Disquiet Junto Project 0487: Carillon Quotidian

Disquiet Junto Project 0487: Carillon Quotidian

Assignment: Turn a recurring sound from your life into music.

This project was developed by Marty Petkovich (aka @Joule) as part of the celebration of the upcoming 500th consecutive weekly Disquiet Junto project.

Step 1: Identify a recurring sound in your daily life that isn’t generally considered musical. Try to locate a sound that you would normally ignore: the hum of the dryer, or the way the car trunk resonates when you drop it closed, the sound your boots make on certain stairs, the sound of the water coming out of the kitchen tap, etc.

Step 2: The goal is to explore the innate musicality of the sound you identified in Step 1. When recording the sound identified in Step 1, please keep in mind the effort may require some production techniques, because you want to try to isolate it as best as possible.

Step 3: Make an original piece of music employing the sample you recorded in Step 2 of the sound you decided upon in Step 1. Transpose the recorded sample and compose a short theme to use as the central voice in your composition. Complete your piece with other instrument lines as needed.

Background: Invented almost 500 years ago, the carillon is one of the first attempts to take a quotidian sound, the bell, and transpose it into a scaled instrument (which comprises a keyboard that mechanically works 23 bells of different sizes). It is also one of the loudest instruments, designed to broadcast music across an entire village. Before the carillon, the most important role of the bell was to announce the hour (functioning at its most basic level) or the beginning or ending of some event, spiritual or otherwise. The carillon instrumentalized the bell, much as samplers can instrumentalize any recorded item. In honor of the impending 500th Disquiet Junto project, this week’s challenge is to revisit the 500-year-old process of taking a common sound that resonates in your life and instrumentalize it in order to craft a piece of music. Your “carillon” should be the central voice in your piece which can then be embellished as you wish with other instrument lines.

Seven More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0487” (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 “disquiet0487” (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, May 3, 2021, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, April 29, 2021.

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

Title/Tag: When posting your tracks, please include “disquiet0487” 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 487th weekly Disquiet Junto project – Carillon Quotidian (Assignment: Turn a recurring sound from your life into music) – at: https://disquiet.com/0487/

This project was developed by Marty Petkovich (aka K Joule) as part of the celebration of the upcoming 500th consecutive weekly Disquiet Junto project.

More on the Disquiet Junto at: https://disquiet.com/junto/

Subscribe to project announcements here: https://tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto/


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

The image associated with this project is by Jade, and used thanks to Flickr and a Creative Commons license allowing editing (cropped with text added) for non-commercial purposes:



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And the latest Junto project is now live. Thanks, @Joule for the concept!


hey @Joule thanks for the cool prompt! I love the idea of focusing on everyday sounds. This morning I sat outside and listened to the normal street noises for a while while drinking my morning coffee. It was nice and I might make it a more regular practice.

Here I made a recording of walking up the stairs–they creak and crunch in the most interesting way. I walk up and down between bouts of working and not working. The house is 100 years old; I’m not sure if the stairs are that old but they’re pretty worn, with nails going this way and that and weathered bits and so on.

I picked out one sqeak that sounded particularly interesting and set up a little program to loop it at various speeds while pitch-shifting it at random through a major scale and then applying some stereo echo. For some reason this seemed evocative of some DnB type drums so I put that on and then some robot bass playing. I couldn’t quite get them to synch up but unsynched was ok. If I were feeling ambitious I would play some guitar over this.


This weeks prompt really intereted me… I recorded the sound of my coffee grinder as I ground my morning beans on Friday morning. I had just read the Disquiet email a few minutes earlier after waking up and knew later on Friday I would have time to take part in the challenge if I wanted. I quickly made a recording of my morning grinding of coffee but wasn’t till after I noticed I had left the radio playing in the kitchen.

After lunch on Friday I sat down and began to make this, cutting up the sounds of the coffee grinder and transposing the sounds and adding other musical sounds. I wanted to do something upbeat and fun and quite noisy!

It starts with the coffee grinder as recorded for about 30 seconds… Then I cut up the sounds and began to transpose them, adding effects and hits etc… Much fun was had in the hours I spent making this.


Short track: 38 seconds

Now that the weather is warmer, I’m making an effort to collect more field recordings.

One downside of field recording is the risk of accidentally collecting RF interference, especially if you carry a mobile phone and you don’t have a Faraday bag.

Every time I visit Jon Harnish at his apartment, I try to record my elevator ride up. He lives on the 11th floor. The sound is always different because the two elevators are usually working at the same time, but the other elevator is beeping and whirring at a different pace and more quietly in the background.

A recent recording I made was “ruined” by RF interference, but I kept it around mainly because of what Andy Warhol said about artistic leftovers in The Philosophy of Andy Warhol: “I always like to work on leftovers, doing leftover things. Things that were discarded, that everybody knew were no good, I always thought had a great potential…”

The initial edit is about 5 seconds long, and appears at the start of the piece. It’s me walking into the elevator, but there’s all that RF interference buzzing in the recording. That edit is looped all the way through.

After 5 seconds, I added a Korg IMS-20 for iPad loop I made over 10 years ago. That’s played three times.

Then I took edits of the RF interference loop and multi-tracked them, stacking them together in the final seconds after the Korg loop ends for a blaze of cacaphony.

It’s just a snapshot, but this little piece has a “funky industrial jazzy” thing going on.

