sound 1: field recording – downtown new york city subway 6 train weekend service disruption announcement and surrounding ambience. recorded with iphone garageband.
sound 2: constructed beat – iphone garageband drum samples
sound 3: synth – programmed iphone animoog
minute 1: the drum is primary, backed by stabs and swoops of the synth and cut up portions of the subway announcement.
minute 2: the subway field recording runs full and uninterrupted, with the beat and synth stabs and swoops slightly tweaked, but retaining the same basic phrasing.
minute 3: the synth comes forward with a 2nd part, laid over the cut up subway announcement and drum beat.
the drum beat is a long phrase (fourteen 8-beat measures?) that repeats three times w/ a couple variations. i considered the entire phrase as one sound, even though it’s made of a kick, snare, high hat and cymbal. this was my first time using garageband to construct a beat and the result sounded something like my old boss dr-5. made me smile for that alone. the synth sound was programmed in iphone’s animoog app, and then played live using the app’s D#-minor pentatonic keyboard over the other 2 tracks. first minute is one take, second and third minutes contain a second take and the third minute a third take as the add’l part.
though everything was generated/recorded by an iphone, all sounds were dumped into sony acid (my daw that i just can’t shake), and all cutting up, loop creation, compression application and rendering happened there. i didn’t set out to use a subway recording for this week’s challenge, but my trips into and out of manhattan this weekend were maddening. this track became my way of processing the absurdity of a monolithic transportation schema that often leaves me feeling like a character in the film “brazil.”
probably best absorbed through headphones, fwiw.
The 18th disquiet.com junto project was “about how a simple matter of sequence can provide a sense of development and compositional momentum.”
The assignment was as follows:
Construct three simple, self-contained sounds (or sonic elements) that are distinct from each other. Then make a three-minute track out of these sounds, based on the following rules:
For each of the three minutes, one of the three sounds should be prominent, and the other two should be less prominent. By the end of the complete three minutes of your track, each of the three sounds, thus, will have been prominent for one full minute and will have served a background purpose for two full minutes.
We were allowed to transform the individual sounds, but they needed to still be somewhat recognizable even in their transformed state.
More details on the Disquiet Junto at: