Noise Terms

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Numeric

  • 0-Cost:
    • Something that you have gotten for free
  • 14k:
    When Noise Blogger's upload your $14k release
    • Unwisely spending a large amount of borrowed money on a noise release.
  • 20:
    • standard length of a noise set
  • 4:33:
    • A piece by John Cage where the audience listens to the ambient sound of the performance space
  • $5:
    • The best increment to use for selling merch at shows. When talking about vinyl it has been said that it should be a dollar per inch but since making change at a show is a pain round up to the next 5 dollar increment.
  • 555 Timer:
    555 Timer IC
    • This integrated circuit is a common and easier to use component to build noise making devices such as the well known Atari Punk Console
  • 911:
    • Was an inside job, jet fuel can't melt steel beams, have you seen my 1943 bronze cent?
  • 9 vdc:
    • The typical voltage for guitar pedals is 9 volts DC

A

  • AC:
    • Alternating Current, also known as mains power. In the US the voltage is 120 and in Europe it is often 240. Many devices have a switch on the back allowing it work with either. Newer wallwarts will work with either. 240 really hurts. Some audio devices like Alesis require a wallwart but still use AC at a lower voltage instead of DC.
  • Academic Noise:
    jliat drives fast
    • Anyone who has or is trying to achieve a Master's degree or higher in the field of music by studying noise. There aren't many examples of Academic noisers to be found on forums as they know better. jliat is one such academic noiser that does not know better. Others tend to only turn up to do interviews of noisers or post questionnaires for their research papers.
  • Ambient:
    • If you have ever bought a CD that said play this as loud as possible it wasn't ambient.
  • Analog vs Digital:
    • This is a sometimes hotly debated noise forum topic. Analog is of course more KVLT for unknown reasons when noise made by either probably sounds like shit.
  • Anti-Record:
    • Anti-Records are more art object than an actual playable audio recording. The most common anti-record is made by destroying the grooves of an existing record to the point of them the original sounds being unrecognizable. Anti-Records could also be a piece of tar paper with a hole drilled in the middle. Anti-Records are not to be played on your audiophile turntable.
  • APC:
    Atari Logo
    • Atari Punk Console is a popular DIY noise making device that was designed by Forest Mimms and utilizes a 555 timer.
  • Art:
    • Discussing art on noise forums is an invitation for disaster. Everything is art or maybe nothing is art. You can't spell fart without art.
  • Artist copies:
    • These are copies of a release that are given to the artist. Sometimes these copies have special art or sometimes the artist never receives them at all.
  • Audience:
    • The noiser reluctant girlfriend/boyfriend and other noisers waiting to perform (luckily with their bored girlfriends/boyfriends).

B

  • Baby's First Noise:
    Baby's First Noise
    • A somewhat cynical phrase uttered by Ron Lessard in the secret maniacs only forum in reference to his interest in releasing the first noise release for noise newbs.
  • Beard:
    • Many noisers have beards especially in the PNW
  • Bearpussy:
    • A certain type of noise forum user who gets upset by non serious noise posting.
  • Beats:
    • Generally speaking all musical elements are rejected in noise but given the problems with lack of originality certain aspects such as rhythm especially very simple beats are given a pass. It is debatable but Power Electronics may be more likely to have beats. It is often the case that after a noise set that someone from the audience will ask the performer if they have considered adding beats.
  • Bedroom Noise:
    Typical Noiser's Bedroom
    • Noise that is literally recorded in your bedroom which is common among noisers, not to be confused with toilet noise.
  • Behringer:
    • Manufacturer of extremely cheap and mostly shitty audio gear. Their marketing strategy is a race to the bottom price wise which has lead to a large number of quality issue in their products. But their products are so cheap that it is hard for the new noiser to resist the low low prices. Common problems have been with the power supply or connections going bad, bad audio jacks, bad battery operation and generally poor digital sound quality.
  • BDSM:
    • Bondage, Domination, Sadism and Masochism is a popular subject of many a harshnoise, power electronics or HNW release. Most of the people putting out this material are skinny nerds.
  • Bitcrushing:
    • Another way to create distortion and glitches is bitcrushing. This usually involves converting the audio to a digital stream and reducing the bit count and then converting it back to analog which causes the output to be stairstepped.
  • BitchBOX:
    4 Way Bitchbox by Xdugef
    • This device is four floops configured with a rotary switch that was designed by XDUGEF
  • Black:
    • This is the default color of everything noise related which is kinda ironic in respect to the physics of actual noise.
  • Blackboard:
    Troniks main page banner
    • Nickname for the old Troniks forum because it had a black color scheme
  • Black MIDI:
    • A style of MIDI composition where so many notes are used that the piano roll view of the composition is blackened with too many notes. This educational video made in the early 80's shows an early example of Black Midi Discovering Electronic Music (1983). Prior to the predominance of computers there were "Black Piano Rolls" where the music was composed by punching holes in paper rolls with more notes than any human could possibly play.
  • Black Noise:
    • According to David Bowie, Black Noise is a Noise Bomb and as such it is a sound that can break glass, people or cities. David Bowie on Dick Cavet Black Noise is also a genre of Black Metal that is extremely minimal and is mostly noise with very few if any musical elements. The genre is mostly known only on black metal forums and derided for the lack of effort. Black Noise is also a technical term for a type of noise where there is mostly silence and some noise and is sometimes associated with natural disasters.
  • Blackened Noise:
    • A type of HNW often created by fans of black metal
  • Blue Smoke:
    • When an electrical device is fried it typically release the magic blue smoke or electronic ghost/spirit
  • Bricked:
    • When I an electronic device is rendered useless
  • BRVTAL:
    • An overused adjective for describing noise in noise reviews
  • Brown Note:
    • The military has experimented with audio weapons and the so called "brown note" was capable of causing involuntary bowel movements.
  • Brojob:
    • A variation of a shill is when friends of the label or artist post highly complimentary comments on forums about a release. Brojobs may contain phrases such as "I need to grip this" or "this is the most KVLT/BRVTAL/FROZEN release ever".
  • Brownian Noise:
    • This is type of static noise that has an even slope of -20 db per decade and has more intensity at the lower frequencies
  • Bucket Brigade:
    A real bucket brigade
    • A type of analog delay that uses a series of capacitors to delay the signal by cascading it from one "bucket" to another. This type of delay tends to alter the timbre of the sound being delay which has a certain KVLT quality about it that is BRVTAL.
  • BW:
    • Black and White artwork is almost mandatory for release art to be KVLT. This probably developed out of dependency to xerox machines for release art duplication.
  • Buzzbox:
    DOD FX33 Buzzbox
    • Another guitar pedal (allegedly named after Buzz from the Melvins) made by DOD that was very popular with noisers. The FX33 Buzz Box pedal was not very popular with guitar players and because of this not many were made which caused the prices on ebay for this pedal to sometimes exceed $300 due to their rarity. But for awhile possessing this pedal was a sure fire way to up your noise street cred.

