Posted on April 14, 2015 by Renick

Junichi Uesugi and Renick Bell - Signal Farming (audio) (2008)

Signal Farming is the first set of works co-composed by Junichi Uesugi and Renick Bell. Junichi was originally Renick’s English student, and they found they had similar musical taste. After their class ended, they began to work on some music together. Every session was interspersed with vegetarian meals or snacks, which had a particularly strong effect on Junichi.

They made this music in a very relaxed way – usually working one day per month. First, digital recordings with a pair of condenser mics were made in a three-hour session of Junichi improvising on electric guitar and viola, sometimes with a delay or distortion pedal, at a practice space in Nakano, Tokyo in May of 2007. Over the next year, the two edited, processed, and arranged those sounds a few minutes from Togoshi Ginza, near Gotanda. The work was done on a Linux DAW using Ardour and various other pieces of free audio software. That work resulted in these five tracks.

Before arranging the edited audio, some sketches were drawn on paper of the structure or feeling of the tracks. Junichi wondered if he and Renick shared the same understanding of what the sketches meant. Though every sketch sat on the desk as they were working, he wasn’t always sure if they were going in the same direction.

Frequently (though progressively less often, thanks to the efforts of the software developers) the software crashed in the middle of editing, causing some edits to be redone multiple times. Some of that frustration and eventual satisfaction is captured in these tracks.

Every time, they lost their way or encountered headaches, such as crashes or digging through the original recordings. Finally, they could come to an agreement about which fragment to use or edit to make; that was satisfying.

THE3RD2ND_013 - Junichi Uesugi and Renick Bell - Signal Farming (audio) (2008)

Download the whole release as a zip archive:

01 - i dropped the pick (1:53)

02 - a busy but unfashionable neighborhood (3:08)

03 - wondering about selfishness (6:03)

04 - i dropped the same pick again (3:33)

05 - 不協和音 (fukyouwaon - dissonances) (8:27)

Illustration by Norio Kozima.