Sonic Art

Sounding the City

Sounding the City is a collection of six soundscapes created from audio recorded in the  Melbourne CBD during the time of the COVID19 in the latter part of 2020. The effect of the restrictions, apart from their immediate physical effect caused  profound changes in the sonic environment. The sound frantic human activity reduced;  car traffic dwindled, air traffic - apart from helicopters - ceased. Trams and trains continued. but emptied of their cargo. Birdsong, relieved from competition seemed to expand out and become more expressive. Wind and rain developed new sonorities.  Human chatter took on more linguistic shadings. White noise became pink and sonic information sharpened. As Norbert Wiener, founder of cybernetics may have said ; "Signal equals message plus noise" .. as noise levels diminished we could hear more of the  message of our city.. but what did it say?

The original recordings were made in 24bit 48kHz format, using purpose built microphones based on sensitive, low noise electret omni capsules in a modified Jecklin-binaural array carried in a specially designed backpack, capturing movement, direction and ambience  far more realistically than a standard boom or tripod mounted stereo setup.  The soundscapes are best listened to on good quality headphones rather than computer/phone speakers. Listen to  higher quality playback on  Soundcloud.