Last Build Date: Wed, 13 Jun 2007 07:55:09 GMTCopyright: Copyright 2007, Aaron Ximm; contributors retain all rights to their recordings.
Mon, 11 Jun 2007 22:55:07 GMTField recordist Fabian Klenk writes of today's vacation, 'In Hampi, in the state of Karnataka in southwestern India, I took a room on the side of the small river in the more isolated Virupapur Gaddi area. It overlooked the rice fields and was far from the tourist crowds. Every evening, after sunset, the fields would burst with sounds from frogs, toads, and insects. Late on my last evening there, I went into the fields, sat down, and recorded this with my iRiver H340 (on which I run the open-source third-party Rockbox firmware) and Soundman OKM II binaural microphones. Everytime I listen to it, I want to go back!' [And everytime I hear it, I want to go! -Aaron]
Mon, 11 Jun 2007 22:55:05 GMTNote: podcast published as two items, so sounds can be kept and narrations discarded after initial listening.
Mon, 04 Jun 2007 22:55:07 GMTToday's vacation comes to us from Chad Randl, who write, 'A trip on the Schilthorn Cableway in the Swiss Alps: on September 27, 2006 we were on our way up to the revolving restaurant at Schilthorn peak, where they filmed the Bond movie On Her Majesty's Secret Service. The cable car was shrouded in clouds with no visibility. Tourists spoke to each other about their other travels. At about halfway through the excerpt we broke through the clouds to a spectacular view of the Alps (at about 2000 meters). Listen for the aaahhhs! Recorded with an Edirol R-09 using its internal mics.'
Mon, 04 Jun 2007 22:55:05 GMTNote: podcast published as two items, so sounds can be kept and narrations discarded after initial listening.
Mon, 28 May 2007 22:55:07 GMTAt one point working on my resideny project, I intended to record the sound of some sheep who lived next door being herded home late one afternoon, after a day grazing in the lush pasture between our house and the river. As with so many of my favorite recordings, what you actually hear is something I could not have planned... This is the sound of Dona Ilya, the sheeps' owner, discovering my unattended backpack on the side of the path, grumbling, begging heaven's aid, and finally grabbing the pack and - convinced that it was scaring her timid sheep - unceremoniously dumping it further along the path. What she didn't notice was that in doing so my pair of very small Core Sound HEB binaural mics were attached to the recorder in my backpack; moving it she ripped them out of the deep crannies I'd stuffed them into in the stone wall at the side of the path! No harm done, to my gear or her sheep, but you'll notice the stereo image changes quite a bit after the disruption in the middle of the recording when my recorder and mics are dumped on the ground... The funny thing was that I'd left my gear recording unattended specifically to avoid scaring those sheep; I'd discovered right away that they and the goats I loved (see below) would balk at passing me when I tried to record them on narrow paths, unintentionally causing delays for their tired herders (of both the two- and four-footed variety)! [Aaron]
Mon, 21 May 2007 22:55:07 GMTSomething the other recordings I've posted in this series haven't conveyed is the profound natural quiet of Nodar and its surroundings. Though cars and the odd motorcycle would pass through en route to one or another of the similarly small towns dotting the hills every day, I've never been somewhere so civilized where motor and industrial noise was such a rarity. In the absence even of regular airplane overflight (which was quite infrequent, much more so than the open expanses of the American west which are my normal metric for natural quiet), I began to seriously mistrust my ability to judge sound levels; it was not uncommon to clearly hear bells tinkling on the necks of animals a thousand yards away or more. This recording is a bow to that quiet; in it, late one afternoon I capture crickets on a hillside above town and the white noise of a tributary running down to the river below... which at the time seemed achingly loud. Recorded with Sennheiser MKH-800 mics to a Sound Devices 722. [Aaron]
Mon, 14 May 2007 22:55:07 GMTOne of Nodar's young entrepeneurs burns the plastic jackets and casing off foot-long lengths of multi-strand solid-core copper communications wire, so that the bare if soot-stained copper can be sold as recovered metal. I'm still a bit skeptical as to the provenance of that cable! Recorded with a Sound Devices 722 and Sennheiser MKH-800 mics - which I endeavored to keep well away from the acrid, toxic, and no doubt liable-to-coat-and-destroy-microphone-elements multi-hued smoke! [Aaron]
Mon, 07 May 2007 22:55:07 GMTOne gray afternoon Binaural's Cristina Tascon led me around the hillside from the chapel (see below) to Nodar's old mill, which I'd tried and failed to find on my own - it's obscured by trees in a side valley. Upgraded with a steel wheel, it looked dormant but useable if the small stream running below the millhouse were to pick up. Absent a torrent I climbed below the house and recorded myself spinning the wheel back and forth. The sound of the millstone scraping with a rasp above me sounded so much like breathing that I improvised for ten or fifteen minutes, trying to replicate the breathe pattern of oncoming sleep. I must have done a reasonable job, since listening to the recording later that day Cristina fell fast asleep on the couch! Recorded with my beloved Sonic Studios DSM-6S/EH mics (as always in a WHB headband) to my Sound Devices 722. [Aaron]
Mon, 30 Apr 2007 22:55:07 GMTOn the edge of town on a hillside I found the burnt-out shell of a small chapel, which was disused but only recently destroyed in the serious fire that denuded many of the hills around Nodar only a few years ago. Like almost every structure in town the chapel was constructed with irregular blocks and fins of local slate; in this recording I walk through the building's interor on stone from the fallen roof and partially collapsed walls, and try to give voice to it. Again recorded with Sennheiser MKH-800 mics in Blumlein to a Sound Devices 722. [Aaron]
Mon, 23 Apr 2007 22:55:07 GMTAn instantly-enchanting soundmark in Nodar is the tinkle and dong of bell-clad livestock cruising lush pastures and distant hillsides. A delight of my residency was that every morning I would wake up to - or later, after I adopted the local schedule, enjoy my coffee to - the gamelan jangle of goats leaving their nearby paddock to forage high in the hillside pastures. (Though initially sent off in one direction or another by their owners, it was a lone fierce sheep dog who kept them all day, and it was he who brought them home from miles away each night.) Recorded with my Sennheiser MKH-800 mics (again in Blumlein) and Sound Devices 722. [Aaron]
Mon, 16 Apr 2007 22:55:07 GMTA few days after I arrived at my residency in the small town of Nodar in northern Portugal, I was caught by a wild late afternoon thunderstorm while taking my first hike high into the hills in which the town nestles. As thunder boomed I sheltered near a concrete water tank constructed to combat the not-uncommon fires that plague the area (largely a result of the cultivation of fast-growing but hot-burning eucalyptus). Not long after I started recording, blown rain turned to blow hail; punctuating the grumble and bluster of the storm you can hear hailstones bouncing off the DPA Windpac windshield that sheltered my microphones! One of my goals at this residency was to field-test the recording rig I used to record this, Sennheiser MKH-800 multipattern microphones (here arranged in the Blumlein configuration) and a Sound Devices 722 recorder. [Aaron]
Mon, 16 Apr 2007 22:55:05 GMTThe seven vacations dated April 16 to May 28 were actually all posted on May 29th: I recorded all of these myself in and around the small town of Nodar, in northern Portugal, where I had an arts residency between April 10th and 28th. During the residency and weeks that followed this podcast was on hiatus. Apologies for the interruption, we now return to our regular schedule!