Cities and Memory remixes the world, one sound at a time - a global collaboration between artists and sound recordists all over the world.
The project presents an amazingly-diverse array of field recordings from all over the world, but also reimagined, recomposed versions of those recordings as we go on a mission to remix the world.
What you'll hear in the podcast are our latest sounds - either a field recording from somewhere in the world, or a remixed new composition based solely on those sounds. Each podcast description tells you more about what you're hearing, and where it came from.
There are more than 4,000 sounds featured on our sound map, spread over more than 100 countries and territories. The sounds cover parts of the world as diverse as the hubbub of San Francisco’s main station, traditional fishing women’s songs at Lake Turkana, the sound of computer data centres in Birmingham, spiritual temple chanting in New Taipei City or the hum of the vaporetto engines in Venice. You can explore the project in full at http://www.citiesandmemory.com
Cicadas in Arquà Petrarca reimagined by Andarctica.
"I really wanted to use the rhythmic pulsing of the crickets as a filter element, so it was a matter of first augmenting the sound to be more tonal and playable, then feeding it back through a vocoder with the original sample as the carrier. It led to some really nice phasing and harmonics, especially when put to tape."
The background to summer
Mid-August in the incredibly beautiful little town of Arquà Petrarca in northern Italy, where the poet Petrarch spent most of his days. On this balmy, hot day, we listen to the cicadas in the trees chattering out their constant chorus, truly the background to summer. Recorded by Cities and Memory.
A day of lockdown in Bourges
Sounds from a typical day during lockdown in Bourges, France (ignoring remote working, of course):
0:0s: churches ring at 7:30 AM
2:00s: birds recorded from my balcony
4m:30s: bells ring the mass
8m:10s: playing fetch with my cat
9m:00s: going out (1 hour/ 1 km radius), rain over fallen leaves in Prés Fichaux garden.
13m:15s: night walk in the deserted streets of Bourges, Saint Etienne Cathedral at 9PM
15m:20s: bat screams (played at 10% speed)
17m:10s: end of the day, reading in bed with my cat
The field recordings were mostly done from my balcony, the garden nearby or at night in the streets.
Recorded by Jeremy Simoncello.
Part of the StayHomeSounds project to map and reimagine the sounds of the Covid-19 lockdowns.
The ineluctable decline of Venice
Listen closely on a walk around some of the less-explored corners of Venice, and as well as the sounds you'd expect, like boats on the canals and the clacking of shoes on bridge crossings, you'll hear repair and construction, as an ancient city founded on the lagoon constantly regenerates and renews herself for the next generation. Here we're tuning into house repairs on Fondamenta San Felice, as a bucket containing building materials is raised and lowered from a boat to a second-floor window using a mechanical winch.
Recorded by Cities and Memory.
House repairs in Venice, Italy reimagined by Xqui.
"I wanted to utilise all the background sounds by way of manipulation. Everything here is taken from the original recording."
Tranquility in Venice
In the Giardini della Biennale at the far end of Venice, it's a quiet moment on a sunny September weekday, with hardly anyone around, and the only sounds being the passing boat traffic at the far end of Venice's main island, and the faint sounds of birdsong from the gardens.
Recorded by Cities and Memory.
Customer ReviewsSee All
This is a gift
Wow keep up the great work. This series is truly a gift!! Hope this project continues, would love to see what obscure sound archives they tap into. It feels like when you’re a little kid, and you just pass the picture book age. When your mind feels so alive with the mental pictures, based on l what you’re hearing your parents read. It’s exhilarating.
Awesome Sonic Mapping!
Wow what a great podcast —thanks