What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Discussing gear, production, and ideas for making noise music. Enough JMJ, let's rock like Merzbow!

Moderators: lisa, Kent, Joe.

Post Reply
User avatar
01235813
Common Wiggler
Posts: 175
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:48 am

What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by 01235813 » Mon Feb 03, 2020 2:54 pm

I listen to mainly rock, I appreciate a heavy song and totally dig it when things get chaotic and "noisy" at the climax.. that aside, I have a hard time listening to "real noise". Unable to do so, I find myself trying to to find the appeal of some of the music attributed to the genre of Noise.

How did you start listening to the genre, was it a slow transition from one extreme to the next? Do you think this is somewhat of an acquired taste? I used to hear bleeps and bloops and wonder what the hell, how can anyone listen to this? Today I understand and appreciate quite a bit of sound design, especially when complex harmonics come into play.

I've always tried to be open minded about music and can see something neat/likeable in just about any genre. Noise is a little different for me, although I have tried, I have not been able to feel the allure. Don't get me wrong, I'm not bashing; I'd really just like to hear/understand what it is that people find appealing.

Do you listen to this in the same manner as someone would listen to radio?

Does/can it actually have a hook, or a part that you look forward to in a song?

What is it that you find appealing, can you sit there listening to this for an hour?

Arneb
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 353
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 4:50 pm

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by Arneb » Mon Feb 03, 2020 3:06 pm

Depends on what you mean by "noise" I guess.

I'm mostly active in what I like to call the Euronoise scene - what's called "power noise" by Wikipedia, "post-industrial" by hipster e-zines and "EBM" by clueless Americans - and that stuff definitely does have musical elements like rhythm and song structure.

Japanoise and other forms of harsh noise are quite different though. My experience with those is that they're best approached not as music but as performance art.

User avatar
01235813
Common Wiggler
Posts: 175
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:48 am

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by 01235813 » Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:29 pm

Arneb wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 3:06 pm
Depends on what you mean by "noise" I guess. I'm mostly active in what I like to call the Euronoise scene - what's called "power noise" by Wikipedia, "post-industrial" by hipster e-zines and "EBM" by clueless Americans - and that stuff definitely does have musical elements like rhythm and song structure.

Japanoise and other forms of harsh noise are quite different though. My experience with those is that they're best approached not as music but as performance art.
I'm referring to Noise with (in my opinion) absolutely no rhythm or song structure. Something like Merzbow. I can wrap my head around viewing this this as performace art.

Btw. I googled "power noise" and actually found some cool stuff.

User avatar
Fallen_lassen
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 7:35 am
Location: Zaandoom

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by Fallen_lassen » Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:32 pm

It cleans the mind and it is soothing because it makes you stop thinking. Just like ambient. For me at least.
To infinity and beyond.

User avatar
01235813
Common Wiggler
Posts: 175
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:48 am

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by 01235813 » Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:44 pm

Fallen_lassen wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:32 pm
It cleans the mind and it is soothing because it makes you stop thinking. Just like ambient. For me at least.
To infinity and beyond.
Interesting but I can get where your coming from. I can see how this would drown everything else out.

Personally a metronome has this affect on me.

User avatar
Fallen_lassen
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 7:35 am
Location: Zaandoom

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by Fallen_lassen » Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:47 pm

Yes. Or the refrigerator or a sleeping dog ,anything.
With noise (music) it can take some time for the mind to adapt and to shut off.

naxuu
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 3:24 pm
Location: oakland ca

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by naxuu » Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:06 pm

For my part, I really appreciate noise as music, and while the performance art aspects are usually engaging when seeing it live, they're not the reason I love noise. Similar thing to me loving rock music as music, and seeing a really energetic and crazy live show is a big bonus but isn't the reason I'm there, per se. I know other commentors mean nothing by it and are just sharing their experiences, but I would caution against any approach that suggests fans are into any genre or subgenre of music for the scene or performances rather than the music itself - it's probably not true!

