About the project

The Project

Surrounded by Midlothian is a game of two halves.

  • The volumes of sound libraries recorded at different locations around Midlothian. The recordings also represent the environment during different seasons of the year with winter being the first edition. The seasons and the locations define each sound bank and I will return to each location as the new seasons come along, building a collection of sounds that document a year of change.
  • The music will be compositions that use these sound libraries to provide foundation sounds, textures and rhythms that will be augmented with more traditional instruments and orchestrations

The Recording

  • Zoom f8n
  • Zoom H6
  • Rode NTSF1
  • Zoom H3VR
  • Parabolic Mic K1 (Link)
  • various condenser and stereo microphones
  • Soma Ether
  • JfR D series Hydrophone (Link)
  • a collection of custom aeolian harps
  • various contact microphones and sensors

Methods and ideas

Each library is presented as an immersive audio scene featuring a primary ambisonic microphone with a combination of other microphones and sound sources. These are recorded coincidentaly to create an immersive representation of time, location and environment. The downloads will have 24bit 48kHz stereo and ambisonic wav files.

On a field session I usually record of selection of these devices at the same time with the main ambisonic mic in the middle. Back in the studio they all go into a large Reaper project and get synchronized with the video footage so that events in the landscape line up (roughly) in the project. Using reaper allows me to mix in a 3D atmosphere and I can print files that are creative mixes from all sources as well as edited and mastered stems from each source.


Ambisonics is a full-sphere surround sound format: in addition to the horizontal plane, it covers sound sources above and below the listener. For more info you can read more here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ambisonics. There is extensive information, tutorial videos and free software from Trond Lossius and the Ambisonics Tool Kit ATKhttps://www.ambisonictoolkit.net/. Further useful resources and software links can be found here as well https://ambisonic.info/practical/software.html.