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: TV

twitter.com/disquiet: Doorbells, 9/11, DAWless

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.

▰ Music theory keeps you young. In music theory years, I am at best a first grader.

▰ The doorbell died after years of me writing about doorbells. Which I’ll write about more later. Main thing: shoddy temp replacement while I waited for actual replacement. Concern: when the new doorbell arrives, I won’t know. But: UPS just phoned from outside the front door. Whew.

▰ Currently immersed in un-ASMR: working inside a building the outside of which is being prepped for painting thanks to vast amounts of scraping, scratching, and knocking.

▰ I was in Golden Gate Park reading a novel on a park bench, and I thought someone was playing an Eric Dolphy album nearby. Turned out it was one of those tiny motorized toy boats on Spreckels Lake. The thing, less than a foot long, had capsized and its engine was churning away.

▰ The next to last concert I attended pre-pandemic, I mentioned, in passing, the concept of “DAWless” to a musician in their early 60s, and they laughed out loud. I cherish that laugh. Its memory has kept me company.

▰ In the Echo of No Towers: On the 10th anniversary of 9/11, I spoke with Stephen Vitiello about his World Trade Center tapes. It’s informative that the audio’s from Hurricane Floyd, climate issues having received far less investment than the war on terror.

▰ First concert I attended after 9/11 was Alex Chilton, I think the Friday following. This was in New Orleans, where he and I both lived at the time. The concert was sparsely attended. Even a hint of police car lights bleeding in from the street made clear how on edge everyone was.

▰ “You have to see Heat.” Says David Costabile’s louche-bro, Wags. Glad that Billions is back at its game. As with Unforgotten, it’s both distracting and comforting (stars: they’re just like us) to watch so many of scenes set with the actors socially distanced from each other.

Reminiscence: Come for the prestige TV Philip K. Dick / Kim Stanley Robinson mashup; stay for the sound design as a grand piano slowly descends through the ceiling into a massive, fully submerged concert hall.

▰ Found some old, unwatched Elementary episodes on the DVR to fill time during Wednesday night’s region-wide internet outage. Just glad I’d caught the evening’s What If…? episode about the zombie apocalypse before this actual apocalypse arrived.

▰ “I was forest bathing and I mistook you for a creek.” The soft-spoken Carmel (Regina Hall) to Tony (Bobby Cannavale), whom she’s stumbled upon peeing onto a giant tree in the first episode of Nine Perfect Strangers.

▰ I’ve realized the reason playing “All of Me” is like eating potato chips is because it starts on C and ends on a B, which you naturally bring back to a C and then you start over again, and you realize your haven’t even eaten your lunch on your lunch break so you eat potato chips.

In related news, as of today’s lunch break I can play “All of Me” on guitar with my eyes closed, which is me always planning for some potential (distant!) future when, you know, one’s eyes might no longer work.

▰ What could be more ambient than muting the word ambient for a few days

▰ And on that note, have a great weekend. I have a heap of work to complete before day’s end, and zero plans this weekend, the best sort of plan some weekends.

  • Listen to TV captions.

  • Cook by ear.

  • Use noise cancellation as the mobile sensory deprivation tank that it is.

Also tagged / / Leave a comment ]

twitter.com/disquiet: Mailman, Ida, Phaedra

From the past week

I do this manually each Saturday, collating recent tweets I made 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.

▰ “If you’d prefer to wait in silence, press 4.”

▰ Waiting for the What If…? episode in which the Watcher recalls that he once, long ago, played Jean-Michel Basquiat, and that Basquiat had once, long ago, drawn superheroes.

▰ The first day of every month is when I’m reminded of how many Mailman-powered email lists I’m subscribed to.

▰ Ida WFH. Rob Walker recorded the sound of the hurricane from his New Orleans home office on August 29th:

Highlights from latest This Week in Sound issue: smart speaker surveillance, listening to gravitational waves, the $12,262 megaphone, AI crime-fighting failure, newfangled hold music, Val Kilmer’s new voice, and more.

▰ Set my Zoom background to a production still from Devs. Right now I’ll take a machine-learned dystopia over reality.

▰ Current status

(Fact check: I’m not actually watching Billions at this moment. Just mental/emotional status.)

▰ I recently bought a second 25″ screen. All I keep on it is a pair of browser windows, each a spreadsheet. It’s the best whiteboard for such things because when I want to I just turn it off (or pull up footage of someone wandering Tokyo), and I don’t have to look at the lists.

▰ Just gonna have “Phaedra” off the upcoming Amon Tobin album, How Do You Live, on repeat until the good news outdoes the bad news. So, for a while.

Technically I’m listening to Amon Tobin’s “Phaedra (People Scraping the Outside of the Building Prior to Painting Because I Need to Recharge My Noise Cancelling Headphones’ Battery Remix),” but I’m pretty sure the original is awesome, too.

