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.

tag: live-performance

Noémi Büchi Live

A percussive set from November in Stockholm


This live set by Noémi Büchi of Zürich, Switzerland, is 23 minutes long and slated for release several months from now, on August 4. Perhaps there’s more to come, but as it stands it’s a very satisfying piece. A driving percussive set eventually wends its way out of an inchoate opening. What begins as scrap sounds, tiny noises and globular burbles, becomes more dynamic, focused, and metronome-like as it proceeds, with opportunities later for lulls and pauses. The result is a mix of classic minimalist percussive music and metallic synthesis. It was recorded at the ljudOljud Festival at KMH (Kungliga Musikhögskolan), the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, back in November 2020. The set is named “Södra Grinda” after the island in the Stockholm archipelago. Büchi has said that she visited the location shortly after moving to Sweden.

The track is at noemibuchi.bandcamp.com and soundcloud.com/noemibuchi.

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twitter.com/disquiet: Museum Dreams, Lawnmower Jam, Atwood x Anderson

From the past week

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

▰ Weirdest side effect of getting my first shot of the Moderna vaccine on Saturday morning was that for the rest of the weekend I found myself daydreaming being in various rooms at SFMOMA.

▰ Ooh, the upcoming Disquietude ambient music podcast episode will have its first entirely original piece of music (that is, first heard on the podcast).

▰ Lawnmower jam: Saxophonist Jeff Coffin (Dave Matthews, Bela Fleck) noticed his neighbor’s lawnmower was in A flat, so he decided to accompany her. (Thanks, Brian Biggs!)


▰ A trick to navigating the modern internet, one that’s even more addled with targeted ads than anything Neal Stephenson imagined when the ‘net was young, is to regularly search for a few things you already own and love. Then you’ll be inundated with reminders of them.

▰ I love this detail in this piece (nytimes.com) by writer Max Gao on the upcoming Kung Fu TV series: ubiquitous actor Tzi Ma has no children, despite having “played the father figure for a bevy of Hollywood talent” (e.g., in The Farewell, Meditation Park, and the live-action Mulan).

▰ “So, 1981. We had the radio on while cooking dinner, when an eerie sound came pulsating over the airwaves.” Because we’ve been good, we get Margaret Atwood writing about Laurie Anderson: theguardian.com. “Do you want to be a human being any more? Are you one now?”

▰ I’m pretty enamored of wind chimes. As I wrote about in my book on Selected Ambient Works Volume 2: If as Brian Eno has said, repetition is a form of change, then wind chimes can show that change is a form of repetition.

▰ The first track is up on the latest Disquiet Junto project and it includes the sentence “I added a phaser effect to the dishwasher track” and this is how I know I’ve found my people.

▰ RSS 4 Life

▰ It’s cool to have some new Twitter followers following yesterday’s lengthy thread about the benefits of blogging, and I should note for the record you’re now following someone who gets excited about: refrigerators humming, doorbells, silence, TV captions, hold music.

▰ OK, have a good weekend. Listen to some poetry. Read some TV. Seek out some birdsong (while masked). And if you’ve got time and interest, play a recording of wind chimes on a speaker and record how it interacts with your own environment: disquiet.com/0484. See ya Monday.

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Guitar + Synth

Orbital Patterns levels up


One of the great things about the slipstream patchwork that is modern music listening — not Spotify, or full albums on Bandcamp, but the individual work-in-progress tracks that make up, particularly, so much of YouTube, SoundCloud, and, to a degree, Vimeo — is you can witness in something approximating realtime the changes that occur to favorite musicians’ approaches. For example, Orbital Patterns (aka Michigan-based Abdul Allums) has added electric guitar to the mix, resulting in a radical evolution of timbres and textures. The guitar is heard here running through the synthesizer he’s slowly accumulated and adjusted as the months and videos have passed. Three different guitar samples are processed by three very different modules, resulting in a dreamy track that varies its hush with a sense of slow-motion abandon.

Video originally posted at YouTube.

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Current Favorites: Guitar Samples, Instrumental Hip-Hop, Surround Keyboards

Heavy rotation, lightly annotated

A weekly(ish) answer to the question “What have you been listening to lately?” It’s lightly annotated because I don’t like re-posting material without providing some context. I hope to write more about some of these in the future, but didn’t want to delay sharing them.

▰ There’s one track up thus far from the self-titled Sweepsculp, the remainder due out on the Nous’klaer Audio label May 7 (I’ve seen it listed as late April elsewhere; May 7 is the date on the Bandcamp page). Sweepsculp is a pseudonym for Dutch musician Thessa Torsing, best known as Upsammy. Apparently the EP is “using only an acoustic guitar besides drums.” The first track, “Plaudable,” is laudable for its tight groove, its punchy, low-key beats, and its playful exploration of slight variations amid minimalist repetition.


▰ On Bandcamp Day, Los Angeles producer Jansport J uploaded the instrumental tracks to rapper Quadry’s mid-2020 album Don’t You Weep. It’s seven soulful cuts, the tidy beats rich with backing vocals, old-school electric keyboard, dubby percussive effects, and occasional double-speed samples.


▰ Vancouver, B.C.-based musician Scott Morgan, aka Loscil, has a new record, Clara, due out on May 28. The production process is fascinating: “[It was] sourced from a single three-minute composition performed by a 22-piece string orchestra in Budapest. The subsequent recording was lathe-cut on to a 7-inch, then ‘scratched and abused to add texture and color,’ from which the entirety of Clara was sampled, shape-shifted, and sculpted.” The first track is all glimmering grainy heavens above a scratchy rhythm.


▰ If you dig Nils Frahms’ live setup, an indie-studio reimgaining of Rick Wakeman’s surround-keyboard mode, then this video of Hania Rani may appeal, especially when, at 7:15, she puts a stone on her Prophet sythesizer to hold a note.


▰ The dental drill wind tunnel noise of “Exhalation” and the lost, dubbed-out spaciousness of “Lost Race” were our first two tastes of the 13 tracks that will comprise End of Trilogy, before it was released this past Friday. Now out on the excellent Room40 label, it collects pummeling sounds from Yuko Araki. She’s a force to be reckoned with.


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Algorave Review in The Wire

Livecoding by Chiho Oka, Kindohm, and AFALFL

Yeah, that typeface means something. I’ve got a new piece in the Wire magazine, the issue with (musician) Warren Ellis on the cover. It’s a review of a livecoding livestream from February 13, 2021, of Chiho Oka (Tokyo), Kindohm (Minneapolis), and AFALFL (Paris), hosted by Alex McLean as part of the No Bounds Festival. There’s something quite digitally native about a livecoding livestream. Had algorave not already existed, Covid-19 certainly would have engendered this cultural variant.

McLean posted the full review at slab.org. The concert is archived on YouTube:

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