Disquiet Junto Project 0387: Everything and More

I managed to pull something together using 61 instruments.

List of instruments

Physical instruments


AudioMulch Signal Generators


Ableton Live 8

Drum Rack

VST Plugins

dirty harry
Drumatic 3
Genobazz 2
Lounge Lizard Session 4
minisynth FRET
minisynth GRIT
minisynth PEAK
Nanotron 2
Strum Session 2
Ultra Analog Session 2
Upright Piano 1

I started by building an 8-bar loop of stuff with Ableton Live 8’s built-in instruments. That’s the main bunch of sounds you hear through most of the track. I kinda like it, kinda think it sounds like a crappy demo. I’ve never really used Live, but I got a licence for some cut down version of it once upon a time and I decided to count its instruments as “available”.

I exported the Live loops and loaded them into AudioMulch, and added parts from the 5 Mulch contraptions I decided to count. The Mulch stuff suggested a coda, so that’s the stuff based around a drone (the subtonic of the original key, hmm).

Next I recorded some notes on the 3 physical instruments I had, and played about with those in Reaper, changing pitch on the kalimba and harmonica to get them in key. I reversed the kalimba too and put lots of echoes on it.

I figured the sounds I’d already got needed to be the foundation and fairly consistent, else the track I’d started wouldn’t hold together. I did toy with constantly switching the arrangement and having something like maybe you’d hear on Orange Milk records, but it felt at odds with where I was headed.

From there on in, I basically worked in Reaper, and did a lot of what felt like cheating. :wink: I made ensembles of many similar sounds and then put fx on them to bind them together, like the first sounds you hear, the string machine stuff that’s coming in around 1m30s, and all the chiming stuff in the second half of the track fed through a warbly tape effect. Then there’s many moments where a single note underscores something, often a bit of a bass pedal.

I don’t particularly like the track, but there are some bits in there I can imagine recycling. I’m soooo used to working with sampled and manipulated sounds but didn’t feel like working hard on that aspect after spending heaps of time just ticking off every instrument. I also ruled samples out of the list of instruments, because that would get even more unwieldy. There were also many times where I would’ve ordinarily let individual sounds have more space for themselves, but it was hard to do so within the context of the assignment.


OK I severely mangled this week’s prompt, which was “Make a single piece of music using every single instrument that you have at your disposal.” Well, honestly, I don’t have any idea exactly how many musical instruments I have, but it’s somewhere in the dozens. I couldn’t figure out a way to record them all this weekend.

but I thought, disposal, disposal…what about making a piece of music from instruments that have been disposed OF? So this track is made from three instruments that were retrieved from the trash. They are, left to right (and they enter the track in this order):

“Matrix” is a twelve-string Ovation knockoff. He was found in a county dump by a friend of mine who thought, hey Charlie would probably play this thing (I have a reputation!) I cleaned it up, put on new strings–not bad! Intonation is meh but miraculously, the electronics work! He starts the song.

“Sunflower” is a guitar found in a collection of trash by the curb by a different friend who thought (you guessed it) Charlie would play this thing. (He calls my house “the Island of Misfit Guitars.”) As with Matrix, somehow the electronics still work and it holds a tune ok. The top is a little caved in so I don’t tune it to concert pitch. My daughter painted the lovely sunflowers on it. He does some Ebow in the beginning and the lydian solo in the middle.

“William” I found sitting out at the curb in a pile of trash not far from my house. He’s a dulcimer built into a cardboard box, with the name “William” written in marker on the headstock. He doesn’t have a lot of sustain (cardboard box, you know) so I put some delay on him. He’s the last soloist.

All guitars tuned to open C. All recorded in Live–first two guitars ran direct, William used the mike built into my Apogee preamp because my regular mike wouldn’t work. Some compression, delay, reverb and limiter applied (also some EQ on Matrix).


Hi everyone! Happy to be back :slight_smile:

Here it is:

Thankfully I don’t have a huge number of instruments floating around, but I had to do the splits in this one mainly because of the Teenage Engineering’s Arcade pocket operator my brother got me.

Here’s the list of “instruments” (gee, the definition can be as wide as you want it to be – glad I don’t work in a lab anymore…):

  • 5-dollar guitar
  • kerbside cleanup ukulele
  • toy xylophone
  • Teenage Engineering arcade pocket operator
  • MPC1000
  • Zoom H1
  • Non Sequencer + amsynth
  • Xone:K2
  • Qtractor
  • Calf plugins and more
  • Audacity

This one took me embarassingly long, but it was a great learning process. I’ve been really loving learning how to use ORCΛ.

