Political Field Recordings Vol 01

Various Artists

We live in an era of field recordings. Whether it’s your iPhone’s sounds or the crazy background noises in your favourite video game, they’re the soundtrack of our era.

But you wouldn’t know that. Nor would the electronic musicians and environmental recordists for whom field recordings mean, quite literally, the sounds of the field, AKA nature.

From ex-Cabaret Voltaire member Chris Watson’s below-the-surface recordings of the Pacific to the pastoral sounds added to half the experimental records reviewed in The Wire, that’s the story.

Political Field Recordings Vol 01 refers to something opposite. It means the sonic signatures of politics and society, cities and wars, and angry people. Hence, political.

That doesn’t mean it’s didactic or polemical. Rather, it’s documentary. Think photojournalism and street photography, captured by a digital audio recorder instead of a camera.

Culled from the first four Battleground LPs, capturing anti-police protests and pandemic New York, and Palestinian solidarity marches in Brussels and Berlin, it’s all there.

Sweetening the mix are three exclusives from today’s Middle East: A pot-and-pan protest in Beirut and recordings of streets and basements in pre-Sukkot War Tel Aviv.

Mastered and produced by Raz Mesinai. Artwork by Philippe Nicolas.