C

  • C10:
    Cassette Tape
    • A cassette tape with a total running time of 10 minutes, 5 mins per side.
  • California 10xLP box:
    • This release was a landmark of sorts both in the output of the three record labels that cooperated to release it and a major implosion within the noise scene. The release of the comp occurred shortly after the the exposure of the secret maniacsonly section of the Troniks noise forum. Stimbox had discovered the secret forum when a friend unwittingly visited the forum using Stim's computer and didn't log out. Stim had previously had a falling out with Ron Lessard after Ron rejected material Stim had submitted claiming there was too much laser noise. Because of this Stim even though was considered a major noise artist from California at the time was not invited to contribute to the California box. However Xome a close friend of Stim's was and reportedly use some of Stim's material in his tracks. Later a minor revision war broke out on the discogs page for the release over crediting Stimbox on the page even though he was not officially in the releases liner notes.
  • CDr:
    • The recordable compact disc used to be the most popular "noisecoin" and media for releasing noise. However CDr have fallen out of favor and have been superseded by cassette tapes. CDr was never an especially KVLT format like vinyl is. CDr's are duplicated whereas regular CD's are replicated.
  • CD Rot:
    • Certain types of CD's and CDr's have been noted recently for the unanticipated break down of materials causing the disc to become unplayable and thus placing another nail in the coffin of the CD as a decreasingly popular format.
  • CD Text:
    • This is the text that is stored on a CD or CDr that allows certain modern CD players to display the name of which track is playing without being connected to the internet.
  • Circle jerking:
    • Similar to brojob except everybody is giving each other a brojob. This process does to a large degree keep the scene alive.
  • Circuit Bending:
    Circuit Bent GWB doll by Univac
    • This is a term that was coined by Reed Ghazala to describe the process of modifying battery powered toys and devices to make new sounds interesting sounds. Circuit Bending is typically abhorred by serious noise guys because of the use of toys and the close association with costume noise.
  • Clamshell:
    • A type of cassette or VHS tape enclosure usually for holding two or more tapes.
  • Clipping:
    • When a signal is too loud it will clip which squares off the waveform and adds distortion and magical harmonics.
  • Cool Story, Bro:
    • Noisers being an awkward bunch often have a hard time finding things to talk about besides stories about weird shit that happened at gigs they have played at or been to. This leads to one upping and when somebody gets annoyed they will utter the phrase Cool Story, Bro to indicate their displeasure or they may say it to ironically indicate their pleasure.. you really would have had to been there to know the difference.
  • Collage:
    • A popular method for created art for releases is to xerox a bunch of images, then tear them into pieces and photocopy it using the shittiest photocopier you can and messing with the controls until the rends result is suitably terrible.
  • Commodity Fetishism:
    • This is a term coined by Karl Marx in his critique of the political economy. In regards to noise and noise releases there seems to be a lot of emphasis placed on packaging when the audio content is often void of meaning and quality. It would appear that often people only collect noise for the packaging. Record Collector Scum seem to be especially troubled with commodity fetishism.
  • Comp:
    • A compilation of various noise artists. Comps are often themed.
  • Contact Mic:
    Contact mics use piezo transducers
    • Otherwise known as a piezo transducer and a common tool in the noise makers arsenal. They are used to capture sounds from all sorts of objects that are not necessarily instruments. They put the electro in electro-acoustic music
  • Contact Points:
    LRon Hubbard making contact with a tomato
    • In Circuit Bending contact points are used to allow the operator to use their bodies own resistance or capacitance to influence the sounds made by the circuit bent device. The electrical principles involved are similar to a lie detector and can used with anything that is conductive such as meat (EVIL_MOISTURE) or even plants like a Tomato or Marijuana.
  • Conjuring:
    • This is an act usually committed by audience members standing directly in front of the live noise performers where they have one or both arms extended in front of them gesturing as if they are trying to "conjure" something from the Aether. This physcial gesture indicates that something is KVLT.
  • Costume Noise:
    Rubber O Cement is classic costume noise
    • Any type of noise made by a performer wearing a mask or any kind of costume. Typically considered a bad thing by serious noise guys possibly because it reminds them of the Insane Clown Posse and serious noise guys are not down with the clown.
  • Cutup Noise:
    • This particular style of noise is distinguished by jarring and hard cuts between different sounds or noises. The process to achieve this can vary greatly. One might cutup and splice actual pieces of analog tape, use cut and paste on the computer or use a sampling delay pedal or switch rapidly between different sources with a device similar to the BitchBOX or just use a rattle box and unironically a noise gate.
  • CrackleBox:
    • Is a specific battery powered noise making device that was designed in the 60's
  • Crustalize:
    • The process through which something becomes crusty.
  • CV:
    • Stands for Control Voltage which is used as an analog means to control audio devices. There are different standards for the range of voltage it's anywhere between 0 and 10 volts depending on the device and used primarily by modular synths, and older analog synths that were created before MIDI.

