Flanear: wwsssSHP wanderings through ethnographic soundscapes and Web 2.0


Hobnobbing with the most bitter of postmodern cynics, musical aesthetics have plateaued and dulled; the search for that new sound proves to be fruitless, if not at least unconvincing. Bodies gigue mechanically to the orchestras of CBDs, indifferent to Luigi Russolo’s celebration of the human capacity for culturally attuned listening, where the potential musicality of noise resides. Digital technology enables accurate repetitions of sonic objects to instigate what Pierre Schaeffer calls “reduced listening” on an audience, which in turn offers an opportunity to realise the aesthetics of perception above simply the perception of aesthetics. Musicality as a specific product of its social context will stop flogging the dead horse that is the physical acoustic source and instead refocus on the curious psychology of listening.


Flanear is not merely a soundscape; it is a revelation of the musicality of noise and the celebration of prosumers transcending their supposedly initial Internet context and fixing their place within all perceptions of art. Where, indeed, will music go from here? What I am suggesting through my project is that the development of musical aesthetics does not lie within the structural elements of tonality, rhythm or timbre, but rather in a reversion back to almost primitive listening practices. As bodies with increasingly translatable boundaries, returning to our inherent bodily capacities – inclusive within and observant of, but always autonomous from the robotics of contemporary life – the act of listening itself will find new found importance as we embrace the aesthetics of perception above the perception of aesthetics.

The exegesis for this project is available below as a PDF.
The sound files that comprise this project are available individually below, however, the project itself is a web based combinatory system.

Flanear.pdf8.95 MB
01 garbage.wav1.66 MB
02 underground.wav1.36 MB
03 robots among us.wav3.15 MB
04 tinny.wav1.06 MB
05 hooligans.wav3.66 MB
06 tram tracks.wav1.18 MB
07 windy corner.wav2.4 MB
08 twinkle toes.wav1.89 MB
09 looks like rain.wav2.7 MB
10 lunchtime.wav2.19 MB
11 history is coming.wav3.78 MB
12 watch it.wav2.64 MB
13 degraves.wav1.71 MB
14 through your body.wav3.51 MB
15 head down.wav2.63 MB
16 warm puddle.wav2.71 MB
17 juicy.wav2.56 MB
18 nails.wav2.59 MB
19 nuisance.wav2.63 MB
20 makeshift.wav2.67 MB
21 butt.wav2.57 MB
22 turn around.wav2.65 MB
23 all in a row.wav2.66 MB
24 mum.wav2.68 MB
25 wasteful.wav2.71 MB
26 ant steps.wav2.55 MB
27 feeding bananas.wav2.83 MB
28 normal boring.wav2.58 MB
29 sun on face.wav2.52 MB
30 so funny.wav2.74 MB
31 looming.wav1.12 MB
32 circling.wav2.55 MB
33 hand in hand.wav2.97 MB
34 giving life.wav2.14 MB