Speaking of sound placement, would you ever consider working in something other than a binaural environment, maybe with multiple speakers set up, perhaps in more of a gallery atmosphere?
Yeah, I’ve been thinking about this a lot recently. One day I’d like to make a surround version of this record I’m doing now. And the other day I had an idea for an alternative kind of gig I might do one day, though not for this record, more of a meditative record. I’d want to have a room with 24 speakers all around it pointing downwards, and a load of people lying in the middle of it. I want to try out lots of that kind of thing in the future definitely.
It sounds very interesting. It’s strange that for home listening we haven’t really moved past a stereo setup of a left and right speaker, apart from say in home cinema systems with surround sound.
It’s not everywhere, but I would say that technically we only have two ears, and they both of our ears are mono, so with a good pair of headphones there is no more room for sound to enter the brain. I still kind of love stereo, but I definitely want to move beyond it when possible.
I heard about this thing, I don’t know where this was but a friend of mine at a festival heard a recording of an entire choir singing Thomas Tallis’ 40 part motet, Spem in Alium and had a speaker for each voice. So there were 40 speakers around in a circle and you could walk around the piece and hear each part individually, that’s pretty incredible. And with that you can arrange the speakers however you want.
It would be interesting to hear how different arrangements of the speakers could lead to different sounds emerging from the piece. It reminds me a little bit of how stages are set up at festivals and how sound from one stage will bleed into another, and when you stand in a particular spot you’ll hear this strange mix of two songs together.
I was at a festival playing with King Creosote and we had the quietest possible band and we could hear Shakira from the main stage which was so much louder than us, so we had to just jam in time with them and make something up just to be heard!