We'll be broadcasting slices of life created in quarantine and lockdowns from around the US, Ireland and France.
Broadcaster's Note: The original mission statement for this show was to broadcast audio that is focused on the environment and nature in hopes of highlighting as much audio absent of human influence as possible. Obviously, a survey of the past year's episodes will reveal that Threshold Shift has been stepping away from the "no humans" rule into a territory that's been a bit more symbiotic, territory that reflects how nature can inform, inspire and enhance our species' creativity. What I've additionally experienced in the past three months, that I know others have also expressed, is a sudden and abrupt return to the nature of nature. The nature of meaning. What it is, or maybe isn't, based on my own perceptions, expectations and desires. The veils have become thinner for me in terms of seeing how much of my own reality has been based upon my narrative structures of it, how those structures impact what I choose to put time into, what I choose to disregard or neglect. It was with this in mind along with suggestions from other audio friends, that I constructed the quarantine episode...to see what other people were doing with their narratives and the nature available to them at this time.
First up, we will be going to Ireland on the morning of April 8, 2020 to listen to the sounds of Slavek Kwi's children building a treehouse in their backyard. Mr. Kwi's work was first heard back in February of 2020 on the episode featuring selections from the HearSay International Audio Arts Festival in Kilfinane, Ireland. Also known as Artificial Memory Trace, Slavek Kwi's artistic focus has been on exploring how our perceptions of phenomena affect our experiences of reality. He is a sound artist, composer, recordist and researcher born in former Czechoslovakia and now residing in Ireland.
Next we will travel close to the Colorado Rockies to the backyard of the scientist and researcher, Dr. Jacob Job, where the people of Colorado have found unique and beautiful ways to communicate their support to the frontline healthcare and essential workers serving their communicites. Most recently Dr. Job, in conjunction with grants from National Geographic, developed a sonic exploration of the natural airspace surrounding migratory birds along the Mississippi River. The project is called Voices of a Flyway. Dr. Job is also a recordist for the National Park Service and helped develop and coordinate the Sound and Light Ecology Lab at Colorado State University. He contributed audio to the original Threshold Shift mini-series and had his dawn recording of Rocky Mountain National Park featured in 5.1 surround at Hear and There: Audio Postcards from Earth, held in 2018 at OMSI's Kendall Planetarium. More of his recordings can be found on his SoundCloud.
From Colorado, we'll move to the residence of sound artist, composer and performer, Benoît Bories, in Toulouse, France. Mr. Bories' work was also featured in the February 2020 episode focusing on the HearSay International Audio Arts Festival. This new piece has been recorded and composed while during France's strict lockdown. He recorded the sounds of the trains echoing through the empty streets of the city and used those recordings to anchor a hypnotic and haunting audio elegy, Chants Nocturnes. More of Benoît Bories' work and that of his audio documentary partner, Charlotte Rouault, can be found at faidosonore.net.
From there we will be diving into the world of Dungeons and Dragons with selections from a socially distanced interview with Portland, OR based Dungeon Master, Colin Ohnemus. Mr. Ohnemus has been creating collaborative community games within the framework of Dungeons and Dragons since his youth. He now crafts and facilitates, aka Dungeon Masters or DMs, transcontinental, online games professionally through the use of online platforms like Twitch. In addition to the long-running game featured on this episode, he also currently runs competitive D&D games with an ever-rotating cast of players every Tuesday and Sunday nights called, "So You Think You Can Quest?" Tonight, he'll be taking us into the world of Eskara, a custom-created high fantasy/sci-fi world inhabited by the characters of one group of his far-flung players. From the interview, we'll peek into the active, on the fly narrative construction of this world with a selection of audio documentation from a recent game night. The characters of this game are Kanari, a barbarian warrior/reluctant adherent to a vengence goddess, played by Austin; Noblin, a runaway, vegetarian goblin in possession of a dangerous weapon, played by Dallas; Astrid, a pseudo-reformed thief and mother of two who has just been trying to get her life back together in the midst of a dark bargain with a demon-possessed sword, played by Kira; and Josh will voice the character of Torrent, aka Tor, a halfling-water elemental cleric training to become the vessel of a universe-collapsing forbidden god, Eldwan. We'll join them on their quest to make it back to their own plane of material existence after being sucked into the Shadow Plane, a monstrous, limbo-like realm between their world and the even darker things beneath it. There are giant spiders, near misses, daring do, and one absolutely epic improvised emotional appeal. Will the heroes survive one more battle? Will these players, whose characters have miraculously managed to escape every near death scenario for two years, make it through one more night? The dice will be the judge of that. Listener discretion is advised.