SAILING THE NORTH ATLANTIC

atlantic-liner

Set in 20th century days of ocean liners crossing The Atlantic this piece of sound art, ‘Sailing the North Atlantic’, using samples of ‘found sound’ (i.e. using sound samples I ‘found’ then captured and manipulated to create music/sound art) is another from my Cosa Nostra concept album. The album was themed around a storyboard I created. A bit like Romeo & Juliet except the families at war are both 20th century Mafia.

My central character had to journey to New York to catch up with the killer of his lover back in Scilly and avenge her death.

Here though, it’s not about him. What I was trying create for this piece was the feel of the journey from start to finish, through the ‘eyes’ of the ocean liner rather than the character’s emotions or the ocean itself. I was looking to get the feel of movement across water of a giant ship, motion, engines at work, the flavour of sounds inside and on deck. This is why no basic melody kicks in for the first 77 seconds of the track. It had to get out of port and build up a head of steam.

‘Cosa Nostra’ was a big project and lyric free. Its sole purpose was to try to tell a story through the various emotions that sound can deliver. There’s a lot going on and personally I prefer to listen through headphones, or with the volume pumped up.

Hope you like it.

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37 comments

    1. It should work if you just click the arrow in the pic on screen, although someone else said it’s not working – worrying. Not that I’ve ever mentioned it before (but I’ll tell you) if you type in george blamey-s in Soundcloud a lot of my old portfolio sits there from uni and pre-uni days.

  1. George, always a beautiful presentation. Your introduction to, “Sailing the North Atlantic” is great, I noticed that I listened with a different kind of intent. I really like the idea of the ocean liner being personified in a way, making it an independent character, this also makes the ship very endearing, at least to me. Terrific, we love it! ~ Mia & Rexie >^.^<

    1. I’ll be honest Mia, the way you present your posts so well made me think I ought to tidy mine up. I’m new to this and learning all the time. Anyway, I am so glad you got the concept in one. With sound art most people just glaze over. Thank you both, Mia & Rexie the T-Rex

      1. Thank you George, you’re much too kind. Your site has always been visually lovely, and your content always wonderful. It’s still exciting to see how things evolve over time, and what triggers that creative spark, never knowing exactly what it might be. I love surprises, and happy accidents. I’ve always been a huge fan of Installation Art and the idea of even coming close to something like that while working in a blog format is a terrific challenge. Perhaps relying on the emotions and the perceptions of a viewer/reader/listener may just help to create and sustain that third dimension, so naturally I love what you’re doing with your posts. Thank you for the new nickname, “Rexie the T-Rex”! M & R

      2. Rexie the T-Rex would maybe make a great cartoon series. Certainly using a combination of art forms to create a single art in any environment is, in many ways, the ultimate form of art. A bit like multiculturalism peaking and blending of the human race into just one model of human. Looking forward to your next post, George & (surprisingly given the time of year and the temperature here) a house fly (?). Odd.

      3. Really, look how popular Barney is!?! Maybe house flies are smarter than we know, I mean he is inside, not outside. Hope you’re having a wonderful day. ~ M & R

      4. I hadn’t thought of that. I wonder where he sleeps. You realize I have to give him (or maybe she – although he looks like a bloke) a name now. Cedric!

      5. Thank you, that’s great. I hope Cedric slept well. I dropped in a video short on my site, not wanting to clutter up your page. Then realized I posted the wrong link, there are two shorts. I think you will enjoy the stop motion film, “The God & The Fly”, just motion and sound. ~ Mia & Rexie the T-Rex.

  2. I love the concept of Cosa Nostra. Really enjoyed this piece! I’ve never actually been on a ship very far off shore but I’ve often taken the ferry from Vancouver to Victoria, and it reminded me of that.

    1. It’s only 20 miles but I travel from Dover to Calais regularly in big roll on/roll off ships. When the weather is bad they are amazing. Luckily, I don’t get seasick.

    1. Thank you. Setting the liner off out of port before risky a rolling melody was, I remember, a difficult thing to do. Capturing the feeling of it all was the problem.

  3. I love the point you make about using the ship’s point of view. I can’t help but picture your protagonist, though, that the music opens with sky, sea, and the protagonist and the rail, back to us, feet spread, hands in pockets, coat flapping in a salty wind as waves crest and fall, crest and fall, even rising in a single fountain, almost like an attack, spraying others on deck, sending them ducking for cover, complaining of their splattered phones and tablets.
    The protagonist never moves. He is untouched and unphased, eyes set only on the course and where it will lead him.

  4. Wow, this piece is so exciting. I am new to listening to instrumental, always been about the words, so I appreciated very much your intro to this so I could put myself in the scene. My great grandfather came from Sicely, so it was especially meanngful

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