Sunday, June 22, 2014

Sound effects

Interesting piece here about sound effects. It reminded me of the Berberian Sound Studio, which I wrote about six months ago and has stayed with me for all that time.

scraping dry ice across a contact microphone and combining it with a woman's high scream recorded backwards... the sound of dog food being slowly sucked out of the can... a pistachio nut being destroyed by metal plating... the cries of the pigs, slowed down to sound unearthly

In a more cheerful/less traumatising way, it also put me in mind of this, which always makes me smile...

When Tom Waits released the album Blood Money in 2002, the pre-release notes mentioned a mouse tambourine and a journo asked about this in an interview:

"Instruments utilised include piano, cello, pump organ, hand bells, circular violin, spring drum, marimba, calliope, timpani and mouse tambourine. l ask about the mouse tambourine and he laughs. 'Oh, you know what,' he says, bending over and rolling up his right trouser leg 'See these boots here, they have this buckle,' He wiggles a small silver buckle at the top of his black motorcycle boot. 'Well, during most of the songs I was tapping my foot and there was a lot of room mics in the studio, and so when we listened back to all the songs my wife's going, "What the hell is that?! That *tsk tsk tsk...*"' We just couldn't figure it out. Finally, she said, "Dammit it's those boots. I told you not to wear those boots. It's on everything!" And she got so upset!' He laughs. 'We tried to get rid of it and couldn't, so finally we just had to call it the mouse tambourine." ("Conformity is a fool's paradise" Time Out London (UK) by Ross Fortune. February/ March. Published: April 24 (- May 12), 2002)

Sourced from the Tom Waits Library:

I also love this: "On 'In The Colosseum' we used the Conundrum. This was an instrument that was built for me by a neighbour of mine who's a sculptor and a welder. It's just an iron cross with a lot of metal hanging off of it. it sounds like a jail door closing behind you."

Matt said he has video of our friend Pascal, who is a wizard with stringed instruments, tuning our ukulele. Just down the street there were some construction workers smashing a lot of glass and it created a great effect. I would like to explore this idea but with more subtlety - and a point to it - so I will have to think about that more.

No comments:

Post a Comment