Featuring a linear recording at Crofton Beam Engines
The Crofton Beam Engine Symphony composed by Richard Selman
© Richard Selman All rights reserved
Introducing the immersive experience of the “The Crofton Beam Engine Symphony”, an audio visual piece inspired by the powerful, spine chilling but somehow calming sound of a beam engine at work. Using a linear recording technique the sound of a whole engine is captured, something you would not normally be able to hear. This unique recording of our engines is set to a wonderful orchestral score with an accompanying atmospheric video of the engines at work and the surrounding environs. Huge thanks to Richard and his team for this fabulous work and for sharing it here and with our followers on social media.
Based on an original idea by Michael Doherty and Richard Selman
Taking a break from playing at an open day event Michael and I were listening to the powerful rhythms of the beam engines at work and came up with the idea of capturing the sound of the whole cycle of an engine. This is something you wouldn’t normally hear given that the engine is spread across the building, through different rooms and over 3 floors. So we planned a linear recording process. The Crofton Beam Engine Museum kindly allowed us access to place microphones at strategic points across the site and trail cables to a central multitrack recorder.
Working on an audio master of the linear recording to be used as part of a live performance by “The Instant Acoustic Band” at a Crofton open day I ended up with the massive wall – rumbling sound of the beam engine in my front room. The sound of the whole beam engine is spine chilling, but like a deep pulse somehow relaxing and calming. This is the sound that inspired The Crofton Symphony.
- The Kennet and Avon Canal Trust at Crofton for access to record and film the beam engines
- Jonathan Causebrook for the drawing of the Crofton Buildings
- Peter Lamb at The Music Workshop, Devizes for help with the audio production