Disquiet Junto Project 0350: Selected Insomniac Works

Disquiet Junto Project 0350: Selected Insomniac Works
The Assignment: Make very quiet music for very late at night for very fragile psyches.

Step 1: It’s the middle of the night, long past dusk and long before dawn. You can’t sleep.

Step 2: Think about what kind of music you’d want to hear right now — super quiet, super subtle, unlikely to wake you, potentially to ease you back to the comfort of your pillow, or at least to calm your mind.

Step 3: Record the sort of music that Step 2 made you imagine.

Six More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0350” (no spaces or quotation marks) in the name of your track.

Step 2: If your audio-hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to also include the project tag “disquiet0350” (no spaces or quotation marks). If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to subsequent location of tracks for the creation a project playlist.

Step 3: Upload your track. It is helpful but not essential that you use SoundCloud to host your track.

Step 4: Post your track in the following discussion thread at llllllll.co.

Step 5: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 6: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Other Details:

Deadline: This project’s deadline is Monday, September 17, 2018, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are on. It was posted just before noon, California time, on Thursday, September 13, 2018.

Length: The length of your track is up to you.

Title/Tag: When posting your track, please include “disquiet0350” in the title of the track, and where applicable (on SoundCloud, for example) as a tag.

Upload: When participating in this project, post one finished track with the project tag, and be sure to include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto. Photos, video, and lists of equipment are always appreciated.

Download: Please consider setting your track as downloadable and allowing for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution, allowing for derivatives).

Linking: When posting the track online, please be sure to include this following information:

More on this 350th weekly Disquiet Junto project (Selected Insomniac Works / The Assignment: Make very quiet music for very late at night for very fragile psyches) at:


More on the Disquiet Junto at:


Subscribe to project announcements here:


Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co:


There’s also a Junto Slack. Send your email address to twitter.com/disquiet to join in.

Image associated with this project is by Helen Cassidy, used thanks to Flickr and a Creative Commons license:




The project is now live. Tracks are due by Monday the 17th at 11:59pm.



Here’s mine. I just happened to be in the studio making something vaguely soporific when the email came through, hence the rapid response time!

I used a couple of voices and effects chains in a Eurorack modular to create this:

  • Doepfer oscillator - via various filters and delays into MakeNoise Morphagene, then Halls of Valhalla reverb
  • 4MS Spectral Multiband Resonator into - Mutable Instruments Clouds

Not sure if this would send me to sleep, it’s not particularly quiet or full of space and potentially has some slightly sinister/worrying undertones. But in terms of washy floatation tanky stuff it probably works.


Thanks. This is lovely. We may likely do a Selected Insomniac Works Vol. II next week, and that might — if things go according to plan — address the “sinister” stuff.


This is an old track I thought would be good, although its, maybe not sinister, but sometimes not quite soothing. I improvised the take on guitar with slide, going into a swell effect and then a DOD DFX9 I’ve had for a very long time.


As it is currently after midnight where I live this week junto could not be more fitting :wink: I tried to enforce more steady breathing using bass that plays the same note in the same rhythm through the whole composition. The melodies that I used are very repetitive and with very mellow sounding synth to encourage mind to relax.



Disquiet Junto Project 0350: Selected Insomniac Works
The Assignment: Make very quiet music for very late at night for very fragile psyches.

This track comes from a group of pieces I made last year. I started with field recordings I’d made on my iPhone. I used Melodyne to convert the field recordings to MIDI and use them as a random starting point.

The substrate of this track is derived from a recoding I made outside a local market. I converted an interesting section of the recording to MIDI and used this to play a Kontakt Piano instrument. I further manipulated the MIDI, quantising, constraining note range and conforming to a specific scale, until I had a pleasing result. I then added some simple melodies and effects. You may notice a repeated note at some points, this was the backing alarm of a delivery truck that was oddly preserved. :D.



The sample which runs through this piece is from Antonioni’s La Notte, which I saw last week for the first time. (I loved it.) I decided to write a small piece about how the film made me feel. This is what I came up with. Cheers xo


If I could program my Marpac Dohm to play some of my own sounds, this is what I’d use - a one minute segment that I’d either loop or “almost loop”.

I’ve made a much longer version of this for my ambient music podcast at http://ambient.libsyn.com/dohm-rushton-ambient-rushton-podcast-140


I am very short on time this week, due to preparations for an exam next Friday, but the theme is one that I often expore - I have been a VERY heavy sleeper all my life, except for a few bouts of terrible insomnia back in my early 20s. I would often get up at 2 or 3 am, put headphones on and make music to try and slow the mental hamsterwheels and tire myself into sleep. The thing with deep insomnia is that the mood stays with you, long after you have recovered good sleeping habits. Even now, some 20 years later, I am still able to mine the strange mental states that I found myself in back then. (If you ever hear a drawn out, thin, high pitched warbling and shimmering sound in any of my music- that is usually a sign I am exploring that region of my past, as it is a sound that has deep associations with my insomnia - e.g. last week’s Disquiet entry, which could easily function as this week’s entry as well). Anyway, earlier this week I was improvising at the piano while feeling quite tired, and the resulting piece could work well as a sort of ‘lullaby’ composed by an insomniac - the mind tired and wandering, working through some problem or other, reaching some sort of unsatisfactory conclusion, and then gradually shifting into sleep - but always the mind has to have one last word…

I’ve annotated the track with my thoughts on how this scenario plays out - other interpretations are available. Your milage may vary. Always read the label… etc…



I’m in love with the idea of running a field recording into an audio -> midi converter and then quantizing it. What a lovely idea! <3



i recorded this early morning while my partner was asleep, i wanted to give it a midnight feel, later she said it doesn’t sound like midnight!

got a new window in the room with my old technics piano, i wanted to see how it sounded, it seems a lot quieter in there - you can hear a couple of cars go past tho. just recorded on my phone

noise reduction, reverb, soft distortion. made sure i left some hiss in


Me too - and it works so well here!

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I would agree with that idea - insomnia can be a really nasty problem when you have it longer term, and some of the mental states it leaves you in really are quite sinister.

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I’ve had some recent experience with insomnia and will try this treatment.

Sometimes when noise is interrupting my sleep I find it good to have a quiet loop to focus my hearing.

This approach works well when I’m camping at burns, where it stops my mind wandering between sound systems.

So I’ve taken a few mellow chords and run them from a Kawai GMega through a Line6 delay pedal and also a Waldorf Streichfett.

The video is playing on the idea of drone and drifting to sleep.

Edit: Youtube seems to be tired. I’ve uploaded the video here:


The playlist is now rolling. Thanks, everyone!



I wanted to put something together that fulfilled the idea of a drone, but needed variablility - enough interest so that if I could not get back to sleep I could at least listen. Well in the background is a string orchestra accompanied by trombone and clarinet, but one is unlikely to recognize too much of that. In for foreground are the electronics, seeded by the single call of an owl I recorded after waking up in the middle of one night.

Music For Insomniacs was written for Clarinet, Trombone, Violin, Viola, Cello, String Bass and electronics.


I really appreciate this needle being identified as the one to thread.



Samples of “Corcovado (Quiet Nights Of Quiet Stars)” by Antonio Carlos Jobim, “It’s Oh So Quiet” by Björk, and “Shhh/Peaceful” by Miles Davis, with some ping-pong delay.



A collaborative ambient track with itssowindy…with music I´d like to listen to late in the night.