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.

tag: current activities

Grace Notes: Used Sounds, De-Amplifying

From the past week

I do this manually each week, collating the tweets I made that I want to keep track of (and sometimes some stray thoughts that didn’t appear earlier). For the most part, this means ones I initiated, not ones in which I directly responded to someone. Long ago, as I mentioned two weeks ago, there was an automated way to collect a week’s tweets as a blog post. Bizarrely, after years and years of that plugin not functioning, this morning it suddenly worked, out of the blue. When I discovered that it had auto-posted a summary of the past week’s tweets, I deleted the entry, because it’s sort of an inelegant solution. I may fiddle with the plugin’s settings, but in the meanwhile, collating these manually is a good practice.

▰ A Go-Go’s song came on over the weekend, and I immediately started tapping my foot and paying attention with what I can only describe as military-grade attention and focus. I felt like I was suddenly becoming aware that I am, in fact, some sort of Gen X Cylon sleeper agent.

▰ Fun thing about buying used music equipment is occasionally hearing, due to SD cards and internal memory, whatever music the person you bought it from was making before they put it in the box and mailed it to you. Even generic looper pedals have stories to tell.

▰ tired: subtweeting
wired: de-amplifying

▰ Skynet alert: The AI spambots are getting smarter. Based on the past few days’ flurry, they’ve sorted out (17+ years after I left New Orleans) that despite my 504 area code I live in 415.

▰ Mistakenly thought Twitter had become a China Miéville book club.

▰ Fellow San Franciscans: if you have children unfamiliar with the concept of “rain” this is a good time to take them outside.

▰ “A lot of people could identify the roar as a Palmer roar or a Nicklaus roar or a Tiger roar” (nytimes.com. Despite the old saw about golf claps, competitive golf without a crowd present is quite a different thing. (I don’t golf, so I’ll take their word for it.)

▰ The “sound beaming” technology that puts music in your head. Cybernetic earmworm FTW: timesofisrael.com.

▰ Have a great weekend, folks. I usually take a long social media break at the end of the year starting right around now, but given the social restrictions of pandemic life, I may hang around online. We’ll see. Still taking weekends off, either way. Be well.

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Grace Notes: Techno Is Music

From the past week

Some tweet observations (twitter.com/disquiet) I made over the course of the past week, lightly edited.

▰ Techno is music. Thus declared a German court (news.yahoo.com) at the end of last month. This brings with it beneficial tax/revenue implications for clubs, putting them in the same category as concert venues. (That it was in doubt is beyond me but that’s another story.) It’s interesting this is framed entirely in terms of DJs. I know I’m a wallflower who optimizes for a healthy sleep cycle, but maybe live techno was already exempted, or maybe it’s just a fraction of what clubs are booking. (Well, “were” booking. Covid and all.)

▰ The Bandcamp of late Nigerian drummer Tony Allen (pivotal figure in the work of Fela, and master of his own music as well) uploaded his Film of Life LP. An instant, and much-needed, mood lift. Allen died at the end of April, what feels like a lifetime ago.

▰ Once in a while an article comes out that I get wind of from friends with almost as much frequency as when Roy Orbison died. This New York Times piece by Sabrina Imbler is such a piece (“Could Listening to the Deep Sea Help Save It?). And it is fascinating.

▰ “A billion tiny sensors would hang motionless in an enclosed space, monitored by an extremely precise network of lasers able to measure movements of less than a fraction of a proton’s diameter”: dark matter detection inspired by wind chimes: gizmodo.com.

▰ Sound-adjacent, but worth a notch in the mental notebook that 350,000 doorbells were recalled (nytimes.com) due to a fire hazard. (“Customers do not need to return their devices.”)

▰ New DeLillo and Lethem novels released within a month of each other. The world could be in worse shape.

▰ Is there any way to find out which SoundCloud accounts one follows haven’t uploaded new tracks in over a year or two? I’d like to clean out the accounts I follow to make room to add new ones. Thanks.

▰ Fun fact: half the internet’s traffic is Netflix, and a solid quarter is boilerplate confidentiality statements at the end of emails.

▰ “Please wait for the host to start this meeting.”

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“Night (There and Back)”

Sunday night loops

Sunday night guitar loops. Unlike other recent guitar loop experiments I’ve tried out, this one has a live component. After the first minute or so (which I’d already layered in advance of hitting record), new material is added and then later deleted. This setup consists of electric guitar, reverb pedal, overdrive, and looper, plus an eBow on occasion for those extended notes. After recording (amp to phone, live in the room), I used Adobe Audition to implement a fade in and a fade out, and for a little additional reverb.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/disquiet.

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Grace Notes: Jawn, Catharsis, Hopescrolling

From last week

Some tweet observations (twitter.com/disquiet) I made over the course of the past week, lightly edited. I usually post this roundup on Saturdays, but yesterday was an unusual day.

I do this manually each week, just collating the tweets I made that I want to keep track of. For the most part, this means ones I initiated, not ones in which I directly responded to someone. Long ago, there was an automated way to collect a week’s tweets as a blog post, but that script stopped working at some point. I do have something set up that automatically collects all my tweets as a private Google document. That’s a useful tool to search through, though Twitter’s own advanced search is there when I wonder, say, how many times have I mentioned Ginger Baker’s album Horses and Trees? Or: how often have I mentioned listening to Éliane Radigue on the bus?

▰ Working on liner notes means having the same record on repeat for a long time in different contexts. I only write full-fledged liner notes about records I can do that with.

▰ Thank you, Small Professor, for having introduced me to the word “jawn” so I was prepared for this fine day. (And Carl Ritger for familiarizing me with it, too.)

▰ hopescrolling

▰ “You are using the computer audio.” A lot of computer interface language still, indeed, sounds like Kraftwerk lyrics.

▰ [cathartic scream]

▰ The longer this year gets, the more time we’re giving 2021 to up its game.

▰ After a buncha false starts, it’ll be Brian Eno’s Thursday Afternoon on repeat for the foreseeable future.

▰ Great (and, needless to say, well-timed for our anxious moment) interview with Brian Eno by Lindsay Zoladz about his music for/from films, with nods to Fellini and Lynch (Dune details!), and insight into ambient as constructed atmosphere: nytimes.com.

▰ Among the many things* I love about where I live, while it’s incredibly clear and beautiful out, the marine layer can still clog up the bay (a 15-minute walk away), meaning the fog horns (incongruously to a visitor) blow on (*including general local political/social comfort zone).

▰ Would love to know if the servers for Calm, InsightTimer, Headspace, and related apps are experiencing overload today.

▰ Hopeful for a near future in which the word “ignominious” is employed with great frequency.

▰ Catharsis go-to track:

▰ Catharsis go-to track:

▰ Catharsis go-to track:

▰ 조용한 / It’s always a good day to change your Twitter location to a country where you can’t read the language. I’m riding out the election with my “trends” all in Korean (with the exception of whatever single promoted tweet shows at the top of the list). Bonus points if it’s an alphabet you find aesthetically pleasing.

▰ I don’t need another Girl with the Dragon Tattoo movie. I just need another Karen O / Trent Reznor / Atticus Ross cover of a Led Zeppelin song.

▰ “That music always round me, unceasing, unbeginning, yet long untaught I did not hear, / But now the chorus I hear and am elated” –Walt Whitman

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조용한

Minding social media

It’s always a good day to change your Twitter location to a country where you can’t read the language. Bonus points if it’s an alphabet you find aesthetically pleasing.

I’m riding out the election with my “trends” all in Korean (with the exception of whatever single promoted tweet shows at the top of the list).

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