Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

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Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by dangayle » Sat Feb 20, 2021 2:03 pm

I'm relatively new to thinking about making this kind of music for other people. For many years I would jam for countless hours with my guitar and giant pedal board, not making "melodic" guitar music, but using the guitar as a noise source. Endless satisfaction, personally, and a great emotional release to disappear into the noise. Now I'm into modular and it's pretty much the same, just far more expensive, lol.

In any case, say I were to record this. Obviously I could throw it onto Soundcloud and Bandcamp, but are there labels that deal with this stuff? Is there an actual scene or market for this? Of course, I assume there is not a penny to be made, but it would be pleasing to share with the most amount of people.

How do you release your work to the public?

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by Jazzman » Sat Feb 20, 2021 2:27 pm

Bandcamp. Just give it away.

I agree with you about getting lost in the noise. I'm a guitar player also and am now focused on taking the cover tunes I learned while playing in a jazz fusion band and deconstructing those tunes with heavy doses of noise added.

Very satisfying on a personal level.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by funeralcake » Sat Feb 20, 2021 5:42 pm

I don't, really. I have a lot of stuff on Bandcamp, but I don't make a point of promoting it, or sharing but a handful of "choice" tracks (most of it is private at this point, and for good reason). Soundcloud is purely for quick demonstrations, half-assed doodles and shitposting.

The few "legitimate" releases I have do get posted on Bandcamp pages for a nice, proper web presentation, but they also get physical releases. CDr's burned or tapes dubbed at home, one at a time. Packaging assembled by hand. Endless tedium for zero financial reward! I am open to the idea of professional duplication, assuming I come up with something I consider worthy of the financial waste. But, so far, it's been all DIY assembly.

I've earned more money submitting my own sound effects to Audiojungle than I ever made in over a decade of making and selling noise tapes, CD-r's and net releases: A whopping $16 and some change since opening an account in 2017! Meanwhile, I can make 5 physical copies of something and expect to sit on them for years, no joke. That said, I have no interest in self-promotion and press releases beyond a blurb to post on a handful of noise forums, which is where most, if any, sales occur.

FB groups, from what little I saw and could tolerate of them, were just a lot of noise (no pun intended). Basically, just an endless wash of reddit-grade meme-posting and not much serious networking or worthwhile conversation happening in between people desperately spamming their latest net release compilations.
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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by smetak » Sat Feb 20, 2021 6:41 pm

I think that when you are into such a fringe genre (which I certainly am), its strictly for personal satisfaction - I've spent a small fortune on gear, weird guitar pedals, bunch of modules that I can barely manage (turned my 0 Coast on the other day - lost as always, but, boy, was it fun! And counting the days on getting my Strega), old tape machines that hardly work etc. I have a Soundcloud page where I paste a few recordings that no one ever listens (though has become an ongoing joke at work....my Beatles-Stones-loving colleagues find my sonic meanderings a scream) and will open for any weirdo act to hit my part of town - generally to a crowd of 5 to 10 people. Never made a penny from any of this, but that's expected. My main goal is to one day have a vinyl pressing of a set that I find decent enough (something that has eluded me for quite some time) - obviously, all DIY and self-financed and to be distributed on some very obscure label. As said, its all strictly for personal satisfaction, to feel a bit more zen at the end of the day.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by VM » Sun Feb 21, 2021 2:13 am

Bandcamp, name your price. I don't rely on selling music to get by and i'm under no illusions about how many people will actually listen, but am incredibly grateful for those that do.
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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by IEC » Sun Feb 21, 2021 5:53 am

i normally tilt my pelvis so one cheek lifts up (if im sitting)

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by dangayle » Sun Feb 21, 2021 3:02 pm

IEC wrote:
Sun Feb 21, 2021 5:53 am
i normally tilt my pelvis so one cheek lifts up (if im sitting)
What if you thought was just going to be noise turns out to be... more solid?

