Ice Manifested As Sound

[Image: Photo by Kevin Sellers, courtesy of the Juneau Empire].

This weekend, April 16-17, over at The Lab (2948 16th Street) in San Francisco, sponsored by Swissnex San Francisco, an event called Activating the Medium will explore the sonic properties of ice—that is, “the physical, geographic, metaphoric, and mythological attributes of ice as manifested through sound.”

Specifically, you will hear “the sound of frozen lakes and ice caves,” as well as “various hydrophone recordings” taken in frozen circumstances around the world, and “a composition for real and imagined ice” will be played. As something like the main event of the evening, Cheryl E. Leonard’s work Antarctica will also be performed, samples from which can be heard on her blog Music from the Ice.

That being the case, I thought I’d post a by now very widely disseminated audio clip, recorded by Andreas Bick, of alien sounds racing through strained ice sheets on a lake in Berlin. The noises are incredible:


And this video, below, that Bick later linked to, offers a bit for anyone curious to hear more from these amazing phenomena that sound like laser warfare being conducted inside a glacier.


In any case, the event kicks off at 8:30pm both nights; tickets range from $8-$15. Enjoy!

(Andreas Bick material originally spotted via Kottke; related older posts include When landscapes sing: or, London Instrument, Phoning glaciers at 3am, and many more).

5 thoughts on “Ice Manifested As Sound”

  1. DJ Spooky also composed Sinfonia Antarctica, a riff on an older piece from the 1940s he calls an "acoustic portrait of a rapidly changing content." It incorporates recording of snapping and groaning glaciers with a multimedia performance.

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