I wasn’t sure if I’ll be able to participate this week, but I managed! I didn’t have time to record my part from scratch, so I decided to use an excerpt from one track which I recorded during my session without laptop when I experienced a Hard Drive crash. I recorded several tracks using only different stuff and my old 4-track Tascam recorder.
Here are the photos from that session.
In this excerpt which is now part of this disquiet junto submission you can listen to me playing the guitar, an old Chinese cymbal from Wuhan which I played using a bow, some glockenspiel, and a piece of paper with a contact microphone glued to it.
I wanted it to be short (between 2 and 3 min.) and I wanted my part not to be too aggressive. You have to assess if I managed. Still, Disquiet Junto is all about being able to fail without consequences, so I hope you gonna like it in the end.
The source audio for this track is part three of the Kenneth Kirschner album June 5, 2012, which features Kirschner on piano and Tawnya Popoff on viola. The album was released in September 2012 on the shskh.com netlabel, where it is available for free download.
More on this 40th Disquiet Junto project at:
More details: Disquiet Junto
More on Kenneth Kirschner at:
I got up early in the morning, at about 6:30 a.m. I usually cannot wait until very late Thursday, so I usually read the instructions on Friday morning. When I read the instructions for the 30th project I decided (just like probably many other artists) to use the field recording. I was lucky, because it was foggy outside and after the rain, and there was no wind. As I live in the countryside it is almost always very calm outside, especially in the morning. I just went to the garden and recorded the surroundings. Of course – the silence wasn’t pure.
First I played with the field recording in Gleetchlab 3.0 to get some nice randomness / granular effect. Than I used Ableton Live and used just 2 tracks. The whole thing starts with the track from the Gleetchlab and there is a transition to the second track where you can hear the pure field recording. The first Gleetchlab track has only 3 effects in Albeton Live, i.e. EQ Three, Ping Pong Delay and Reverb. The second, pure field recording track, has also 3 effects, i.e. EQ Eight, EQ Three and Reverb.
More details on the Disquiet Junto
First of all I wanted to find a “musical element” in the running water. It doesn’t mean that I think that e.g. a stream doesn’t have a musical potential. But I wanted to get something more. I made my “running water” experiment in my workshop where I sometimes build things, so it’s a rather messy place.
See more pictures
I found a rather long PVC pipe. First I glued a contact microphone to it, but I wasn’t really happy with the results. Than I placed the ZOOM H4 recorder at the top of the pipe and started pouring water down the pipe. First the bottom was sealed with the Styrofoam and later the water was landing on the metal bowl. Than I was happy with the results cause the pipe work kind of a natural resonator (resembling a bit resonator effects in Ableton Live).
What is more. first I wanted to upload just the field recording, cause it was quite nice itself. Later I played with it a bit a made a soundscape using just the sounds recorded in the workshop. But still, most of the sounds were unchanged (except from a bit of EQ). I also looped things a bit.
I uploaded the original field recording. You can download it and use it. It’s CC licence.
More details on the Disquiet Junto
I’m not sure if I managed to reach the goal I wanted to reach. But I had a crazy weekend and decided to upload the version of the track I’ve managed to produce so far. I hope it’s good enough and I haven’t failed. It’s up to you to assess the whole thing :-)
I used 4 items from the temporary dust bin (I put most of the stuff there and after that I sort things and put them into the big containers you can see in the track photo): a bottle (from a small Polish brewery), a can, a plastic bag and yoghurt container. I tried to make the sounds recognisable, but sometimes (especially in the case of the can and yoghurt container), you really have to listen carefully (especially in the second part of the track). The whole track has the background which is a plastic bag recorded with a contact microphone which was glued to it (I call it improvised background). The bottle sounds are obvious.
[Update: Thanks for the comments. Man people hear “the sea and the horns of the ships”. This is awesome! If anybody likes to make a video, please contact me ASAP!]
More details: Disquiet Junto
So after two weeks I had some time to take part in the 25th Disquiet Junto project. It’s very hot outside so I decided to describe this situation with my music. First you hear the sounds which wake us up. Than there is the whole day of fight between hot, dense soundscapes, and cool guitar drinks somewhere in the background. The day ends when the we are tired, and can only reach for a glass of cold drink. Than we have to calm down and go to bed.
I used the “call pop” track by Westy Reflector.
I couldn’t let Westy Reflector down :-) If fact when I listened to his original “call pop” track I thought if would be nice to listen to some house version, but I am not very good at composing house music. I decided to go into a bit more experimental direction. Hope you like it!
More details – Disquiet Junto
The last week Disquiet Junto project (I missed Disquiet Junto this week)
What I wanted to achieve while making the track was the feeling of intimacy and calmness. I don’t know if I’ve managed – it’s up to you to assess.
About the process:
First of all I wanted to use the guitar. But than, on Friday when there were several guitar tracks already uploaded I decided to stick to melodica. My experience with this instrument is quite different and I really don’t have a ready patent how to record it well. So sometimes I achieve good results and sometimes bad.
I decided to record the melodica on my Tascam 4-track tape recorder. First I took the tape out and destroyed it with my feet. Luckily the tape wasn’t cut into pieces :-) I recorded two track simultaneously. The first one was recorded with a normal microphone, and the second with a contact microphone glued to the melodica. I was eating almonds during recording and I decided to put some almonds on the keys. It was a good idea cause I got some clicks I really like and I used them a lot.
