site sonology #3
I had imagined what this event would ‘sound’ like only because I have explored this site several times over the past seven years and I have a sort of familiarity with the ‘instrument’. What I remember of it is that the bunker is built into a slope so that its slightly-angled roof rises from ground level (ice plants and dust along a ridge that allows a view of the Bridge and the entrance to the Bay) on its ocean-facing side and is accessible on its inland side from several staircases that lead down to a paved walkway running along a long wall set with massive steel doors. Through one or more of these ajar doors you can enter the bunker and step among broken glass, feathers, gardbage, sticks and chunks of masonry. Today I set out with a small amplifier and some recordings from this and other California bunkers that I had compiled over the years. Also, I brought with me some contact mics to be used somehow with the doors. And I brought a harmonium.
Nearing the entrance to the Bridge on Sunday I noticed that many of the roads leading to various landmarks and trailheads in the Presidio were closed off and guarded by the police. Battery East Rd. was among these sealed-off areas and so the bunker was not accessible. Of course, this is all part of a great precaution being taken around a significant feature of San Francisco that could imaginably become another target of terrorism. I ended up crossing the Bridge and spending the day in Marin, the harmonium coming out briefly and without inspiration in the parking lot of some riding stables on Route 1.
This probably qualifies as the first ‘implied’ performance in my series.