Five years ago I spent the entire year running around the county recording trains. The result of my efforts was North Country Trains which I released in late 2011. I learned a lot about the best places to record and the best times of the year. Along with nearly being arrested I spent countless hours sitting and waiting in locations ranging from wide open fields to dense forests to the local train depot. For this collection I used that experience and knowledge to record even more of the massive diesel beasts as they rumbled through the area without waiting forever to capture the moment.
I learned that with all the trains (70+) that pass through here everyday, there is a certain pattern to the criss crossing madness. I would listen and wait for the times when I heard lots of trains from the south which meant trains from the North were waiting patiently before crossing the lake. Just one set of tracks cross the lake and a bottleneck is almost daily. Other trains come from the West on a separate rail system and they have to wait also. When they get the go ahead the North South trains are waiting. These “stop and go” train situations create the perfect opportunity to get slack take-up metal impacts along with slow starts and passes.
One of the aspects of train sounds that I love the most around here is the way that the horn echoes and bounces between the valleys and the mountain ranges. On a quiet day or evening it’s a stunning sound and can go on for what seems like forever. Another is the way the wheels scrape and squeal against the rails when a train is on a curved set of tracks. It can be abrasive and yet at times it’s strangely musical.
Sound Devices 702 | Sennheiser MKH-8040ST | Sanken CSS-5 | Sony PCM-D100 | Sony PCM-D50
Freight Trains Part-4 added! Free update! 5 new sounds, same old price!