Disquiet Junto Project 0336: Open Mic


Actually, we sort of like the distortion at the start. There’s a “video game” quality that comes through, albeit not quite as playful. Sometimes compression can create some distortion by fattening up the low-end frequencies a little too far – this can be fixed through some reductive EQ, maybe a cut south of 80Hz. But honestly, it sounds good. Somewhere around 1:30 it feels as if something should come in, but shortly thereafter the ping-pong channels create an intriguingly binaural listening experience on its own. Confession that the term “judder” isn’t totally clear – do you mean the vibration in the tones? That can be nice, especially when the reverb starts to pick up a few beats later. There’s a very subtle sliding effect happening near the end that warrants more investigation. Perhaps consider taking that up an octave and panning it cross-channel. If you decide to add anything, make sure to pull some bottom out of the EQ of the new bit so it doesn’t compete with what’s already there. Agreed that it sound pretty finished – nice work as always.


It is always a pleasure to listen to your contributions every week. This piece is no exception. There is a lovely Bill Frisell vibe at the beginning, melancholy but not depressing. The backing voices resemble a gentle application of Frippertronics, which really come to the front about two or so minutes in. Agreed that it was probably too “nice” for a Branca tribute, but it’s highly satisfying on its own terms. It’s far from boring or repetitive. Fascinating combinations of voices and tones emerge as it develops. (Remember that such composers as Michael Nyman have built careers around this sort of approach to composition). Perhaps what would complete the piece in your mind is some form of reduction in the middle – a break in the pattern, or maybe two phrases where the fuzzy guitars and synths are left to fend for their own. But really, a beautiful offering.


fantastic :slightly_smiling_face:
sounds organic, alive, underwater
musical traveling
digitally through the internets


Two main things it would be nice to get feedback/suggestions/ideas on.

  1. The transition between bar 12 and 13 (between 28 and 29 seconds into the piece). Bar 12 has a restatement(?) of the second half of bar 11, and so somehow to me it feels like the end of a phrase.

But then the start of bar 13 doesn’t seem to mesh well with what goes before. I thought of just messing around until it sounded better, but instead I’m asking why doesn’t it sound right? I thought maybe I could change the second half of bar 13? or maybe I just have to rework the whole thing? What kind of things can I try?

  1. Development. Any ideas on how I should develop the piece? (What’s there is really just the first 16 bars of a piece)

PS … ok maybe 16 bars of content, maybe for example bar 12 (0:26-28) should be put elsewhere (near end maybe) … thoughts from others?


I am looking for feedback on this: I tend to like a single tone which does not change all too much like the bass pad in the beginning, but maybe it is too boring? The sound texture (some field recordings) seem not to fit (in the beginning, in the ending) and feels “added”, but maybe it’s just me on some days. The only tracks I like perfect are the sine bell and the pizzicato samples and that you may suddenly “feel” the “missing bass pad”. What do you think?


Thanks for all this feedback suss, really useful!

Normally I cut pretty much everything below 80hz but I find it makes beats a bit weak.

The judder is a stutter: the CPU usage went above 100% and cut out slightly. Not too much.


Really nice melody. To our ears it resembles the Go-Betweens’ more poppy moments (can totally hear Grant McLennan singing on top of this. Maybe listen to McLennan’s Heartbreaker Star album for some ideas). The piano hits and strings that come in at the 1-minute mark create an interesting tension. Adding a 5th to the root chord will always spice things up a bit, especially in major scale. The tempo feels a little quick for typical country songs, which isn’t a problem although maybe slowing it down a bit will activate your imagination in other areas. Some little percussion accents might sound nice: little wooden sticks tapped in rhythm or something, and maybe (dare we suggest this) some tasty slide guitar near the end.


Great idea - I may have to submit more than one this weekend.


Hooked from the opening notes, then we slink into beautiful funkalicious territory. Very nice. The little stuttering mashup that starts at 0:45 is terrific. Really can’t suggest much, as it’s already a wonderfully cool vibe with interesting sounds – the sort of track that will give Toro Y Moi a run for his money. If we were to suggest anything, it might be a dirty sax solo floating on top during the final minute to wrap things up in a tight little package of Chillwave euphoria. But that’s merely a suggestion for a track that needs few alterations. Great stuff.