D

  • Databending:
    A jpg image that has been databent
    • Conceptually related to circuit bending this process alters a computer file in such a way that it when it is played back through standard software it creates new and unexpected sounds. This is usually accomplished by opening an mp3 or mpg in a text editor and entering a few random letters here and there which causes the interpreter to freak out. In regards to circuit bending it is most like what is known as a "shitshot".
  • DC:
    • Direct Current or District of Columbia. DC unlike AC is polarized and the amplitude of the voltage moves from 0 to positive whereas AC "alternates" between positive and negative. The typical effects pedal takes 9 volts dc. Some devices have diodes to protect from damage (may evoke the blue smoke) that may occur if the polarized connection is reversed by mistake.
  • Deathkey:
    • A self described noise nazi project. This project received much undo attention because of the controversial subject matter of their releases. This project scored high on the KVLT scale and had very slick release art. Their first release "Hammer Of Aryan Terror" was put out by Ron Lessard/RRR and Mikko Aspa/Freak Animal and the cover art feature an image of a Star of David with what appears to be a Nazi dagger stabbing it. It was rumored that the project was actually a complete fraud fabricated by the Noise Illuminati however the man responsible is some guy named Antichrist Kramer from Chicago who was better known in the black metal scene before getting involved in noise. Discogs is currently blocking all sales of Deathkey in their marketplace which is probably further boosting the KVLT status and prices among record collector scum.
  • Death Metal Pedal:
    Death Metal Pedal Belt
    • Instant HNW noise in a box.. the only thing better that one DMP is multiple DMPs. There are several different version of this pedal. This pedal has become a meme.
  • Deleted bookmark:
    Ron deletes bookmark to Maniacsonly
    • In the wake of the closure of the troniks forum Ron Lessard was made moderator of the maniacsonly noise forum. Ron was a terrible moderator and after awhile he snapped and banned a few people for no apparent reason. He may have banned this one guy because of somethign he said about old peopel taking too long to buy stamps at the Post Office. After being called out on it Ron said he was going to "delete the bookmark" to the forum and never logged on again.
  • Dicknipples:
    • As part of his live performance Xdugef dons a set of fake tits that have balloon animals connected to each nipple that are inflated using canned air thus creating 4-6 foot long dick nipples.
  • Distro:
    • Short for distribution. Distributors stock and sell merch from different labels.
  • Dirty Noise Hippy:
    • These are sort of like crust punks but they are into noise. They tend to be seen in Florida, Michigan and the PNW more than anywhere else and often congregate at Noise festivals. Beware of cavorting with them as you might catch a bad case of noise cooties.
  • DIY:
    • Do It Yourself. There is some debate as to how far one really needs to go to truly be DIY but the general idea here is that musicians or in this case noisers don't need a major record label to distribute their bullshit. Since the invention of the interwebbs it is easier than ever to pipe your bullshit into anyone's ear who wants to hear it. This has caused much distress to members of the Noise Illuminati who have wrung their hands over the issue of their being too much noise to shift to. The solution is to only buy vinyl because surely no one would go through the trouble and expensive to release shitty noise record right?
  • DOD:
    • A manufacturer of guitar pedals now owned by Harman International which also owns Digitech.
  • Dogfart:
    Mikko Aspa shirtless and ready for PE
    • Nickname for Mikko Aspa (FreakAnimal) on the Troniks forum.
  • Drone:
    • This style is probably more like music than noise even though it's mostly about taping a key down on your Korg MS20 and taking a nap.
  • Dubber:
    • Dubbing typically refers to duplicating tape cassettes, a special deck for this purpose is called a dubber.
  • Dungeon Synth:
    • A non-existant genre that seemingly describe music made on analog keyboards like a Korg MS20 in someone's basement or actual dungeon. As a style it is probably very spooky and noisers such as ATRAX MORGUE or Hivemind can probably relate.

E

  • Entropy:
    GX Jupitter Larsen: Pump-Powered Permawave
    • When in doubt break shit. Many noisers are fascinated with decay and the slow gradual destruction of the universe. Some cite entropy as being why they like tape or vinyl because when you play them you are destroying them a little bit. Some performers like GX Jupiter Larsen try to demonstrate entropy in action by doing something repetitive which eventual causes the audience or listener to focus on the subtle variations one will find within the act of pumping air into a closed suitcase for a full hour.
  • Expression Pedal:
    • Many guitar pedals have an input for an "expression pedal" which is essentially a poteniometer that is operated with a foot pedal. This idea probably first appeared on wah pedals.