Here are the results of that original Tascam recording. Check it out because there you can really hear where and how the tape was damaged. Please DOWNLOAD & USE it as much as you want to. Just let me know of the results:
What I did with it? I just simply cut short loops and played a lot with them. I also used some of them in the Gleetchlab to achieve the seamless loops at the end of the recording.
I didn’t have much time to record everything on Friday so I put all damaged loops into Ableton to create the track. Than on Sunday I simply recorded some melodica tunes straight to Live and created the final version.
More details on the Disquiet Junto
Another Disquiet Junto project:
When I saw the instructions my first thought was “No, not this time.” But than I started thinking if I have some field recordings I could use in order not to use the ones provided. (I really like working on my own stuff). When I found the sounds in my library of field recordings I thought of a nice one my friend recorded in winter (info below).
Than I started thinking that it may be boring to work only with field recordings. I thought that to create the background I will use all field recordings in the same time but strongly transformed. And when I started transforming the background I spend over two hours just listening to the noises, hisses, drones I was doing and that process told me that I have to finish this assignment. I recorded many backgrounds and I even thought that they may be useful in my other projects. It was a great experience. So you can hear the hissing background almost from the beginning and than something deeper fades in. The backgrounds contain only 4 field recordings I used.
Than I started with the natural sounds. The first field recording representing spring are the birds recorded just outside my house. There is a desire to use the field recording just as it is, without making any breaks. But I thought that I will cut the initial bird field recording into some short loops which fade out. Just to make it different.
The second fields recording is summer in the Liang Garden, Foshan (China). I recorded the sounds of the noisy bird during our ChoP China Tour in 2009. If you’ve ever been to such a place, it is amazing to hear that nosiy animals – they produce a constant white noise :-)
The third field recoding is my small railway station. I just drove to pick up my wife who was coming home. It was a rainy day. You can hear the window of the car opening during the field recording. There is also a woman walking an of course the rain.
I couldn’t do the whole track without the recording of the breaking ice because it is so beautiful! I simply didn’t want to destroy the atmosphere of the recording. Here I used a field recording by my friend Jarek Grzesica, curator of the Warsaw Electronic Festival, who is also an artist and has a project is called Gold Plated Face (http://soundcloud.com/goldplatedface). He allowed me to use his recording he did on the Zegrze lake. These are the sounds of the ice breaking in winter.
Another Disquiet Junto track:
First I thought that the disquiet0020-nodebeat wouldn’t be for me because I try not use “artificial” sounds in my music. But than, after running the desktop version of the app I thought – why not? Especially after reading that it will be possible to use another “traditional” instrument.
First I recorded 3 pieces on my recorder while I was playing NodeBeat with the mouse on the screen. Finally I decided to use only one track.
The traditional instrument I used is really a traditional one! It is a Chinese guzheng played by me personally (for the 1st time in my life) While we were on tour in China (October 2011) with my friends as a ChoP project, one of my friends really wanted to buy a mini-guzheng. We were trying to find one in Shanghai, than Nanjing and finally we found an amazing street in Beijing. I don’t know if such a street exists in other part of the planet. It is full of shops with all kinds of instruments – Chinese traditional, drums, guitars, trumpets, violins, chellos, etc. Each chop is different and when you think there won’t be another one with the instruments you are looking for you go 20 meters, or cross the street and there is another one, and another one… no end! So in one shop, when my friends were negotiating the price of the mini-guzheng, I found a big one standing in a quiet place, took out the recorder and played. I recorded several loops which I really like. Here is one of them. You can even hear the voices of my friends who negotiate the prices. (Actually the price was amazingly low!) And yes – that day remained in my mind :-)
Here you can see how we were buying mini-guzheng on the ChoP Blog
(you can’t see me in the photos from the shop cause I was taking them, I’m in the photo no 7, 10 and 12 from the concert)
So I combined those things in Ableton Live adding some seamless, granulated guzheng loops.
This track employs the app NodeBeat, created by Seth Sandler, Justin Windle, and Laurence Muller. More information on NodeBeat at nodebeat.com.
More details on the Disquiet Junto at: http://soundcloud.com/groups/disquiet-junto
Please also CHECK my label: http://www.ETALABEL.com
This time the idea was to use a photo by Yojiro Imasaka it were a musical score. Even before seeing the photo I more or less knew what to do. When I saw the photo I started thinking what can I do with it to implement my idea (kind of an analogue one).
First I flipped simply printed the picture. I decided to flip it 90 degrees left. I put a sheet of paper under the picture and started drawing lines in the place when dark elements of the photo meet with the white sky (kind of a border). I pressed the pencil very hard in order to get the marks on the page below. Than I draw the lines again on the blank page with a pencil and added some shades.
As you can see (the cloud picture) I treated the upper lines as a notation for the guitar chords. I just looked at the page and started playing (and improvising a bit) on the guitar starting with a simple E chord.
The bottom line resembles all the clicks and noises. The place where on the photo you can see the outside stairs I treated as a place for a noisy element of the song. So I drew a bigger shade, and in the song it is a place with a distortion.
This track treats a photo by Yojiro Imasaka as its score. More on Imasaka at http://yojiroimasaka.com.
In this project I decided to use 3 samples:
The first one is the recording of a child’s toy – whirlgig – which makes a nice soundscape sound. The pitch of the sound was lowered a bit.
The second one is my improvisation on the cymbals. Treated with the reverb.
The third one is my field recording from the Katowice Airport.
BTW – it is available for all of you to download and process.
So read the description under it and feel FREE to use it: DOWNLOAD
More details – Disquiet Junto
Please also CHECK my label: www.ETALABEL.com