Front end image – Spider + Cricket installation as of July 16, 2019.
Bradley & Ruchalski were recently awarded the Wave Farm artist-residency to realize SpiderCricket (Sp+Cr).
Stephen Bradley and Edward Ruchalski’s SpiderCricket (Sp+Cr) is a multi-phonic ecological radio installation informed by Wave Farm’s biophonic and radiophonic soundscape. The core of Sp+Cruses a “spider web” wind-harp structure, which also functions as an antenna for low-power FM transmitters that broadcast on the property. Using DIY micro-mixers, numerous solar-powered FM radio receivers are tuned to one of the broadcast channels. Each wire’s unique length is tuned to a particular frequency that mixes with other sonic algorithms. Field recordings made during the dawn and dusk cycles are incorporated into Sp+Cr sculpture and into the final, live WGXC radio broadcast.
Here is an early test of the wind harp using a stereo piezo contact microphones cheaper version. (since removed) I have been struggling to create a quiet recording with just the sounds of the harp so opted to purchase a new high tech contact microphone version called the Marshmallow that has a preamp and rechargeable battery built-in that also isolates the sound in contact with a vibrating surface. These have a very high-quality sound – all three versions, high gain, low gain and normal. These are designed and built by Michael Krzyzaniak. The next few samples were recorded in my back yard testing the Marshmallows & different situations first the wind harp, then several trees in the hard the last one is no longer alive but is full of termites. Unfortunately, we will be cutting it down soon to take care of the pest problem. Ruchalski sweetened and remixed the raw samples into the following works.
Collective statement: Bradley and Ruchalski’s (B&R) practice is informed by their close relationship to place realized through radio, deep listening, acoustic intervention, and compositions based on environmental field recording. Their artistic practice is grounded and based on studies of acoustic spaces, engaging site-specific improvised sound actions and installations that raise the audience’s awareness of the hidden, often subtle and difficult to hear sounds found amidst bioacoustics and noisy landscapes.