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Inside the Tour de Levi, Montreal

1A guest sound today from long-time contributor Dan Tapper, who’s sent through a recording and remix from the Tour de Levi in Montreal, Canada which was created for a multi-channel performance as part of the Sound Travels Intensive run by NAISA. Dan was kind enough to write a really interesting note about the sounds, so I’ll let him describe them in his own words:

This piece is composed from recordings of an old water tower located in Montreal called Tour de Levi. I was able to gain access and record using a combination of contact and binaural microphones. The water tower itself was very dusty but
produced incredible resonant sounds. These are focused on in the first part of the composition. I played the tower by banging, scraping and investigating as many ways as I could to create sound.

The acoustic sound inside the tower was very noisy as a loud industrial air conditioning system dominates the space. Outside the tower, however, there is an amazing sonic and visual panorama – a 360 degree view of the city. I was able to
hear swallows alongside an abseiling drill being taken by the Montreal fire department.

The field recording presented incorporates recordings taken from both these spaces, the interior of the water tower and the exterior.

The composition further explores the water tower in three distinct sections:

The first: Looks at the low frequency resonances of the water tower, creating deep drone and transient material.
The second: Investigates the exterior sounds of the tower, looking at the sounds of birdcall and how variations in repetition can create a perceived soundscape. This section is later combined with the sounds of the fire crew.
The third: Creates a hybrid between real and imagined space, incorporating sounds of other resonant objects – a set of saucepans from my kitchen – with the water tower’s interior.

The presented composition is a slightly reworked version for stereo. It is highly recommended that the piece is listened to on headphones or good quality monitor speakers as the low frequency material featured in several of the sections is too low for laptop/computer speakers to effectively reproduce.

City version:


Memory version: