naviarhaiku517 – Early dawn’s pale light


The haiku shared by Naviar Records had a line about a "gentle start to the day" and the weather has been warming up here.

It's heading toward a maximum of 40 and that gentle moment feels brief, as the sunlight begins to bite from the first direct beam.

So I tried to convey a sense of the day being brighter than expected.

Disquiet Junto 0622 Know the Shadow


The Disquiet Junto assignment asks "How do you depict a shadow in sound?"

It prompted a few thoughts for me, starting with the line that The Shadow knows the evil that lurks in hearts of men.

Then I reflected on the way shadow blocks light and thought it'd be interested if the sounds came from the edges, so I explored panning and tilting and compression artefacts.

Finally I realised that I had an example of shadowboxing if I used the two takes I'd recorded on the drums.

Guitar players on laundry day


Disquiet Junto 0621 The Leftovers

The Junto prompt arrived as I was wondering if I had useful bits from recording last weekend. 

 That session built on the drums I'd played for the recent 0619 project, but felt like I was cheating since I didn't use material from another contributor. 

So that became a Naviar track and now this feels like the material has returned to the Disquiet fold. 

Last night I took an alternative drum performance (notably it lacked the triplet part), as well as two ukulele recordings and added them to the bass part. 

Then this morning I edited out one bit that didn't seem to gel, so there's a little jump but it probably blends in with the other edits.

I'm here to tune your guitar


naviarhaiku515 – Last bloom before autumn


The haiku shared by Naviar this week was an opportunity to jam with myself.

While the seasonal reference didn't gel with the summer temperatures we've been having in Leeton, the line about a sibling did -- since I'd recently spoken with mine.

Disquiet Junto 0619 Beat Accrual


The Junto instructions this week is to accrue a beat over time.

It seemed obvious to record the drums, which are sitting in the living room while my son rehearses for a music assessment.

naviarhaiku513 – a black dog


The haiku shared by Naviar Records this week prompted me to think how transformation is central to music-making.

So I took the MIDI information and played it through a collection of Roland Boutique sound modules in the studio I've set up in my caravan.

Paper scissors

Disquiet Junto 0618 Burying the Lede

The Disquiet Junto assignment is to "Turn old news into new music."

I searched Trove for an article about Griffith from 50 years ago.

The Bulletin was a journal that ran for over a century and a story mentioning Griffith appeared as soon as I search the Trove database for a publication from 1973. 

However, this "local" story appeared to be linked only to the name Griffith, the rest seemed to be discussing the left-leaning factions across the Australian political landscape. 

I took the Mac's text-to-speech software into Matriarch via an oscillator input, then jammed with the Mood Sound Studio. 

It gets satisfyingly loud toward the end. 

At the time it made sense since I've been looking at another copy of The Bulletin in Griffith, but that printed copy came from 1899 or so and sits in an old homestead which was used as a film set this week.


Not all heroes

Here's a little tune I wrote


naviarhaiku512 – Endless echo

The haiku shared by Marco this week is one that he wrote.

It surprised me to see it echoed one I wrote recently, as well as his account of cleaning his mother's place as that's the subject of a story that I began writing recently.

So I took the opportunity to record a jam on Moogs.

Disquiet Junto 0616 Definition Jam

The Disquiet Junto project this week asks participants to "render, through sound, the two different definitions" and explore the nuance in language.

I've been playing with a new synthsiser and thought I'd consider the definition of synthesis as "the combination of components or elements to form a connected whole."

So I've layered recordings of different patches on the synthesiser.

Disco Steve


naviarhaiku511 – in dark autumn nights

The haiku shared by Naviar Records this week prompted me to start exploring ideas in the dark.

I wanted to use my new keyboard and thought reaching out to the moon would sound like rising delays, while the autumnal setting suggested F minor for fall.

It was light by the time I recorded, then I layered up the two takes that sounded best together.

naviarhaiku510 – in pre-dawn darkness


The haiku shared by Naviar this week is different than I remembered.

Thinking back I can see that I read it earlier in the week and then associated the scene it describes with one I wrote in a recent short story, where pre-dawn rain was making percussive sounds on scrap metal.

My haiku might be:

in pre-dawn darkness
metal makes percussive sounds
rainfall in junkyard

Anyway, that's what led me to record this piece.

This week I'm traveling and had a couple of hours with my nephew's drums.

I recorded them first, using the Rode mic that attaches to my Nikon camera.