F

  • Feedback
    • When you put the mic too close to the speaker you will get high pitches shrieks. One of the most asked questions by noise newbs is will this blow up my amp.
  • Field Recording:
    The literal recording of a field
    • These are usually recordings made of incidental or environmental sounds and used as is or processed. They can be made in doors or outdoors and do not have to literally be made in a field.
  • Flakelist:
    • Noisers who bail on their gigs without notice and/or an acceptable excuse. +-error for example booked himself a slot at Norcal Noisefest and claimed he flew from Germany to the states but then for some lame reason flew back without showing up at the venue. Coincidentally +-error also is well known for doing shows where he uses better known noisers noise while he pretends to air noise the gear on his table.
  • Flanger:
    • This audio effect is pretty common and makes a wooshing sound.. best if used %100 wet for the entire album.
  • Floop:
    • Short for feedback loop. Feedback loops can be created simply by connecting the output of a device back into the input of the device. You can use a Y-adapter on the output in order to hear the results. It is usually necessary for there to be some amount of gain in order to achieve feedback and so distortion pedals and mixers are usually ideal for this purpose. Inserting delays and eq's into the loop can create also of interesting effects as well as mixing in other sound sources into the loop. Feedback is essentially a way to create a sine wave and some early waveform generators use controlled feedback to create a constant sinewave.
  • Frequency Shifting:
    • Also known as heterodyning, A Real Frequency Shift will shift the spectrum of a sound giving a very metallic result, while Pitch Shifting will dilate it, retaining the harmonic relationship of the sound.
  • Fuzz:
    • Another word for distortion

G

  • GAS:
    A major pile of delays
    • Gear Acquisition Syndrome is common among noisers and most all electronic music makers. Collecting gear and posting about your latest acquisition becomes a large part of the noisers experience especially online. Gear is probably the one topic that almost all users online can find common ground.
  • Gimmicks:
    • In the quest to be original and unique in an overly saturated noise release market many projects resort to packaging gimmicks to set their release apart.
  • GIS:
    • Google Image Search is the least KVLT way to find art for your noise release.
  • Glitch:
    • Is any number of effects or techniques to create intermittent spastic noise. A common method these days is to use pedals that use granular synthesis to take tiny samples of incoming audio and rearrange them.
  • Gonkulator:
    • The DOD FX13 Gonkulator Modulator was another unusual pedal made by DOD that had limited use among guitar players and found some use among noise makers. Essentially the "Gonk" is a rather tame ring modulator. It does not have a carrier wave input which kind of limits it's abilities. Because of it's rarity it also garnered high prices on ebay although it has for some reason been reissued even though it's really not all that great.
  • Gristleizer:
    Throbbing Gristle's Gristleizer
    • Is an audio device built by Chris Carter that was used by Throbbing Gristle that was based on a design for a guitar effects pedal designed by Roy Gwinn for the July 1975 issue of Practical Electronics magazine. The effect makes the incoming sound warbley or even a bit like cutup noise. Genesis P'orridge has been quoted as saying something like anybody can make experimental music if they buy several 1000 pounds of sound processing gear.
  • Grip:
    • How one expresses interest in buying a noise release when posting online

H

  • Have you seen the graph:
    Popularity of Clemon Graph
    • Inspired by jliat's STDEV noise research. The phrase "Have you seen the graph" began to be used to refer to any spurious claim made by certain people.. especially unsubstantiated claims that they would make over and over again.
  • Headbanging:
    • Not as common as conjuring at noise shows .. the person doing the headbanging will have long hair of course and probably be wearing a black denim vest with black metal patches on it.
  • Hipster:
    • It's almost impossible to define who is a hipster but many have tried. The noise scene has a love/hate relationship with them.
  • Hotpocket:
    • A microwaveable pastry filled with gross meat also a derogatory word for a noise release.
  • HNW:
    • Harsh Noise Walls. The godfather of HNW is Vomir who described HNW as having "no dynamics, no change, no development, no ideas". It has often been speculated that HNW is just a big joke despite there being wiffs of serious noise or noise is serious business surrounding it. In the early days HNW was controversial which attracted many copycat noisers. Now that discogs has added a HNW tag it is over.

J

  • Junk Noise:
    Despite being a junk man, Fred Sanford is not a fan of junk noise
    • Perhaps as a hold over from industrial music and fans of Einsturzde Nebauten junk noise is literally made from the sounds of breaking shit or beating on random pieces of metal. Such recordings are prime for being used in Cutup Noise to provide textural variety. Junk noise should not be confused with noise made by Junko of the japanese noise group Hijokaidan.

K

  • the letter K:
    • Another way to try to achieve KVLT status is to replace the letter C in your band name and liner notes with the letter K.
  • KISS:
    • Keep It Simple Stupid
  • Knobs:
    • Most noisers turn knobs or twist controls of guitar pedals and effects units instead of playing "instruments"
  • Krell patch:
    When a Krell patch goes wrong
    • In the movie Forbidden Planet which is much loved for it's early and experimental sound track which included sounds that were generated with aspects of entropy an ancient race called the Krell have left behind an underground power planet capable of creating an infinite amount of power. A Krell patch is a type of random self oscillating patch. The patch is like a feedback loop where the output is connected to the input that is what causes the sounds to change and continue to evolve. The sounds created are usually long rising and falling pitches which variations in duration and intensity.
  • KVLT:
    • Only the Noise Illuminati knows what is KVLT
  • Korg MS20
    • Analog audio electronics have a higher KVLT status than digital keyboards and vintage analog keyboards are even better. Too bad Korg smelled a chance at profit and have released the MS20 as smaller more manageable keyboard that any bedroom noiser could possibly afford to make drones or dungeon synth with.

L

  • Laptop Noise:
    If Vomir used a laptop
    • This type of noise is mostly made with software on a laptop computer. Of course when comes down to it when you are listening to noise it really does not matter how it is made but there is some dispute over watching somebody do a live "performance" using a laptop computer. This has led to comments such as "for all I know they are checking their email". There are of course some famous noisers who use laptops such as Merzbow who much like his career in music gave up using pedals and is not using a computer. John Wiese was once criticized for playing a recording at a show which I presume was on his laptop but he did not sit behind his laptop and at least look like he was performing. His response was "the noise didn't make itself". There are many pieces of software one can use to make noise on the laptop. Two pieces that are especially popular are Max MSP (mac) and Pure Data/PD on windows.. both lend an air of academia to your randomized chunks of static.
  • Lathe:
    • Vinyl lathes are special turntables with a vinyl cutting head to create very short runs of records. The sound quality is usually not nearly as good as a pressed record. Lathe records do have a certain high amount of KVLT street cred for being rare and slightly more DIY than getting a record pressed. For extra street cred make it one sided and drill some extra spindle holes in it for good measure.
  • Lasernoise:
    Stimbox - Lazer Noise Up Your Ass
    • A type of floop noise that utilizes digital delay with lots of repeats with decay, Stimbox was well known for this type of noise. There was a noisebeef between Stimbox and Sickness and the later proposed a noise dual where Stimbox would not be allowed to use a delay in his setup implying that the use of a delay was a crutch.
  • LFO:
    • Not to be confused with UFO a Low Frequency Oscillator may generate any number of different waveforms including sine, square and saw at frequencies that are usually below the range of human hearing. LFO's are typically used to control VCO's or to modulate filters or delays.
  • Limited Release:
    • A release where the number of copies is more than 1 but less than 12. The number is usually dictated by poverty rather than demand. Although in some cases the number is so absurdly low that the label can say it's sold out the same day or specifically within ten minutes of posting about it and when their two friends brojob the only copies.
  • Locked Groove:
    • On vinyl records it is possible to put one of more grooves on the record that once that needle has found it's way to it cannot escape. Adding locked grooves improves KVLT street cred. Adding 500 such as the RRR 500 does creates a blackhole in time and space and is a sure fire way to KVLT noise infamy. WARNING! Reproducing this novelty will lead to an infinite amount of it's been done already or at the very least give Jack White a small boner.
  • Loops:
    • One of the main techniques of making noise is the use of loops. Prior to the proliferation of cheap sampling delays one had to actual make tape loops. These days anybody can pick up a cheap as delay pedal for under $50 and make loops all day long. To make things interesting one will play several loops at once and run the loop for some kind of effects pedal then put everything through a Death Metal Pedal and call it HNW.

M

  • Masturbatory:
    • There are many aspects of noise that are masturbatory. In particular most of the people making noise mostly make it for their own enjoyment. Much like farts one's noise sounds best to them especially if it's shitnoise. In one notorious case the artist ejaculated on every single copy of their 7 inch vinyl release claiming that the death of a member of anti-fa gave them erotic pleasure. There are many aspects of this release that make it repulsive but also KVLT.
  • Maniacs:
    NEVER FOREVER
    • "Do you know true maniacal terror?" was the slogan of the iheartnoise/troniks noise forum which was possibly the log line from an exploitation slasher film. At some point it was revealed that there was a secret section for Maniacs who were presumably the biggest players in the noise scene at the time. This revelation lead to the eventual demise of the forum is it bred numerous Noise Beefs from all the shit talking and back stabbings. Shortly after the site closed a new copycat site was created by Nathan Trites AKA Pup called maniacsonly.com. The new forum however is conspicuously missing most if not all of the supposed major players from the noise scene and is a shadow of what the "blackboard" was in the glory days of noise forums.
  • Matrix Mixer:
    • A type of mixer (usually DIY and passive) where there are two sets of inputs placed in a grid and any input can be combined with any other input using poteniometers
  • M.A.N.:
    • Mothers Against Noise was a hoax perpetrated by the band Wolf Eyes in 2006. The story goes that WE and maybe John Wiese were playing a show in San Diego and a group of enraged Mothers protested the show. There was never any press coverage of this incident and the first mention of the incident was found to be posted by a friend of WE on the troniks noise forum. M.A.N. then had a website that was listing other specific bands that seemed to be related to WE that were being specifically targeted. Years later after interest had been lost in the Hoax also played a solo gig in Los Angeles where he claimed he was pulled over by the police and officer made a reference to M.A.N.
  • Meatbox:
    FX32 DOD Meatbox
    • The FX32 DOD MeatBox is a suboctave generator that is very popular with noisers. It was more popular as an actual guitar pedal so for a time was fairly easy to find for under $50. However like the Buzzbox the prices crept up until it was selling for hundreds of dollars. The pedal was reissued recently although the enclosure is much different than the original. One of the charming aspects of the original was that it came with little fly stickers you could place anywhere you wanted and the controls were called Meat, Rump, Flank and LBS. The reissue controls are Octave, Output, Sub and Low.
  • MediaMail:
    • The cheapest way to ship merch
  • Metal Machine Music:
    Lou Reed invented harsh noise and the shirtless thick belt look
    • This album by Lou Reed is often credited as being the first "noise" release ever which may be debatable. Reed's motivation was to get out of his current recording contract in which he had complete artistic control or something pissy like that. Many people who bought the record returned it thinking it was defective which has lead to it being scarce and catnip for record collector scum. The album also has locked groove which furthers it's KVLT status.
  • Merch:
    • Short for merchandise, you can tell someone is a seasoned noiser when they say they got merch for sale
  • Merzbutt:
    • A derogatory term for Merzbow
  • Merz___:
    • Putting Merz in front of another word in order to express a high level of excess
  • Monthly Tape Trade:
    • Each participants picks a month and when it's their month sends a tape to the 11 other participants.
  • Musique concrète:
    Pierre Schaeffer inventor of Musique concrète
    • This term was coined by Pierre Schaeffer to describe compositions built from prerecorded sounds. At the time this meant editing tape in what could be described as collage or cutups.
  • MS Paint:
    • This is the software of choice for shitnoise art release design.. it doesn't get shittier.

