Toshiya Tsunoda
“Extract from field recording archive #2: The air vibration inside a hollow”

Häpna H.1, CD (sold out)
8 tracks, 71 minutes
Listen to:
Reviews of “Extract from...”
Release date: November 1999

This is a CD of field recordings by the Japanese artist Toshiya Tsunoda. Microphones were placed inside small objects (e.g. bottles and drain hoses) located outdoors - either in an urban or rural sound environment.

The work of Toshiya Tsunoda is concerned with the relation between sound space and cognition space, and often investigates stationary waves formed by fixed conditions in closed systems.

He has previously released CDs on the WrK (Japan) and Selektion (Germany) labels. He also works with sound installations.

Tracks: 1. Bottle at mountain road, 2. Bottle at park, 3. Tub-type container, 4. Drain hoses, 5. Connecting duct, 6. Downpipe for rainwater, 7. Crack in the lid of a manhole, 8. Cavity in a cliff wall

“Member of the sound installations collective WrK (see the "Site of Sound" book reviewed in our previous issue) and formerly author of an excellent CD on Selektion, Toshiya Tsunoda is an acoustic researcher exclusively working with field recordings and piezoelectric microphones; the results of his peculiar survey are fully appreciable in "Extract from Field Recordings Archive..." on the new-born Swedish label Häpna. That's a collection of recordings carried out by this Japanese artist placing the said contact mikes into different empty objects (bottles, a lid of a manhole, water ducts...: everything is accurately described in the liner notes) to catch their oscillations at the contact with air and other atmospheric and environmental agents: what we listen to is the vibration in itself, the stunning and mesmeric resounding of pure physical phenomena, the brute propagation of acoustical/sound waves without any human correction. To come to the point that's a homage to the old and good idea according to which (the) sound has simply to be in itself rather than express (something) (of course for fully appreciating this work you have to think in non-strictly musical terms, to well cock your ear and to keep away any bias/prejudice).”
Rated 8/10, Nicola Catalano, included in his top 15 CDs for 2000, Blow Up

“One of the great advantages of having a broad range of music to listen to is that often any kind of sound, of combination of sounds, could be interpreted as music by someone, somewhere. It's sometimes even tempting to completely reclassify what music is based on how listenable it is. So Tsunoda's field recordings of vibrating air may not be intentionally structured to form musical bars or phrases, but there's more than enough texture and structure here to make an intriguing listen. The eight tracks on this CD have been recorded by microphones placed either in small objects (bottles, ducts and pipes) or in rock cavities around Japan.
The point of this experiment being that the characteristic sound obtained is dependent heavily on the fixed properties of the hollow, affected by the external vibrations (in engineering terms, the characteristics could be completely classified by recording the affect of an infinitely short pulse of noise, but that's wouldn't make for a very long or listenable CD). Tsunoda goes into great detail regarding each recording. For example, Downpipe for rainwater was recorded thus: "Microphones were set up close to the ground but inside the 31.5-meter vinyl chloride downpipe attached to the outside wall of the silo." What's most evident by listening to these atmospheric recordings is that they emphasise the lyrical - almost musical - sound produced in a seemingly ordinary situation, which is often the domain of many "Cageian" composers and performers. As a piece of installation art, an engineering experiment or even as an experimental composition, it's intriguing.”
David Thorpe, Motion

“The initiated already recognize the name: Tsunoda is a member of the WRK collective. A group of artists from Japan who are specialized in producing sound installations. To quote from the excellent Site Of Sound book: "WrK has attached importance to conceptual attitude that each member gives consideration to phenomena as shift/passage in time-space and to reception/perception of the phenomena". A strong conceptual approach, but never theless with a highly listenable result. Tsunoda placed microphones in hollow objects (bottles, drain hoses etc.), which act as an amplifier when placed outside, either in urban or rural environments. Whatever happens on the site is what you get. If they are placed under bridge, you hear the traffic moving over he bridge. It's that simple. The result are huge resonating tracks of vibrating ambiance. There is not the disturbing character one can find on some other WrK releases, but more "ambient" (= environmental). Beautiful release with adequate descriptions of each track.”
Frans de Waard, Vital Weekly