Flood sounds

A pair of hydrophones in a flooded creek

The valley where we live floods quite regularly. At their peak the floods usually quieten the neighbourhood animals, the near silence signalling a temporary change in the local ecosystem. Only once the waters recede do the sounds of frogs and birds return.

Interested in listening to the sounds of the floodwater I cast a pair of hydrophones into a local creek. There at the surface the hydrophones struggled against the current and produced an ascending bubbling effect. The hydrophones became both the subject and object of  their own recording.


A tangled electric fence-line struggles in the floodwater

An adjacent creek provided the potential for recording more sounds. A fence-line swayed back and forth in the rush of water. Expecting to hear a high-pitched drone I was surprised to instead listen to a low frequency vibrating through the line. It was a nice contrast to the previous recording.

This little field recording sojourn was a good reminder to listen to familiar objects in new ways. After a decade of passing these creeks each day it is rewarding to be aware of their different (auditory) properties. What else sits before us that we have become deaf to?


7 thoughts on “Flood sounds

  1. Your website is a little gem I discovered yesterday. Great sounds, great recordings, very inspiring. And the site itself is very well done, looks great. Keep up the good work and keep inspiring people like me.
    Also a question: I want to try out contact mic’s and looked into it. What is the best setup for field recordings with contact mics? I understand you need an impedance converter (or pre-amp) for most recording devices. What do you use?


    1. Thanks for the positive feedback. I use JR Fresh contact microphones attached to a Zoom recorder. Maybe your best way to start is to look at some field recording videos on YouTube as everyone has different areas of focus in their approach to recording.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s