Ways of Listening: March 26, 2019
WHAT IS FIELD RECORDING?
Field Recording is a method of recording sounds outside of a recording studio. This can include natural and man-made sounds.
Listening through technology
Inaudible to the human ear - Infrasound and Ultrasound
Directional, focussed sounds
Ambient Soundscapes (R. Murray Schaeffer, The Tuning of the World, 1977)
Small sounds and large sounds
FIELD RECORDING + LISTENING PRACTICE
Deep Listening - Pauline Oliveros
A practice designed to expand our consciousness of sound through exercises that explore listening attention, meditation, repetition, vocalising, body work and more.
Deep Listening - A Composer’s Sound Practice (2005)
Field Listening - Fransico Lopez
Unmediated field listening, is listening in the field without microphones, headphones and sound recorders. This practice generates a connection to our surroundings through listening, a quiet meditative connection that helps us to separate the recorded sound and the actual sound.
Sonic Mmabolela - South Africa “concerts”
Attention to listening
Reversing the visual dominance
Three Listening Modes: Michel Chion
Causal listening - listening to a sound in order to determine the sound’s cause
Semantic listening - listening to decode or interpret a message
Reduced listening - listening to a sound regardless of its cause or meaning. Accessing the material of a sound, it qualities and characteristics as pure sound without attachments.
FIELD RECORDING + SONGWRITING:
EXTRACTION / ABSTRACTION / MEANING / PERFORMANCE / RHYTHM / REPETITION
MIGration (2017) - 4:28
Finland's migratory swans. Poet, vocalist, musician and producer. Recognisable sound, meaning, a message.
Intl-A-Bin (2014) - 01:07
Rhythm, Performance, unsound, loop
Laura Luna (Mexico/Poland)
Ennui Hours (2014) - 8:32
A combination of soundscape and focussed sounds. Developing rhythms, synthesisers, internal and external sounds. Swelling, organic and non-organic
Hype Williams (UK/Russia) (aka Dean Blunt + Inga Copeland)
The Throning (2010) - 04:05
Me, First (2018) - 04:05
SPACE, PLACE + TIME
Space / Place:
Toshiya Tsunoda + Haco - Tram Vibrations
Sound walks / Time / Narrative
Janet Cardiff - A Large Slow River http://www.ubu.com/sound/cardiff.html
Zoe Scoglio - The Sedimentary Collective http://www.zoescoglio.com/The-Sedimentary-Collective
POSSIBILITIES OF FIELD RECORDING: SOUND ENERGIES
Sonosphere - Pauline Oliveros
Joyce Hinterding - Encounter with the Halo Field https://soundcloud.com/hinterding/encounter-with-the-halo-field
Annea Lockwood: Wild Energies
Physicality of Sound - Directionality
Samson Young - Sound Canon https://www.thismusicisfalse.com/canon
Parabolic Reflector - long-range directional audio recording. Nature sounds, eavesdropping,
Hydrophone - underwater microphone
Contact Mic - piezo pickup that captures sound vibrations through objects and surfaces
Induction coil pick up / electromagnetic mic
Jay-Dea Lopez (Australia) https://soundslikenoise.org/2018/07/09/pulse/
(some) Creative considerations when listening and recording in the field:
Filters or all sounds
Sound analysis - what are we listening to? Can we break down the frequency spectrums? Timing, timbre, events, textures, colours?
Signifiers and context. How does this relate to you and your work?
Mediation - the technology between the sound, you and the audience. The sound’s journey.
(some) Practical things to consider when recording in the field
Choosing a recorder
Battery power, microphone choice, cabling, bags/cases, stands, tools (clamps, elastic bands, tape, bull clips, multi-tool, etc.)
Privacy - respect for culture and people. Seek permission if capturing the sounds of people. Understand Cultural significance, religious, tradition, songs etc.
Markers - time, date and location at beginning of recording
File handling and naming
Duration recordings best to be at least 3 minutes depending on situation
The sound you are making, is that being recorded?
Levels, basic recording skills, mic placement