David Byrne Captures Sounds Of London In New Art Piece

David Byrne Captures Sounds Of London In New Art Piece

Grammy Award winner David Byrne stayed took inspiration for his latest piece from London landmarks and population.

Don Michael Acelar De Leon
  • 4 april 2012

PSFK previously featured A Room for London, a boat-shaped one-bedroom installation perched on top of the Queen Elizabeth hall at the Sounthbank Centre in London, specifically designed to provoke thought and stir inspiration among creative minds. Since its installation early this year, A Room for London has served as a temporary home to a variety of artists who create artworks or performances inspired by the space to be subsequently shared with the public.

Musician David Byrne recently stayed in A Room For London for two days and brought recording gear to capture the sounds of London and mix them with his music along with videos he took while roaming around the city.  The result: ‘Get It Away,’ an organic musical composition that reflects the spirit and life of London at a tempo of 122.86 beats per minute. David Byrne shares:

I brought along some field recording gear to use while I was staying in the lovely pod/room/boat. 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 its own rhythm, but here it is. I let the sounds dictate the groove, the tempo, and then I simply played along.

Here are where the sounds come from:

Strawberry seller: Borough Market
Train: Southwark
Woman Evangelist: Spitalfields Market
Organ: Southwark Cathedral
Jackhammer: near Waterloo
Footsteps: mine, embankment
Thames waves: near Surrey water

Check out the video below:

Images by Boingboing and The Guardian.

A Room For London

David Byrne


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