Flux was a 6 episode curated radio series that explores the themes of liminal space, temporality and boundaries, whether physical or theoretical. This exploration is carried out through field recording and sound design. Each episode invites an artist, performer or sound recordist to create a show in reaction to these themes. Exploring a space or spaces they deem relevant through their own creative practice. Hosted by our friends on ResonanceExtra.

Episode 1 by James Davoll

Ebb and Flow

This episode explores the now abandoned Dorothea Slate Quarry in Dyfrryn Nantlle and the intersection of Loch Harport and Loch Bracadale off the Isle of Skye.
The Dyfrryn Nantlle Valley is an incredible landscape. Ancient hills give way to a man-made valley sculpted by industry and the production of new counters. Davoll explores the sonic potential of this space performing improvisation with the space as well as making field recorders.

Leading on from the abstract hydrophone recordings made at Dorothea this second section of flux explores the Peat Bogs that descend into the waters at the intersection of Loch Bracadale and Loch Harport on the West coast of the Isle of Skye. The fluctuations of pressure on the bog placing pressure on air trapped within.


Episode 3 by Tom Schofield and James Davoll

Man’ Escarpments

This episode explores two powerful walls. The Land Walls of Istanbul dating back to the 4th - 5th century and the contemporary Sea Defence Walls currently being constructed in prefecture of Fukushima, Japan.

The Land Walls that used to define the rear perimeter of the city. But, as the city has grown it has expanded beyond its reach and now cuts through different demographics and communities, picking up new thoughts, new sounds, and new environments.

The sea walls of Fukushima now span some 700km and reach a height of 12m in places. These walls constructed to protect communities from Typhoon or Tsunami are a highly contested space due to their effect on these very same communities. Cutting them off from the sight and sound of the sea. The walls acting as a sound mirror reflecting the internal and external sounds. From inside the safety of the walls one only hears the reflected anthrophonic sounds of the populous, industry and infrastructure, as well as, the biophonic sounds of cicadas, birds and domestic animals. On the exterior side the mass reverberations of the waves cancel all other noises and the both the soundwaves and waves compete for space.


Episode 5 by Tim Shaw/ John Bowers and David de la Haye/ James Davoll


Fluid takes shape in two sections. One a recorded improvisation by the duo of John Bowers and Tim Shaw and the other a exploration of the bridges of Newcastle upon Tyne edited by my good friend David de la Haye.
In Music for Trace Hall, Bowers and Shaws contribution to a collaboration with the Experimental Architecture Group of Newcastle University and the Bristol Bio Energy Centre, Trace Hall, an installation in the Matadero Centre in Madrid which opens in June this year. In Music for Trace Hall, they imagine liquid soundscapes which combine natural and artificial flows, water and synthesised energies, recorded resonances and computational models of fluids, scanned and sonified. Music for Trace Hall was recorded as a live improvisation.

The second section of this episode of Flux, Bridges explores the spans of the river Tyne through alternative and traditional field recording techniques. This area boasts one of the most densely populated areas of bridges boasting 7 spans within a mile of each other . These spans include the iconic Tyne bridge designed by famous Mott, Hay and Anderson sharing it's lineage with the Sydney Harbour bridge and the millennium bridge a tilt bridge locally referred to as the blinking eye. You will hear a bizarre pan within the recordings. The left the reverberation and resonance within the bridges the right the ambient sounds present.

Episode 2 by Martin Eccles


This episode examines distance, time, movement and place from replicated walks into the remote, coastal, Icelandic lava field of Búðahraun. A ‘there-and-back’ route was walked twice, once at dawn and once at dusk; distance is both the distance of the walk and distance heard across the lava field. As well as the elapsed time of the walks themselves, time is present as the time of day but also the time between the walks – the time of a day – and, as the walks occurred on the summer solstice, the time of the year. Movement comes directly from my footfall, my embodied movement across the rock, but also from the comings and goings of the birds as they, and their calls, songs, and displays move over the lava field. Together these elements contribute to a sonic portrait of a place but they also create a space to allow a listener to hear a place of their own.


