Buzzle Liner Notes by Tim Story
When Buzzle was originally released in 2006, we decided to subtitle it “a Tim Story diversion,” in part to let recent listeners know that this was clearly something a little different. Ironically, though, this “diversion” might have just as easily been called a “return.” My experiments in music in the late 70’s, ones that would eventually culminate in Threads, were marked by a chaotic diversity in sound and technique. I was working (well, playing around, really) with my limited palette of early synthesizers, cheap guitars, kitchen utensil percussion - and pushing most everything past their usable, and listenable, limits. It was a time of exploration, the wild excesses of which I eventually tamed into more compelling (and hopefully palatable) miniatures. Decades later, when I’d finished Shadowplay, which felt like the culmination of a certain language I’d been reaching for, the old restlessness set in again.
Working on the sometimes prickly textures of Lunz with Joachim Roedelius, I realized I’d like to pair the old sonic explorations of my past with the nuances of form, sound and music that I’d learned in the intervening years. That, then, became Buzzle. In designing the sounds, I indulged myself in everything - recycled percussion and instrumental tracks from friends, wild electronica, the voices of my young daughters, deeply quirky processing.
But curiously, my greatest hope for Buzzle was that it wouldn’t actually seem “experimental” at all. In spite of, or perhaps because of, such a sweeping embrace of sound, I immediately set upon weaving the most careful and controlled environments that I could. In a fundamental way, the inspirations that drove me were the same as they had always been – a search for elusive bits of truth and beauty, warts and all. And with Buzzle’s quiet subversions, I also felt free to express the absurd, to find a rhythmic groove, to explore the emotive possibilities of outlandish sounds. If the music of Buzzle works, and I sincerely hope that it does, it is not because its unabashed sonic jumble ‘diverted’ my search for the small, the subtle, the evocative. Buzzle’s tenuous soul couldn’t have survived without it.
(TS, October 2017)