Editing the Sounds of Europe


Dave and I in Scotland

It has been 2 weeks since we returned from out adventure to Europe and I’m finally back in the swing of sound editing.

Just to recap. We were in Europe for a month and a half. Two weeks in the UK, two weeks in Ibiza, three days in Barcelona and then three weeks in Switzerland. We were supposed to only be there two weeks, but when I sprained my ankle badly, we were waylaid. We then missed out on the last segment of our planned trip in France, Germany, Norway and Denmark.

A little bit disappointing to say the least, but after spending a quiet week in the studio reflecting on the sounds we recorded, I am truly grateful for the time we had on such an amazing adventure.

We recorded everyday and as such walked away with about 360Gigs of raw sound material. I have only just started sifting through this.

I’m about halfway through looking at the UK stuff and have just spent the weekend chopping up the Ibiza material. So beautiful! One of my biggest challenges is going to be identification of bird species. I just can’t memorise all the different calls and tell them apart. Unfortunately, I think in the description field of these files, there will be a few question marks, but who knows, maybe some wise listener will be able to help me identify some.

Over the next wee while, I will hopefully add blogposts to document some of the places we went and the different things we recorded. There were some moments of pure sonic bliss. However, one of my biggest realisations is how lucky we have it here in New Zealand. There was so few places we went in our travels where we could escape man-made noise. The biggest killer is air traffic. New Zealand is blessed to be so isolated from international flightpaths. No one flies over us to get anywhere besides here.

I strive to craft these recorded sounds to give the impression that the locations were more pristine than they are. I remove man-made sounds, trimming out the planes and cars etc, but I’m aware that as time goes by and cities become busier, this gets harder to do. We have to record long slabs of time in a place, sometimes hours, just to walk away with a few minutes of solid tranquility.

I’ll be discussing this more on this blog, but for now, I must get on with the chopping. Once I’ve sifted through the first pass I will then hand them over to Dave for him to have a look through and use some of his magic talents to make the sounds truly shine.

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