“Listen to your world. It may be more interesting than all the things you buy to escape from it.” American writer Sasha Frere-Jones’ observation from 1999 comes 30 years after composer R. Murray Schafer introduced the term acoustic ecology, thus shaping the awareness for the musicality of soundscapes.

detail cover art Bill Fontana – Field Recordings of Natural Sounds (1983, Sierra Club)

This 46-minute mix proves Frere-Jones right – with field-recordings by Alejandra & Aeron, Bill Fontana, Chris Watson, Paul Bowles and others.

Featured cover art: Jean C. Roché – Birds of Venezuela

Quiet Ambient – In Lilac Heaths (1974-96)

Quiet ambient music may be rooted in cybernetic spirituality or get played in hospitals. It can be cinematic or resemble a landscape, and its production process might utilize huge quantities of graph paper. 61 minutes with Anthony Manning, Inoyama Land, Joanna Brouk, Laurie Spiegel and others.

Paul Bowles – Wind

playing with a musical sound (1958, Dom America)

Geir Jenssen – Cho Oyu Basecamp: Morning

audio diary of climbing the eight-thousander Cho Oyu in Tibet (2006, Ash International)

BJNilsen – Rough Grazing

exploring acoustic environments in Gran Paradiso’s alpine landscape (2015, Editions Mego)

Justin Bennett – The Mosques of Tanger (exc.)

high up on a rooftop in the early morning, calls from different mosques mix and resonate as they cross the city (1994, Staalplaat)

Chris Watson – Cassarina

echoing voices shouting by the seaside (2002, Touch)

Jean C. Roché – Ocumare (exc.)

fascinated by the unusual musical volume he encountered in Venezuela, ornithologist Jean C. Roché set out to record the country’s birds (1972, Sub Rosa)

Paul Williams – Top Fuel

action during the hot-rod drag car racing meet on England’s Santa Pod Raceway (1999, Ash International)

Alejandra & Aeron – Anguiano Bells

calling the village for the Danza de los Zancos during the annual Fiesta de la Magdalena in Anguiano/La Rioja (2001, Lucky Kitchen)

Félix Blume – Piano and Screaming

a funeral in Port au Prince on the Caribbean island of Haiti (2016, Discrepant)

Bill Fontana – Waves Breaking on Rocks Along the Northeast Australian Coast

field recording as an art in itself, analogous in many ways to photography (1983, Sierra Club)

Eckart Rahn – Pachinko In Your Head (exc.)

imaginary rhythms emerging from the interfering sounds of about 1,000 pinball machines at Aladdin Pachinko Parlour, Shinjuku, Tokyo (1998, Blue Rahn Studio)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *