Recording Ice cubes with Contact Microphones

Whilst working on this project I have been struggling to find organic sounds to represent the image of the particles and matter being drawn together and joined to create the universe.

Whilst sat last week enjoying a nice ice cold glass of Cola, I thought that the sound of the ice cracking and the drink fizzing may work well within the context of the video. I attached the stereo pair of contact mics to the glass, popped in an ice-cube and recorded the results. What I didn’t realise was that I would also record whilst doing this, the very quiet sound of the ice creaking and squeaking as it melts, sounds that are not normally perceived.

The video below shows how the original sound was recorded and what it sounded like along with a clip from an edited video of the sound processed and blended with some other sounds. The ice and fizz had reversed reverb added in Logic, some EQ, a de-noiser. A droning synth was added for low frequencies and  a granulated planet sound (Saturn) from my previous project was also used just to see what it might sound like. It’s a good short test and i’m quite happy with the results – so far!

I think this will end up being a starting point for some of my sounds. The next time I am going to use a bigger bowl, try it with just water and fizzy drink and finally use lots more ice, along with some other sounds I have in mind.

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