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by dangayle » Sun Feb 21, 2021 3:03 pm

VM wrote:
Sun Feb 21, 2021 2:13 am
Bandcamp, name your price. I don't rely on selling music to get by and i'm under no illusions about how many people will actually listen, but am incredibly grateful for those that do.
This, right here, is a low calorie burn way to promote your tunes:


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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by IEC » Sun Feb 21, 2021 4:38 pm

dangayle wrote:
Sun Feb 21, 2021 3:02 pm
IEC wrote:
Sun Feb 21, 2021 5:53 am
i normally tilt my pelvis so one cheek lifts up (if im sitting)
What if you thought was just going to be noise turns out to be... more solid?
i guess then i can say i finally have a solid release under my belt? :foul:

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by stepvhen » Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:08 am

Bandcamp. Promote it if you want, make a run of 10 cassettes, give them away anyway, try to find a community where everyone listens to everyone elses music, do whatever. There are noise/extreme/harsh/experimental labels and netlabels out there, but I don't know any of them. And you would likely need some kind of portfolio anyway to show "hey this is what I make, would you help me release it?".

If you have the time and energy, I'd say focus on creating a practicing a live set (even if that just means doing three 5-12 minute sections separated by some silence, getting that intnernal "ok thats long enough" feel). Once the pandemic stuff is over, you can probably reach out to organizers in your local art scene (if you live in a city or near a college you probably have one). Should everything work out, you'll then have an audience of like, 20-50 people who are there to hear you play (and probably know what they are getting into). I was only able to do one live set before life had other plans for me, but it was really a fantastic experience. Even made $40 off of donations (after it was divided among the artists!).

I'd also suggest aiming for the art scene (look up no-input music) rather than the noise scene. Unles you're into that.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by dangayle » Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:03 pm

stepvhen wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:08 am
Bandcamp. Promote it if you want, make a run of 10 cassettes, give them away anyway, try to find a community where everyone listens to everyone elses music, do whatever. There are noise/extreme/harsh/experimental labels and netlabels out there, but I don't know any of them. And you would likely need some kind of portfolio anyway to show "hey this is what I make, would you help me release it?".

If you have the time and energy, I'd say focus on creating a practicing a live set (even if that just means doing three 5-12 minute sections separated by some silence, getting that intnernal "ok thats long enough" feel). Once the pandemic stuff is over, you can probably reach out to organizers in your local art scene (if you live in a city or near a college you probably have one). Should everything work out, you'll then have an audience of like, 20-50 people who are there to hear you play (and probably know what they are getting into). I was only able to do one live set before life had other plans for me, but it was really a fantastic experience. Even made $40 off of donations (after it was divided among the artists!).

I'd also suggest aiming for the art scene (look up no-input music) rather than the noise scene. Unles you're into that.
That's really good advice, thank you. I think I know just the guy locally. He does reactive light installations at art galleries and such, I'm 100% certain he'd be down for something like this.

I remember in the early 2000s when I had a band, at rehearsal all we would do was live improv. Someone offered to let us play a show, and half the band members said "We're not ready, we need to make songs." I was like, what have we been doing all along? We've perfected the creative bit that I loved the most, the part where you listen and react and go places you've never been before.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by EATyourGUITAR » Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:13 pm

I thought you were required to trade cassettes for cassettes to be fully accepted into the subculture?
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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by carbonhazard » Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:52 pm

tapes! or cd-r's. any physical media basically, tapes and cd-r's being most accessible to new artists. noise is all about purpose & intent, many people including myself have no interest in listening to random bandcamp releases with no context to the sounds given. unless your music is EXCEPTIONALLY good, don't go digital only. self release a tape & then trade it with other noise musicians, labels and distros (often the same thing). make an effort with your releases, really think through your themes and the physical packaging. get your music out there in physical form, and if it's good a label might offer to re-release it or to release your next work. DO NOT JUST POST IT ON BANDCAMP AND SPAM FACEBOOK GROUPS, that's super fucking lame.

as far as live stuff goes, sure you could practise a set but it really depends whether there's an active community in your local area. on the other hand i've seen cool youtube lives that i've really enjoyed, so maybe if you want consider filming one of those? idk, right now live stuff is so distant & who knows when it's coming back. i've personally been thinking of doing a studio live thing in an abandoned warehouse or something, just record everything with a zoom and film myself doing it. that could be a cool alternative to live shows.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by dangayle » Mon Feb 22, 2021 1:18 pm

carbonhazard wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:52 pm
i've personally been thinking of doing a studio live thing in an abandoned warehouse or something, just record everything with a zoom and film myself doing it. that could be a cool alternative to live shows.
Dude, if you do that be sure to snake some long mics out to the corners and pick up the entire room as an echo chamber

