Caught by the River


13th October 2019

A collection of the latest reads, listens and watches which have held tapers to our wick…

On the Spodden Valley Revealed blog, Folklore Tapes’ David Chatton Barker explores Limersgate, an ancient highway which runs between Rochdale and Clitheroe.

For the Canal & River Trust’s Waterfront magazine, Rob St. John creates an ambient sound portrait of the remote upper stretches of the Lancaster Canal.

On the subject of field recording, Chris Watson and Australian audio-visual artist Polly Stanton guest on Kate Carr and Luca Nasciuti’s Resonance Extra show to explore the concept of field recording in the era of climate change. How we can use sound to participate in environmental activism? The pair discuss their work in the context of climate change, and examine the ways sound can be used to approach this urgent issue. Listen here via Mixcloud.

There’s no money, there’s no glory, there’s no fame, so why start a press? 3:AM magazine interviews intriguing Manchester-based independent publishers Dostoyevsky Wannabe.

‘A whole taxonomy of wrongs— / wrong day, wrong path, wrong weather / (wrong clothing?)’ – Will Burns pens new poem ‘Before Rainfall’, part of the People’s Forest commission which sees him walking from Epping Forest to Wendover Woods.

Robert Macfarlane and director Rob Petit collaborate on Upstream – a film shot entirely from the air, which follows the course of the River Dee all the way to its source in the Cairngorm mountains. With a prose poem written especially for the film by Macfarlane and an original score by the Oscar-nominated composer Hauschka, the film takes as it epigraph the words of the Scottish writer Nan Shepherd (1893-1981): “One cannot know the rivers till one has seen them at their sources”, wrote Shepherd, “but this journey to sources is not to be undertaken lightly.” (The Living Mountain, 1977). Available to watch on the iPlayer until the end of the month.

Artist and photographer Paul Hart’s photographs of the Fens are on display at the Fen Ditton Gallery (until 20 October). More info here.

‘Those of us that grow up with a river, that spend our days – either consciously or subconsciously – mapping the course of its ethereal and surreal liquid element; lulled by its lapping; maddened by its meandering; we are shape-shifters. We are all at once the observer but we are, too, the one being watched. We are reflected and refracted. In time, as each fluid day passes, glassy and spectral, salmon and sorrow full; we are carried in its flow. We become the load, and we sometimes, fleetingly, know this, deep down: in the sinew; in the silence.’ The startling Kerri ní Dochartaigh writes powerfully on grief, and on hope.