And the photo’s somewhat appropriate. That’s a shot of downtown Cedar Rapids from Jon’s apartment. The colorful building is the Alliant Energy building, all lit up. And the weird lights in the sky are reflections from inside the apartment on the window glass.

Wear good headphones when listening.


I recorded the door leading to a small garbage room. This is a sound I hear every day. The picture shows the squeaking part. This recording is the only sound in my submission.

I start my track with the orignal sound [freesound.org/s/569962/]. Then I select a part of that sound, and work with that. I think I need a better sampler in my DAW. The “free” sampler does not handle looping points - I think…


When I was a kid, a long time ago, people had these records with, like, whale songs that would have New Age music piped in along with. I fear I ended up basically doing that.

I recorded spring peepers. It’s a little early, so there were only two of them singing last night. I layered the processed recordings with a guitar loop and, well, there you go.


I have a “The Making of RF Elevator” video on YouTube: RF Elevator Disquiet Junto Project 0487 Carillon Quotidian - YouTube

  • staircase creaking

  • elevator recording “ruined” by RF interference

  • coffee grinder

  • spring peepers (frogs)

  • door leading to a small room

These are among the quotidian sounds being turned into music so far in the week’s Disquiet Junto project. Can’t wait to hear what else happens in the coming days.

The playlist is now rolling:


This is stunning, wow, thank you.

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Every day I make a brew. So here is spoon tune. Made with a recording of brewing, and stirring.
Melody created with Norns script Dunes
Short glitch created with a newly built ‘Simple and radical’ noise circuit on veroboard. Thanks @Cementimental for pointing it out.

VST ‘Moon kits’ on drums.
Hope all are well :slight_smile:


I imagine more than half of the current entries will feature coffee in some fashion. I actually used a 14 second recording of measuring whole beans by weight into a vintage corningware bowl that belonged to my wife’s grandmother. The Spring Blossom pattern, green on white. Measured for cold brew, which I tend to switch to from espresso once it thaws here in Maine.

I loaded this sample into Morphagene which I then sampled with the Cocoquantus. The MG was also run through Mimeophon and the Coco through Erbe-verb, all being modulated by Pam’s, OCHD, and a Verbos Voltage Multistage. Performed live, this is the second take. Thanks to @Joule for the excellent prompt.


You hear my suburban carillon here.

When I stepped outside on Friday to record the hum of the fan, I noticed other activities around the house.

You can hear passing traffic and my neighbour was particularly shrill, but I also listened to the dripping of the tap – which we let drip as birds will drink from it.

Then I noticed how the ants have been frenzied around 3pm and will disperse by the time my kids return home from school, which is kinda mysterious.

As for the music, I wanted to do something with the glockenspiel that was part of my unsatisfactory Junto response last week.

That instrument sorta lends itself to being a carillon.

And I also wanted to record drums and tried to match the tempo of the dripping tap.


A short recording of sounds made by scissors, repeated in various guises over a drone backdrop.


The prompt this week made me very aware of a lot of sounds in my daily environment. The one I picked for this, I felt had both rhythmic and melodic potential. The light switch in my bathroom has a pleasant sound that with the resonance from the room itself, was nice. I turned it into a high frequency melodic line, into a simple click track and I blended it with some recordings from the Microfreak via a Universal Audio Apollo, which I bought recently.


Trying to puzzle it out… Is it a burr coffee grinder ? Sounds a bit industrial too, a plate compactor or ‘wacker plate’ as it’s affectionately known round here :slight_smile: ?


I live with a noisy oldish refrigerator. Processing was done via Izotope Iris and Michael Norris Spectral suite (Spectral emergence, Spectral gate and hold, Spectral drone maker).
Also used some pitch delay (Soundhack) and chorus.


Electric toothbrush :slight_smile: Can’t blame you for loving Oreo’s :cookie: :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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Entirely composed of manipulations of a field recording of filling a kettle, boiling it, then making a cup of tea.

The recording was loaded into several instances of Ableton’s Simpler sampler. One track was created using Simpler’s Slice function. The results of this were sent to a group of ApulSoft ApQualizr’s each narrowly bandpassing a group of frequencies determined by ear. This was repeated with another track using different frequencies. The results were additionally ducked and filtered.

Another track used pitched versions of a section of the original recording and these were passed through Albedo and convolution reverbs. A further track was a snipped sample from the original recording played through Ableton’s Wavetable synthesizer with the table position being modulated by an envelope based on the synth’s output.

These tracks were then variously panned, filtered, compressed and volume-automated to create the final track.


I like this prompt because it has me paying close attention to every sound around me. It’s also the kind of prompt that sparks a lot of ideas and makes me want to do everything with everything.

I started to think about the term “innate musicality,” and wondering what it means for a sound to be musical. I suppose any sound can be musical when placed in a musical context.

I was beating eggs in a glass and thought it had a nice rhythm, plus I liked the bell-like clink of my fork hitting the side of the glass. I initially tried pitch shifting my recording on a keyboard to create a melody, as the prompt suggested, but I found it was becoming too musical for my tastes. Lately I’ve been liking the idea of music that never resolves, and just sort of hangs in suspension without suggesting any obvious emotion. I ended up playing the sound back unedited with various pitch shifting delays. I also added a resonator to accentuate the bell tones. Finally I ran the whole thing through an “audio to harmony” analyzer, and layered an FM bell sound with a short decay, trying to blend the sound with the source material as much as possible. The end result is this short piece which sounds a bit like an ambient chorus of banging pots and pans.