The Awful Truth - Music Video

A few weeks back we were asked by our friend if we could pop down whilst he was recording a new album in order to make a little video for him. The band is The Awful Truth and the song we recorded is called In Too Deep.

We were expecting a slightly different setup and so we were a little perplexed when we arrived and saw the five of them playing instruments and singing surrounded by chairs, tables and various pieces of furniture. We later found out this was so that the sound from each instrument wouldn't bleed into the neighbouring microphones, but it also meant we had to quite literally jump obstacles to get to film each musician. The result is a bit wobbly in parts, although we like it this way in the end!

We hope you enjoy it, the song is really catchy and it was great fun to work with these guys!

 Greta & Nick, Oropendola Productions




Wildlife Weekly at Martin Mere - Bird Calls

After visiting Martin Mere for the dawn chorus, we were excited to do a whole episode on the various sounds you can hear whilst walking around the reserve. Through this  video you will get a taste of the various soundscapes, from the familiar chirps of woodland environments,  strange calls of the beautiful Lapwings and finally, to the utterly mad, almost techno beats of the reed warblers. Hopefully this will inspire you to listen closely to the sounds around you, even if at first you can't tell where they're coming from.

More coming  soon....


Nick & Greta, Oropendola productions

Sounds From The Undergrowth - A Taster

Life in the rainforest, from a human perspective, can be quite disorientating. From the chirps of bird calls to the deafening chorus of crickets and the seemingly endless choir of frog songs, together all these sounds ensure that there is never any peace in the jungle. Perhaps the only fleeting moments of silence are the ones following a sudden end to a huge downfall, but even then, the cacophony of noises quickly resumes. With this bombardment of sounds it's very easy to overlook the more subtle noises that make up the bustling world under your feet. I am talking about the sounds from the undergrowth: the hundreds of crawling beetles, the fluttering of butterflies and the tireless march of the ants, to name just a few. Each have their methods of communication and some are audible to our ears if we just stop pay attention and listen. So that is what we did, with the aid of contact and omni-directional microphones to boost those tiny sound waves.

Stripping back the noise to its simplest sound, we attached contact microphones to various size and types of leaves and recorded raindrops hitting them. Then we collected all these drumbeat-like sounds and gave them to our friend and collaborator Alex (Phat Acrobat), who pitched the sounds slightly and created this funky rhythm to which we have built our video.

The result, is the following:

As Nick says, this is just one spice, but there is a bag of mixed spices waiting to be sorted, chopped up and combined in just the right way to give one hell of a curry. The translation of which is, be patient because we are working on a much bigger number of sounds and images to bring you a better, longer, funkier version of this and shed light on those sounds often trampled under foot.

Nick & Greta, Oropendola Productions

The Tasty Wood

If you like close up shots of ants, bees or freshly snapped wood then you are in luck,  this short clip is just for you! Ok, no, seriously, this was just a test we did to experiment with some sounds and footage we got from Peru, using Adobe Premiere Pro as editing suite. Although it is no masterpiece, there is something we both really liked about this particular sequence. Partly the ant, and the fact that it was such a solitary grazer, and partly the succulent log it was munching on, recently snapped and still wet from the rain. The way the sunlight danced over the golden wood, filtered through the canopy, made the whole scene seem almost staged, but I promise you it wasn't! We had originally been attracted to that log by the buzzing sound of a bee, which you can briefly spot in the sequence, with a full pollen sack on its leg, before noticing the lonely ant.

For the sound here we used a pair of small omni directional microphones and a modified contact microphone. See if you can hear the little footsteps of the ant or the crunch of the tasty wood.

If anybody knows what the species of ant is, please let us know as we are struggling to identify it. Thank you!

Nick & Greta, Oropendola Productions