Then I quickly put together a chord progression that would suit the C key of my tongue drum, then recorded a couple of takes on that instrument.

It would've been good to add a bass but the ukulele and tongue drum were the only instruments at hand.

Disquiet Junto 0614 Alternate Route

The Disquiet Junto this week prompted me to plug in a few previously unrecorded instruments.

This piece was composed in April, when I wrote a bunch of tracks and then had some computer problems.

I recently bought a Yamaha digital piano and used it with an Alesis SR-16 and Bastl Softpop 2.

Disquiet Junto 0612 Drum Vector

The Disquiet Junto assignment this week is to "Walk the listener through variations on the same percussive instrument."

I decided to quickly record on the drumkit, using the camera's built-in mic without rehearsal.

I wish my life had background music


Disquiet Junto 0611 Music That Listens to Itself


The Disquiet Junto assignment this week is to "Record a piece of music that repurposes itself as it proceeds."

I pondered that directive for while, at first thinking it was about establishing a leitmotif, then reading the detail about effects:

From reverb to echo to tape loops to granular synthesis to accessing a buffer, various techniques serve such a compositional and performance purpose. Consider a means to achieve this result.

This led me to use my gated effects with two chords to draw attention to how the different pedals are triggered by the drumloop to shape the ukulele part.

The effects chain splits an octave below and above, while the original part goes to the Empress Zoia pedal with the "Loopforest" preset.

On the octave below is a Mainframe bitcrusher and Bass Synth, while the octave above goes through a stereo chorus and into the Modrex.

The drumloop is going through a Platform compressor and Generation Loss, before being filtered by a Mini Kaoss Pad.

The Beastie Boys are releasing

naviarhaiku504 – Lazing in shadows

Layered up my takes from the Junto recording for the Naviar track this week.

Every day is better


Disquiet Junto 0609 Speed Limit Pt 1


The Disquiet Junto instruction is to "Record a simple track at 60 BPM in 4/4 that will be reworked subsequently by other musicians."

naviarhaiku503 – Caterpillar


This haiku shared by Naviar Records prompted me to record the chords I'd been jamming with on my electric ukulele.


Disquiet Junto 0608 Nature-to-Text


As someone, I think Brian Eno, once said “Honour thy error as a hidden intention.” 

When I read the Junto instructions I thought they said to use a text-to-speech tool to turn a field recording into instructions for a composition. 

Anyway, it led me to plan to use lines from my micro-journal with a recent field recording to start a composition. 

After I double-checked the assignment and realised my error, I tried Youtube's auto-subtitles and Macwhisper but couldn't use a speech-to-text tool to turn a field recording into instructions. 

So, I took the instruction to also include considering Eno and his hidden intention is where that recording landed.

Disquiet Junto 0606 Three to One

The project this week is to "Compose a piece of music with three times as much silence as sound."

Once again I reached for the guitar and began recording while waiting for my son to return home.

I recorded a few takes but the camera battery ran out before completing the final.

This version is the first take and I picked it as it has more silence.

In post-production I added some tape delay and reverb, as well as tube-style saturation.

Disquiet Junto 0605 Fifty Fifty

The Disquiet Junto prompt this week is to "Compose a piece of music with as much silence as notes."

It came from a suggestion I made to Marc after hearing Mozart on the radio while driving to work.

Ed Le Brocq had introduced the piece observing that it had as much silence as notes and it seemed perfect for a Junto exercise, particularly since I've found myself frustrated by making busy music.

(And, as an aside, I read Ed's book 'Whole Notes' recently and enjoyed it. One of the volunteers at the museum where I work had recommended it, saying all of the members of her ukulele group had liked it.)

Anyway, I found half an hour this morning to set-up a camera on the balcony of my out-laws place outside Wagga and recorded a few takes.

This evening I've tried to improve the sound quality by EQ-ing away higher frequencies and sneaking a bit of tape warble and delay, as well as compression.

And, I've got to add, I was pleased to read this from Marc in the Junto email:

Major thanks to Jason Richardson, aka Bassling, for having proposed this week's project. There may not be another person who's recorded as many Junto projects as Jason has, and so he has a unique sense of them. He interviewed me back in 2017 for Cyclic Defrost, and I learned quite a bit about the Junto myself during the conversation. I think frequently about an observation he made, in the context of one of his questions: "Junto themes seem to have proportion to daily life, with a number about sleeping, waking, eating, walking, etc." I couldn't agree more.

Disquiet Junto 0604 Heaven’s Gate

The Disquiet Junto assignment this week asks participants to "Use a picture of the clouds as a plan for adjusting your sound."

It's been a long time between Juntos, the longest in nearly ten years; but I've been keen to get back.

Marc shared a photo of clouds that reminded me of a clock and the title said gate, so I ended up thinking about gating the sound of the chimes I heard while volunteering at the front desk of a museum on the weekend.

The snippets of sound that broke through seemed ripe for delay and then I added back in the clock to make sense of it all near the end.

Gibb's son

I'd love to add The Bee Gees to my effects chain.

Seriously, I spent many years dancing to a copy of the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack.

Recently I saw a doco on them and found myself admiring their harmonies, songwriting and a joyful jam that led to 'Jive Talking'.

Not my pic but I'd like a fuzz pedal just to see their eyes light-up to my music!

World Listening Day

This morning I heard a Pied Butcherbird singing outside my office, so I attempted to make conversation with a renowned songbird and appreciated that it entertained my efforts.



Disquiet Junto 0595 Filter Progression


The Disquiet Junto this week asks participants to modulate a tone or field recording using only filter frequency and resonance.

Earlier today I was walking past the ricegrowers facility that seems to make dog food and remembered recording it for the Junto proposed by Australian Kate Carr, number 0218.

And earlier his week I was remembering Junto 0186, which used Morse code. 

For that I recall spell my name using the kick drum and I went for a similar idea here, but it's more of a high-hat part.

I was remembering Morse code his as it was a topic being presented to a school group visiting the Museum where I work.

Martin Amis on anxiety

Use any anxiety you have about your writing — or your life — as fuel. Ambition and anxiety: that’s the writer’s life.

naviarhaiku490 – The cold forest flaunts


When Naviar Records shared the haiku this week, I thought of the wind rushing between the trees in my front yard.

It's not really a forest but Australian trees don't really grow that way.

I don't know what a wood anemone looks like, since apparently they don't grow on my continent, but I thought it might sound like wind organs.

Disquiet Junto 0593 The Charm

The Disquiet Junto project this builds on previous weeks as we form trios.

I joined a couple of tracks using my Korg Volca FM synth driven with MIDI from Ableton Live.

Unfortunately my computer browsers are too old to access the forum where the Junto community gather, so I'll try to add these videos when I can and draw attention of the other musicians.

The track below also uses a 909-style drum machine in Live.

Disquiet Junto 0592 Better Than One


The Junto this week asks participants to join a trio.

And we also get to respond to more than one trio, so I recorded two tracks.


Korg volcas

Still playing with my Korg Volcas and happy with the bass sound from the Keys.

I've taken a couple of samples from the MIDI of an old pop song, then played with the drums to get them through the Percussion unit.

Disquiet Junto 0591 The Loneliest Number

Disquiet Junto Project this week is to "record the first third of a trio."

It's become an annual prompt and I've used different instruments, so as I looked around and pondered the Moog DFAM seemed a good choice.

I like that the tempo is so varied that it needs to be used as a textural sound more than an electronic drum track.

The patch uses the Make Noise CTRL to drive the clock via a sequencer going back and forth.

You can also hear the Subharmonicon in the distance on the righ channel, since I didn't think it was right for the DFAM to be lonely.

Ethan Hein on funk

"Funk works best when the musicians subsume their egos into the groove."

Disquiet Junto 0590 Concrète Roots

The Disquiet Junto asks participants to "Combine field recordings and feedback in the development of an original track."

Time was running out in more ways than one, but I wanted to use my Bastl Thyme unit although the deadline for the Junto had passed.

Today is Anzac Day, a public holiday that gave me opportunity to position a Rode NT4 microphone in doorway and record sounds from a couple of young families in my street.

Disquiet Junto 0589 Auto Play

The assignment is to "Automate something manual" and it arrived at the correct moment.

This week I've been playing in Ableton Live and trying to make something musical.

Today I made a drum loop and then recorded a bass part, before making a couple of other recordings using the M-Tron VST.

They sounded harmonically interesting but the playing was scattered since I'd used the computer keyboard and have almost zero keyboard skills, aside from touch-typing.

Anyway, I read the Junto prompt and decided to add arpeggiation to every track -- except the drums, which got an Automaton effect.

