Listening is an increasingly mobile activity. Headphones have become part of our everyday life, just as much as the podcasts, radio programmes and music streams we are consuming through them. Most of this content addresses us as if we were sitting in some isolated space, dedicated to listening only. However, the contrary is true: what we listen to frequently overlaps with our current acoustic surroundings. So why not use this conjunction and produce audio pieces referring to particular places or routes? These pieces will allow us to superimpose one reality over another. This should be particularly interesting when both realities share some points in common, e.g. when they refer to similar places or paths in different countries.
What if we could walk through a forest in Finland and have ourselves transported to a forest in Slovenia? Can our headphones beam us from a shopping mall in Barcelona to a market in Sweden? Can we go jogging by the sea in Marseille and hear the world around a jogging trail in the Austrian Alps? Let’s give it a try!
A project by the EBU Ars Acustcia group.
"B.I.K.E. (Believe In Kinetic Energy!)" by Karlheinz Essl (Ö1 Kunstradio, Vienna, ORF)
Generative soundscape based on a two-dimensional random walk between four binaural soundscapes, recorded in spring 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic in Vienna and its surrounding.
Released: 19 Apr 2020
This sound composition is composed of those four field recordings:
1) a railway crossing gate in Klosterneuburg
2) Kongresspark in Vienna on Saturday noon
3) animal cemetery in Vienna
4) pedestrian bridge in the swamps of Stockerau
and mixed algorithmically with a computer program written in MaxMSP by Karlheinz Essl.
Soundwalk at Levý Hradec by Jan Trojan (Radiocustica - Český rozhlas)
The private author's soundwalk created on July 11, 2020 around 6 am in the morning in
occasion of the World Listening Day 2020. It is a short part of the route on the left bank of
the Vltava River situated on the territory of the town of Roztoky near Prague. The walk was
around the corner of Potoky Street, near Levý Hradec village, an early medieval
fortified settlement. The location is important especially from an historical and natural point
of view. In terms of sound, it is a quiet place where we can find several key sound events:
a small river flowing down the slope through a valley of streams (the area of Potoky
Street), the Vltava river embankment, a railway with frequent traffic leading to and from
the north part of Bohemia, a passage under the railway bridge. Part of the walk was
swimming in the Vltava River.
Jogging in Corona Time by Adriana Kramarić (Kroatischer Rundfunk)
Escape from the indoors, enjoyment of the sound of one's uninhibited breath, the smells and sensations of the forest, freedom of movement, freedom to breathe in and out, and running, running, running beyond our limits, within ourselves…
Haymarket by Estlin Usher (WFMT, Chicago, USA)
EBinaural recording made at the Haymarket Memorial in Chicago on November 21, 2020. The memorial is situated on a one-way street with vehicles moving south from the right to the left side of the stereo field.
The memorial is situated west of the center of the Loop (downtown) and is a few blocks away from the highway (heard in the background) and the El public transit system (to the far right of the stereo field).
There is an ebb and flow of traffic and transit, from trains, cars, motorcycles and pedestrians. During the course of recording, in the foreground, a United States Postal Service worker dropped off a number of packages, and a familiar Internet-based commerce platform employee made deliveries to the upper-class condominium high-rise that now overshadows the monument.
Sea Waves by Joan Melero and Alejo del Peral (RTVE, Spain)
Location: Mar Bella Beach, Barcelona
Staff: Alejo del Peral, Joan Melero
Gear: 2 x DPA 4060, Sound Devices MixPre 10M
Sea waves recorded crouched down, feet in the sea. Some background traffic noise and wind.
Parrots and Pigeons at Plaza Real by Joan Melero and Enric Martí (RTVE, Spain)
Location: Plaza Reial, Barcelona
Staff: Enric Martí, Joan Melero
Gear: 2 x DPA 4060, Sound Devices MixPre 10M
Argentinian parrots and pigeons gather every morning to get breakfast at Plaza Real. Traffic noise from the Ramblas in the background. If you listen closely there's some very low frequency mumble from the metro. Argentinian parrots have their nests on top of the palm trees at Plaza Real and we hear binaural effects overflying our head. Some parents bring their children to school riding on a bicycle.
EBU Ars Acustica Gruppe
Map of the Soundwalk Levý Hradec