Disquiet Junto Project 0499: Out of a Landscape

Instructions go out, as always, via tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto.

Each Thursday in the Disquiet Junto group, a new compositional challenge is set before the group’s members, who then have just over four days to upload a track in response to the assignment. Membership in the Junto is open: just join and participate. (A SoundCloud account is helpful but not required.) There’s no pressure to do every project. It’s weekly so that you know it’s there, every Thursday through Monday, when you have the time.

Deadline: This project’s deadline is the end of the day Monday, July 26, 2021, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, July 22, 2021.

These are the instructions that went out to the group’s email list (at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto):

Disquiet Junto Project 0499: Out of the Landscape

The Assignment: Record a piece of music in which a sound emerges from a field recording.

Major thanks to the work on Golden Gate Bridge music by Mahlen Morris (@StochasticTelegraph) and Nate Mercereau in inspiring this project’s approach.

This project might prove among the more complicated ones, or I may be mistaken. I’ve written a short version of it, and I’ve written it as a longer, step-by-step procedure.

This is the project in one sentence: Add a subtle sound to a preexisting field recording of a soundscape, have that sound slowly gain prominence, and then let it disappear, leaving nothing but the original field recording behind at the end.

And here is the project as a series of nine steps:

Step 1: The goal is to record a piece of music in which a sound emerges from a field recording of of a soundscape. Please read these instructions through closely before proceeding with the project.

Step 2: Locate a field recording of an environment. It could be urban, rural, industrial, domestic, whatever you might choose. A recording with slight variations over time would be beneficial but isn’t necessary. You should, again, read through the instructions in full before determining what field recording you want to work with. You might use a preexisting one, or record a new one.

Step 3: Select a roughly five-minute, continuous segment of the field recording from Step 2. Set it to fade in at the start and out at the end for about 5 seconds each, so it neither starts nor ends abruptly.

Step 4: Listen closely to the field recording. Play it on repeat a few times and think about its tonality, its component parts.

Step 5: The goal for this project is to now introduce a sound at the very start of the field recording that is imperceptible as being an addition. It should fit in so well that the field recording still sounds like a field recording. Plan for this addition to play for roughly 15 seconds before doing anything further with that sound.

Step 6: Now, around the 15-second mark, have that additional sound very slowly make itself more apparent. By 30 seconds, it should have risen in prominence and stand out and somewhat apart from the original field recording.

Step 7: For almost the entire remainder of the piece, have that additional sound do more. Have it morph and vary, and continue to stand out and apart from the field recording, though make sure the field recording is still audible.

Step 8: Around 45 seconds before the end of the piece, have the additional sound slowly return to its original state, as it was at the opening, when it was indistinguishable from the field recording. By the time the piece is about 30 seconds from the end, it should sound as it did when the piece started.

Step 9: When the piece is 25 or so seconds from the end, suddenly mute the additional sound. It should disappear entirely, so that for those final 25 seconds (well, 20, and then the piece will fade out for the final 5 seconds), we hear the unadorned original field recording for the first time.

Seven More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0499” (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 “disquiet0499” (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 track in the following discussion thread at llllllll.co:

https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0499-out-of-a-landscape/

Step 5: Annotate your track 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.

Note: Please only post one track per project. If you choose to post more than one, and do so on SoundCloud, please let me know which you’d like added to the playlist. Thanks.

Additional Details:

Deadline: This project’s deadline is the end of the day Monday, July 26, 2021, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, July 22, 2021.

Length: The length of your finished track is up to you. Around five minutes is recommended.

Title/Tag: When posting your tracks, please include “disquiet0499” 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 499th weekly Disquiet Junto project – Out of the Landscape (The Assignment: Record a piece of music in which a sound emerges from a field recording) – at: https://disquiet.com/0499/

Major thanks to the work on Golden Gate Bridge music by Mahlen Morris and Nate Mercereau in inspiring this project’s approach.

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

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

Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co: https://llllllll.co/t/disquiet-junto-project-0499-out-of-a-landscape/

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

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The project is now live. Thanks, everyone.

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PS: Someone asked if “interior” is OK. Inside is totally welcome. That’s what I had intended to mean by “domestic” (in Step 2) but I wasn’t as clear as I thought I was.

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I followed the directions pretty exactly. I found a field recording of a thunderstorm by Jillis Molenaar. I then wrote 4 parts in A minor for piano. I added a Longest Ping-Pong clean delay on each of the piano parts. Maybe I’m starting to overuse that effect. I also added a lot of echo and reverb to the thunderstorm track.


Credits

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Hey All,
I took a fireplace fire recording from freesound (Credit in SC description.)I put a short click from the fire in sampler and looped it. I slowly added effects to the track. It gets pretty unrecognizable towards the end. Real cool prompt. I added some effects I have never used before.

Hope all are well. Peace, Hugh

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Just want to mention I’ve added shout-outs to two musicians whose work inspired this week’s project, and if you could include that thanks when you post your tracks, that’d be awesome:

Major thanks to the work on Golden Gate Bridge music by Mahlen Morris (@StochasticTelegraph) and Nate Mercereau in inspiring this project’s approach.

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This piece was developed from a field recording of the Seine near Port Neuf by Matt Snedecor. I used Supercollider to extract tones from the recording to be played back at different rates and used a granular loop to try to copy the chugging sound of the large river boat passing by. Great prompt this week - thanks Marc!

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hi, I behaved today and followed the instructions quite well, I’m proud of myself!
Made some music( piano, synths, bells etc) over a beautiful filed recorded of a rainforest I couldn’t identify.
Photo by Anton Darius Thesollers

Friday July 24th 2021

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The night watchman sits just inside a large culvert to stay dry. But there seem to be issues. Or frogs. Or a choir in the distance. Maybe all three.