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by folpon » Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:35 pm

dangayle wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:03 pm
stepvhen wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 9:08 am
Bandcamp. Promote it if you want, make a run of 10 cassettes, give them away anyway, try to find a community where everyone listens to everyone elses music, do whatever.
I'd also suggest aiming for the art scene (look up no-input music) rather than the noise scene. Unles you're into that.
That's really good advice, thank you. I think I know just the guy locally.
I agree with dangayle here fully. I'll just add that instagram is a good place for experimental music; there's a sort of endogenous IG noise/synth culture there that can be enjoyable to participate in.
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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by NARC NOISE » Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:57 pm

I still like to go the route of CD's, packaged oddly and sent to the same 5-10 people. 1st CD had used cigarette butts, another CD had a bunch of tiny electrical components squashed under the disc tray, while the entire case was wrapped in cassette tape and an (unused) condom. My most recent one, which should be sent out to fellow weirdos soon has a bunch of dry spices under the disc tray, while the whole shebang is wrapped in a few long pieces of cooked lasagna with some marinara (gravy for you hardcore Italians...). Also do the soundcloud/youtube thing for shits and giggles.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by dangayle » Tue Feb 23, 2021 1:02 am

NARC NOISE wrote:
Mon Feb 22, 2021 2:57 pm
I still like to go the route of CD's, packaged oddly and sent to the same 5-10 people. 1st CD had used cigarette butts, another CD had a bunch of tiny electrical components squashed under the disc tray, while the entire case was wrapped in cassette tape and an (unused) condom. My most recent one, which should be sent out to fellow weirdos soon has a bunch of dry spices under the disc tray, while the whole shebang is wrapped in a few long pieces of cooked lasagna with some marinara (gravy for you hardcore Italians...). Also do the soundcloud/youtube thing for shits and giggles.
As much as I might appreciate someone's *music*, there is an absolute zero chance that I would appreciate someone's lasagna showing up at my door with a CD case.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by Euro Trash Bazooka » Tue Feb 23, 2021 1:16 am

You can use Bandcamp (but set a minimum price. If it's a name your price thing, people don't think it's worth buying), you can also selfrelease your stuff (tapes mostly), and since we can't play gigs anymore (although very useful), trade your stuff or send it away. I sent so many tapes around, to labels or random people. Eventually the word spreads and people come back to you for more. There are a few weird guys who buy whatever I put on my Bandcamp, and now, because of trades, there are a few labels who asked me to record some stuff for them.

Also, don't put out everything you record. Just because it's noise doesn't mean it has to be sub-par quality material.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by carbonhazard » Tue Feb 23, 2021 8:44 am

Euro Trash Bazooka wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 1:16 am
You can use Bandcamp (but set a minimum price. If it's a name your price thing, people don't think it's worth buying)
based on years of experience with my band i've found the opposite to be true. free with name your price gives you more revenue than setting a minimum price, even if that price is 1€.
Euro Trash Bazooka wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 1:16 am
Also, don't put out everything you record. Just because it's noise doesn't mean it has to be sub-par quality material.
this, this times 1000. noise is not easy to make, rare are the artists who can improvise stuff worth listening to. don't get fooled by super profilic big names, they've been making it for so long that they know what they're doing. if you're starting out, i'd wager 99% of your stuff is bad. it's hard to tell whether your own stuff is just bad or mediocre, and even harder to tell if it's just mediocre or good. that's why you want a label to release your stuff, and preferably someone who has to put actual money into it.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by Euro Trash Bazooka » Tue Feb 23, 2021 2:22 pm

carbonhazard wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 8:44 am
Euro Trash Bazooka wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 1:16 am
You can use Bandcamp (but set a minimum price. If it's a name your price thing, people don't think it's worth buying)
based on years of experience with my band i've found the opposite to be true. free with name your price gives you more revenue than setting a minimum price, even if that price is 1€.
Well my experience and my friends' tell me otherwise, so we'll have to agree to disagree I suppose? 🙂

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by carbonhazard » Tue Feb 23, 2021 3:10 pm

