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Re: Very quiet recordings

Subject: Re: Very quiet recordings
From: "404" quies_still
Date: Mon Jun 4, 2012 1:52 am ((PDT))
hi Tony (and Jez and Mark)

I'm obsessed with quietness as well. To find a really silent space and just=
 sit and listen never tires me. If I try to rationalise it, it probably has=
 to do with how quiet spaces throw you back on yourself. They function like=
 mirrors, somehow. Because there's "nothing" to escape in or hide behind, y=
ou're left with yourself. Unlike, say, a piece of music, or bird song, or d=
awn chorus, there's simply "nothing" and as far as I'm concerned that's mas=
sively overwhelming and powerful.
I've been actively seeking out empty and quiet spaces. A search that took m=
e all the way to the Australian outback and desert, where I experienced nea=
r silence. I put together an album with some of my recordings. If you're in=
terested, it's here:
The last 4 tracks are recordings of these spaces. Now obviously, experienci=
ng a quiet space is one thing, and recording it something else. It doesn't =
take much before we hear the microphone rather than the space. But then aga=
in, I find that kind of "failure" artistically very interesting, but that's=
 food for another thread.


On 04 Jun 2012, at 11:02, Mark wrote:

> Hi Jez,
> I lived with a deaf family for several years during university. It's a co=
mmon misbelief that the deaf cannot hear anything, but on average they are =
living a world of soft booms faint, clicks and muffled voices. While I woul=
dn't wish deafness on my worst enemy, I feel that the lack of distraction h=
elps in developing exceptional skills in listening and the intuition of sub=
tle energies.
> just a few distracted thoughts ^__~
> Mark
> On Jun 4, 2012, at 6:24 AM, "Jez" <> wrote:
> > very quiet recordings (quietudes) have been something of an obsession o=
f mine for many years. I spend a lot of time recording stillness in buildin=
gs for example. When there are just small sounds to hear we have to micro/m=
acro listen & that draws you in, closer.
> >
> > --- In  "soundings23" <tony.whitehead2=
> wrote:
> > >
> > > Hi All, just for interest here are two very quiet recordings I upload=
ed to Soundcloud this morning. Both are hydrophone recordings taken yesterd=
ay near where I live.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > I was in two minds whether to upload them, because they are so quiet.=
 But, I was fascinated because they are so full of tiny detail, especially =
the pond at Chudleigh. I also found that I enjoyed listening to them withou=
t excessively turning up the gain - which just seemed to increase the noise=
 of my Edirol's pre-amp.
> > >
> > > As I said on the soundcloud page, they make me think of sound work by=
 the like's of Francisco Lopez, Radu Malfati and Bernhard Gunter .
> > >
> > > Ages ago there was a review of this sort of quietness in Ed Pinset's =
Sound Projector magazine where, reviewing Lopez's "Untitled 74" he said
> > >
> > > "There's something going on there all right, but what is it? How is i=
t possible to record and produce sounds so remote and tiny that you're only=
 dimly aware of them? ... No point turning up the volume - that'll only cau=
se more damage - these are fugitive spirits, like fairies of the air which =
will vanish if you draw to near to them."
> > >
> > > I like that. And I like what the hydrophone reveals of these tiny sou=
nd worlds.
> > >
> > > BTW, while writing this, I felt like I was reviewing my own recording=
s - which would be odd and not a little arrogant - but I don't feel these a=
re my recordings, I simply dropped the hydrophone in a pond, hit record, an=
d listened - so I'm reviewing and sharing thoughts what I heard rather than=
 what I did with what I recorded.
> > >
> > > Be glad of any thoughts on very quiet sounds, or links to anything si=
> > >
> > > Tony
> > >
> >
> >

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