N

  • Name That Gear:
    • A phenomenon on forums where the would be noiser asks the forum to identify all the gear on a usually well known noisers table presumably so they can get the same gear and sound like them.
  • Net-Label:
    • A music label that only puts out releases online. The proliferation of noise on the internet has drawn much ire from the Noise Illuminati. Net-Labels are not KVLT and online releases have much difficulty getting reviewed as putting out digital only releases is too easy and denies the commodity fetish of many noisers.
  • NG:
  • Nikola Tesla:
    Nikola Tesla inventor of the Theremin
    • The inventor of the Theremin and all around cool guy
  • No Input:
    • No input audio mixer feedback
  • Noiser/Noisehead:
    • A person who makes noise, sometimes used in a derogatory fashion.
  • Noise Beef:
    • Any kind of dispute between two or more members of the noise scene. A common beef is over people who don't mail merch they have sold.
  • Noisecoin:
    • A type of currency. The trading noise merch is it's own economy. CDRs used to be the defacto noisecoin.
  • Noise Ninja:
    Xdugef gives a thumbs up to debri leftover from Norcal Noisefest XIII
    • After the Norcal Noisefest XIII an irate man wielding a samurai sword threatened the crowd of noisers who were milling about outside the performance space. At some point the gate was slammed shut and became jammed which shut out the sword wielding angry person. Undaunted he tried to grabbed a member of the band Actuary who twisted the deranged man's hand almost completely backwards. At some point the police showed up and the man from next door and his sword had disappeared.
  • Noise Illuminati:
    • An international consortium of noise taste makers that are shrouded in mystery
  • Noisepark:
    • A blog that features caricatures of noisers as South Park characters. The selection of who gets a makeover is probably the result of a brojob.

O

  • One Sided Record:
    • Typically an LP that only has audio on side as a way to reduce cost of putting out a vinyl recording. One sided LP's do have a certain amount of KVLT street cred.
  • Originality:
    A record made from concrete
    • A common problem in post modernity is the search for originality. The internet has made it possible for everyone everywhere to do the same things over and over again and post about it online. This often leads to shitposting where the comment "it's already been done" is stated frequently. Out of this has come the ultimate lack of originality which is HNW which by design is contains "no dynamics, no change, no development, no ideas". The previous phrase was coined by HNW god father and possible member of the Noise Illuminati: Vomir.
  • Open Call Comp:
    • A really lazy way for new labels to expand their catalog is to do an open call comp which invites all bed room noiseheads to submit their noise farts.
  • Oscillator:
    • The basis for most electronic sound synthesis is an oscillator which will create a continuous tone at a specified frequency until you do something dumb like hit it with a hammer and get into the bathtub with it plugged in.

R

  • Radio:
    • There are many uses for the radio in noise. You can use the radio as a sound source although some say that radio static is not good for HNW. You can also get your noise played on a college radio station or you can use an FM transmitter and try to move it just out of range of the radiop receiver as an effect.
  • Rackmount:
    • Any gear that can be mounted in a standard 19" wide rack. Each row is 1U. rack gear has a different aesthetic than the typical table full of pedals. There is alot of vintage audio gear that has high KVLT status as well as value. For example the Lexicon Super Primetime digital delay was a state of the art piece of gear back in the day and units in functional condition can fetch over a grand on ebay even though most modern digital delays are much cheaper and fit into a much smaller space that the 4U rack space the Primetime requires. It has often been said that you can tear a hole in space and time with the Super Primetime.
  • Record Collector Scum:
    Record Collector Scum catnip
    • These are the type of collectors who drive prices upward in the market and thrive on paying ridiculous amounts for obscure records. RCS are closely related to hipsters.
  • Real Noise Hero:
    • This is someone who uses noise for good or does good noise or is somehow good for the noise scene.
  • Real Talk:
    • Online discussion that is free of the usual bullshit
  • Recycled Tape:
    Two examples of the Xdugef RRR recycled tape
    • A popular tapes series produced by RRR is called Recycled Tapes. Because Ron runs a record store he started accumulating a surplus of used commercially made audio tapes and at some decided to recycle them as noise releases. There are many well known noisers in the series as well as probably what may have been babies first noise releases. The tapes are minimally decorated with color duct tape and the name of the project written in sharpie.
  • Rhythmic Noise:
    • This is a halfway step towards adding beats to your noise. The rhythm is often very monotonous and simple or "primitive" and very repetitive. If there are vocals run through a tremolo or flanger over the top of this then it might be Power Electronics.
  • Ring Modulator:
    • Ring Modulation uses a carrier wave combined with the voice signal and can output the difference of the two signals. Ring Mods have been used to decode FM radio transmissions. It often sounds like a robot voice effect
  • RRR:
    • This is the record label run by Ron Lessard (AKA Emil Beaulieau) in Lowell MA. I'm not sure what the RRR actually stands for.. I think Ron said Ron's Records sounded dumb but RRR sounded cool so he used that.