Episode 4 by John Bowers

Laboratroy One

Field recordings, on-site improvisations, synthetic resonances, paranormal sensing, spoken texts, underground, on the ground and receiving from off-Earth, in Northumbria, Tyneside, Teesside, East Anglia and Scotland, over the last ten years. Laboratory One takes its name from the abandoned structure at the former Orford Ness Atomic Weapons Research Establishment, a vibration lab to test the resilience of nuclear weapons to in-flight disturbance, and here reimagined as a listening space for other vibrations.

John Bowers (UK) works with modular synthesisers, home-brew electronics, reconstructions of antique image and sound-making devices, self-made software, field recordings and esoteric sensor systems. He makes performance environments which mix sound, image and gesture at a fundamental material level, sometimes accompanied by spoken text. His practice often combines improvised performance with walking, urban exploration and the investigation of selected sites to conduct research in an imagined discipline he calls ‘mythogeosonics’. He has performed at festivals including the collateral programme of the Venice Biennale, Transmediale/CTM Vorspiel Berlin, Piksel Bergen, Electropixel Nantes, BEAM Uxbridge and Spill Ipswich, and toured with the Rambert Dance Company performing David Tudor’s music to Merce Cunningham’s Rainforest. He contributed to the design of The Prayer Companion - a piece exhibited twice at the Museum Of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, and acquired for their permanent collection. Amongst many musical collaborations, he works with Sten-Olof Hellström, Tim Shaw, Kerry Hagan and in the noise drone band Tonesucker. He helps coordinate the label Onoma Research and works in Culture Lab and Fine Art, Newcastle University. He is a Director of Allenheads Contemporary Arts and a Trustee of Monkfish Productions.


Episode 6 by Rob Blazey and Caroline Bergvall

The Bird

Recorded at the International Literary Festival Dublin, the piece takes its starting-point in the old Irish tale of mad King Sweeney’s transformation into a bird condemned to roam over Ireland in perpetual exile, and consists of a conversation between artists and specialists from disparate disciplines discussing themes of journeying, language, migration, history and place, gradually evolving into an imagined soundscape formed from fragments of the preceding discussion. Taking its starting-point in the old Irish tale of mad King Sweeney’s transformation into a bird and condemned to roam over Ireland in perpetual exile
The second half is a mix of field recordings and compositions by Rob Blazey, employing varying degrees of sampling, found sounds and electroacoustic techniques.

Track listing :

Conference of the Birds (after Sweeney).
A cross-disciplinary performative discussion using the mad King Sweeney legend as a starting point for live discussion and spacious sonic transformation.

Taking its starting-point in the old Irish tale of mad King Sweeney’s transformation into a bird and condemned to roam over Ireland in perpetual exile, the artist has invited six speakers from different disciplines to discuss its contemporary resonance. The conversation will explore ideas of journeying, ask how languages migrate and settle, how love poetry crosses histories, how traces create places, and will address urgent questions around resettlement, translation, elemental languages and endangered species.

The speakers are: Ceara Conway (Irish singer and visual artist) Vahni Capildeo, (Trinidadian Scottish poet),  Prof. Vera Regan, (Sociolinguist, Tracker of Bilingual Dublin communities), Geoff Sample (Bird recordist and sound artist), David Wallace (Medievalist Scholar and Cruise guide), James L. Smith, (Geographer of the Sea, Trinity Dublin). Programmed by Rob Blazey for live processing, Conference (after Sweeney) develops into a cycle of sounds and vocal frequencies. It also includes migratory songbirds recorded on their way out from Ballyhoorisky and Claddaghduff early September 2018 and a vocal bassline based on an old Irish melody.

As speech changes into waves and sound particulates, the discussion unearths shadows of song and infuses the voices with other memory.

Commissioned by International Literature festival Dublin (ILFD).

Part 2 (Rob Blazey) -
1. First Train
2. Sketch
3. George V
4. Basic Sound (collaboration with sculptor Harriet Sutcliffe)
5. The Reading Room (collaboration with poet Cara Brennan)
6. Shimagoma Shrine (for Beat Picnic project).
7. Reply with Eyes
8. Swelt
9. Monkey Mountain (for Beat Picnic project).
10. Jazz Club
11. At First
12. JJ/59
13. Clari

Copyright: James Davoll