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Adventures in Murano, Venice

Two absolutely beautiful pieces for you today from the island of Murano in Venice (and you can hear more of our sounds from Venice here).

Murano is world-famous for its glass-making master craftsmen, a centuries-old tradition of hand-blown and hand-shaped glass passed down through generations. Many glass factories do demonstrations of their craft, but this one is far more interesting, taking us into the actual workshop to see whatever happens to be going on at the time.

In this field recording, you can hear our tour guide describing the glass-making process through various stages, while, more interestingly, you can hear the sound of the furnace, blowtorch and the craftsman moulding a new glass object (in this case, a rather lovely bird) with hammer and tongs.

City version:

The glass-making tour has been expertly reimagined by The Leaf Library (produced and mixed by Matt Ashton, mastered by Mike Cranny) – Matt writes:

“The piece is made entirely from the field recording – nothing else (bar a bit of reverb and delay here and there). A bit of background – a friend of mine works with glass and has an old factory in Walthamstow where I’ve enjoyed hanging out now and then. He’s a big fan of the German school of dub techno (as am I) and I wanted to make a track for him.”

Memory version:

In our second field recording from Murano, the bells ring out for midday across the canals.

The sound is accompanied by the gentle sloshing of moored boats so characteristic of Venice, and we can hear a mother telling her daughter Nina that there is a boat with the same name as her.

City version:

This recording was reimagined by Alex Hehir, who writes:

“I loved the sonic mixture of the bells and the boats hitting each other. There are also some voices that make it into the final piece.

“Much of the sound design came from the original recording and was heavily processed using various techniques within Ableton.”

Memory version: