Artist News

David Byrne takes London’s tempo, makes sound montage

By | Published on Thursday 22 March 2012

David Byrne

During a recent residency at Artangel’s South Bank situated ‘boat-hotel on a roof’ installation, ‘A Room For London’, Talking Heads auteur David Byrne found space and time to create an audio collage of sounds he recorded on location at various London landmarks. The result is ‘Get It Away’, a ‘soundwork’ set to a beat to suit the city’s natural tempo, which Byrne gauges to be 122.86bpm.

He says: “I went out during the day and recorded sounds that I thought might be useful and evocative. It turned out that most of the sounds – even the church organ in Southwark Cathedral – seemed to converge around a common rhythm. It’s a bit too good to be true – that every large city should have it’s own rhythm, but here it is. I let the sounds dictate the groove, the tempo, and then I simply played along”.

And you needn’t wait to sample said sounds, because here’s ‘Get It Away’, now: