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: video

The Rhythms of Primes

And the sonification of decreasing density

A 10-minute video exploring the rhythms inherent in prime numbers. For me, what was most remarkable was experiencing, through sonification, the decreasing density of primes as the numbers get higher. For context, check out its preceding video (below), which breaks down the correlation between the math and the sound. (Thanks, Adam Boyd, for the tip.)

Originally published in a special, experimental September 23, 2022, “TWiS x 3” edition of the This Week in Sound email newsletter. Get it in your inbox via tinyletter.com/disquiet.

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Prada x Cliff Martinez

Scoring a runway

Apparently the music in this Prada womenswear runway show is by Cliff Martinez (Contagion, Kimi, Solaris), who worked with frequent collaborator, director Nicolas Winding Refn (their team-ups include Drive, Too Old to Die Young, Only God Forgives, and The Neon Demon), on videos for the installation. If you watch the archived comments scroll by as the video plays on YouTube, you’ll see numerous assumed Prada aficionados describing the music as “creepy,” which is accurate and to be expected, since that is often the impact of this duo’s modus operandi.

I’m all for fashion houses hiring great composers to do bespoke scores for their shows. I feel like I’ve read smart critiques of runway music, in particular how name DJs performing at the events get paid large fees while the musicians whose tracks they play may earn little if anything — but I can’t find a citation in my browser history.

According to IMDB, Martinez had no releases in 2000 and 2021, with the exception of his work on the TV series The Wilds, so until his next reunion with Refn or Soderbergh, we may just have to listen to Prada on repeat.

Video originally posted at YouTube.

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Current Favorites: Tuscany, Los Angeles, Prague

Another round of Instagram favorites

Like last week’s round-up, this post is a reminder of some of the inspiring music housed at Instagram. It’s also the latest in a series of occasional answers to a frequent question: “What have you been listening to lately?” These are annotated, albeit lightly, because I don’t like reposting material without providing some context. I hope to write more about these in the future, but didn’t want to delay sharing them.

▰ Tuscany, Italy-based Federico Chiesa, who goes by Oora (“pronounced like Aura”), at instagram.com/ooramusic, shared a live sequence of tender, lush synthesizer mood music.

Sarah Belle Reid (instagram.com/sarahbellereid), based in Los Angeles, does incredible things with her horn, processed live by racks of synthesizer modules. As she explains, “I am constantly exploring ways to add breath and organic motion into my synth patches, looking for ways to make my oscillators blend with and play off of my trumpet more, and so on.”

▰ Thinking too much about the potential for something akin to a proper “metaverse” can diminish the melding of physical and virtual already in full flower. This video by Prague-based Digiklvb (instagram.com/digiklvb) combines the synthesizer seen in real life with an overlayed image that is produced by the same system. Yes, these don’t appear in the “real world” as such, except through post-production editing, but I think the increasing prominence of such combinations is a glimpse into how musicians like Digiklvb experience such work as they produce it.

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Lanois at the Piano

A glimpse at a forthcoming album

Apparently Daniel Lanois has a new album — its title, Player, Piano, featuring an attention-getting comma — due out on the fairly new label Modern Recordings (a BMG company whose roster includes Nils Petter Molvaer, Robot Koch, and Meredi). “I got to visit with the ghosts of Erik Satie and Oscar Peterson and Harold Budd,” Lanois said in a pre-release statement. This short video is a live snippet of him at his heavily used instrument, carefully selected chords worked through with soulful patience.

According to the pre-release announcement: “Lanois and [co-producer Wayne] Lorenz set about transforming each of the three pianos in the studio, dampening the strings with tea towels and dulling the percussive impact of the hammers by adding small felt pads to the heads. When it came time to record, they used vintage ribbon mics and arranged them behind the instruments rather than in front in an effort to further soften the sound.”

That glimpse at his approach explains the muted quality of the piano, the way it both echoes with a pronounced softness and yet feels constrained, controlled. The softness is itself a sort of constraint, in that it presents the piano at a remove from how one normally hears the instrument — thus the sound is both warm and alien. In other words, very much Daniel Lanois territory.

Video originally posted at youtube.com. More at modernrecordings.de.

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Current Favorites: Stillway, Knobs, Mursyid

On Instagram

It’s been quite an odd week for Instagram, which has reportedly been testing out a variety of shifts to its interface and focus. This post is a reminder of some of the good that can be found amid the … well, everything else. It’s also the latest in a series of occasional answers to a frequent question: “What have you been listening to lately?” These are annotated, albeit lightly, because I don’t like reposting material without providing some context. I hope to write more about these in the future, but didn’t want to delay sharing them.

▰ It’s been four years since, in 2018, the highly talented guitarist Jamie Stillway released City Static, which included some beautiful ambient soundscapes. A new live studio performance (at instagram.com/jamiestillway) shows her back at it, writing, as she jokes, “the kind of music that puts cats to sleep.”

Knobs, aka Scott Harper, best known for some of the most simultaneously whimsical and informative videos about guitar pedals, has an album due out. Get a listen to preview videos, such as this one, at instagram.com/knobs.creative .

Fahmi Mursyid (at instagram.com/_fahmi_mursyid_ ) records with a wide variety of tools, some of them software-based, such as this droning, pulsing music (that’s half downtempo techno and half space-station infrastructure A.S.M.R.) in the visual coding tool known as Pure Data.

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