Sri Lanka stripped bare by her suitor, Mark Vernon, during his six-week residency at the Sura Madura arts centre in Hikkaduwa, on the southwest coast of the island. A near-hour of field recordings gently blended, for us listeners Things That Were Missed in the Clamour for Calm may be more a dream of the place, especially when the sounds become amorphous, unidentifiable, or more of a gesture on Vernon´s behalf, a thing that didn´t really happen but that the place evoked in him. (Recommended accompanying reading: Michael Ondaatje´s magic-realist family memoir, Running in the Family.
Numerous heatstroke hazes recur, overwhelming more corporeal street scenes and jungle floor hubbub, choked with lyrical sellers, busy buyers and tuk-tuk fumes, amphetamine frog croaking, barbiturate cricket chirping, a brief drum tattoo that is actually raindrops on a tin roof (or not), local radio, typewriter clack, workshop filing and welding, children´s music lessons, religious processions and off in the distance, that all-important colonial railway. Finally, the sea laps at our toes.