Deep Listening and Soundscape Recording


Deep listening and recording of soundscape/

listening technologies and acoustic ecology.

Until recently, the sound factor was not understood as a measuring element within the processes of change in an ecosystem, and fonography was basically limited to the recording of isolated individuals, understanding the sound object as a unique expression within the processes of communication between individuals. Even in the field of ethology, sound records are limited to trying to determine the uniqueness of certain sounds culturally predisposing to a utility within the communication between individuals of the same species and in this way define their function.

If we consider that soundscapes are the sum of these singularities, and that despite what was thought until recently, species have a predetermination to function within the landscape to the point of evolving towards inter-species communication, the isolated sound record of individuals seems almost totally useless; therefore, here is a utility of recording the soundscape “in all its integrity”.

A listening and adaptation methodology

It is about understanding how to generate the methodological constants that allow us, through listening and sound recording, to understand some of the most intimate questions of the behavior of an ecosystem and above all its meanings: There are the technical issues that can perhaps help us understand technology as an extension of our perceptual experience and not just as a measurement tool. A this point we must consider that our technology and our science, are based on measurement and perhaps comparison, considering comparative fact as well as a measurement action. Therefore, I like to think these exercises on perception are nothing more than an attempt to use listening as a measuring tool, and perhaps what makes all this a sublime experience, is precisely to maintain certain methodologies that allow me to compare and find, between very similar landscapes, great differences. I believe that in the search for these differences is the fact that, a seemingly passive attitude becomes a source of knowledge that can broaden the perceptual thresholds and the thresholds of knowledge itself.

One of the paradoxes most present in the sonology is the fact of trying to know how nature sounds, and in trying to do so, to see that our presence alters in such a meaningful way the landscape that what we are really hearing is a reaction of the medium to our presence and our technology. Therefore, what we really hear is a kind of acoustic shadow caused by our presence… It is like we are really listening to ourselves… Based on this awareness, I could also say that this project is about this: how to listen to ourselves…

So how can we significantly reduce the impact of our presence and that of our recording machines in a specific context?

These are the topics we discussed in this module.