Valparaiso city ambience reimagined (based on an original field recording by Stuart Fowkes).
I wanted to create a sound collage progressing from the most natural parts of the original recording through to the most man-made, representing the uncontrolled development of a city, getting louder and more chaotic, and eventually spiralling out of control.
A critical mass is reached leading to a sudden change and return to nature. Whether this change is due to a disaster or a breakthrough is left undecided.
Sound artists and musicians all over the world “produced a series of compositions inspired by individual works from the Smithsonian collection, the world’s largest museum complex – reimagining images and scenes of history, art, science and culture through sound” — Cities and Memory
I chose the item pictured to the right. Since it was sheet music I immediately wanted to know how it sounded. I could not find any version of the music anywhere online, and trying to play it myself was a very slow process. So I downloaded some software that could scan sheet music to MIDI. The music was corrupted in the process and I decided to work with this and explore how the music sounded with different voices and with different tempos. The resulting piece is 5 minutes long but only represents perhaps 10-12 bars of the original. To add texture I incorporated an unfinished project which was my first attempt at creating an ambient/drone piece.
I created a piece for the Cities and Memory project “Sounding Nature”.
“Sounding Nature is the biggest ever global exploration of the beautiful sounds of nature, covering 55 countries with almost 500 sounds. The sounds have been reimagined by 250 artists to reflect upon the damage being done to our natural world by human-generated sounds.”
My piece can be found on the map, in Japan, and was based on a field recording of cicadas by Gabriella Disler.
If you have difficulty getting it to work or finding it, I have posted direct links to the sound files further down the page.