Various Artists

A Week in Hawaii, Vol. 7: Tropical Surf

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Rykodisc presents one full hour of oceanside ambiance recorded (they say) in Hawaii. One potential problem with sound effects records that consist of continuous water noises is the indeterminate nature of the sounds created by the swooshing, hissing, foaming liquid mass. Fortunately, whoever documented this aural seascape did a good job of capturing the sounds of aquatic birds in addition to the shifting nuances of surging and breaking waves. The tide has a certain audible "depth," so to speak, which is detectable over the more distant and fairly constant roar made by tons of mobile water white capping further from the shore. The effect of being there is re-created with surprising success. This will work best if you crank up the volume and close your eyes. Heard at lower volume and with other things going on in the listening space, this could come to sound like wind or radio static rather than a peaceful yet violently churning ocean beating against a tropical shore. So stop what you're doing, put everything away, and turn this up as loud as possible so the sounds completely surround you and carry you out to sea.

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