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Little Sisyphus
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by Nora Nygard

The Portal exclusive
Happy Cats 01:13
Common Sense 00:58
Safety 03:32
No! 01:52
Noise 02:00
811 04:03


In March 2022, while getting ready to move out of state, I found a stack of old discs. I flipped through the contents. A well-worn mix CD of Tool, Sex Pistols, and live Primus bootlegs. My beloved copy of SimPark with its beautiful artwork featuring a buck, a cougar, and a soaring bald eagle. A blue CD-R with nothing written on it.

I took a look at the back of the blue disc. I had already checked numerous blank CD-Rs, but this one had the classic visible signs: it was loaded with content. I held my breath and popped open my disc drive. Moments later, the title appeared on my screen.

I clicked on "Stuff#9BDE" and the glow of ancient digital photographs burned into my eyes. The pristine, fossilized AIFF files washed over my ears. Like a dose of dimethyltryptamine, I was thrust through a portal into the past, where machine elves lifted the veil, revealing to me the true nature of myself.

Middle school. The computer lab. A digital VU in the red.

I present this strange time capsule to you, these GarageBand tracks from my melted 14-year-old mind.

I remember very little about creating these. "Common Sense" and "Safety" were soundtracks to videos that I made as class projects. The safety video was for a shop class, complete with fake blood and a finger cut off in a table saw. That's where the photograph for the cover art comes from.

There may have been lyrics, or the intention of writing lyrics, for "811," "No!" and "Happy Cats." I suspect I wanted to use these tracks for the satirical metal project I was working on.

Never forget to back up your media to CD-R. The past is a hallucination.


released July 8, 2022

Thank you to my supporters on Patreon: Evan, Calvin, Divyaa, Chris, Aaron, Delia the Snake, Cameron, Jacob, Shannon, Blake, Frida and Zoë.

Thanks to my subscribers on Bandcamp: Jacob, Beat and Frida.

Nora Nygard: Production / Recording / Mixing / Mastering / Composition / MIDI Programming / Cover Art / Photography / Vocals / MIDI Controller

Composed and mixed in GarageBand at school and at home in Bismarck, 8 September 2006 to 12 January 2007.

Happy Cats ♡ 8 September 2006
Common Sense ♡ 10 January 2007
Safety ♡ 14 December 2006
No! ♡ 12 January 2007
Noise ♡ 12 January 2007
811 ♡ 14 November 2006

Mastered in the Vampire Castle on 27 March 2022.

The photograph was shot in Bismarck on 30 November 2006.

Little Sisyphus | NN033


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Nora Nygard Saint Paul, Minnesota

I've always been searching. Drumming in punk bands. Singing into a cassette mic alone. Trans angst, alienation, going on the road. Synthesis, tape, poetry. Two failed tours, two failed degrees. Reclaiming my voice from the choir, reshaping my voice after punk rock. Years of isolation, hormone therapy, production studies, and hundreds of releases with various projects. ... more

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