On a visit to the iconic Jurassic Coast tourist attraction of Durdle Door, the beach was suddenly cleared of people by site security, as a search and rescue helicopter was called to take off someone in distress to hospital.
This recording captures the helicopter arriving and coming in to land, briefly circling before descending onto the beach. Recorded from the clifftops above, you can clearly hear when the helicopter drops below the level of the cliff from the way the sound changes.
The Durdle Door field recording was reimagined by Simon Woods, whose composition takes the source material of rotor blades as the basis for a journey into sound:
“The piece is partially built up from the sound of the sound of the helicopter blades to make a basic rhythm. This is complemented by waves of synths.”
As an added bonus, here’s a brief video clip of the helicopter coming to land at Durdle Door as we were making the recording: