are the various places we actually did record: if you sit down
carefully with the CD, you might well be able to identify them all.
Chamber, Liverpool University
Playing in an
anechoic chamber is a slightly strange experience, but one i recommend
to you. There are no hiding places at all, and you can hear little
rattles and overtones that you wouldn't otherwise notice, and the
complete absence of any reverberation at all is a little
disorientating, though you might not notice it so much on the
recording, as close miking gives a similar effect.
Georges Hall, main hall
St Georges Hall
is a gibongous neo-classical Victorian building on Lime St - if you
stand with your back to the station, that's what you're looking at.
Inside it's a huge hall, lots of marble and granite with a curved roof,
with a cathedral-like acoustic. The reverb is, i'd say, 8-10 seconds,
with a comb-filtering effect going on, as certain frequencies are
thrown back to you. All that statuary makes you ponder on mortality a
bit, cos those Victorian bods must have been pretty eminent to have
their own statues up there (presumably at their own expense). You've
never heard of most of them, so if you're thinking of having yourself
carved in marble for civic display, i'd suggest that you don't bother -
it'll only make young persons say "who the hell is that?" in 100 years
Georges Hall, small theatre
This isn't like
the main hall at all. The theatre is a little 400-seater, and the
statues are artistic ones of underdressed young women. I'm guessing it
was built for chamber concerts, and there is a grand piano on stage. We
weighted the sustain pedal down and played into the open lid. At the
time we recorded in there, there was no power, and we had to run 75
metres of cable from the balcony of the main hall - it hadn't been used
as a theatre since the 1970's, so there was a delicious feeling of
having our own secret time capsule.
is one of the road tunnels under the Mersey. You can't just wander in
and start playing, that would be dangerous. In fact, that evening one
of the tunnels was closed for maintenance on the Wallasey side, so we
were allowed in on the Liverpool side to record.
Greenhouse, plot 21, Sefton Park Allotments
As you may have
guessed, not a random choice as this is phil's allotment. We serenaded
the tomato plants, and the blackbirds warbled back at us.
Grapes, Mount St
This was a
social night for an organisation called Creative LETS - as you can
hear, it was just in the corner of the pub, so a fair proportion of the
audience was just people who'd come out for a pint, which made for an
interesting evening all round, i think...
Library, William Brown St
The Picton Library is a round room with a domed roof, which acts as a
parabolic reflector. There's echo, there's reverb, and it's all wildly
unpredictable. We could have stayed all night.
& Alleyway near Penny Lane, Wavertree
phil's house, as you might imagine. A neighbour's burglar alarm was
going off, to underpin the music.
Jump Ship Rat, Parr St
Jump Ship Rat was a gallery in a large converted garage -
now sadly closed. Big space with a metal roof - you can hear the sound
bouncing off it.