▰ I can no longer hear the work being done on the building so maybe they’re taking a break but more likely I have simply, fully, willingly succumbed to this song.

▰ Perhaps you’d be astonished by how many press releases and announcements go out for singles and albums saying nothing about the music. Here’s the cover, here’s some merch (need another branded tote?), here’s a moody artist photo. Thanks for the inbox clutter. Unsubscribe. Delete.

▰ It’s a Bandcamp Friday, but rather than list a few records I recommend, or other people’s lists of recommended records, maybe I’ll recommend other people’s lists of other people’s lists of recommended records. Or, you know, suggest people read some reviews and buy some records.

Also tagged , / / Leave a comment ]

twitter.com/disquiet: Cables, Triads, Surrealism

From the past week

I do this manually each Saturday, collating recent tweets I made 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.

▰ Been re-watching Downton Abbey and thinking about the way it maps the adoption of technology as time passes (electric lights, cars, a blender, a radio), and was about to tweet a quote (“Mrs. Patmore is not what you’d call a futurist”), only to find when I searched Google that I had done so when it first aired. Later: “Why is it called a wireless when there are so many wires?” This is something said by Daisy when a radio is brought into the house for the first time, thanks to the king being due to make a broadcast announcement.

▰ Guitar class update: I haven’t been this into triads since I was addicted to Hong Kong crime movies.

▰ “Your gift is quite destructive but look at the music you can make.” (Been re-watching Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)

▰ I think there is an insect crawling slowly across my phone’s upturned face. It is the reflection a bird hovering outside the window.

▰ The term “Surrealism Tycoon” is certainly my kinda headline clickbait. And this is totally the raw material for a sequel to China Miéville’s The Last Days of New Paris: “Arturo Schwarz, Refugee Who Became a Surrealism Tycoon, Dies at 97,” via nytimes.com.

▰ Guessing this bypassed Discogs.com: “United States Sells Unique Wu-Tang Clan Album Forfeited by Convicted Hedge Fund Manager Martin Shkreli”

▰ My favorite pithy summary of the Disquiet Junto music community is Ethan Hein’s. He said in effect that I write record reviews of music that doesn’t exist yet and then internet strangers make it real. I’m not sure I could improve on that. The 500th weekly project begins July 29.

▰ “I blink with fatigue, and my eyelashes make an infinitesimal, inaudible sound against the felt whiteness of the pillows slope.” Been thinking about @espejoacustico‘s suggestion we finally get around to a proper Pessoa-themed Junto project. It is the Disquiet Junto, after all.

▰ I highly recommend the Take5 email from the Japan Times (japantimes.co.jp): a free (English) daily newsletter of five top stories, a glimpse into what’s happening. I wish more newspapers from countries where I don’t read the language did it. Maybe they do. Any recommendations?

▰ There are days when using the browser interface for the New York Times crossword is like pushing back on a ouija board against a particularly strident spirit.

▰ Cool. There’s a new entry, all about the Disquiet Junto, on the ever-growing Music Games Wiki: musicgames.wikidot.com.

▰ Yes, but when do we get the 5-CD expanded box set of George Harrison’s Electric Sound album?

▰ Tinyletter has become a drag, which is part of why I haven’t published a This Week in Sound email in quite a while. I’m looking to switch to Buttondown or an alternative. Trying out some options. So far, Buttondown seems pretty cool.

▰ It was a week:

🗹 buncha work
🗹 longform writing
🗹 cheating on longform writing
🗹 Disquiet daily
🗹 Junto 500
🗹 guitar study
🗹 exercise
🗹 gallery review filed
☐ email catch-up
🗹 home office remedies (standing)
🗹 digital tool revisions (newsletter)
🗹 sign off til Monday

Also tagged , , / / Leave a comment ]

twitter.com/disquiet: Dalton, Kadist, Oblique

From the past week

I do this manually each Saturday, collating recent tweets I made 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.

Gunpowder Milkshake uses the same Karen Dalton song, “Something on Your Mind,” that Mayans MC did this past season, number three. It’s a beautiful track, how her voice always sounds like it’s going to break, and I’ll now always associate it with cinematic ultraviolence. And oh that violin that emerges. It’s by Bobby Notkoff, who played on Joni Mitchell’s For the Roses, and several Crazy Horse records (with and without Neil Young).

▰ Last month, members of the Disquiet Junto music community recorded sounds of fictional insects they had imagined. This past weekend, participants created hybrids by blending the sounds of pairs of those imaginary insects. The playlist menagerie is here: soundcloud.com/disquiet.

▰ Some coordinates:

disquiet.com
soundcloud.com/disquiet
youtube.com/disquiet
instagram.com/dsqt
flickr.com/disquietpxl
tinyletter.com/disquiet
tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto

▰ First burrito at Cancun on Mission in forever

▰ Weighing in at 1,055 pages. See you later.

