st. petersburg

live show at the venture compound

 

photo credit: janet williams

 

Without Fear of Wind or Vertigo_Video Barf 2015

Submission for a local film festival, Video Barf, held on January 30, 2015 at The Fuzz Factory in St. Petersburg, Florida.

The film is an edited reel showing samples from Internet Archive's 35mm Stock Footage collection.

Scenes from the original film real were chosen and written on tiny pieces of paper. The sequence of scenes were determined by chance operations which included drawing these scene names from a bowl.  Glitch edits and montage techniques (Janet Williams) were done first so I would have no knowledge of how the sound would interact before hand. Following the completion of the film, I contributed original sound design to be reflective of the visual effects. The final product came out rather immersive and went over really well at the Festival. We even won an award.

For more on the original film reel including the Creative Commons: Attribution 3.0 license, head over to archive.org.

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and then [disquiet0159-kitchenhyperlapse]

Disquiet Junto Project 0159: Recipe Hyperlapse
The Assignment: See what music the steps of a favorite recipe yield.

Lemony Kale and Couscous Salad
[Ingredients]
    1 Tbsp olive oil
    2 cloves garlic
    ½ bunch Dinosaur/Lacinato Kale
    1½ cups vegetable broth
    1 cup uncooked couscous
    1 fresh lemon
    ¼ cup chopped walnuts
    1 oz. crumbled feta

1.jpg

[Instructions]
1. Rinse the couscous well with cool water. Remove the stems of the kale leaves by running a sharp knife along both sides of each stem. Cut each leaf in half lengthwise, then across into ½ inch strips. Rinse the kale well in a colander.
2. Mince the garlic and add it to a large pot with the olive oil. Sauté over medium-low heat for one minute, or until the garlic is slightly softened. Add the rinsed kale and sauté for 2-3 minutes more, or just until the kale has wilted and looks dark green and glossy.
3. Add the rinsed couscous to the pot along with vegetable broth. Stir the contents of the pot, place a lid on top, and turn the heat up to medium-high. Let the pot come to a boil. As soon as it does, reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for 15 minutes. Make sure the pot is simmering the whole time.
4. After 15 minutes, check the quinoa to see if it is done. Each granule should look slightly transparent with a white outer rim. If there is still a considerable amount of broth left in the bottom of the pot, replace the lid and let simmer for a few minutes more. If there is a small amount of liquid, simply remove the lid and sauté for a couple of minutes, or until the excess liquid evaporates.
5.  While the pot is simmering, zest half of the lemon. Chop the walnuts and crumble the feta.
6. Once the couscous is cooked and any excess moisture has evaporated, remove the pot from the heat. Sprinkle the lemon zest over the kale and quinoa. Squeeze the juice from half of the lemon over the pot as well. Finally, sprinkle the chopped nuts and crumbled feta on top.

...with couple glasses of wine.

 

[Sound]

All [kitchen] sounds were recorded with a Tascam DR-100. It has a nice little remote that makes it even easier to avoid the irritating, spring-loaded, button blunk that begins most of my recordings. 

Due to the unpredictable humming of refrigerator and other undesirable noises, sounds were cut as to maximize the action while to minimize the unnecessary. Some sounds required more or less of an amount of EQ to remove undesired frequencies. This varied depending on what action was occurring and in what proximity to the drone of the fridge or incessant pollution of the leaf-blower outside. Not the most Cagean of approaches, but because I was more focused on capturing the details of each sound specifically, I found the myriad of buzzing tones to be distracting when editing and arranging. This provided other, and even greater sonic opportunities. For example, take the chopping of garlic with the pounding and peeling of the outer layer, scraping of the cutting board to organize, the chopping. All of these steps are not as fluid when comes to the impact (desired) sounds. There is in between, more space that the environment around us is only too excited to occupy. In a practical sense, there is unwanted and therefore wasted time in there too.

Once desired sounds were isolated, clusters about 4-8 seconds long were looped and individual sounds were arranged to produce some sort of musicality representative of complex action.  One inspiration was the well known hip-hop montage technique in Darren Aronofsky's Requiem For a Dream. (Side note, the sound department responsible for the success includes over 40 people.)

These clusters were then arranged in sequence to other clusters. I then consolidated each of these clusters to one track. Additional tracks were added that included two simple chords which were recorded with an acoustic guitar; another with an electric. There is also a finger-picking phrase that is looped, swells in reverse, treated with a large amount of reverb and sits quietly in the periphery. All tonal additives cease with the uncorking of a wine bottle.

