Terror Alert Orange Frank Koustrup

“Terror Alert Orange” is a sound-scape recording at the shoreline of Aquatic Park in San Francisco that was made on Veterans Day of 2001. It was a cool, gray November eleventh, two months and three time zones from that warm, clear September eleventh. This recording was originally a test to compare microphones. The shoreline ambience has a wide frequency range, is spatially diverse, and provides challenges caused by wind. It makes a very good test of sound recording equipment. During the test recordings, a large, military plane that was accompanied by two helicopter gun ships, slowly circled San Francisco Bay. The federal government had declared a Terror Alert at the Orange level. Like most such alerts, it provided no concrete recommendations for civilians; just watch out for something suspicious and keep shopping.

The mood resembled very much the Cold War. Uncontrollable doom was possible at any moment in any place for any reason: a computer or chain-of-command mistake perhaps, or a twisted neural firing from a religious maniac. There was absolutely nothing one could do to respond. Just turn to face the blast — if you have time — and enjoy the view. Hope to go early and quickly. Be passive. The peace dividend was spent.

  • Year of composition: 2003
  • Duration of the submitted work: 1:46
  • Production: Home

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