This is a rainstorm from my back porch from April 23, 2020.

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Thanks, Marc! While not part of this Junto (since I made it a while ago), here’s the piece of mine Marc is referring to: The Golden Horns - YouTube

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The original sound was the hot water heater and the water level valve discharging in my furnace room.
I then used Ableton live “Grain Scanner” to generate 9 samples from this ambient sample,
then using (FX) reverb, resonator, rig modulation, delay and pitch shift
i mix and merged then in to the soundscape ,
finally all post processing was done in audacity
(fade in fade out and general normalizing and compression)

ZeroSumGamedisquiet0499

Released by:

Disquiet

Release date:

23 July 2021

Zero Sum Game Disquiet0499 By FSK1138 is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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Recently I was invited on a bus ride in Lismore with my friends at RealArtWorks.

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I tried a lot of field recordings for this, mostly peaceful soundscapes or restaurant murmurs (glass sounds could have fitted) but I was not satisfied.

This field recording worked. Its from this this June, recorded in Venice (Italy), on a first trip after lockdown, recorded with a Zoom H4n and I think it’s pretty good.

I instantly imagined to have orchestral brass sounds in it and used Kontakt with ProjectSAM Free Orchestra. I accompanied the field recording as it was a movie and edited afterwards to set some special hits and to repeat fitting motives.

I’m pretty happy with this result, although this might not be on a par with Mr. Bernard Herrmann (yet).

“Vaporetti” is the name of the small passenger boats in Venice.

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Mix of field recording & electronic sequence.

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Field recording of the urban soundscape under a bridge plus a synthesizer patch (Arturia’s Buchla Easel emulation)modulated with resonators and GRM’s Evolution device.

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I used 3 of my field recordings (2 nature/cicada and 1 bird) for the field recording aspect of this project. I used Teletype, Disting EX, and Clouds to make the granular melody (which was made out of the piano sound that occurs sporadically throughout. LFOs are coming from PNW into almost all of Clouds parameters (Granular Mode). Bass from STO.

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While hunting for sounds I actually found two recordings that went very well together, sonically as well as conceptually. I used Freesound - "Insects in the Field" by Oneirophile and Freesound - "Woodland birdsong June .wav" by juskiddink which combined give some of the oldest creatures on the earth: birds (as descendants from dinosaurs) and insects. From the background (buzzing of insects intermingling with some faraway hum) emerges an artificial motor sound generated by a software synthesizer (Pigments), which I found kind of ironically pleasing. Then the motor gets excited and intense. Finally, it fades and goes away, like us humans and our tools, eventually.

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Hello, here is my result:

The process was described in several surprisingly (and suspiciously) detailed steps and I really tried to adhere to them.
Therefore I first marked the sections in my DAW to outline what is supposed to happen when.
Then I looked for a field recording on my hard drive, containing about 100 GB of my own field recordings :confused: however, finding one that was 5 minutes long drastically reduced the amount of recordings I could pick from. I listened to several and had some ideas, but realized that the field recording needed to be somewhat continuous, otherwise it wouldn’t make sense in the end. Most of my longer field recordings (mostly construction site machine noise)are not the same in the beginning and the end, more like a long collection of builders doing different noisy stuff) therefore “we hear the unadorned original field recording for the first time” could not be met.
One recording was left: birds making noise in my backyard in the morning. Since my backyard is in a big city there is also hum and other noise.
Ok, the next step was to insert something that wasn’t noticable right away. Difficult with birds, making bird-like synth sounds is also not very pleasant on the ear. Any other noise could have been in my backyard, but I do not live on Mars, so… I tried different things and wanted to give up.
But I had another idea: took a piece of the original bird recording and used it for resynthesis, so I can have the bird in my synth to manipulate. I recorded several takes of the manipulation and tried to adhere to the timeline of events, but I had to cut out some time in the middle because the recording still wouldn’t fit for 5 minutes.
Anyway, having a piece of the original birdsong+hum resynthesized, I could also focus the sound on the hum, and got a nice droning. Sounds like I added something else, but it was all contained. Now I have a bird with a terrible space disease. I like it.

tl;dr: according to assignment. 5 minutes! almost. I liked the drone.

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Lyra 4 disguised as a Chinook helicopter…I had no sooner set up the recorder outside when the beast flew by at low-ish altitude. Making a helicopter sound with Lyra to match the low drone wasn’t too difficult but some of the steps of the junto were difficult due to the nature of the field recording and the instrument chosen.

When you hear the ‘blade’ sounds at 9 secs in, that’s the Lyra 4. Unfiltered audio’s ‘fault’ was placed on one of the Lyra sounds to try and keep up with the Chopper. Hope all are well :slight_smile:

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I finally got some headspace and stilness to submit something this week.

I started with setting up the timing structure per Marc’s instructions and wanted to follow it somewhat rigidly and see what happened. I made a field recording captured this friday on an evening hike; coastal water laps and crickets.
For the “hidden” sound, I first tried building it with a synth, but I couldn’t get it to work in a satisfying manner. Instead I went through my library and found, after many failed attemps, a short and windy close-up lake recording. It’s a bit deceptive using something so similar, I know, but it’s imperceptual to anyone but me - atleast until I start modulating it :slight_smile:
I had to loop it a couple of times to match the length of the piece. It’s discernable by the bird heard in the beginning.
I modulated the “hidden” sound by creating different automated sends in REAPER, filling up Echoboy delays, a Raum reverb, bit crusher, saturator, chorus and a combfilter to give it some bite. Everything you hear is triggered by the lake recording sent through a filter modulated by water laps and crickets.

6 Likes