P

  • Passive Mixer:
    Rolls MX41b 4ch passive mixer
    • A type of audio mixer that only uses passive components to mix audio signals. They can also be used as a mult in order to send one signal to multiple devices.
  • Patch Cable:
    • Typically very short cables used to connect guitar pedals or modules in a modular rig.
  • Pedal Hoarding:
    • a variation of GAS (gear acquisition syndrome) but specific to pedals. Like record collector scum, pedal hoarders drive the prices of what were cheap guitar pedals nobody wanted into absurd prices of hundreds of dollars on ebay.
  • Photoshop:
    • Pretty much the standard graphic design tool for noise art. There are other tools but they are shitty.. fuck those other tools.
  • Pluralism:
    • There was a period when every other new noise project was pluralized even though most noise projects are solo one man bands.
  • PNW:
    • Pacific North West. Eugene OR, Portland OR, Seattle WA and Vancouver WA are PNW noise cities.
  • Polycase/Softcase:
    • A type of tape cassette packaging where the case is made from a slightly flexible plastic
  • Poseur:
    Noise Poseur
    • Another topic of hot debate and possibly defined as somebody who shops at hot topic. A poseur is someone who uses the noise scene to superficially boost their standing as a hipster or cool guy.
  • Pink Noise:
    • Pink Noise has equal energy in all octaves of frequency. PN is often used for audio calibration because of the consistency of across the spectrum.
  • Pizza Box:
    • The type of cardboard mailer used for shipping LP records
  • Power Electronics:
    • This style of noise is somewhere inbetween industrial and techno. PE usually includes vocals and or screaming about the holocaust (for or against). PE is also very manly and performers are often shirtless and wear thick belts. This genre is especially prone to taken itself too seriously.
  • Prison Cassette:
    • A clear cassette that is often used in prisons because you can't as easily hide contraband inside them.
  • Punk pricing:
    • Okay it says punk but noise and punk share a DIY aesthetics.. So punk pricing is cheap and easy to make change by establishing the following charges $5 (max) door, $5 for a tape, $10 for a t-shirt.

S

  • Serious Noise:
    Why?
    • A derogatory term for anybody but especially people who make or sell noise and post on forums and who do not have a sense of humor. These people typically belong to the maniacs only secret forum. They sometimes pull a 14k. They are also often bearpussies and get offended by noise memes.
  • Shaker Box:
    • Any kind of container filled with loose objects with a contact mix contained
  • STDEV:
    STDEV Graph by jliat
    • Short for Standard Deviation. As part of a long standing forum argument between Jliat and Clemon, Jliat created a chart to try to establish what is the harshest sound by using the STDEV of a range of different types of noise and music.
  • Sharpie Attack:
    • This is a CDr that has been decorated with a sharpie. This is a somewhat derogatory term as sharpie attacks are usually not that great looking especially if the CDr is branded.
  • Shitnoise:
    • Lo-Fi noise
  • Shitposting:
    • As opposed to "Real Talk" shitposts are low quality or negative posting on forums and often precipitate flame wars. Shitposts often contain memes or an excessive number of smilies. Posts talking about gear are almost never shitposts. The Noise Illuminati hate shitposts unless they are making them in private about the pleebs in the public section of the forum.
  • Shitshot:
    • In circuit bending one common way to bend certain types of toy or devices that have memory is to inject a random signal into the memory chip which temporarily scrambles the contents.
  • Short Wall:
    • Much like there is are short buses there are short walls. There was an attempt to coin this term in the quest to create novel noise genres by Clemon.
  • Side Project:
    • Doing the same thing you usually do but this time with a new name and its about a different serial killer than your last project
  • Skiff:
    • A skiff is a shallow case for eurorack modules
  • Special Packaging:
    Rammstein putting the 'package' in special packaging
    • A brick that you have glued to your latest C10 release.
  • Split:
    • This is when two or more noisers share a release. If it's too many noisers then it's a comp. It is also common for well known noisers to do splits with much lesser known noisers. Such noisers who are or were notorious for this is RedSK, Kenji Siratori, Macronympha, Merzbow and Vomir.
  • Special Interests:
    • A short list of common themes for noise releases include: True Crime, Nazi's, misogyny, Serial killers, Pedos, Pedo serial killers, Sharks, Nylons. It is also the forum associated with the label FreakAnimal and is run by Mikko 'Dogfart' Aspa and is considered a safe space for serious noise discussion of politically incorrect fetishes.
  • Spraypaint:
    • A common DIY method for decorating tape cassettes and CDr's is to cover them in spray paint
  • Suitcase Noise:
    • A noise setup that is in an actual suitcase. Old hardshell suitcases can be found for cheap and can be a convenient way to make your noise setup portable. Suitcase is sometimes very literal such as the case with GX Jupiter Larsen's Pump Powered Permawave which is created with a small pump connected to a suitcase that is contact mic'd.
  • Synth:
    • Short for synthesizer keyboard. The most common synthesizers used by noisers are analog because they have more KVLT street cred

T

  • Table Flip:
    Table Flip
    • A classic way to finish a noise set and show that you are really nihilistic and aggro is to turn over your table with all your gear on it at the end of your set. There are accidental noise flips such as the time Survival Units table fell off the stage as soon as he started to perform. Ironing boards used as noise tables are notorious for collapsing unexpectedly mid set.
  • Table Noise:
    • Most noise performances occur on a folding table loaded with guitar pedals.
  • Table Hooters:
    • This term originated in the circuit bending community to describe cheap keyboards that have been modified to make loud distorted sounds.
  • Tape Loop:
    • Before sampling delays people made tape loops, these days if you want to be KVLT you make tape loops even if they are time consuming and a pain in the ass.
  • Techno:
    • Also known as EDM or IDM. Once an artist has finally resigned to adding beats they are one step away from making techno which is probably the fastest way for an x-noise artist to sell-out. Unfortunately switching from noise to techno probably does not solve the problem of a lack originality. However it is possible to make noise and make techno by using a side project. The worst thing to do is to switch from noise to techno but then try to justify it while keeping the same project name such as Prurient.
  • Timestretched noise:
    Clemon: Obsessed with timestretched noise and Facebook selfies
    • This was a half baked theory by Clemon that had something to do with elongating noise via time stretching and Adorno. After arguing about this theory for years on a couple of noise forums he eventually abandoned it and took up trying to write "noise poetry".
  • Trade:
    • Since most people who listen to noise also make noise it is common for noisers to exchange their Noisecoins instead of using money. Many noise distros are also noise labels and exchange merch to stock their distros.
  • Trip Metal:
    • A term coined by Wolf Eyes founder John Olson. At some point WE proclaimed that they were not noise and started using the term "Trip Metal" which should not be confused with heavy metal or psych rock.
  • True Crime:
    Charles Manson is the poster child of TRVE CRIME
    • Gruesome criminals such as serial killers and other murderers are often the subject of many harsh noise and power electronics artists. Despite the lack of originality these topics still have a high level of KVLT value especially if there is nude corpses in the xeroxed or otherwise BW release art in which case it is TRVE CRIME. However committing a TRVE Crime especially one that any South African could do is not cool according to Mikko Aspa after he discovered that he had been trolled hard by Kyle Nonneman of NothingIstTrue infamy after he realized that he had put out a release by Kyle that was mostly samples of Mikko's project Grunt.

