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Re: Very quiet recordings

Subject: Re: Very quiet recordings
From: "soundings23" soundings23
Date: Tue Jun 5, 2012 1:11 pm ((PDT))
Clearly "silence" is a contested word, but personally I don't have any issue 
with not attributing it to situations that might better be described as quiet. 

The differing experiences of "quiet" are however very interesting. 

Years ago, I was standing with a group of people at night (composers/sound 
artists on a course as it happened) by the River Dart here in Devon. We were on 
a sound walk and it was a particularly still August evening. Conversation fell 
away and we became still. As we did so I felt a "rushing in" - an almost 
physical pressure. It was quite startling, but I've experienced it a number of 
times since when I've purposefully put myself in similar situations. Its the 
sort of experience that is personal and no recording technology could replicate 
- but I recognise it in experiences related in this thread. 

I don't wish to overanalyse, but I'd be intrigued in a wider sharing of 
experiences of such quiet places to see if there's any commonality, or if our 
experience's differ widely. 

--- In  "Jez" <> wrote:
> quickly:
> these 'silences' aren't silent. What tends to happen is the extreme quietness 
> combined with the listeners attempts to perceive it lead to a situation where:
> 1) on a psychological level, one accepts the definition of silence 
> 2) on a physical level, the ears attempt to adjust to the surroundings & to 1)
> the combination means that 'silence' is the surface perception. There are all 
> kinds of sounds present, even in the disorienting stillness of the most quiet 
> places on earth (such as deep caves or deserts) but, as is the way of us 
> humans, it is easier for us to apply filters to our perception of what is 
> there.
> micro / macro listening to these places or recordings of them reveals a 
> wealth of sound, all be it on a sometimes very subtle level.
> it's amazing to perceive stillness & amazing to hear whats there at those 
> times.
> --- In  404 <404@> wrote:
> >
> > Thanks for this, Raimund. Fascinating stuff!
> > 
> > On 05 Jun 2012, at 19:39, Raimund wrote:
> > 
> > > <But every now and then there's moments where the wind lies down and the
> > > flies stay away and it's silent. Not quiet. But silent. I'm sure that 
> > > anyone who's ever driven into the Australian outback or desert know what 
> > > I'm talking about. I can highly recommend it>
> > > 
> > > Peter,
> > > 
> > > I think I know what you are talking about. I experienced that stunning 
> > > silence several times shortly after sunset while camping in the Sonoran 
> > > Desert (Arizona). 
> > > 
> > > There is a simple explanation for that kind of silence: A strong 
> > > temperature gradient in the air above the ground creates a sonic shadow 
> > > region for each sound source (the ground is still hot, but the air is 
> > > getting cooler at night). See 
> > > So, I think 
> > > there is still some noise around, but it just cannot be heard due to 
> > > these refraction effects.
> > > 
> > > Regards,
> > > Raimund
> > > 
> > > 
> > 
> > 
> > 
> >

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