like cuddling a ghost - whose body is this [album release]

hey people, I just released a new album on Bandcamp called ‘like cuddling a ghost’. half made in ppooll, the rest in Pd (with some help from Tom Mudd’s Gutter Synthesis) in semi-improv sessions.

inspired by the ‘laptop music’ of the early-to-mid 2000s, like stuff from Editions Mego, Touch and Room40, kind of noisy/ambient/drone digital textures.

hope someone likes it :))


I’m going to have to spend some time with this and headphones tonight but upon first listen I really appreciate your sense of pacing and breath, foreground and background, and the build and release of the different elements as they progress. Great timbres too. Thanks for sharing.

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wow thanks so much, that’s so kind of you! i really appreciate the comment about the pacing, that’s always been the hardest thing to get right for me, especially with more texture-based music.

hope you enjoy you headphone listen :))

Really cool and kinda creepy. The name realty fits. How you making this stuff?

Thanks so much! the name actually came from a Bandcamp comment on a Xiu Xiu/Grouper album that I thought fit my thing pretty well.

I made this stuff largely in two environments, ppooll in Max/MSP (tracks 1, 4, 6 and 7), using the granular and Beauty patch(es) for textures. The other three tracks I made in Pure Data with some custom patches that are essentially primitive momentary samplers, with the audio source being Tom Mudd’s Gutter Synthesis. Then I just added a liberal dose of reverb to make it sound good haha.


I’m new… are those codes we can run on norns? I ordered a norns on Monday!

i always come back to exactly the early-2000s laptop music scene you’ve described. there’s something special about the convergence of the era’s software limitations with a particular avant-garde approach to ambient or even pop music that makes that music so special. you’ve captured this vibe and taken it in a different direction which i’m loving! some of the tracks have 2003 tim hecker echoes which is just wow

@appa hmm I’m not a Norns user, but I don’t think ppooll can run on a Norns, mostly because of it’s clunky UI, maybe Pd stuff can get onto Norns but I’m not sure? if I ever get my hands on a Norns maybe I’ll try porting some of my patches, but in the meantime I’m definitely planning on getting a Pd environment thing available for other people, got some exciting ideas for my dissertation I’m starting this year! but re: using this code, this kind of stuff is all free just to use on a laptop, hence the ‘laptop music’ thing lol.

@slumplifter thanks so much, your comments are very kind! I totally agree, I had a bit of an obsession with emulating OS9 last year (which ended unsuccessfully), but diving into it using old, clunky software was very inspiring, the limitations and I fell in love with those ‘good-bad’ sounds.