Dirty minimalism

October 15th, 2012  |  Tags: ,

I’ve long been interested in the Disquiet Junto music-making assignments, and have even started efforts at some, but haven’t gotten anything actually presentable until this week’s assignment: “Produce an original piece of music that fits the genre “‘dirty minimalism,’” which benefited from just the right combination of inspiration and a few rare blocks of contiguous free time.

My song, “the concept ‘horse’ is a concept easily understood” is available on SoundCloud or as an AAC download.

My basic idea was to do something in a rock or post-rock idiom that nonetheless has many of the hallmarks of what I consider minimalism: ostinati, shifting polyrhythms, and gradual introduction of pitch classes, new timbres, and layered sounds. Of course, minimalism-influenced rock is nothing new, but most such work (like this track) is necessarily temporally compressed when compared to minimalist concert music. Bitcrushing, phasing, frequency-shifting, and general sloppy technique (which I’ve been working on perfecting for some time) contribute to the “dirty” aspect. (I considered introducing a sparse bowed-guitar solo over the top of this — after all, I like those a lot — but didn’t think I’d have time to introduce it and maintain the minimalist aesthetic.)

This was a lot of fun.