For my part, it's definitely about sound design, and about breaking out of the binary constraints and rigid aspects of traditional music theory and western conventional stuff, etc. I love the sonic density of it, and I love picking apart the layers. I love some noise and find others cold or uninteresting. I'm in a minority of noise fans that never found Merzbow that interesting (sacrilege) from a music perspective, but many of his contemporaries are, and Japanese noise is pretty incredible generally speaking. These days I tend to go for things that are situated in the drone-noise-ambient cross-section/spectrum (and I don't care if noise gatekeepers think that's not 'real' noise). You could say I love drone that has become maximalist in timbre, ugly, and difficult or impossible to analyze on any logical level. Love when my overly analytic brain kinda just breaks down and submits to the pure now experience. At live shows I love when it's so loud and unrelenting that my body vibrates at visceral frequencies and I can feel my bones and actual heart respond. After a particularly good noise set I have a vague awareness of having participated in something like a communal spiritual moment with the musicians and the other people in the room, but I wish I could say that without it sounding as lame and hippie and new age as it surely comes across.

I noticed you said this: "Today I understand and appreciate quite a bit of sound design, especially when complex harmonics come into play." I'd say, for me anyway, my approach to noise is no different. If anything, noise should be very interesting to you from that aspect of complex harmonics. I'm reminded of Make Noise wonderfully describing the (often harsh and noisy) sound of their complex oscillator, DPO, as "a complex harmonic lattice". Think of that phrase the next time you hear a pure wall of unrelenting noise and see if things click a bit from there.

naxuu
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 3:24 pm
Location: oakland ca

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by naxuu » Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:16 pm

Oh also, this is something I would consider pushing back against mentally:

"I'm referring to Noise with (in my opinion) absolutely no rhythm or song structure"

Listen for the (phantom) rhythms, and try to find the structure. They're often buried or nearly imperceptible, but that doesn't mean they're non-existent. They can sometimes be the key to the whole thing.

User avatar
luchog
Crazy Pony
Posts: 888
Joined: Sat Nov 21, 2015 2:57 pm
Location: The Emerald City

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by luchog » Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:37 pm

I'd mostly agree with naxuu.

I like most kinds of noise, ranging from semi-melodic Industrial Noise stuff, to the harsher and more chaotic Japanese noise, to layered noise drones, to Musique Concrète, and so on. I also listen to non-melodic ambiant stuff.

I like stuff that breaks free of traditional, especially western, ideas of music and harmony, and explores more idiosyncratic soundscapes. I discovered noise back in the early '90s with bands such as Merzbow and Cosmic Coincidence Control Center; and a bit later more industrial stuff like Throbbing Gristle and other Genesis P Orridge projects. These days, my listening also includes stuff like Dead Voices On Air, download (a cEvin Key project), and Future Sound of London. I love the use of complex, layered sounds that build off each other.

I don't often sit and listen to noise for its own sake, usually it's more what John Carpenter referred to as "wallpaper music", that is, it's something that's playing while I do something else. I like the way that it sort of focuses my mind, give it something interesting to do while working on more repetitive, less intellectually-stimulating tasks.
naxuu wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:16 pm
Oh also, this is something I would consider pushing back against mentally:

"I'm referring to Noise with (in my opinion) absolutely no rhythm or song structure"

Listen for the (phantom) rhythms, and try to find the structure. They're often buried or nearly imperceptible, but that doesn't mean they're non-existent. They can sometimes be the key to the whole thing.
Agreed. There are often layered, complex, and shifting rhythms in noise music, which help form a line through it that the mind is able to follow, giving it a subtle sense of movement and structure.

Bataserpa
Common Wiggler
Posts: 146
Joined: Tue Jul 16, 2013 1:44 pm

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by Bataserpa » Tue Feb 04, 2020 3:00 pm

I am listening and playing harsh noise for years. In my opinion there is no genre in music more subjective than this. Noise is more a physical and psychologic experience than regular music. Just listen all those frequencies traveling around your brain and body is something really hard to explain. It's real a pure sound and texture experience. There a tittle/quote that translate well what noise is:

"music is castrated noise"
Dror Feiler

User avatar
Euro Trash Bazooka
Common Wiggler
Posts: 207
Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:44 am
Location: Bdx, France.

