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The British Library is home to the UK’s national collection of radio recordings in its Sound Archive. On 18th November 2010, the entire collection was handed over to and shared with The British Library, and is now a "named collection" within the Library's Archival Sound Recordings website. You can read more about this here.
Touch Radio 118 | Patrick Franke
26.10.15 - Patrick Franke - Oriental Chrorus - 29:26 - 320 kbps
"In Spring 2013 I was part of an ornithological survey (bird migration census) in a desert area in the Nile Valley, Egypt. Our team lived, considering local conditions, in a rather modern building in a town called Sandafa Al Far.
Apart from the actual work, our standardized observations, I most of the time made sound recordings of birds, amphibians, insects and the general “soundscape” in the vicinity of our house. Sometimes guarded by two policemen (because of an allegedly unsafe situation after the so-called Arab Spring) but always accompanied by a cluster of curious and noisy children.
The combination of an extreme climate, a precarious political situation, witnessing violence, experiencing severe health problems and not least being surrounded by an omnipresent, diverse and sometimes almost too powerful soundscape led to a somewhat surreal memory of my time there."
Photo: Marcus Held | afternature.net
Continue reading: Touch Radio 118 | Patrick Franke
Touch Radio 117 | Bethan Parkes
22.09.15 - Bethan Parkes - Live in Los Angeles - 24:00 - 320 kbps
Performed live at Resonant Forms on 11th September 2015 in Hollywood, Los Angeles. Also live that night were Simon Scott & Jen Boyd. With thanks to Volume, Rafa Esparza and Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions.
Continue reading: Touch Radio 117 | Bethan Parkes
Touch Radio 116 | Willem Sannen
29.08.15 - Willem Sannen - End of Summer - 14:49 - 320 kbps
"After a heat wave of almost one month in the south of France this is the sound of that first rainy morning at the swimming pool. I recorded the rain and thunder in the countryside near Quissac (between Nîmes and Montpellier) with 2 Line Audio CM3 microphones in a spaced pair configuration into a Mixpre-D into a Sony PCM-M10."
Continue reading: Touch Radio 116 | Willem Sannen
Touch Radio 115 | Vault!
25.06.15 - Vault! - 25:43 - 320 kbps
"Mark [Van Hoen] and I visited the tunnels underneath downtown Los Angeles on Tuesday. Many miles of these tunnels are closed to the public, but a section underneath the city archive collection is open. We recorded using an iPhone 6 and a Zoom H6. One of the signs had been adapted to read: "SOUNDs HORNy".
Touch Radio 114 | Pascal Wyse
01.06.15 - Pascal Wyse - Any Port in a Storm - 09:34 - 320 kbps
To call this field recording would be crediting the situation with more adventure than it deserves. At five in the morning, with a hangover starting to percolate, the ideal conditions are surely to just roll over, hit record and go back to sleep – and that is pretty much what happened here. End of disclaimer.
Boats, whether out at sea or in harbour, have a particular vocabulary of sounds. On the water, they are masked by the white noise of the ocean, in which – as many sailors have reported – you can hear almost any sound imaginable. Moored up, where things are quieter, the water laps and slaps the hull while the wind plays aeolian harp on the mast.
That rigging sound is often a chorus of tapping lines against masts, but this particular boat – a cruising yacht with a Bermuda rig, moored at Yarmouth after a day’s sailing – had an unusually musical voice, sounding clear notes as the wind passed through its structure. At sea this was a contented hum, but at night it felt much more ominous.
The tones in this piece were recorded in one of the sleeping cabins in the stern, a little resonant box. Of course, there has been some processing – mainly to remove the snoring of sailors.
Continue reading: Touch Radio 114 | Pascal Wyse
Touch Radio 113 | Simon Scott
27.04.15 - Simon Scott - Caxton Gibbet - 31:36 - 320 kbps
The word 'gibbet' is used both to refer to an executional structure and to a hanging iron cage that used to display the remains of executed prisoners; when someone is thusly displayed, it is known as ‘gibbeting’.
Recording the wooden gibbet in 2012, believed to be haunted burial site and located at Caxton in Cambridgeshire, to capture the sound of the gallows wood (elm) and saproxylic (dead wood) invertebrates (beetles) that lived within it was a challenge because of the vast amount of traffic that passes by. It is located beside a busy roundabout (A428 to Cambridge) and I initially found it difficult to capture the wooden gibbet creaking and moving in the way I had envisaged. I therefore used contact microphones to get inside the construction. I was inspired by the grim history of this location, the place of multiple murders and capital punishment, and also from reading about Bernie Krause (b.1938) who, on the CD included in his wonderful book "Wild Soundscapes", explains that “recordings are an illusion… the best microphone systems and recorders cannot possibly reproduce exactly what our ears hear in the holophonic way that we hear it” (2002). He documented acoustic environments that faced dramatic change or extinction but often needed to recreate the sounds of nature by double tracking or changing microphone placement.
This location has changed dramatically recently as a McDonalds fast food restaurant opened on this site recently.
Continue reading: Touch Radio 113 | Simon Scott
Touch Radio 112 | Bethan Parkes
06.04.15 - Bethan Parkes - Krafla Geothermal Power Station/Hverir, Iceland June 2014 - 27:28 - 320 kbps
This composition features unprocessed recordings from Krafla Geothermal Power Station and the nearby mudpools and steam vents of Hverir in Northern Iceland. The recordings were made in June 2014, on the Wildeye sound recording course led by Chris Watson and Jez Riley French, using a SoundField SPS200 and JrF contact microphones.
The composition draws upon the spatial experiences of recording at these sites, journeying from the booming, all-encompassing drone emitting from the boreholes; through the uncontained, explosive energy of steam vents and bubbling mud-pools; and into the inner sonic worlds of the metal pipes and geodesic structures that punctuated the lava field.
Continue reading: Touch Radio 112 | Bethan Parkes
Touch Radio 111 | Mark Van Hoen
17.02.15 - Mark Van Hoen - Anthem for the Homeless - 21:40 - 320 kbps
"Inspired by BJ Nilsen's performance at LACE in Los Angeles last month, I decided to attempt my own composition using field recordings. The source recordings are quite crude in comparison to those made by the great Mr Nilsen; I even used only an iPhone to collect the recordings; but after a little judicious use of processing back at the studio, I am pleased with the results. On leaving LACE after the show, I noticed how many homeless were sleeping in the doorways at the back of the venue, where my car was parked. There were several droning air-conditioners, some emitting quite rhythmic sounds. It occurred to me that there are many that would hear this as music (myself included) but it's very doubtful that those sleeping in those doorways do... or perhaps some do find some comfort or music in such sounds. I assembled several of them to create this, an anthem for the homeless."
Photo by Mike Harding taken in downtown Los Angeles
Continue reading: Touch Radio 111 | Mark Van Hoen