Then I went looking for a video in the public domain about automation and the result seems kinda cool.

Disquiet Junto 0588 Swell Time

The Junto this week asks for surf music.

My mind went to Valla Beach, where I wish I was holidaying.

Then I remembered a song that was prompted by a haiku about a beach and thought I should revisit it.

The Penny Effect

One of the best things about making video for other people is when I get to soundtrack the resulting production.

So it was with The Penny Effect, which was made about three years ago and has now been premiered at the local gallery.

It will now be a permanent exhibit and I like that my music will be playing for days.

Disquiet Junto 0587 Sour Mash

The Disquiet Junto assignment this week is to "Let something go out of tune."

Because I've been busy, I wanted to use an existing recording and my mind went to the washing line.

I recorded this extended squeak for Junto assignment number 356 and remembered it was dissonant but had forgotten how short my hair was back then!

To really get it out of tune I transposed it in Ableton Live, then recorded myself playing a bass part with a synth along with a drum loop.

For a bit more interest I added chance and delay to the drums, as well as an arpeggiator to the bass.

Organ Donor at Burning Seed

Burning Seed, the NSW Burning Man event, happened last weekend and I got a grant to build a collection of wind organs. 

Organ Donor was the name for the collection and came with a message in the program about donating organs to save lives.


Something about the handwriting on this radio appeals to me, but there's also that lovely blue mesh.

Disquiet Junto 0585 F9

When I saw the prompt to fastforward a piece, I thought it'd work best with a very slow track.

The slowest track I have is the 10bpm track from Junto 299, then I noticed a couple of beats at 83 (397) and 84 (429).

My track ended up at 90bpm.

There was a bit of pitch adjustment in Ableton Live, but I decided to push through with the idea.

Not sure what happened in the bit where the drums both drop out.

DIY Limiter


naviarhaiku479 – Summer night

The haiku shared by Naviar Records prompted me to layer the takes from a recent recording session.

Billy no

Disquiet Junto 0584 Generations

The Junto prompt this week stirred a lot of thought about music I liked when I was younger.

In the end I'd repurposed a piece of music from countless childhoods and brought to it an instrument that stirred a child-like wonder for me. 

I also reflected on sequenced and performed music.

My idea was to create a separate but complementary piece that ran independent, then I noticed afterwards how I'd adjusted the number of bars to suit the sequenced music from the clock.

I forgot 3-03 day

Vocal mixing


Disquiet Junto 0583 Wall to Wall

The Disquiet Junto assignment this week is to "Use a building as a filter."

It's kinda hot at home this weekend and I've a lot of work to do, so I wasn't sure I would have time to record a piece.

Then I remembered an earlier Junto that involved recording from an adjacent room, as well as another that imagined a doorbell.

While I was looking for those, I found a couple of Junto that involved another sort of muffled approach in wearing cotton gloves.

Anyway, it all sort of made sense at the time, so I made a remix from my tracks for Juntos 115, 174, 253 and 289.

Disquiet Junto 0582 X Techno

After seeing the Junto prompt, I went looking for a sample to manipulate and found a video of my youngest from our visit to Canberra in 2019. 

That trip featured in a couple of Juntos around then and I’ve used this material elsewhere. 

The title is a pun too, since Sunday suggests relaxed but also “son day” techno. 

I knew the percussive instrument could be pitched down to create a kick, which is the foundation of the genre. 

Going for a relaxed feel, I opted for a slower tempo and a bit of dub-style tape delay. 

The video was edited in Ableton Live along with the audio.

naviarhaiku476 – Birds in a bare tree

The Naviar prompt mentioned birds, so I took it as a cue to try another approach to the material used for the Junto this week.

Disquiet Junto 0581 Helsinki Downspout

At first I listened to the pipe and appreciated how the splash kinda swings against the drip. 

Then Soundcloud wanted a log-in, so I thought I'd look for a drain recording of my own. 

It was weird looking back to 2015 as this week I returned to the job I started then. 

I couldn't find drains, but I did find drips. 

Can't remember why I recorded various objects in the shower. 

So I've edited my drips to get an effect like what I remember liking in the Helsinski downspout.

It's called "Cheer up" because that's what we say to down pipes!

Disquiet Junto 0580 Evo Evol Evolve

The Disquiet Junto assignment is to "Record a piece of music that develops like an organism evolves." 

The so-called Horseshoe crab came to mind after I wondered what my son would pick. 