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by Euro Trash Bazooka » Tue Feb 04, 2020 6:16 pm

I love noise music. Harsh noise, industrial, PE that's not made by try-hard, noisecore, the more agressive musique concrète or electro-acoustic music, etc.

For me it's mostly about textures, there's something soothing in harsh sounds kind of like in drones. That's why I love black metal too. I'm currently listening to Kazumoto Endo on my headphones and I'm about to sleep. Best way to fall asleep for me. It can be either background music or something I need to listen to closely to dissect every subtleties. I love it.

Enjoy:




User avatar
Infinity Curve
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1105
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2014 11:29 am
Location: Toronto Canada

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by Infinity Curve » Wed Feb 05, 2020 1:28 pm

with 'music' I have some idea what is coming up, whether its melody, chorus, whatever

not so much with noise, lots of suprises

pixelmechanic
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1013
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 4:36 am
Location: Edinburgh, UK

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by pixelmechanic » Wed Feb 05, 2020 1:36 pm

Paul Hegarty has some interesting ideas on the appeal of noise in his books and papers... short version here via Rosa Menkman - http://rosa-menkman.blogspot.com/2010/0 ... y.html?m=1

Also, here's a free (digital) book published by Huddersfield Uni on 'Noise in and as Music' -
https://unipress.hud.ac.uk/plugins/books/5/

User avatar
wackelpeter
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 408
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2015 5:56 pm
Location: Germany, MD

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by wackelpeter » Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:43 pm

Depends on...

Once i was more invested into noise music...

For my part it was a steady progress of radicalization in what i consumed in a musical sense... starting with some ordinary EBM and later arrived at Skinny Puppy and thus slipped into the noise genre from there...

Nowadays i don't listen that much to noise music anymore, except John Duncan, C.M.von Hausswolff and a few others... (if one would consider them noise artists) usually still listen to a lot of the early industrial stuff like Cabaret Voltaire, Throbbing Gristle, etc... But mostly disbanded the power electronics genre and it's kinky attitude with shock tactics or images and such...

I still have some Merzbow, Haters or similar records around and find some of them very relaxing and pleasing, but this often depends on my mood... On the other hand i can't stand a certain kind of noise music, it's hard to describe... i would rather define it that i do not listen to a certain kind of noise music for the noise's sake but for the power of the sound... means this mostly is the kind of more "structured" noise music i adore, still walls of sound in terms of power of the sound but not solely walls of sound in terms of noise and chaos...




btw... that serge stuff in the video above sounds cool.. like it

User avatar
Bartelby
Common Wiggler
Posts: 157
Joined: Mon May 07, 2018 12:40 pm
Location: Penperlleni, Sunny Wales

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by Bartelby » Wed Feb 05, 2020 2:59 pm

Fallen_lassen wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:32 pm
It cleans the mind and it is soothing because it makes you stop thinking. Just like ambient. For me at least.
To infinity and beyond.
I find it can both stop you thinking or aid your thinking...

I find stuff like Merzbow and Incapacitants helps me concentrate on work.
Blots out the outside world, no rhythms, vocals or true melodies to distract me from the task.

User avatar
sparood
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 464
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2015 3:51 pm
Location: Netherlands

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by sparood » Thu Feb 06, 2020 5:40 pm

Do it yourself and find out!

User avatar
moremagic
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1057
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2010 8:45 pm
Location: NC
Contact:

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by moremagic » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:57 pm

everything! noise is what music wants to be

User avatar
thetwlo
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 4764
Joined: Wed Apr 16, 2008 4:05 pm
Location: East Bay, CA US

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by thetwlo » Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:01 am



User avatar
GuyaGuy
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 1506
Joined: Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:49 am
Location: Brooklyn | NY | USA

Re: What is it about the musical genre "noise" that you find appealing?

Post by GuyaGuy » Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:33 am

I feel like this diagram is just as true of noise music.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Post Reply

Return to “Synth Noise”