About the process: The first synth is real random midi notes put into Non Sequencer, hooked to amsynth. I then added the guitar based on those notes. I mapped a few knobs to my Xone controller to play with the synth. The xylophone samples are repeated in the MPC, which includes rubbing the xylophone on carpet for that wave sound. The last bit is obviously the TO Arcade, and I based the second synth on those chords (ORCΛ controlling PHASEX). All 140 BPM. Had to add that ukulele finish to tick that one off. :wink:


  1. Sample from my phone into Morphagene
  2. Morphagene is morphagened. Time stretch and modulated with Wogglebug, noise from Quantum Rainbow into Varispeed, this goes into a…
  3. Phonogene which is set up using the “EchoPhon” patch from the manual. Some more modulation of a couple parameters (varispeed ditto as above), output of which is patched to…
  4. a w/ set up as a basic tape delay (negative offset into THAT and a Zularic Repetitor is being used as funky clock divider and patched into THIS) (I have two but I need to clean up and reinstall the FW on my 2nd one, it froze and I didn’t want to start over).
  5. This is sent into a 4ms DLD, set up as a basic mono-to-stereo looper…
  6. Which then goes into a Clouds (well, “Smog”) which has parasites firmware and is in 8 bit looping delay mode, with some attenutated modulation into Position, either white noise from a Quantum Rainbow or the wiggly bit from Wogglebug).
  7. Recorded into an ER-301, which seems like overkill for what that module can do.
  8. Took the recording into Ableton, very light EQ and a wee bit of reverb just slapped on.

This prompt initially gave me anxiety — Everything?! (gazing in horror at piles of “gear”)— which turned into a few good ideas, but, well, time and life intervened (and my daughter’s sports day).

So what I had at my disposal (i.e., hooked up, ready to go) was my sampler/looper rack which I often use to process short bits and bobs either from my laptop, norns, or another rack of sound generating modules. I made a couple versions of this patch today while I was at home doing housework, a few with phonogene in broken echo mode going into the morphagene set up as a delay/granular delay. They all sounded nice to me, but this was the shortest recording I made today and the other ones won’t fit into Ableton without me chopping them up.

This week taught me (i) I have a lot of stuff, (ii) my studio space is (still) a mess and disorganized, and (iii) I can still make music I like with the things I have at hand, no excuses. :slightly_smiling_face:


Beautiful beautiful track, sounding like the offspring of Robbie Basho and mid-period Sun City Girls. Love it!!


No, could not get it done, but thanks for the idea – it got me playing the mbira and some of my toy flutes, then developing ideas on the violin and guitars. The accordion will come out of the box, too, but this suite for eclectic orchestra needs more time. Love what others have come up with.

1 Like

wanted to follow the instructions without having to use a ridiculous amount of instruments
the phrase ‘at my disposal’ means ‘right to dispose’ i don’t really think i have the right to dispose of any of my (physical) instruments, but if i had to choose i’d choose mass produced ones that are easily replaceable.
i used:
bamboo flute
plugged samples of these all into protoplasm


• Key: C major BPM: 120 Time signature: 4/4 DAW: Reaper
• Instruments: Casio keyboard, glockenspiel, electronic drum set, tambourine. Claves, shaker, slide whistle,
• Plug-ins: session strings vsti

1 Like

Ok, here we go, just 3 minutes before midnight.
As written above, I didn’t have much time this weekend. So I decided not to use everything I have (5 Saxophones, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, several synthesizers, piano, guitars and lots of percussion), but to to take a little walk through the house and collect instruments I use seldom (soprano recorder, Clark penny whistle, ukulele, Meinl percussion frog, Hohner Comet mouthharp, guiro, shaker, tambourin, tubz, cowbell, temple blocks, tamburim)
I recorded sound snippets with my Zoom H2 and mashed them in Audacity.

1 Like

At the trainstop, alone at night. Something seems amiss as the bell keeps ringing. I must filter it all out; yes, all of it. All my filters are out.

1 Like

I thought it would be fun to make a piece out of my school’s orchestra playing Pomp & Circumstance (since it’s not every day I have access to a school orchestra!)

I took my recording of the orchestra and chopped it up based on the melody pitch, knowing that little glitches and inaccuracies would end up sounding better at the end. I assigned each pitch to a keyboard key (as accurately as possible) and then came up with a few riffs at the tempo of our original performance (82 bpm).

I then tried to construct a drum set using a second-hand djembe and some guitar plucking.

Repitching the djembe sounded great - I think I am going to use that again for my own version of an 808 kick.

This mix is probably a mess, sorry - I bashed this whole thing together in about 2 hours.

1 Like

Yea I agree. Like anything within your space is an instrument

1 Like

Sounds like a grand time!


Overall, it’s been fun.

1 Like