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Scott Sherk’s Icelandic Slideshow MP3s

If still waters run deep, then what’s hidden inside sub-arctic air? Scott Sherk went to Iceland, and he has plenty of documentary audio evidence to show for it. His new, 12-track release on the Wandering Ear netlabel, Icelandic Air, available for free download, contains a wide range of rarified aural soundscapes, from church bells echoing in the distance (MP3) to the frigid white noise of coastal surf (MP3) to the ever-whiter noise of a rapid waterfall (MP3). As with any venture into the mythical unknown, the experience proves surprisingly closer to one’s own than might be imagined: the birdsong no less lovely (MP3), the sheep no more sentient (MP3). But there is, in Sherk’s audio slideshow, a sense of remove from the industrial that will, for most listeners, be bracingly unfamiliar. There aren’t many places in the world where one can listen for half an hour and strain to hear a plane cross overhead, but the 30-plus minutes of Icelandic Air provide just such a refuge. (Just to manage expectations, at least one plane — from the sound of it, a propeller-powered one — will fly through your headphones.) Get the full set at wanderingear.com. More on Sherk at thethirdbarn.org.

By Marc Weidenbaum

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