field: beneath and above the surface

field: beneath and above the surface (2020) is a soundscape composition made from a contiguous excerpt of a much longer recording made during the evening of August 17, 2020 alongside the East-West Trail in the Bangor City Forest, Bangor, Maine, USA.

In this piece, we are hearing sound from three hydrophones in a tiny pond and a stereo microphone pair receiving an airborne soundscape. I was surprised at the amount of activity in the pond at dusk, in which we hear snails rasping, diving beetles stridulating and, possibly, frogs bumping into the hydrophones. Above the water’s surface in the forest, the crickets—mostly pine tree crickets (Oecanthus pini)—create a real wall of sound. Other creatures, of course, are heard from as well...

In contrast to other of my “field” pieces, the field in this recording is an expansive one, with approximately 600 feet separating the hydrophones in little pond and the stereo mic, carving out a space of some 180 square meters.

The composition resides on Soundcloud, and may be heard using the player below:

This piece was completed on September 5, 2020 and is dedicated to the great bassist Gary Peacock who died on that date at age 85. Requiescat in pace.

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