U

  • Underground Venue:
    This underground venue is in a sewer
    • Any venue that is not a professional establishment used for small performances on a regular basis. These are typically art spaces or people homes. Sometimes they are literally underground as in a basement or even the crawl space of a house. These types of spaces are often plagued with a variety of problems and get shutdown after a short time if they are not managed well and hidden from the man.

V

  • Vactrol:
    Vactrols also known as Optoisolators
    • This is a type of electronic component that uses an LED and a photo resistor. They can be used as a type of CV to put an envelope on a signal. They have many uses but are especially useful audio devices due to their built in slow decay.
  • Vacuum Tube:
    • Prior to transistors vacuum tubes were commonly used in electronics. Tubes are still very popular in electric guitar amplifiers. A handful of audio synth manufacturers are using tubes in their products. The two most notable manufacturers are Metasonix and Trogotronic.
  • Vaulted Releases:
    • These are releases that have been thought to be out of circulation but a stash of them has been found and is one is lucky has been in demand by record collector scum and is now very valuable. The typical "noise vault" is under someone's best or in their closest or returned from a distro that is going out of business.
  • Vocoder:
    • Otherwise known as voice encoders where invented as a method to compression voice signals for telecommunications. Analog vocoders divide the incoming signal into a number of tuned frequency bands or ranges. Vocoding is a predecessor of the dreaded autotune craze.
  • VCO:
    • Voltage Controlled Oscillators are waveform generators that typically use CV (control voltage) or some other type of signal to modulate the parameters of the waveforms being generated. A VCO may generate any number of different waveforms including since, square, saw, triangle, random or even granular audio.
  • VCA:
    • Voltage Controlled Amplifier is an amplifier that uses a CV (control voltage) or some other type of signal to modulate the amplitude or volume of a separate input audio signal.
  • VCF:
    • Voltage Controlled Filter is an filter that uses a CV (control voltage) or some other type of signal to modulate the parameters of an audio filter of separate input audio signal. The are many different types of filters but common ones will change the equalization (hi,mid,low) of the signal.
  • Vomir:
    Vomir
    • Roro Perrot is the infamous godfather of noise genre HNW. Is well known for wearing a black plastic trash bag and standing motionless during his live sets and is quoted as saying HNW is about "no dynamics, no change, no development, no ideas".
  • VST:
    • Virtual Studio Technology is a standardized software API for development of audio plugins or the equivalent of guitar pedals for GarageBand or whatever cracked/freeware software the laptop noiser has decided to use.

W

  • Wallwart:
    Wallwarts, Wallwarts everywhere
    • The bane of existence of most noise makers as practically every device needs one and they take up alot of space on power strips. Fortunately most pedals use 9volts DC and there is a variety of daisychainable power adapters. However some manufacturers like Alesis use AC power and it sucks.
  • White Noise:
    • Despite the name; White Noise is not inherently racist in fact white noise has equal power across the spectrum.. imagine that!

Y

  • Y-Adapter:
    Y-Adapter
    • These are typically audio cables with two connectors on one end that merge into one connector on the other and look like the letter Y. For standard AV uses they are intended to combine mono cables to stereo. They are a poorman's passive mixer. They can also be used as a mult in order to send one signal to multiple devices. These a good to have in any noiser's arsenal.
  • YouTube:
    • Is like the Google but of shitty videos. The noise Illuminati has declared that sourcing audio samples from YouTube is the least KVLT way to find samples. The most KVLT way surprisingly is not to commit an actual crime and record yourself doing it. However sampling Fulci movies as part of yet another HNW track is given a pass.

Z

  • Ze_Prof:
    Clara Massa AKA Ze_Prof
    • A noise forum nutter. Clara has alot of interesting ideas.. one of the more interesting ones that at one time she had in her possession a rare 1943 US bronze cent. This coin is supposedly worth upwards of a $100,000. She was carrying this coin around in her back pocket and also had in her possession a magazine that had a picture of the NY Twin Towers on it and the date 9/11 but this was prior to the year 2001. Anyway she lost the penny which apparently is because there is a consortium of magus eater twats following her around on the internet.. who knows???
  • Zine:
    • Short for magazine these are usually small D.I.Y. publications that can cover a wide range of personalized subjects. The classic zine is typical made completely using collage and a xerox copier and then folding the 8x10 pages in half and distributing the result. Noise zines often contain reviews of releases, interviews of noisers and BW college art with grim or abstract and textural themes.

X

  • Xdugef Engine
    • Taking the Bitchbox a step further the Xdugef Engine not only contains four floops but also the rehoused pedals that used in the floops which includes a Buzzbox, a Gonkulator, a Bluebox and another fuzz pedal or some kind.
  • Xerox:
    • Probably the single most effective way to add KVLT status to your release is to do all the release art with a photocopier. Inkjet is the least KVLT way to do do your release art. Not only because most likely you used Google to find an image that any South African could have downloaded but every bedroom noiser has an inkjet printer and inkjet prints fade even when the resulting tape lives in your personal noise dungeon.