The rolling of a drawer, procurement of spices, cutting of garlic, clicking of the gas light, pouring of couscous granules, sizzling of the kale, rinsing with water, mixing in a bowl, sprinkling of salt, squeezing of a lemon, gathering of plates. All these sounds - and editing them - provide a greater awareness of being in the kitchen than I had previously. An unedited (tonal additives/music absent) version of this project is below.

More on this 159th Disquiet Junto project

— “See what music the steps of a favorite recipe yield” —

at: http://disquiet.com/2015/01/15/disquiet0159-kitchenhyperlapse/

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

http://disquiet.com/junto

Join the Disquiet Junto at:

http://soundcloud.com/groups/disquiet-junto/

Disquiet Junto general discussion takes place at:

http://disquiet.com/forums/

 

 

pressed-for-space [disquiet0158-syllablegumbo]

Disquiet Junto Project 0158: Syllable Gumbo
The Assignment: Go from noise to signal with words.

1. reading of phrase from article of the st. petersburg times.  every story had mentions of people dying, so the story of a nearby hospital planning to expand seemed the least important. i've always wanted to record in the historic snell arcade, located in downtown st. petersburg. janet williams read the first sentence of the article:

"moffit cancer center officials are considering a plan to replace the pressed for space hospital with a new building that would be more than twice as tall."

2. the recorded phrase was sliced first into 1/64s, then into 1/32s, 1/16s, 1/8s, and lastly 1/4s. although the tiny slices were relatively proportionate, the syllables being sliced were random.

3. a tonal piece was created over the slices.

4. later that day, i returned to the snell arcade and recorded the playback of the tonal piece which was amplified into the space with a battery powered fender mini amp. the distortion sounds are due to the gain and drive of the amp.

5. i walked around the space during the playback, which was recorded with portable field-recorder. in the piece, this creates the rise and fall, a certain physicality of tonal swelling based on distance and direction. in addition to the original (now distorted)  tonal playback, other sounds captured were the ambience of the space, footsteps, cars passing, and voices. upon careful listening, the last sounds of the piece are of a man apologizing because he thought he was in the way.


More on this 158th Disquiet Junto project — “Go from noise to signal with words” — at:

http://disquiet.com/2015/01/08/disquiet0158-syllablegumbo/

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

http://disquiet.com/junto

Join the Disquiet Junto at:

http://soundcloud.com/groups/disquiet-junto/

Disquiet Junto general discussion takes place at:

http://disquiet.com/forums/

The pier [disquiet0149-processingthepresent]

Being new to an area provides many opportunities to learn about one's environment. I've done many soundwalks, but not so many in downtown St. Petersburg. It was a beautiful day on Friday and a bike ride over to the Pier was in order. The area has been neglected for some time and plans exist to demolish and redesign some of the structures. I like the idea of capturing the history of a place, whether abandoned or in the process of entropy.

My initial plan was to soundwalk the length of the pier, a paved road that was much longer than I had anticipated. Walking around the Pier building,a five-story inverted pyramid-shaped structure, rendered 4:34 minutes of recording time.  I explored the area a bit more and experimented with the boardwalk at the eastern most edge of the pier. I worked with the 3:19s of walking/recording time which appears in the left channel unedited. Sounds from the nearby International Airport, fisherman talking, the call of seabirds, resonant waves lapping under the concrete pier supports, creaks from the boardwalk, and other site specific field recordings are littered throughout. I also added a few ominous loops that change throughout the length of the walk/track.

In many ways, I feel this particular Disquiet Junto project is an odd extension of some of my work, namely working with the environment and using maps as points of departure for a composition, with field recordings as source material.

The map illustrates different scales of context of the St. Petersburg area. I also incorporated a sense of visual continuation throughout the image, one that reflects the spatiotemporal length of the 'track', both audio and physical motion of walking along the pier.


More on this 149th Disquiet Junto project — “Take a walk around the block and make something from it″ — at:

http://disquiet.com/2014/11/06/disquiet0149-processingthepresent/

More on the Disquiet Junto at:

http://disquiet.com/junto

Join the Disquiet Junto at:

http://soundcloud.com/groups/disquiet-junto/

Disquiet Junto general discussion takes place at:

http://disquiet.com/forums/