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Occasional posts on subjects including field recording, London history and literature, other websites worth looking at, articles in the press, and news of sound-related events.

27 September 2010

Sounds from 12 Gates to the City

THREE NEW SOUND recordings have appeared here, thanks to Jonathan Prior of the Edinburgh-based website 12 Gates to the City. It’s an ongoing project collecting sound recordings and producing podcasts for walks around Scotland’s capital.


This part of the site’s ‘About’ preamble struck a chord:

Living in Edinburgh can, at times, feel like living in a city-wide museum. Coupled with the fact that the two of us had become complacent about the city through retreading the same walks and visiting the same places, we wanted to find novel ways of re-engagement.

12 Gates to the City also includes an Acoustic Map, the first one I’ve seen based on Microsoft’s Bing Maps. Individual adjacent placemarkers merge into a single numbered circle if you zoom out far enough, a nice feature. There are a couple of dozen recordings from Scotland, as well as five from London, three of which Jonathan has very kindly shared with the London Sound Survey.

The first indulges the universal curiosity about what’s under the city streets with the sounds of a sewer in Clapham Common, recorded from inside an open manhole cover:


The political section of the sound actions page here isn’t very well populated, given the number of demonstrations and rallies that must happen in London. This recording of the protests by Sri Lankan Tamils in 2009 is only 23 seconds long, but is joined to events of historic importance nonetheless:


Lastly, there’s a cheerful performance by a band of buskers near Hungerford Bridge, presumably on the South Bank:


These three make for lively and vivid additions, but when you’ve had a listen to them, check out the podcasts on 12 Gates to the City.

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