Radar commissioned six sound artists and musicians to create site specific pieces that can be downloaded from this website. The practitioners involved range from electro acoustic musicians to artists whose exploration with sound is more conceptual and often gallery based. The diverse nature of the artists is reflected in the work. This is not simply a soundtrack to specific locations, rather the work is a range of different responses to or impressions of particular places at a specific time.
1. Janek Schaefer
The Sporting Guide to the Speed of Sound
Where to Listen: Any Sports Hall/Leisure Centre
Download MP3 - 64 kbps - 18.2 Mb
This is a recording of a new composition that Janek created that was performed within the David Wallace Sports Hall.
Where to Listen: Walk through the town centre
Download MP3 - 128 kbps - 9.8 Mb
This work explores the idea of place and identity of the town of Loughborough. Place-names are an ancient and continuous record of our history. Their study enlarges our knowledge not only of topography and human settlement, but also of institutions and of our language itself. This work features voices reading through the street and place names of the city in the form of an abstract text.
Embracing both the cultural and the historical, the city and the wilderness, this work appraises the geographies people inhabit, visit, defend, destroy - and overlook.
3. Salome Voegelin
Where to Listen: Walking into the town centre from Loughborough train station
This is a sonic document of a brief visit to Loughborough that casts doubt on whether the town actually exists as a solid architectural fact, however firmly it is established on a map, or evidenced in a photographic tourist brochure. You make an arrangement, book a ticket and depart, but as you arrive and walk through its streets it becomes clearer and clearer that it is not there, you are there. The fleeting voices, your own included, the sounds all around you, the messages left, create an elaborate and opaque design in the form of a town. But it lacks the assumed opacity of its own architecture, its buildings, its sights, in favour of life living now, dense, porous and complex and there. The buildings seen are but façades, pretending a permanence that is contradicted by the sounds of the town, talking and moving; proclaiming a far more ephemeral presence. The town itself is transitory, passing the trains arriving at its station, rather than the trains passing it. Loughborough in the end becomes the visit rather than Loughborough the town, because Loughborough itself, as shown on the map, does not exist in sound.
4. Kaffe Matthews
Where to Listen: Walk from a park bench in Queens Park to the Cino's coffee shop
Laura has lived in neighbouring Sileby all her life, coming to Loughborough daily to visit her grandfather, go to college and work. She met Kaffe on a park bench on a hot summer's day and shared and showed her some insider Loughborough stories. Together they made one journey to one spot, around which 'Viewing 2' has been structured.
Inspired by the multiple silent cartographies that inhabit our minds as we navigate our daily lives, Kaffe has developed a compositional strategy by aurally and visually documenting journies. Noting the specific colours, names, numbers of streets encountered and events experienced she used the visual record as a trigger to select specific sounds their respective duration, frequency, volume and timbre. 'Viewing 2' is the result, a sonic realisation of an English town through the daily life of a local teenager.
5. Mike Marshall
The World Beneath You
Where to Listen: Walk around Charnwood Museum Queens Hall, Granby Street, Loughborough
Download MP3 - 256 kbps - 8.6 Mb
Beneath the floor of the Charnwood Museum and beneath the exhibits arranged all around lies an old swimming pool. If you stand in the museum then the now empty pool would be, at that moment, under your feet. Towards the ceiling are the frames of windows which are now boarded up. Once years ago when it was filled with water the light would come in through those same windows and on a sunny day would sparkle and glint on the surface, its noise, sunlight at a frequency of 5500 K (or in musical terms 12 trillion times middle D) could not be heard, but if it was lowered to just within audible pitch it might sound like what you can hear on the recording made for this commission.
6. John Wynne
Feeding the Habit of Energy
Where to Listen: From Canal Bank, go onto the Grand Union Canal and walk along the Grand Union Canal until you come to the Nottingham Road Bridge which overlooks the factory
'Feeding the Habit of Energy' is a meditation on the sonic environment of the huge BRUSH factory which sprawls next to Loughborough train station. BRUSH manufactures industrial scale electrical generators and transformers which help to feed society's insatiable "habit of energy" - which Italian Futurist Marinetti urged artists to celebrate at the beginning of the last century but which is now looking increasingly like a self-destructive addiction rather than a liberating "love of danger". The sound walks route along the Grand Union Canal plays homage to the Midlands industrial heritage.
All the sounds in Feeding the Habit of Energy were recorded within the BRUSH factory; it moves back and forth between unmanipulated recordings and a kind of abstraction distilled from those recordings. Thanks to Grahame and Philip at BRUSH Electrical Machines Ltd. for their kind support and assistance.