“Making sense of sound is a biological triumph,” says Nina Kraus, professor at Northwestern University and a specialist in the biology of auditory learning. “What’s auditory learning?” you may well ask Nina. Well, you could boil it down to a simple question: how is it that we humans are able to make sense of sound and all the noise? This episode of Bang & Olufsen’s Sound Matters podcast goes for a deep sonic dive into evolution, music, language and the whirlpool of noise we are immersed in every moment of our days – all to find out just how we manage to separate signal from noise.
May 10, 2020
This is the story of a river. Not just any river, but a very special river. One that has been given the same legal status as a living, breathing human being. In this episode of Bang & Olufsen’s Sound Matters podcast we meet the documentary film and audio maker, Rikke Hout, and travel down the Whanganui River in New Zealand. The Whanganui is one of the longest rivers in the country, and in 2017 was given the same legal identity as a person due to its importance to the region’s indigenous Māori people. Sit back, immerse yourself in sound, and float downstream into nature come alive.
Apr 9, 2020
True crime podcasts are almost a cliche nowadays. But in terms of niches, there’s still some cache in the sound of true crime, or more specifically in the field of forensic audio analysis. What’s forensic audio analysis, you may ask? It’s “the scientific way of analysing audio recordings that may be needed in a courtroom or in some kind of official inquiry,” explains Professor Rob Maher of Montana State University, an expert in the field. Put your headphones on and deep dive into the clicks, pops and other assorted suspicious sounds in this episode of Bang & Olufsen’s Sound Matters podcast, and do some “critical listening” yourself.
Dec 19, 2019
“It’s a description of the next record that I will never make,” so relates UK based composer, DJ and artist Matthew Herbert, telling us about his new book, The Music – now Herbert can add writer to his CV of creative activities. But, true to his eclectic back catalogue of work, his new work is not just any novel – it’s a novel of sounds: “It’s supposed to exist in other people’s heads… I like the idea of personal interpretation,” continues Herbert, whose work has crossed genres from electronic dance music to the avant garde, recording music as Dr Rockit, Radio Boy, Transformer, Wishmountain and other monikers. Now, if there’s one thing our intrepid host of all things audible (and beyond) Tim Hinman loves, it’s personal interpretation. For this edition of Bang & Olufsen’s Sound Matters podcast, we present a version of this novel in sound, with the assistance of tonmeister Mads Lundegaard and Herbert himself.
Dec 19, 2019
Music. Oh, beautiful, uplifting, inspiring music. We all love music. Thing is, we all love different types of music, and generally can’t bear to listen to the music we don’t like. But can certain types of music be so bad that they can actually harm you? In this episode we take a deep dive into a world of often conflicting, sometimes highly unconventional ideas around so-called pathological music and meet Dr James Kennaway of Roehampton University, an expert in awful, nasty and sometimes painful music. (Have no fear, dear listener, none of what the podcast contains will hurt. It’s actually quite fun, we promise.)
Dec 19, 2019
Ah, Paris. Unmistakeable, beautiful Paris. Paris: a place so unique – so authentic, so essentially itself – that it is truly irreplaceable. The eighth and final instalment in our Sound of the Cities mini-series – a sonic exploration of our urban environments and their cultural soundscapes – visits the French capital. There we meet two composers, Yann Coppier and François Bonnet, who both spend a lot of time thinking about sound and how it informs the nearly ungraspable sensations and feelings – the je ne sais quoi if you will – which makes a place seem real or not. But just how Parisian are the sounds of Paris, exactly?
Dec 10, 2018
In part seven of our Sound of the Cities mini-series – a sonic exploration of our urban environments and their cultural soundscapes – Sound Matters podcast travels to the Hollywood Hills. Peacefully perched up above the sprawling noise emitter that is Los Angeles, we grab a damn fine cup of coffee and sit down with legendary artist, musician and film maker David Lynch to chat about the infinite dynamism of sound, creativity and meditation. Bang & Olufsen and David Lynch have collaborated on a special edition collection of speakers featuring Lynch’s artwork. Click here to find out more: https://www.bang-olufsen.com/davidlynch http://www.beoplay.com/soundmatters https://twitter.com/david_lynch
Oct 8, 2018
Us humans preserve our experiences in recordings. And when we revisit these texts, images and sounds, it can feel like a small form of time travel. In part six of our Sound of the Cities mini-series – a sonic exploration of our urban environments and their cultural soundscapes – host Tim Hinman travels to Tokyo, digging up sound recordings made 20 years back, and meeting the artist and photographer Takashi Arai. Arai takes one long exposure daguerreotype photograph and sound recording every day in locations around the Japanese capital, preserving the day-to-day goings on across this bustling metropolis. http://www.beoplay.com/soundmatters http://takashiarai.com
Sep 21, 2018
In part five of our Sound Of The Cities mini-series – a sonic exploration of our urban environments and their cultural soundscapes – we’re moving away from the noisy sensory overload of megacities. We’re still visiting a capital city, it’s just that this one is a bit on the smaller side: Reykjavik, capital of Iceland, population 337,780 (give or take). In this episode, Sound Matters meets the musician Kira Kira aka Kristín Björk Kristjánsdóttir, and artist Finnbogi Petursson, and discuss the subtle sonic and cultural resonances that emanate through their home city, and beyond. http://www.beoplay.com/soundmatters https://www.kirakira.is http://www.finnbogi.com
Aug 30, 2018
For millennia our hearing has acted as our early warning system. It worked well out in the relative silence of nature: a bird calling out against a predator; the snap of a twig in a deep forest, and so on. But what about in our noisy cities? In a way, this primal sensitivity to noise can turn against us in our industrial, urban soundscapes and cause low level stress, confusion and exhaustion. Our host, Tim Hinman dips his head into the clamour of the Big Smoke, speaks with Cathy Fitzgerald, Colin Black, BJ Nilsen and others, and investigates how we can learn to listen to, and even embrace all this noise. http://www.beoplay.com/soundmatters https://cathyfitzgerald.co.uk http://colin-black.weebly.com http://bjnilsen.com
Jul 19, 2018