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It is easy to go in to a special mood when I think of the Icelandic highland and all the fabulous moments I have experienced there twenty to thirty years ago.
This quiet black desert gives me always a wonderful feeling. Just like I am in love.
Endless fields of weather beaten black and gray gravel, with a soundscape of wind and water, or just a real silence.
River sources and oases are there in many places. This water sources have very often some life. If not just a thin layer of sensitive moss, then grassland with birds, insects and even mammals.
Sadly, many of these wonderful quiet places have been under a threat by humans activity last decades, so they are not anymore this magic places as they were for a lonely cyclist more than twenty years ago. Some of them has been totally destroyed, like huge area in the east highland, like Vesturöræfi 
For that reason I will not inform where the following recording was made. I just like to say, it was recorded in the highland in one of my „hidden places“ that still exists and has not been destroyed with hydro power plant, tourists, offroad driving motorist, or human waste.
This recording is very quiet. It contains a dunlin, howling arctic fox, europian golden plover, red necked phalarope and pink footed goose.
The background noise is a waterflow from nearby water source.
This was recorded 17th of July 2015 around two o´clock in the morning.
Quality open headphones are recommended while listening at low to mid level, or in speakers at low level .

Tófuvæl

Það verður að viðurkennast að á þeim árum sem ég ferðaðist sem mest um landið á reiðhjóli, var ég ekki oft var við tófu, hvað þá að heyra í þeim. Eftir að hætt var að greiða mönnum fyrir skott hafa tófuveiðar svo til lagst af. Tófu er því að fjölga og það líklega um allt land því ég er farinn að sjá hana oftar og heyra.
Það gerðist svo í sumar að ég náði að hljóðrita tófuvæl á hálendinu á einum af mínum leyndu eftirlætis dvalarstöðum frá fyrri tíð.
Í upptökunni hér fyrir neðan má heyra í tófu á 5. mínútu. Hún er því miður í talsverðri fjarlægð enda kannski ekki furða með mann í næsta nágrenni. Þótt þetta sé ákaflega þögul upptaka heyrist líka í lóuþræl, heiðlóu og grágæs, sem og óðinshönum í návígi á 18. mínútu.

 Download mp3 file  (256kbps / 52Mb)

Recorder: Sound device 744
Mics: Rode NT1a (NOS)
Pics: Canon EOS M
Weather: Cloudy, drissle rain, calm- up to 8 m/s, around +3¨C
Location: Sorry, no comment

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Whatever the mainstream media says, the Paris talk COP21 was a fraud. The outcome was almost nothing, just promises. For me and many others is it too late. The chain reaction has already started so radical actions was needed at last sixteen years ago.
Paris talk was tailor made for investors, corporations and politicians with different needs, probably to make different outcome from previous conferences.
I have wait for political actions all times since beginning of this century so I was really hoping for radical actions after COP21.
The only thing that Icelandic politics brought from COP21 was mostly a nonsense. Icelanders were already doing most of the “solutions” for other reasons. Icelanders will just plant trees and fill up drainage ditches to restore swampland. When investors are ready somewhere in the future, Icelanders will change fossil fuel cars into electric cars.
At the same time Icelanders will increase tourism, even though extreme growth in tourism last decade has already damaged the nature with following pollution and intrusion. Icelanders will also keep on making cheap power for antitrust corporations by building more polluting power stations. They are even going to search for oil well in the North Atlantic ocean.
So as so many earthlings Icelanders intend to continue their greedy and polluting lifestyle.
We are in War against Mother nature like we are all brainwashed by Sauron . We are not only polluting the earth´s atmosphere with poison gasses. We are also polluting the ground, the oceans and fresh waters with dangerous materials and gasses. Irritating audible noise is now everywhere, from the sky, on the surface and in the ocean.
Unpolluted space on our planet is now rarer than gold, in fact more valuable too.
I want to dedicate the accompanying recording to our foolish lifestyle. It was recorded on Mosfellsheiði, east of Reykjavik 25th of July 2013. It should be a quiet place, far away from busy roads in beautiful open landscape. But instead a rumbling noise filled the air from all directions. The recording contains “fossil fuel cars and air traffic”. But the loudest steady noise comes from Hellisheiðarvirkjun, a geothermal power station in more than 10 km distance. It normally blows huge amount of gases into the atmosphere. It is mostly hot steam but is mixed with toxic gases like carbon dioxide (CO2), hydrogen sulphide (HS) and also substantial quantities of hydrogen (H2). Other gases such as nitrogen (N2), methane (CH4) and argon (Ar) are in the gas mixture, but in lesser extent.
Quality open headphones are recommended while listening at mid-low level

Erum við heilaþvegin af Souron?

Loftslagsráðstefnan í París COP21 var mér mikil vonbrigði. Ég hafði vonast eftir mjög rótækum aðgerðum STRAX, en niðustaða ráðstefnunnar varð aðeins í grófum dráttum sú, að fyrirtæki og fjárfestar þurfa að huga að í lotslagsmálum á næstu árum. Það er einfaldlega of seint.
Enginn þorir að takast á við vandann. Menn ætla bara að bíða og sjá hvort það sé nauðsynlegt að gera eitthvað og vonast svo til að tæknin bjargi öllu. Flest okkar hafa séð hversu skelfilegt ástandið þarf að verða svo menn taki nýja stefnu. Nægir þar að nefna mengun í iðnaðarborgum Kína. Fátt bendir til annars en að ástandið verði eins á heimsvísu. Það er því eins og mannkynið sé heilaþvegið af “Sauron
Framtíðn er því ekki beinlínis til að gleðjast yfir. Því vill ég tileinka upptöku hér fyrir neðan viðfangsefninu. Meðfylgjandi mynd er tekin á upptökustað. Allt virðist þar í fljótu bragði óspillt og ómengað. En það er ekki allt sem sýnist. Í loftinu er óvenju mikið af óheppilegum ósýnilegum gastegundum af mannavöldum eins og frá Hellisheiðarvirkjun.
Hljóðritið gefur aðeins til kynna hljóðmengun á stað þar sem ríkja ætti “þögn” ef mannfólkið hefði haft vit og rænu á því að þróast í sátt og samlyndi við Móður náttúru.
Mælt er með því að hlusta á upptökuna í góðum opnum heyrnartólum og á miðlungs- lágum hljóðstyrk.

Download mp3 file (256kbps / 50Mb)

Recorder: Sound Devices 788
Mics: Sennheiser MKH20 (AB40)
Pics: Canon EOS-M (see more pictures)
Weather: Calm, Sunny, ca. 14°C at 20:00 o´clock
Location: 64.110946, -21.541311

Þeir sem vilja fræðast meira um Loftslagsmál geta hlustað á útvarpsþáttinn Þræði á Rás 1.
En dagana 28. nóvember, 5. og 12. desember 2015 var fjallað um loftslagsmál og ráðsetnuna í París sem þá stóð sem hæst.

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My favorite recordings are those who are many hours long. Even in places where I hear „nothing“, I will more often end up with expressively moments. Here is one of these moments when curious sheeps are sniffing, licking and biting the microphones. Not very interesting, but anyway the loudest part of seven hours long recording. It was recorded in Álftaver, in the south east south of Iceland, around midnight, 4th of June 2015.

Forvitnar kindur

Mitt skemmtilegasta viðfangsefni eru langar upptökur úti í náttúrunni. Jafnvel þó fátt makrvert heyrist, þá er oftar en ekki eitthvað áheyrilegt í þessum upptökum. Hér er ein slík uppákoma þegar rolla og lambrútur snuðra við hljóðnemasettið. Þetta er ekki merkileg upptaka en engu að síður háværasti parturinn úr sjö klukkustunda langri upptöku. Þessi hljóðpartur var tekinn upp um miðnætti í Álftaveri þann 4. júní 2015.

  Download mp3 file (256kbps / 30,8Mb)

Recorder: Sound Devices 788
Microphones: Sennheiser MKH20 (AB40)
Pix Canon EOS-M
Rec. Location: 63.522821, -18.351570
Weather: ca. 4°C, calm (SW 2m) cloudy

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Við lifum einkennilega tíma. Við þurfum að taka MJÖG rótækar ákvarðanir og breyta lifnarðarháttum okkar miklu meira en flestum likar. Ekki einhvern tíma seinna, heldur NÚNA.
Segja má að Loftslagsráðstefnan í Paris, COP21, sé mikilvægasta ráðstefna sem mannkynið hefur upplifað.
Að því tilefni voru farnar kröfugöngur víða um heim þar sem ráðamenn voru hvattir til að gefa ekkert eftir í þeim efnum.
Ein slík ganga var farin í Reykjavík einn kaldan vetrardag, sunnudaginn 29. nóvember 2015, á vegum náttúruvendarsamtaka. Heppnaðist gangan með ágætum þó fleiri hefðu mátt taka þátt í svo milivægri kröfugöngu.
Hér er hljóðrit frá seinni hluta göngunnar sem og frá Lækjatorgi þar sem haldnar voru ofur stuttar en mjög góðar ræður.
Sjá meira á MBL
Vefsíða COP21

Our LAST chance, COP21

We live in a strange time where we must take a very radical decisions and changes in our lifestyle. Therefore, is the UN climate change conference now in Paris, COP21’s the most important conference that mankind has ever experienced.
For this occasion many march or demonstrations occurred in cities all around the world where the leaders in the conference were encouraged to make a very radical agreements.
One such climate march was gone in Reykjavik in a cold Sunday, November 29th, 2015.
The following recording includes the second half of the march and two short speeches in the end (in Icelandic) at Lækjartorg square in Reykjavik center.
COP21 website

Download mp3 file (196kbps / 31Mb)

Recorder: Olympus LS100
Mics: Sound Professionals MC-TFB-2 (In ear Binaural w. Soundmann windshield)
Pics: Thanks to Jón Pálsson (See more pics)
Weather : About -4°C, calm.
Location: 64.147463, -21.936443

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This recording is almost straight forward from the recording I posted about a year ago “Dawn in Stafholtstungur, part 1”.
Now the traffic in the county increase slowly from previous recording, but all the time it is possible to listen to the birds activity in details around the recording place.
This was recorded the 18th of October 2013, between 6 and 7 in the morning near the farm Arnarholt.
Quality headphones are recommended while listening at low level in relaxed position.

Dögun í Stafholtstungum, annar hluti

Hér er á ferðinni  svo til beint framhald af upptöku sem fór á vefinn fyrir um ári síðan; “Dögun í Stafholtstungum, fyrsti hluti”.  Heyra má að umferð eykst í sveitinni  þar sem klukkan er farinn að ganga sjö.  Gera má ráð fyrir að það heyrist í sumum bílum, þá líklega flutningabílum, um langan veg  frá Norðurárdal suður til Borgarfjarðar. En þegar þögnin er sem mest er vel hægt að heyra í fuglum  athafna sig í smáatriðum nærri upptökustaðnum.
Upptakan var gerð við bæinn Arnarholt þann 18. október 2013
Mælt er með því að hlusta á þessa upptöku í góðum heyrnartólum og á lágum hljóðstyrk um leið og slakað er á í þægilegum stól eða rúmi.

Download mp3 file (256kbps / 60Mb)

Recorder:  Sound devices 744
Mics: Sennheiser MKH20 (AB40)
Pix: Canon EOS M
Rec. location: 64.672593, -21.629240
Weather: Clear sky, calm, -4°C

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The 10th of July 2015 I visited Ásbyrgi national park, in the north east Iceland.
I arrived around 9 pm. The weather was rather cold, with light drizzle rain. However there was a sport game on the old camp side held by the local community. Calls, yell and sheers from audience sounded fantastic in the echo from the surrounding cliffs. Mixed with the birdsong from the forest and the cliffs above it sounded like I was in another world.
I found a good place to record this amazing soundscape.
Soon I noticed a boring noise in the background from petrol power generator so the recording was shorter than I hoped .
When I came back to the car park the sport game was finished and the people were leaving the place. I heard someone in the crowd playing on Mbira thump piano. It came from female in traditional dress. Her instrument sounded nice in this place, so I enjoyed listening while I was packing my gear in the car.
Some Icelandic male in the crowd called after her: ‘Where are you from?“
„I am from everywhere“ she repleted.
Funny answer, I thought and started to listen to the conversations. Why not record her while she was playing?
She gave me a permission, so we took a walk to Botnstjörn pound in the bottom of Ásbyrgi.
Her name is Jessica Rose, with nickname Fairy.
I did not dare to ask her about her nationality, but her English was from the west, maybe from Canada, or north east USA. She was traveling in Iceland with her sister and two friends.

Fairy in Ásbyrgi

Um miðjan júlí 2015 kom ég við í Ásbyrgi. Ég hafði gefið mér nægan tíma þar árið áður svo ég ætlaði ekki að að eyða þar miklum tíma heldur fara á aðra staði í þjóðgarðinum sem ég hafði „hljóðstað“ á.
Ég kom á bílastæðið í botni Ásbyrgis um kl. 21. Á gamla tjaldsvæðinu stóð yfir íþróttamót. Það var því óvenju mikið af bílum og fólki á svæðinu. Hvattningarköll áhorfenda bergmáluðu sérkennilega milli klettanna í bland við fuglasöng úr skóginum og fýlahjal ofan úr klettunum. Ég rauk því til og fann mér upptökkustað. En það leið ekki á löngu að suð frá bensínrafstöð á keppnissvæðinu fór að pirra mig. Upptakan var því styttri en til stóð.
Þegar á bílastæðið var komið var fólk að streyma af mótssvæðinu. Heyri ég þá að einhver spilar á þumalpiano sem hljómaði skemmtilega á þessum stað. Var þar á ferð dama að nafni Jessica Rose sem vildi láta kalla sig Fairy. Var hún þarna í félagsskap með systur sinni og tveimur öðrum vinum á ferð um landið.
Ég stóst ekki mátið. Ég fékk leyfi hjá henni til að taka tónlist hennar upp og var það gert á pallinum við Botnstjörn.

Download mp3 file (256kbps / 48Mb)

Recorder Sound devices 788
Mics: Rode NT1a (NOS) & Sennheiser MKH8020/8040 (ORTF)
Pic: Canon EOS M
Recording location: 65.998557, -16.513076
Weather: Drizzle rain, calm and about 9°C

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Recording fireworks can be difficult. The dynamic of the blast is normally far more than the equipment can record in full quality. So acceptable recording level is very important, especially when sound process afterwards is not allowed.
The limiter in Sound devices 744 & 302 can work smoothly if they are not „overloaded“ too much, so again, acceptable recording level is very important.
Another big factor for good fireworks recording is the location. Any reflection or echo from nearby buildings or mountains can make the whole blasting thing as an outstanding symphony.
Culture night has been held in August in Reykjavik for twenty years and it normally ends with huge down town rock concert and a firework show. As usual I went there this year to record the fireworks. For a one year I have been thinking for better recording location, because I have never been happy with my firework recordings before. This year I spotted place nearby Harpa concert hall where two big buildings are on two sides. I was pretty excited for the outcome.
I waited there for the last song from the rock concert. Normally I would have about 5 to 10 minutes to prepare my gear after the last song, until the fireworks starts.
But suddenly the fireworks stated before the concert ended.
I panicked! I started my gear while I tried to run in the darkness to my deliberate place. I was tangled in the mic cord so I was afraid to damage something on the run. And because of the tangled cord I could not rise the boom above my head.
I was MAD! I lost about half and the best part of the show and faced some stupid troubles and mistakes, like level adjustments.
As usual it would take me one year to have another opportunity!
I did not listen to the recording when I came home. It was not until last week, when the dance artist and the author of the firework show, Sigríður Soffia Nielsdóttir asked me for the recording. She was planing to use it in a dance project show. Sadly I could not send her the whole firework show. But who knows, it will probably all, or part of it, be used in her dance project this October.
The following recording is just as it comes out of the recorder, it is just fade in/out and downgraded to mp3. So it start suddenly without warning with loud blasts. So be careful, don´t put up the volume, especially not when listening with speakers.
Quality open headphones are recommended while listening at mid/high-level.

Flugeldasýningin á menningarnótt 2015

Hér er á ferðinni upptaka frá flugeldasýningu á Menninganótt í Rykjavik 22. ágúst 2015.
Það gekk bókstaflega allt á afturfótunum þegar hún var tekin upp. Því vantar fyrri hluta sýningarinnar í upptökuna. Upptakan er gerð á milli Seðlabanka og Hörpu. En vegna staðsetningarinnar þá má heyra ýmiss konar áhugaverð hljóð sem myndast vegna endurvaps milli húsanna. Mér þótti það þess vert að setja upptökna á vefinn.
Hljóðritið byrjar mjög snögglega því ætti ekki að stilla hljómtæki hátt, sér í lagi ef hlustað er með hátölurum.
Mælt er með því að hlusta á upptökuna í góðum opnum heyrnartólum og á miðlungs/háum hljóðstyrk.

Download mp3 file (256kbps / 8Mb)

Recorder: Sound devises 744/302
Mics: Sennheiser MKH8020/8040 (Parallel ORTF)
Pix: Canon EOS M
Recording location: 64.149706, -21.933897
Weather: Around 13°C , calm, cludy.