The synthesis isn’t so much evidence of a hybrid as it is of an augment, an upgrade, a fissure. It’s absolutely beautiful.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/user-666602380. More from Shinji Wakasa, aka Hitsuji Sound Factory, who is based in Yokosuka, Japan, at hitsujisound.com.

Tags: , / Leave a comment ]

Lightbath’s Percussive Reverberations

A bit of what Emily Sprague praised in the Sound + Process podcast

In her interview as part of the Sound + Process podcast, Emily Sprague mentioned two musicians as inspirations for her, one of them being Lightbath, aka Bryan Noll. She was speaking in particular about Lightbath’s videos, in the context of videos with a certain aesthetic that she found comforting if rare — which is to say, not all 4/4, not techno, not noisey, not songy, not purely noodling; instead: soft, ambient, and ever so slightly melodic. She doesn’t specifically say those things; that’s an aesthetic triangulation on my part based on what Sprague’s music often sounds like, and what Lightbath and the other musician whose videos she mentioned, R Beny, are generally up to.

This track, while quite rhythmic, is a good example of Lightbath in action. Titled “Forgiveness,” it has a very organic sounding percussive undercurrent. The beat brings to mind African talking drums, above which sharp, plucked notes slowly fill the audio spectrum with extended reverberations. I’ve posted the audio, from SoundCloud, up top, and the video below to encourage giving it a listen before watching the piece unfold. Like many modular performances, there is far less going on than we actually hear. With notable exceptions, of course, modular performance is often more a matter of coaxing, nudging, and shifting than it is of what we have come to traditionally think of as “playing.” That sedate composerly presence isn’t always reflected in the sound, but it certainly is here.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/lightbath. More from Lightbath/Noll at lightbath.com and twitter.com/lightbath.

Tags: , , / Leave a comment ]