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World Listening Day: circuit-bent water sounds

Leaking Water PipeA leaking pipe might not be necessarily the most inspiring source material for World Listening Day, but when – as with Michael Ridge – you’re an artist working with circuit bent and modified electronic devices, the possibilities are endless, as he explains here:

“I’ve captured the sound of leaking water pipe steadily dripping onto a redundant plastic container (which actually amplified the sound somewhat) near our house. It was recorded early in the morning so listeners will hear a continuous alarm clock beeping, nearby traffic and chatter from neighbours.”

For the reimagined version I transferred the field recording onto a compact audio cassette and collected samples of water from the leaking pipe.”

“In my studio the collected water was carefully dripped (with the aid of a pipette) directly onto the exposed circuit of a battery powered cassette player running the recording.”

“The water droplets created new and momentary connections on the circuit causing the player to produce bursts of erratic noise and alterations in the playing speed.”

“A delay pedal was utilised at various points primarily to enhance and play with the sonic textures of the water sound.”

“Not only was the sound of water recorded but my intention was to use it as an instruments or sorts when reimagining the original field recording.”

City version:


Memory version: