Soundscape Composition

Genres and Categories [G&C]  ]

The term refers to a kind of electroacoustic work, much of which was initiated by members of the World Soundscape Project (WSP) at Simon Fraser University. Environmental sound recordings form both the source material and also inform the work at all its structural levels in the sense that the original context and associations of the material play a significant role in its creation and reception.

In other words, soundscape composition is context embedded, and even though it may incorporate seemingly abstract material from time to time, the piece never loses sight of what it is ’about’.

The principles of soundscape composition are:

1. listener recognisability of the source material is maintained, even if it subsequently undergoes transformation;

2. the listener’s knowledge of the environmental and psychological context of the soundscape material is invoked and encouraged to complete the network of meanings ascribed to the music;

3. the composer’s knowledge of the environment and psychological context of the soundscape material is allowed to influence the shape of the composition at every level, and ultimately the composition is inseparable from some or all aspects of that reality;

4. the work enhances our understanding of the world, and its influence carries over into everyday perceptual habits.

Thus, the real goal of the soundscape composition is the re-integration of the listener with the environment in a balanced ecological relationship. (Source - Reworking of Barry Truax (2000). The Aesthetics of Computer Music: a questionable concept reconsidered. Organised Sound Vol. 5, No. 3. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press and (1996) Soundscape, Acoustic Communication and Environmental Sound Composition. Contemporary Music Review Vol.15, Part 1. London: Harwood.)


See also:

Acoustic Communication, Acoustic Ecology, Diapositive Sonore (Sound Slide), Field Recording, Phonography, Referential Sound, Semiotics, Sound Symbol, Soundscape Studies, Soundwalk, Transcontextuality




- Young Digital Creators: The sound of our water ( English , French , Spanish )
- Young Digital Creators: Scenes and sounds of my city ( English , French , Spanish )



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Alphabetical order - Chronological order

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Battier, Marc (2003c). Science et technologie comme sources d’inspiration
Caux, Jacqueline, Delalande, François, Gayou, Evelyne, Teruggi, Daniel (2002). {Presque rien} avec Luc Ferrari
Chen, Tsai-Wei (2006). Sonic Constellations: Taiwanese sojourners’ listening experiences in London
Corringham, Viv (2003). Vocal Strolls: Voicing the Soundscape
Cox, Cindy (2003). Wounds like Flowers Opening: a Discussion of {Hysteria} for Trombone and Four-Channel Tape
Dack, John (2000). Ludwig Van Henry - An Interview with Pierre Henry
DeLaurenti, Christopher (2004). Intermissions with the orchestra
Drever, John Levack (1999). The Exploitation of ‘Tangible Ghosts’: Conjectures on soundscape recording and its reappropriation in sound art
Drever, John Levack (2001). Sounding Soundscape Composition
Drever, John Levack (2002). Soundscape Composition: The convergence of ethnography and acousmatic music
Dunn, David (2001). Nature, Sound Art, and the Sacred
Dunn, David, Peer, René van (1999). Music, Language and Environment
England, Phil (2002). Acoustic Ecology
Feld, Steven, Palombini, Carlos (2001). Thoughts on Recording Soundscapes
Fells, Nick (2002). On Space, Listening and Interaction: {Words on the Streets are These} and {Still Life}
Gaye, Lalya, Mazé, Ramia, Holmquist, Lars Erik (2003). Sonic City: The Urban Environment as a Musical Interface
Guérin, François (1993). Aperçu du genre électroacoustique au Québec
Hahn, David (2002). Creating the Soundscape for {Zagreb Everywhere}
Hannan, Michael (2006). Intermedia Collaboration for {The Flood}
Holmes, Thom (2002). Electronic and Experimental Music
Iges, José (2000). Soundscapes: A Historical Approach
INA-GRM, (2000). La musique électroacoustique
Iwatake, Toru (1994). An Interview with Barry Truax
Keller, Damián, Capasso, Ariadna (2006). New concepts and techniques in eco-composition
Kolber, David (2002). Hildegard Westerkamp’s {Kits Beach Soundwalk}: Shifting Perspectives in real world music
Kröpfl, Francisco (1995). Experiences and Reflexions on Electroacoustic Music
Lalitte, Philippe (1998). {City Life}
Lockwood, Annea (2004). Sound Mapping the Danube River from the Black Forest to the Black Sea: Progress Report, 2001-2003
MacCormac, Sylvi (1999). Reflections on Hildegard Westerkamp’s Talking Rain
McCartney, Andra (1998a). Soundwalk in the Park with Hildegard Westerkamp
McCartney, Andra (1998b). Where water meets
McCartney, Andra (2000a). Soundwalking Interactions
McCartney, Andra (2000c). Soundscape Composition and the Subversion of Electroacoustic Norms
McCartney, Andra (2000d). Sounding Places with Hildegard Westerkamp
McCartney, Andra (2002a). Alien Intimacies: Hearing science fiction narratives in Hildegard Westerkamp’s {Cricket Voice} (or ‘I don’t like the country, the crickets make me nervous’)
McCartney, Andra (2002b). Sharing Experiences Towards the Possibility of an Electroacoustic Ecology
McCartney, Andra (2003). In and Out of the Sound Studio
Mermoz, Gérard (2004). Istanbul Sound Diary
Norman, Katharine (1994). Telling Tales
Pallandre, Jean (2003). La charpente invisible (une pratique expérimentale de la phonographie)
Proy, Gabrielle (2002). Sound and Sign
Savage, Jonathan, Challis, Mike (2001). Sound Reflections: The Influence of Acoustic Ecology on Classroom Composition
Schafer, R. Murray (1994). The Soundscape: Our Sonic Environment and the Tuning of the World
Schryer, Claude (1998). Electroacoustic Soundscape Composition
Schryer, Claude (2001). The Sharawadji Effect
Stelkens, Jörg, Tillmann, Hans G. (Eds.) (1999). KlangForschung ’98: Symposium zur elektronischen Musik
Thomson, Phil (2005). Soundscape Composition, Globality, and Implicated Critique
Truax, Barry (1992b). Musical Creativity and Complexity at the Threshold of the 21st Century
Truax, Barry (1992c). Composing with Time-Shifted Environmental Sound
Truax, Barry (1995a). The Composition of Environmental Sound at Simon Fraser University
Truax, Barry (1996b). Soundscape, Acoustic Communication and Environmental Sound Composition
Truax, Barry (1996c). Sounds and Sources in {Powers of Two}: Towards a contemporary myth
Truax, Barry (1996d). Sounds and Sources in {Powers of Two} Towards a Contemporary Myth
Truax, Barry (2000a). The Aesthetics of Computer Music: A questionable concept reconsidered
Truax, Barry (2002b). Genres and Techniques of Soundscape Composition as Developed at Simon Fraser University
Voorvelt, Martijn (1997). The Environmental Element in Barry Truax’s Composition
Weale, Rob (2005a). The Intention/Reception Project: Investigating Composer Intention and Listener Response in Electroacoustic Compositions
Weale, Rob (2005b). The Intention/Reception Project: Investigating the Relationship Between Composer Intention and Listener Response in Electroacoustic Compositions
Weale, Rob (2006). Discovering How Accessible Electroacoustic Music Can Be: the Intention/Reception project
Weidenaar, Reynold (2002). Composing with the Soundscape of Jones Street


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