Euro Trash Bazooka wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 2:22 pm
carbonhazard wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 8:44 am
Euro Trash Bazooka wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 1:16 am
You can use Bandcamp (but set a minimum price. If it's a name your price thing, people don't think it's worth buying)
based on years of experience with my band i've found the opposite to be true. free with name your price gives you more revenue than setting a minimum price, even if that price is 1€.
Well my experience and my friends' tell me otherwise, so we'll have to agree to disagree I suppose? 🙂
Could be a genre thing. All I know is that once we started offering pay what you want, people downloaded a lot more and paid more. This was 2010-2017, things might very well have changed.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by Euro Trash Bazooka » Tue Feb 23, 2021 3:29 pm

carbonhazard wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 3:10 pm
Euro Trash Bazooka wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 2:22 pm
carbonhazard wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 8:44 am
Euro Trash Bazooka wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 1:16 am
You can use Bandcamp (but set a minimum price. If it's a name your price thing, people don't think it's worth buying)
based on years of experience with my band i've found the opposite to be true. free with name your price gives you more revenue than setting a minimum price, even if that price is 1€.
Well my experience and my friends' tell me otherwise, so we'll have to agree to disagree I suppose? 🙂
Could be a genre thing. All I know is that once we started offering pay what you want, people downloaded a lot more and paid more. This was 2010-2017, things might very well have changed.
That may well be indeed!

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by funeralcake » Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:53 pm

carbonhazard wrote:
Tue Feb 23, 2021 8:44 am
noise is not easy to make, rare are the artists who can improvise stuff worth listening to.
It goes without saying, but there is a common misconception that, just because anyone can make noise, none of it is practiced or complicated to execute, or otherwise considered and well-crafted in terms of production/engineering alone.

Part of the beauty of noise is that everyone can do it. In fact, we all do it. Constantly. Noise is everywhere. It's literally impossible to avoid it outside of a vacuum. It all gets very wishy-washy and philosophical from there, but the basic point is, anyone can do it, and it's just about the purest form of expressing affirmation of one's own "being" there is. But the ubiquity and effortlessness of noise is also a double-edged sword in that most of the noise we create (intentionally or otherwise) is unremarkable, if not downright dull. "Technical" noise artists, or else noise artists whose work is sensationally weird and out-of-the-ordinary, really are impressive if you have any idea of the level of trial and error, honing of performance skills and understanding of one's chosen "instrument" and how it operates is necessary to perform certain things live:



This comes back to my assertion about noise as a form of musical nihilism. It's a new, clean slate on which to draft an alternative musical language. One can become a virtuoso of anything once they establish the rules, practice and perfect them, even if it's slamming pedals on and off and turning knobs. One can also choose to wallow in apathy and indifference and basically marinate in one's own physical and psychological waste as a reaction to ultimate meaninglessness. Another common misconception is that nihilism necessarily requires a deferral to chaos or pessimism or "ushering in the new dark age" or something. I do not subscribe to the idea that nihilism is the end conclusion which negates all self-appointed meanings. In fact, it is the only thing that gives them validity, since God is now dead and music is now just another noise. It is the essential starting point from which people are able to construct new, relevant meanings, systems and languages. From this perspective, I reject the idea of "noise purity", which asserts that noise that is in some way practiced or "perfected" goes against the implied essential quality of noise, and the implied rule (and I've heard it stupidly suggested many times) that "true" noise (whatever the fuck that means) should defer to chaos/laziness/pessimism/non-effort/sheer happenstance. That isn't to say that there isn't value in trying to express that ultimate meaninglessness, chaos and absurdity in such a way (and despite the irony) as a way to sublimate existential angst.

Anyway, as impressive as technical performances can be, I am not a "no overdubs" purist either (another weirdly common preoccupation among noise dorks). I think even artists who are largely studio-based and generally just fly by the seat of their pants and throw anything and everything at the wall as the inspiration strikes them (I'm talking about myself here), but take the time to at least try (again, myself) to produce and engineer recordings to a high standard, can create impressive and engaging noise as well. Being shitty for the sake of sounding like shit does not make the end results any more trve or avthentik. Even HNW can have at least have a suggestion of depth/dimension, and it requires a lot more time and effort than one might expect to create this effect, or even to create interesting/evocative/"effective", flat textures.

Preaching to the choir, though. "Noise as a genre" is just hardcore porn for your ears, and that should be enough. People might try to zazz it up with plot lines or thematic flourishes, but it's only window dressing. EVERYTHING IS NOISE AND NOISE IS EVERYTHING. CONTEXT IS IRRELEVANT. BWUUUAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by Infinity Curve » Tue Feb 23, 2021 7:43 pm

Upload to bandcamp pay what you want(dont make it free or it doesnt show in the app), post about it on instagram, move on with your day.

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Re: Noise musicians: How do you release your work?

Post by sparood » Wed Feb 24, 2021 8:17 am

Making a tape with bizzarro artwork is half the fun of what makes noise noise.

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