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.

A Glitch in the Canyon

Taking cues from the Algorithm

It was only there for a moment, but scrubbing back through YouTube is so simple as to be an inherent part of the viewing process. For a moment, the album cover is in view, and there it is. In The Matrix, the appearance of a black cat, the experience of deja vu, is evidence of being in a simulation; the glitch in the matrix is a short circuit, flubbed data, a sign of the system failing to maintain perfect verisimilitude to real life.

Back up a week. A walk in the park. My interlocutor tells me that Joni Mitchell’s album Ladies of the Canyon has only one good song on it, “The Circle Game.” Not looking for an argument, I just politely note that the album has at least four other excellent songs (“Morning Morgantown,” “Big Yellow Taxi,” “For Free,” and, of course, “Woodstock”), and arguably more. Two days later, I bring up the conversation opener with someone else, who says the same. I bring up the other songs, and my second interlocutor is astonished, not having remembered many of them were even on the album. I search and put my cellphone up the screen as evidence: one screen against another screen, to be displayed across town on a third screen. This is not an argument. It is not a debate one wins. One simply opens the window, points to the clear sky, and everyone agrees the sky is clear, no matter what they had thought previously.

And then, today, YouTube recommends I watch a short video about a small apartment in Paris, around 350 square feet. I live in a small home, but by no means that small, and I occasionally watch small home videos to marvel at and even take tips from the organization and design. At 7:10 in the video’s nearly over timeline, I pause and scrub back. Something looks familiar as one of the residents is giving a tour, at that moment of how the home stereo system is secreted behind plain panels. A home this small must have only the essentials. What is true of furniture is true, as well, of books, and of record albums. You see where this is going. And yes, there, briefly in view, is the sliver of an image: the cover of Ladies of the Canyon.

I’ve been rewatching the TV series Person of Interest lately, and doing some writing about artificial intelligence, so these things are on my mind, key among those things: the way a nascent intelligence might make its presence known. I thought I was watching a “small home” video because I’d watched a few in the past. I came to wonder if it had been recommended because of some searches I’d done of a record album nearly a week ago, something then viewable for a second or two, and even then just as a tiny image beneath someone’s arm. I came to wonder if by pausing the video to confirm, I had now further encouraged the Algorithm to send future messages through barely visible snips of relevant cultural artifacts.

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Disquiet Junto Project 0516: Outside In (Co/Exist 1 of 3)

The Assignment: Record a minute or two of nature.

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 the end of the day Monday, November 22, 2021, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, November 18, 2021.

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

Disquiet Junto Project 0516: Outside In (Co/Exist 1 of 3)
The Assignment: Record a minute or two of nature.

This is the first of a three-part project sequence. You can participate in all three parts, or any two of the three, or even just any one of them. Part one began on November 18, part two will begin on November 25, and part three will begin on December 2. Thanks to Alan Bland and Mark Lentczner for having proposed the project.

There is one step for this project: Record a minute or two of nature, whether that be bubbling streams, leaves rustling in the breeze, the sounds of birds and crickets, etc., however it is that you might define nature.

Note that the three-part sequence will eventually draw from this project’s results, so it’s helpful if you set your track for download so that other musicians can make use of it down the road.

Seven More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0516” (no spaces or quotation marks) in the name of your tracks.

Step 2: If your audio-hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to also include the project tag “disquiet0516” (no spaces or quotation marks). If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to subsequent location of tracks for the creation of a project playlist.

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

Step 4: Post your track in the following discussion thread at llllllll.co:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0516-outside-in-co-exist-1-of-3/

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

Step 6: If posting on social media, please consider using the hashtag #DisquietJunto so fellow participants are more likely to locate your communication.

Step 7: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Note: Please post one track for this weekly Junto project. If you choose to post more than one, and do so on SoundCloud, please let me know which you’d like added to the playlist. Thanks.

Additional Details:

Deadline: This project’s deadline is the end of the day Monday, November 22, 2021, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, November 18, 2021.

Length: The length of your finished track is up to you. Around one or two minutes is best.

Title/Tag: When posting your tracks, please include “disquiet0516” in the title of the tracks, and where applicable (on SoundCloud, for example) as a tag.

Upload: When participating in this project, 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 always best to set your track as downloadable and allowing for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution, allowing for derivatives).

For context, when posting the track online, please be sure to include this following information:

More on this 516th weekly Disquiet Junto project — Outside In (Co/Exist 1 of 3) (The Assignment: Record a minute or two of nature) — at: https://disquiet.com/0516/

This is the first of a three-part project sequence. You can participate in all three parts, or any two of the three, or even just any one of them. Part one began on November 18, part two will begin on November 25, and part three will begin on December 2. Thanks to Alan Bland and Mark Lentczner for having proposed the project.

More on the Disquiet Junto at: https://disquiet.com/junto/

Subscribe to project announcements here: https://tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto/

Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co: https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0516-outside-in-co-exist-1-of-3/

There’s also a Disquiet Junto Slack. Send your email address to [email protected] for Slack inclusion.

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Solomonic Co-op Dispute

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

Just enough buttons that you really need to count your way up if you’re looking for one of the higher ones. It’s as if someone in the building wanted Braille, and this result was the compromise that the co-op board decided no one in the dispute would be happy with.

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Under Cover

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

This photo doesn’t quite do credit to the makeshift apparatus, but if you look closely you’ll see there is a piece of reused carboard folded to serve as a little brim atop the buttons. Of course, you’d need to know where to look to find the doorbells in the first place, so unhelpfully masked are they by foliage. There’s such a thing as too much protection.

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Shangri La

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

This neighborhood is a Shangri La, in its own way.

No filter, as they say, though photographed with a new phone (that no doubt does its own digital magic, even with the default settings) through the natural filter that is coastal haze here at the edge of San Francisco.

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