Listen

As we travel, we occasionally run into an interesting sound that we record. Here they are.

We have also collected a few bootleg recordings of the underground band Refractory Road, after whom our travelogue is named. You can learn a little about the band, and hear these previously-thought-to-be-lost recordings, by going to the Refractory Road Band page under this category.

The embedded audio player might take a few seconds to load, so please be a little patient.

Amputee Band in the Temples of Angkor

Amputee Band in the Temples of Angkor

On the pathways through the temples of Angkor, there are musical ensembles of amputees, their prosthetics displayed beside them. Their signs say they are victims of land mines, which are a persistent legacy of the conflicts in Cambodia.  All the groups have CD’s for sale.  And all the groups seem to be playing the same song – with slight variation, […]

Sounds from a Bon Katen

Sounds from a Bon Katen

Here are sounds from a Bon Katen, which is a celebration that raises donations for a temple. A little after noon on the day of the celebrration, a procession of mostly older Khmers came toward the pagoda. The procession was led by a handful of folks playing percussion instruments, the most notable being a man who banged away at a […]

Refractory Road Band: The Australia Song

Refractory Road Band: The Australia Song

Well, we found another of the band’s recordings in the attic. This one is really a vocal — no instruments. The lead singer managed to record the guitarist’s rant one day, as he was being swarmed by flies during the band’s tour of Australia. As a joke, the drummer and the bassist helped her build a little ditty around the […]

Refractory Road Band: Slow Jimi Shuffle

Refractory Road Band: Slow Jimi Shuffle

Well, here’s a recent find! It’s a never-released song by the Refractory Road Band, from the dark days of the break-up before the break-up. We just found it in the attic of a sister-in-law of one of the band members. The story goes like this… The lead singer left the country for several months. She was trying to find herself […]

Bugs Attacking the Campervan in Australia

Bugs Attacking the Campervan in Australia

In Northern Territories, the flies tended to ease up a bit when the sun went down; but that is not the end of the bugs. That’s when the gnats and bigger stuff swarms toward any light source, and you have to resort to blackout conditions to survive.  The swarm can be insanely large and determined. One evening, I recorded the […]

Monk Chants in Battambang, Cambodia

Monk Chants in Battambang, Cambodia

Somewhere between 4:00am and 5:00am every morning, the Buddhist temples came to life with the sounds of chanting monks, blared through palm-tree-mounted loudspeakers.  We awakened to the chants throughout our travels in Southeast Asia. Sometimes, we were able to hear the chants from two or more temples at the same time.  We called it “dueling monks.” Here’s a short clip […]

But there are things about Australia that are nice...

But there are things about Australia that are nice…

Jen here.  I just thought I should add my two-cents about Australia. Dan hated Australia.  OK, I share most of his angst about the place, BUT there are things about Australia that are nice, like being awakened every morning by this (push the play button):     Overall, the places we visited in Australia weren’t so great; but I think […]

Geckos

Geckos

Geckos are everywhere, and in every room and bungalow. Some of them are big, like the guy pictured on this post. One type makes the classic “gecko” call, and you can listen to that by clicking on the play button below.    

Cicadas at Thasongyang Hill Resort, Tha Song Yang, Thailand

Cicadas at Thasongyang Hill Resort, Tha Song Yang, Thailand

This is a great sound, with the main sound in the foreground generated by a single cicada. They sound like buzz saws. It’s amazing stuff.  Push the play button below to listen.                          

Refractory Road Band: "The Me Song"

Refractory Road Band: “The Me Song”

And yet another resurrected song by the Refractory Road band. Just about everyone knows somebody like this.  Someone whose sentences always contain the words “me,” “my,” “mine,” or “I” — even when the conversation is about you, or someone or something else. Click the play button below to listen.      

Refractory Road Band: "Dana is a Chick"

Refractory Road Band: “Dana is a Chick”

This Refractory Road song is for Dana, the lead singer’s favorite cross-dresser and a superb house-cleaner.  It’s from the band’s early days, playing the San Francisco punk scene. A word of warning: This is not a G-rated song.  Send the children to another room. Click the play button to listen.