He described these as a poster child for not evolving. 

As I considered how that might sound, I remembered a sketch of a riff that had been sitting on my desktop for a few months.

So I opened the Live document, shifted the loops around a little to sit with the video from and then put that exported version through Motion's comic effect.

A riff that didn't want to evolve as a soundtrack to a Horseshoe crab.

What I've learned from using the Cut-Up Technique

This week I gave a Studio Co!Lab Artist in the House talk on what I've learned using the Cut-Up Technique.

To begin I encouraged everyone to print a copy of Picasso's poem about noon, since he's known to have stated that artists steal and it feels right to honour this contemporary of Cut-ups.

My Cut-up experiences have been realised in lyrics, sampling and also a book that invites destruction.

I also mentioned the poetry reading that I gave at a book launch which performed a live remix.

We began cutting Picasso's poem into individual words while I explained how the imagery reminded me of the Riverina and introduced David Bowie's use of the technique.

The singer acknowledged his debt to Brion Gysin and echoed some of the magical attributes he promoted with a process pioneered earlier in the 20th Century by Tristan Tzara.

My recollection is Cut-ups were a significant development in the split between Surrealism and Dada, when Tzara created a "manifesto" using newspaper clippings.

At the time the Surrealists were writing manifestoes and took offence at this brute process for generating words.

However, the cut-ups have been seen to share in common the influence of Freud's ideas of dream analysis as a way of identifying cues from the unconscious.

Cut-up documents interrogate the text in a haphazard manner that reveals as much about the dynamics and relationships of the reader, while allowing anyone to be an author. 

In this way it shows a Dadaist antiestablishment attitude that can be seen as an attack on authorial intention.

Some might view the process as reassembling a document and the process can be viewed through a variety of philosophical positions, such as the magic and art roles.

When you begin creating a cut-up text there are decisions about the process that determine roles for chance or probability.

You might choose to draw a word from a hat, or you might assemble them from a visible pool of possible words.

My partner developed an exhibition that referenced William S. Burroughs' use of the Cut-up Technique in 2014 and that year introduced me to an alternate approach proposed by the Disquiet Junto.

While the process of preparing the pieces and then pasting them together has a meditative quality that suits gallery spaces that are open for more of a performance art aesthetic, the simplicity of the idea is ripe for technology.

It is interesting to see David Bowie returned to the idea as personal computing developed with the Verbasizer, which has been beautifully realised at this website.

The idea of cutting seems simple and it's worth remembering that many ideas about editing have developed since Tzara.

When you cut up a text the words are never entirely anonymous, even if the document become a palette for beige language.

Each discrete piece becomes a springboard for a chain of connotations, which is a process that has been called "unlimited semiosis" in semiotic theory.

These become potent symbols and through the popularisation by Gysin the cut-up practice came to be infused with ideas of magic that were researched by Genesis P-Orridge.

Burroughs undertook audio and film-based cut-ups that extended the ideas he identified in literary practice.

I explained an audio-based curse that P-Orridge detailed and how sampling harnesses a similar energy when it takes a small example from a larger whole.

Working with the landscape as a document to sample you find inspiration in selecting small symbolic examples to trigger memories of entire ecosystems.

Which l led into my discussion of my Soundscaping videos and exhibitions.

Using video as a medium for cut-ups led to the role of Arthur Lipsett's 21-87 in the development of Star Wars.

I pondered religious implications as well as broader philosophical questions of free will and determinism.

There were some questions towards the end, including some discussion of AI and machine-learning tools.

I talked about my collaborative poetry, where I fed lines about the environment into a website.

It offered results that were surprising in a way similar to cut-ups but overcame a key constraint.

The responses from AI saw angels, which was delightful and language that I never use.

So the AI experiment gave a nice counterpoint to the Cut-up Technique and Andrew, the moderator, decided that was the moment to end.

Motivation from Leslie Diuguid

Keep going. It’s one thing to try something new. It’s another thing to keep improving on that new thought.

Nine years of Naviar

Very happy to continue my collaborations with Naviar Records and see a few of my tracks from last year included with their latest compilation.

Disquiet Junto 0579 Memory Serves

This is a rerecording of the track ‘Hopped’ that I recorded last week. 

That piece was the second of three takes, so I went back and exported the third take to share.

In this version I take a different path to the F# chord progression from the song about being a tumbleweed and arrive sooner at the delay setting you can hear with it.

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