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The sounds of calcio

Over the past few years we’ve enjoyed a few trips to football matches across Italy to capture some of the noise and passion of the game, both before and after the global pandemic. From the cathedral of the sport that is San Siro in Milan to Serie B’s more down-to-earth Stadio Tomobolato in Cittadella, these are the sounds of calcio in Italy.

We start with a rare recording from the away end at a Serie B football match in Italy, December 26 2019. The Stadio Pier Luigi Penzo in Venice is unlike any other in the world, requiring arrival for the away fans via a vaporetto water taxi across Venice.

During this match, which Cittadella won 2-1, we hear the aftermath of one of Cittadella’s goals, with songs, chanting and general merriment (and abuse) being dealt out by the passionate away fans. Recorded by Cities and Memory.

City version:

This particular sporting field recording was reimagined by de Velden, who writes:

“The field recording that started this track was made amongst football fans, away from the pitch.

“It captured the excitement on the stands, which, in my track, I have tried to bring together with a musical interpretation of the drama and particularly the dynamics of a game of football.”

Memory version:

As a bonus, here’s a short video of the reimagined piece using footage from the actual match:



Next up, we’re off to the magnificent San Siro in Milan, to tune into the sounds of a match from 2017, well before the global pandemic hit sport around the world. Tune into this field recording for crowd chants and noise from Inter Milan 0-0 Lazio in December 2017, recorded by Cities and Memory.

City version:

Inter Milan vs. Lazio was reimagined by Andy Lyon, who writes of his approach:

“The approach I took was to create three live recordings in Sensomusic Usine Hollyhock 3 using parts of the recording processed the joggle sampler and a variety of effects:

  • Mangled Verb and Blackhole;
  • Octavox, Ultratap, Blackhole, h3000 factory delay;
  • Palindrome, Blackhole h949 dual harmoniser; Grain cloud sampler, h949 dual harmoniser, groove slicer.

The joggle sampler has a speed control (-400% – 400%) and I’ve used a midi controller to start / stop the sample and alter the speed during the recording.

I’ve then used the start of the original recording layered against orchestration and bass to create a contrast and change the feel. The three live recordings are then substituted for the original recording to create the track.”

Memory version:

Finally, we’re at the Stadio Tombolato, Cittadella, Italy for Cittadella vs. Crotone, August 2021, as crowds slowly begin to return to stadiums as part of the pandemic recovery – here, the stadium announcer reads out the Cittadella teamsheet before a match that the home team would go on to win 4-2.

City version:

The Cittadella stadium announcer was reimagined by Richard Watts, who writes:

“I found the original recording imposing (and slightly sinister for some reason) so I’ve tried to capture that in the reimagined piece. I’ve used lots of samples from the original recording and manipulated them using the Alchemy, a sample manipulation synthesizer in Logic Pro.”

Memory version: