Jim Haynes
Jaam SMEAR With Radio 1504
3"CDR // Tiny Portraits


Available through the Helen Scarsdale Agency: $7.00

"This is an unedited recording using two contact microphones in each of the stereo inputs of a digital recorder on the high-tension wires of a 130m mast on a weather research station. One of the channels captured the resonance of the wind, creating a very complex drone harmonic; the other channel is a recording of an Russian polemic broadcast through radio. The recording was made in April of 2015 in the southeastern forest of Estonia. At the time, I did not have a radio on my person; rather the two contact microphones formed a primitive radio antenna with the digital recorder acting as the receiver. I do not speak Russian at all; and upon this discovery, I asked fellow sound recordist John Grzinich about it. He too does not know Russian; but we both postulated that this might be a NATO propaganda broadcast, given the military might that Russia had been wielding against former Soviet republics and that Russia had violated Estonian borders to kidnap an Estonian espionage officer for a trumped up charges in Russia. While our collective conspiratorial minds were deflated a bit by the actual purposes of both the weather station (not a disguised NATO-funded radio tower for western propaganda akin to the Finnish broadcasts of western television into Tallinn in the early '80s) and the sermon (a hellfire and brimstone Russian Orthodox sermon about Jonah and the whale in parallel to the debauchery of modern culture -- the translation of this I owe thanks to Rostislav Rekuta), this recording is a rare document of a very particular event in time and place that I chose not to corrode or deconstruct." - Jim Haynes



Jaam SMEAR With Radio 1504