There’s a very neat Web site, Disquiet.com, that covers assorted electronic music (though largely ambient and experimental). It’s run by Marc Weidenbaum, who’s also the author of 33 1/3: Aphex Twin’s Selected Ambient Works Volume II
The site is also home to the Disquiet Junto, “an ongoing weekly collaborative music-making space in which restraints are used as a springboard for creativity.” You can listen to project works on soundcloud.
Recently was Disquiet Junto Project 0177: Netlabel Portrait.
Basically, take the first 30 seconds of three specific tracks and use that as the raw material for your own piece.
The Neurogami submission is Schneefall, Nähe von Kempten [DJP 0177]
You can hear the current playlist here
(Well, at least until the next project, when there will be a new playlist.)
“Schneefall” was done using Renoise.
You can also download the xrns file: DisquietJuntoProject0177.xrns
The basic approach to re-purposing the source material was selecting shorter sections of sound and altering the pitch.
Renoise has some neat features that make certain effects easy. It has a built-in sample slicer. For any sample or slice of sample you can tell Renoise to adjust its pitch. This way a single bell-like tone in the source material could be made into a range of pitches.
Renoise also has special “fx” commands. for any given line in the song you can, for example, provide an instruction to glide the pitch up or done by some number of semitones. This is what gives the piece a somewhat microtonal feel; notes are periodically de-tuned up or down, sometimes gliding to a new, stable tone, other times hitting an almost-but-not-quite pitch.
There are three sections; these make use of the Renoise fx command to change the BMP. The piece goes slow-fast-slow.
It’s an ambient piece with a lot of repetition. The name was picked once it was completed.