▰ When I bought the URL and started disquiet.com in 1996, it was named for Pessoa’s Book of Disquiet. More broadly, it was because, unless I’m mistaken, the copyright had run out on the book, so translations could more easily be published. I had several recent ones. Oh yeah, disquiet.com turns 25 in December. The Junto turns 10 in January. Next Thursday is the 500th consecutive weekly Disquiet Junto project. But first I need to post the 499th today. (And in 6 years, it’ll be the 300th anniversary of Ben Franklin’s original Junto.)

▰ The Dune trailer looks epic. It should look epic. It’s Dune. The most promising thing may be that it appears to have a sense of humor. Alternately, the most promising thing is they seem to have ditched the Pink Floyd song.

▰ If you zoom (not Zoom) in and dial the number, you can hear a conversation between Laurie Spiegel and the late Pauline Oliveros. Or you can visit the Kadist (kadist.org) gallery in San Francisco, where the installation (Dial Tone Drone by Aura Satz) is part of the Seeing Sound exhibit. The traveling exhibition is curated by Barbara London, who in 2013 assembled MoMA’s Soundings: A Contemporary Score. Two other artists are featured at Kadist in San Francisco: Marina Rosenfeld and Samson Young. Perhaps to their credit, not one of them is on Twitter, but three of the four are on Instagram, if that’s of interest. The number is 1 (833) 764-1221.

▰ Hit pause and accidentally stumbled on Downton Abbey and Zombies:

▰ Oh, wow. When I posted to Facebook, it triggered the facial recognition, so now it looks like a first person shooter based on the Downton Abbey and Zombies movie:

▰ Really appreciate the Disquiet Junto being featured in this piece at hii-mag.com about internet communities for musicians built around compositional prompts. As one of the Oblique Strategies cards reads: “Define an area as ‘safe’ and use it as an anchor.”

▰ Checklist:

🗹 499th Junto
🗹 ton of work
🗹 long-form writing
🗹 writing that’s me cheating on long-form writing
🗹 gallery review draft
🗹 lunch with friend
☐ email catch-up
🗹 guitar practice
🗹 home cooking
🗹 some exercise
🗹 go offline until Monday

Also tagged , / / Leave a comment ]

twitter.com/disquiet: Theater Anxiety and Media Ambience

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.

▰ The sequel to A Quiet Place, a film about a society in which survivors of a worldwide catastrophe take extreme caution whenever leaving their homes, will apparently be available “only in theaters.”

Which is to say, the bar for the cinema sensorium has been lowered as a result of the pandemic. Simply entering the movie theater exceeds whatever Sensurround had ever been hoped to accomplish.

▰ I enjoy buying downloads. I also feel a threshold-breaking new utility (app/device/service/protocol) remains necessary for doing so to become mainstream, mainstream being necessary for downloads to pass a threshold at which they will become financially meaningful for musicians.

▰ Me at 6:45am: Yawn.

Me at 7:15am: Oh, yeah, it’s May the 4th. I’ll watch Bad Batch, but it’s not like I’m gonna be celebrating Star Wars all day. C’mon.

Me at 9:00am: Oh wow, this Star Wars Biomes audio-video feature is awesome and I’m going to play it on loop until dinner!

Pretty much the only shortcoming of these Star Wars Biomes videos is they don’t entirely ditch the music. Fortunately, the environmental sound of the various locations is prominent most if not all the time.

▰ Netflix needs a third button for “I really enjoyed this and I never want to watch it or anything like it anytime again in the near or foreseeable future.” Pondering what that hand gesture is.

▰ That thing where you’re looking at Goodreads and you go to click the “Want to Read” button and, just as you do so, the advertising banner finally slides into place, thus pushing down the rest of the page, leading you to instead trigger a full-page view of the book’s cover.

▰ Really enjoyed the dense environmental sounds of Cyberpunk 2077, so rather than just watch recordings on YouTube I got a copy. Somewhere a database is registering the machine language equivalent of “This player simply wanders around town and then stands still for a half an hour.” … Somewhere another machine on the network replies, “The player’s digital signature resembles that of someone who did the same thing in Pikmin 20 years ago.” … Further down the stack comes a whisper on the wind from an ancient BASIC subroutine: “I know that kid. Used to carry a binder of floppies around with him in high school.”

▰ I think I need to add “Loitering in video games” to the Disquiet.com profile.

▰ The phrase “panting sibilantly” was one of the first descriptions in the captions for Mayans M.C. this week.

▰ And on that note, have a great weekend. Listen to one of your favorite TV shows. Admire the emotional heft of the word balloons in a favorite graphic novel. Record the outside and bring it inside. See you Monday. Or maybe Tuesday.

Also tagged , , / / Leave a comment ]