Beautifully tense; a creepy sound of foreboding that both threatens and calms. Strange noises dart in from various angles: footsteps, sirens, whispering, chains, doors opening & closing. It’s a very unsettling musical experience and recalls the best work of Zoviet France (check out their seminal Shouting at the Ground). Is that an orchestra starting to emerge around 3:45 or so? Lovely, especially as the ear starts to detect a repeatable rhythm. When the ocean waves start crashing in during the final minute, one gets the sense that something very important has just happened, hidden in plain sight. If there’s such an experience as psycho-acoustic squinting, this piece is the prototype. A fascinating journey – thank you for sharing it.


The vocals fit the sound perfectly – it’s a very unsettling experience but definitely powerful. Sort of has that Throbbing Gristle / Foetus vibe going. The middle section is fantastic with its multiple layers of heavy sawtooth noises. Curious about the two voices: both you, or did you bring in a guest? Whatever, the “duet” approach works well in this instance. The only question is what the lyrics might mean. Given how sinister the vocals sound, maybe we don’t want to know :grinning:


I love this idea. Am going to give it a try.


This is difficult for me, as I don’t really attempt finished pieces of sound currently - more jams with the modular as I attempt to understand / control the beast - and then record these as some form of record. The Disquiet Junto project is perhaps the only place where I deliver a finished, self-contained piece of sorts.

So to avoid falling into a horrible self referential logic loop, here is a recent one of those jams. I’m not looking for any particular feedback, but anything welcome in the context of this isn’t intended to be a finished piece of work at any stage.


To directly respond to your question: yes, we really would listen to more of this. It’s perfect ambient music in that it rests comfortably in the background while rewarding closer attention. There are multiple layers building as well: the deepening bass at the two-minute mark; the subtle retreat at 9:58; the little whine that comes in at 15:10; the shift to (what sounds like) acoustic orchestration at 20:55; the elongated gong sound at the 25-minute mark; the modulating synth rotations that take place in the final six minutes or so. How could anyone find this boring? There is so much happening if we simply choose to hear it.


To start: thank you for choosing to make music again. Without creative expression, this life is pointless. And we share your joy of the “art critique” as a form of productive dialogue. This track is enthralling, relentless, mysterious. What are those demonic voices saying? What is that strange whooshing sound at the two-minute break? How can we resist the urge to dance? (Admission: dancing took place in Suss Müsik studios while this track played). Such a fun ride, shrouded in evil, almost begs for a touch of irony – we could almost hear jingle bells being applied, or a jolly tambourine, or a chorus of soul singers wailing as the beat pummels us into a pulp.


This is fantastic – is it a fragment of a larger piece? (Sounds like it). Definitely has a sort of Terry Riley Cadenza on the Night Plain vibe to it. Is that a mellotron with strings? Fascinating. The only feedback we might offer is what appears to be an extra note at the transition between bars 12 and 13 (at the 0:28 mark), which is perhaps why it doesn’t quite mesh for you. One can hear it coming just before, as if there’s a bit of hesitation in the tempo. It’s possible that if bar 13 were to arrive a moment or two just before (or after) where it currently sits, everything will bind together perfectly. But to answer your question: no, don’t rework the entire thing – there’s something very good happening here. Keep at it.


This is great. Have you heard of a band called O.rang? It’s an offshoot of Talk Talk that uses found sounds, something like what you have going here. Maybe check out their album Fields and Waves for some inspiration. This piece begins wonderfully with that droning didgeridoo-like bass tone, which isn’t boring at all and fits nicely. The melodic piece is an interesting detour and perhaps begs for some other accompaniment: something non-rhythmic or even atonal. Maybe that same opening tone pushed up two octaves to round out the piece, sort of like a bookend.


What an interesting mix of sounds, moods and textures. Really love the choral/vocal sounds that come in after about a minute, because then the piece really develops: all these disparate bits congealing into a tasty, compelling brew. Things start to get truly weird at about 2:30, making us recall some of Legendary Pink Dots’ stranger moments. (That’s a good thing). By the four-minute mark we’re enraptured. What might the piece sound like with some glitchy distortion in some areas, perhaps brief bursts of white or pink noise exploding into the mix near the end?


Thanks Sweet. It’s not a fragment, it’s just how far I got with it. I’m a bit confused about what to try, but actually I have some cord progression I was considering, so maybe I could just try that. Also thanks for the reference.


I agree, on first listen I though it was pretty well done, the bassline is pure 80’s joy, kinda “Welcome to the Pleasure Dome”, I don’t agree with “The bass line. Its big and bombastic, but you cant really tell whats going on.” I love it, when the piano left hand joins for that riff, it’s great. And your funky robotic guitar player did a nice job.