Yesterday we had conversation with Carlos abut perception and impact of soundsape. Background sounds (or noise) are always following us. And unlike the sight, we can not escape from them. Apart direct perception what is happening and what you hear, our bodies are influenced physically and psychologically by frequencies and levels of sounds. Our hearing capasity and perception has adapted to particular ranges and frequencies during evolution. That’s why sounds found in the nature are more acceptable and has more positive impact. In contrast, cities have higher concentration of high and low resolution noise which is beyond normal limits. Our system ‘alerts’ that something is abnormal and automatically reacts to it. For example, in the nature very low or high frequency sounds, such as thunder, running of flock were percepted as danger. But perception of sound is personal and subjective. Whether sounds are irritating  or pleasant varies depending on experience, associations and inborn features. One man’s music is another man’s noise.

Some hints form Carlos recommended  “The music of the environment” book  by R. Murray Shafer:

  • In rural areas sounscape is uncrowded, surrounded by pools of stillness. It gives potentiality to orientate and define surrounding.
  • “..The shepherd can determine from sheep bells precise state of his flock”.
  • “.. He was disturbed in his meditation by a grating noise from the coach-house. It was the vane on the roof turning round and this change in the wind was the signal for a disastrous rain”.
  • Industrial revolution began to produce the lo-fi soundscape. In cities background lo-fi sounds mask perspective of sounds.
  • The value of silence.