The dominance of the visual over the aural has increased little by little over the past few thousand years; back then, we would listen intently to sounds in the forest in order to locate the position of our prey and then, using our eyes, would seek out our prey and kill it. Now, mostly, we hunt for our food in supermarkets, plugged into our iPods, not listening at all…
We’ve forgotten how to use our ears – we’ve forgotten how to listen. Many of us find it hard to listen; it’s much easier to just be present where music is playing (on the radio, in the background…) than actually to devote time and energy to concentrated listening.

soundsites is about helping us to understand more about the power of listening and to raise awareness of the many sounds there are around us that are being ignored. It’s invisible in the City and there’s nothing to look at out there – but everything to listen to.

Using a sound mapping tool, users can upload sounds they have recorded onto the sound map, as if they were putting photos onto a social networking site. As more sounds are added the project develops into a rich database of the sounds of Aberdeen – providing the audio heritage of the future.

soundsites essentially has no end date and will continue for as long as people want to add sounds and text to the site. It will explore how people respond to the sounds of Aberdeen and how these sounds change over time. It will allow people to experience Aberdeen in another way and to make sense of what sound means in their lives.


Pete Stollery
Creative Lead

James Daniel
Website Design

Andoni Correas-Illarramendi
Sound Mapping tool design

Craig Barrowman
Project Manager

Phil Marston
Technical Guru

Murray Dawson
SHMU (Station House Media Unit)

Chris Gray, Ross Whyte, Chandra Chapman and students from University of Aberdeen
Workshop Delivery


Aberdeen City Council

Supported by Aberdeen City Council’s Public Art Fund