Disquiet Junto Project 0458: Phrase Shift

Disquiet Junto Project 0458: Phrase Shift
The Assignment: Make music in a sequence of parts with shared elements.

Step 1: You’re going to create a piece of music that goes through a series of unique but related phrases. Beginning with the second phrase, each phrase will repeat one element from the previous phrase. It’s best to read through the following steps before beginning work on the project.

Step 2: Compose and record a brief initial phrase, of between roughly four and ten seconds in length, that has three separate and distinct simultaneous components. These might be three tones, or a tone and two beats, or a tone and a beat and a texture, or three field recordings, and so on, whatever three components you choose. (Silence can count as a potential component, certainly.)

Step 3: Compose and record another brief phrase, again of between roughly four and ten seconds in length, that has three separate simultaneous components. One of these components should be retained from the previous phrase. The other two components should be entirely different from the previous phrase.

Step 4: Repeat Step 3 as many times as you like, preferably for a combined length of at least one minute. Longer is fine.

Step 5: When you have recorded as many phrases as you determined in Step 4, collect them all into one long single track. That is the completed composition. Some overlap between phrases is fine.

Seven More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0458” (no spaces or quotation marks) in the name of your tracks.

Step 2: If your audio-hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to also include the project tag “disquiet0458” (no spaces or quotation marks). If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to subsequent location of tracks for the creation of a project playlist.

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

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


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

Step 6: If posting on social media, please consider using the hashtag #disquietjunto so fellow participants are more likely to locate your communication.

Step 7: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Additional Details:

Deadline: This project’s deadline is the end of the day Monday, October 12, 2020, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, October 8, 2020.

Length: The length is up to you.

Title/Tag: When posting your tracks, please include “disquiet0458” in the title of the tracks, and where applicable (on SoundCloud, for example) as a tag.

Upload: When participating in this project, 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: It is always best to set your track as downloadable and allowing for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution, allowing for derivatives).

For context, when posting the track online, please be sure to include this following information:

More on this 458th weekly Disquiet Junto project, Phrase Shift (The Assignment: Make music in a sequence of parts with shared element), at:


More on the Disquiet Junto at:


Subscribe to project announcements here:


Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co:


There’s also a Disquiet Junto Slack. Send your email address to twitter.com/disquiet for Slack inclusion.

Image associated with this project is by Thomas Hawk and used via Flickr thanks to a Creative Commons license allowing editing (cropped with text added) for non-commercial purposes:




The project is now live. Thanks, everyone.


A fun project this week - I really enjoyed creating the small phrases / loops! The hardest part was trying to keep some sense of continuity between the different sections, given they only contained one common element. There’s a 4 note melody that appears every now and then, employed to add some kind of ‘glue’ for the whole piece.

Created in Ableton Live, using mainly FX and soft synths.

Here’s the track:


For this week’s project I used 3 sound sources, Ultrabeat, a Koma Fieldkit picking up a classical radio station and a pluck module with it’s pitch and decay controlled by rapid cycling LFOs, both which were sent into Monsoon for glitchiness and reverb.
I followed the brief by periodically changing, muting or rerouting the FX chain for two of the tracks and keeping one remainder from the previous phrase.


The playlist is rolling:


This project was a challenge for me. I’m used to composing with long, drawn out elements that evolve over minutes instead of seconds. I tried to stay within the project guidelines and still have something that sounded cohesive to me. May have fudged things a bit by making most of the phrases relate to each other instead of making them distinct. I created a lot of textural elements and tried to layer them together to create a feeling of subtle unease. If nothing else, at least I was pushed outside of my comfort zone for a bit.


Wondering how to approach this weeks project I heard the birds outside getting agitated. I opened the window and recorded that. Good start… Made most other sections ‘in the box’ Switched to modular for latter sections and recorded them from the keyboard amp with handheld recorder. Which turned out surprisingly well. There’s a short section made with Norns script UHF
Some light mastering in the box. The short sections are 10 seconds the long ones 20 seconds. There is some overlap to better shape the coming and going of sound.

Hope all are well :slight_smile:


Fun project

I used parts from the archives, whether field recordings or audio snippets from previous projects to populate the various phrases in this piece. Each has 10 seconds playtime. Post effects include Echo and multiband compression to help gel the somewhat random parts together.


This was fun and a lot of work, I spend the whole day (Friday 09 October 2020from 9Am till midnight) and it was a nice chance to try some new sounds I’ve got from a friend (mostly N.I. Kontakt synths and libraries)

I wrote one phrase and played it with a random sound on Massive X (first 30 seconds)
I wrote a new phrase that includes 2 beats from the first and played it a patch on Reaktor 6 (30sec to 56sec)
I Played a third phrase using 2 measures from each of the previous, played on a zither (from 0:56 to 01:23)

All accompanied by several pizzicato upright basses I recorded as an overdub.

Then I played three consecutive variations and superposition of the 3 phrases, added a hi pitched tremolo zither and treated string samples from an Albion library.
Added some touches of acoustic Martin guitar.
You’ll hear a string loop both normal and in reverse throughout and some tape/delay loops form the same tracks.

Hope the result is confusing and intoxicating as intended.

Cover painting by Paul Signac c. 1890


I explored Norns, Grids, and my Octatrack.
I used Molly the Poly, Reels, Barcode, and a couple other Norn scripts.
I kept the melody as my reoccurring piece each phase. Each phase runs about 10 seconds long, incorporating Norns, atmospheres run through norns from octatrack, and various other elements.


a patch in iris2 made of 4 samples
after each part one sample is changed and then i play the same thing again
gradually goes from field recording to more tonal


Three guitars taking turns repeating their phrase. Recorded with two mics in M/S-configuation.


I did this project entirely in ChucK. Think of a three-segmented worm spiralling around the Just Intonation Five-Limit Lattice. As it’s head reaches a new note, it plays that note and stops playing the note on the node that its tail was just on. So it’s always playing three notes, but adding a new one and dropping an old one as it moves. It starts in the center, spirals outwards clockwise, the reverses direction and spirals back in to the center.

Here is the five-limit lattice it operates on:

[[[ 25,  18], [ 25, 24], [25, 16], [75, 64], [225, 128]],
 [[ 10,   9], [  5,  3], [ 5,  4], [15,  8], [ 45,  32]],
 [[ 16,   9], [  4,  3], [ 1,  1], [ 3,  2], [  9,   8]],
 [[ 64,  45], [ 16, 15], [ 8,  5], [ 6,  5], [  9,   5]],
 [[256, 225], [128, 75], [32, 25], [48, 25], [ 36,  25]]] 
     @=> int fiveLimitLattice[][][];

The entire program is here.


Several species of small and furry loops… electronics and guitars.


Phrases (such as they are) were created from reference recordings made during synth programming sessions some years back, including processing of found vocals through Zebrify/Bidule and some hardware modules (mostly, I think, 3 Sisters).


The work shows and it really paid off - feels complete and whole and yes, intoxicating.


The circus is definitely coming to town!:grinning:


thank you, it’s been a while since I’ve found time to spend a whole long day on a track like this, it was nice. glad you liked it.

1 Like

The circus yes!, but I imagine there’s a a creepy clown there. will try to pitch this one to a Halloween themed playlist…
Thanks a lot