Discoveries

by Elliot Knapp

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    Copy of DIscoveries on CD with handmade packaging and liner notes

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1.
57:30

about

Discoveries is released as a charity fundraiser for Seattle's Discovery Park--all proceeds from download/CD sales will be donated directly to the park.

With Discoveries, I wanted to recreate in sound the experience of exploring Seattle’s Discovery Park, so this summer I spent six days collecting field recordings of all of my favorite locations within the park and the vast range of different sounds you can hear when you’re there. Then I edited, layered and composed the recordings into an hour-long sound collage which, in the end, is made up of almost 50 discrete mono and stereo recordings. Discoveries is organized as an actual linear journey you could walk on the park’s trails, starting and ending at the visitor center and traveling to all corners of the park. Throughout the recording, you’ll listen to the birds waking up at dawn in the woods and by the pond, travel through long grass, tall trees, across the beach, over creeks, past the wastewater treatment plant, high above the shore at Daybreak Star overlook, across the Wolf Creek marsh and back through the woods during a characteristically-Seattle rainstorm. I wanted the recording to really reproduce through sound the unique sense of place Discovery Park has to offer—listening to Discoveries, you can take the park with you wherever you go!

My other goal with Discoveries is to not only recreate the substance of the park’s sounds, but also the feeling of being there. There’s something magical about how it feels to sit quietly in a natural setting and simply listen to what’s going on around you. Living in city, we get so used to the constant throb of mechanical noise that we have no choice but to tune out the sounds of our environment. When you’re in a place like Discovery Park, though, the relative quiet allows your mind to decompress, and after a little while you start to realize it’s not necessarily quiet at all—there are thousands of different sounds all happening at the same time. As a musician, I find that when you start listening to the sounds going on around you, there’s almost always something musical happening, whether it’s a randomly orchestrated chorus of birds, the ever-shifting rhythm of waves crashing on shore, or the layered texture of wind blowing through hundreds of leaves. Stopping and tuning in to the subtle sounds happening around you can be not only be entertaining in a musical sort of way, but I think it can also be quite meditative in a way that clears your mind, helps get the creative process flowing, and inspires ideas. It’s this feeling and experience I want Discoveries to offer as well. It may not be quite as good as a trip to the park, but hopefully it can produce a similar effect.

credits

released December 11, 2013

Elliot Knapp - Field recordings collected with Tascam DR-05 digital recorders, sound collage composition
Justin Phelps - Mixing, mastering engineer
Courtney Morgan - Album art

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Elliot Knapp Seattle, Washington

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