in what we hope will become a regular “column”, we present two locations, as recorded, photographed and described by yiorgis sakellariou (mecha/orga). The original idea was to examine the relation between the act of field-recording itself and its use in an artist’s finished work. To focus on what the recordist sees/looks for in a location chosen to be recorded and in turn how he/she sees the recorded material, when the time comes to use it in one’s actual creation.
in this case, because he usually manipulates field recordings beyond recognition, yiorgis felt he didn’t have much to add as far as the subsequent use of said recordings was concerned. He chose simply to document these two locations in a form of audio diary. You might want to turn the volume slightly up, or not -depends on whether you like your field recordings raw or medium-rare.
feel free to contact us with any suggestions for future entries.
2 locations by yiorgis sakellariou
Collodi, Tuscany, Italy
This little village in Tuscany is famous for giving its name to the author of Pinocchio, Carlo Collodi, and attracts visitors mostly because of the “Pinocchio theme park” which seemed to me a bit like a “mini-Disneyland”. Nevertheless, the Tuscan beauty and atmosphere is not absent. I walked around the first houses of the village and very soon discovered some very quiet and calm paths, ideal for getting lost in. I immediately heard the discreet and continuous sound that was “dominating” in the area. Hundreds of birds, sitting on the trees, were participating in a “concert” which is always welcome to hear to and, although cliché-d, the birds’ song is definitely enjoyable. It did not take much time before another characteristic sound was added: Church bells, a new minimalistic “orchestra” joined into the soundscape. I had no idea what was the (probably) religious reason for which the bells were ringing for, but nonetheless their sound felt like it was making a loose counterpoint with the birdsong, I was very glad I had the “Record” button already pressed down…
Aleppo is a city in the north of Syria, close to the border with Turkey. I was relaxing in my hotel room when a characteristic sound of an Arabic country was heard: the chant of the muezzin, calling the faithful to pray. As in Collodi, in Italy, again, a sound of religious origin dominated. The Muslims, instead of the bells, use the human voice, which itself adds a special dimension to the ambience. Besides the interest in the chant itself (the scales, the singing technique, the language used, the reverb caused by the amplification), from the fist time I heard the muezzin, I was fascinated by the fact that his sound can be heard only in some specific countries of the world. Its rarity, for an inhabitant of a non-Muslim country, makes the listening experience even more important…