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Secrets of Orford Ness

by Iain Chambers



"I've been working on material recorded at the former UK Ministry of Defence site Orford Ness on the East England Suffolk coast.
Since the Ministry of Defence left in 1993, the buildings have been overrun by nature.

The excitement felt by Bletchley Park's wartime code breakers was echoed here too: Britain's greatest scientific brains, along with 400 civilians and thousands of unacknowledged Chinese migrant workers all worked on developing military technology including the UK’s first nuclear weapon.

Today the place gives us a sense of what a post-apocalyptic environment might look and sound like. Air ducts once now burst open with the packed nests of roosting birds. There are seagulls 'playing' the atomic weapons laboratories with their cries; baby jackdaws duetting with gravel footsteps; metal stairwells transformed into aeolian harps. " Iain Chambers, Orford Ness.

Thanks to David Mason, Markus Heuger, Roy Dommett (RIP) and Viet-Xuan Williams
About Iain:
Iain Chambers is a composer and producer whose music often deploys field recordings and location sounds as musical material.

Iain's work is heard live in concerts, radio, sound installations and multimedia. His feature-length symphonies of industrial sounds have been commissioned by BBC Radio 3, WDR Cologne and ABC Australia.

In 2019 Iain launched the independent record label Persistence of Sound, presenting new musique concrète and field recordings.

Iain is a founder member of Langham Research Centre, an electronic music ensemble using obsolete Cold War era technology to create new music. The group also create new realisations of 20th century electronic works by composers John Cage, Alvin Lucier and Christian Wolff using an unusual instrumentarium: analogue tape, sine-wave oscillators, analogue radios and phonograph cartridges. LRC perform internationally, and released “Tape Works (Vol. 1)” on the Nonclassical label in 2017.


released October 27, 2020

All tracks by Iain Chambers
Mastered by Nima Aghiani
Photography: Ian Rawes
Design: Kate Carr


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