What is EVP?
EVP stands for Electronic Voice Phenomena. This is the unconscious or accidental manifestation of anomalous sounds on recording equipment that is not heard at the time of recording.
True EVPs appear at frequencies & amplitudes undetectable by the human ear.
Sometimes an unidentified sound will be heard at the time, sounding like a foot shuffle perhaps. Yet on playback it turns out it is something else very very different...
© Copyright Ann Morris 2021
© Copyright Ann Morris 2021
These sounds often appear to be voices - although they are also frequently made up of many other miscellaneous noises also not heard at the time of recording. And that is the key - you hear NOTHING at the time, only on playback.
It's not just human voices that appear either. I have recorded a dog barking at very close range when there were no dogs in the area, and another time what sounded like a panting dog.
Other non-human captures have included recorder music drifting down a deserted corridor, clinking chains, an old fashioned typewriter, and what sounds like a ruler being dragged over the ridges on one of those dated old radiators. Again let me make this 100% clear, at the time of recording there was ABSOLUTE silence.
Over the years of doing EVP recordings I have become increasingly aware of my own name being used. Comments such as "Oh Ann's back", "Ann's here!" and "Someone should shoot Ann" have been gaining in regularity at a number of locations.
I regularly receive communications at home, my resident gent' isn't particularly nice, and recently (July 2021) clearly told me that I'm "getting fat". I am, but I got on the treadmill pronto after hearing him, I can tell you!
Captures can vary enormously in quality and type.
In the business, EVPs are loosely classed as A's (the best) and descending as quality diminishes. Like most EVP enthusiasts I have plenty of all sorts from A's down to E's - all are precious, but there's nothing QUITE like hearing your class A's to make you feel proud & downright excited!
Captures are often single words of inconsequential meaning. At other times they appear to directly interact with the person recording. eg, I've had things said such as "Cheese!" (Oddly I've had two references to cheese from within the old governor's office in a prison) and also "Are you a prisoner here?". One random and the other so-spot on it seems obvious that there is some degree of intelligence in whatever dimension this entity hails from. For in this example I was indeed wandering the deserted wings of a 400 year old prison.
CAN YOU SAY THAT AGAIN?
Captures are sometimes full sentences featuring discernible multiple speakers. Occasionally the voices appear to be a playback of situations past, particularly if recorded in historic locations (residual playback if you will). Other times the speaker seems aware not only of my situation but also of their own. There seems a deep mix of layers here, not any one sort of capture.
More frequently these days my name is mentioned, and at regularly visited locations I have been known to recognise a regular speaker. It's truly fascinating and humbling.
Sometimes humiliating too - when a voice tells you that you're "too big for those trousers..." it can be upsetting!
Other theories as to what EVP is include:
* Desperation. The investigator is so desperate to hear 'something' that they perceive every noise to be of paranormal origin.
* Subconscious self-manipulation of the false vocal cords. In other words, people really want to hear a voice so they make it up. Without realising... Somehow I doubt this! Would that explain a conversation going on between 2 entities whilst I was talking? No.
* That the voices are provided by hidden speakers. I'm sure some venues do try to fake noises, but not in my experience. And how do you fake a sound that you cannot hear at the time?
*That all people who believe in EVP are lunatics.
*That all people who deal with EVP are fakers.
* That they are cross-dimensional pick-ups via an audio substrate. Now this one, I can get behind. White and brown noise can play a huge part in the realisation of sounds 'in the moment' - but a true EVP is NOT heard at the time. I repeat, NOT HEARD! Plenty more on these subjects in my Lost Voices blogs.
QUESTIONS OF TIME & REALITY - HOW CAN THIS BE?!
Within 'normal' EVPs (if such a term can EVER apply to this phenomenon!) of late I have discovered something totally illogical and in the true sense of the word, awesome. Yes, this genuinely inspires awe. It makes no sense - but this is real.
If this doesn't make you question our perception of time and reality, of multi-dimensional possibilities, then I don't know what will....! It stuns me just to think about it, and it's not an isolated case.
I've heard of some paranormal audio being spoken in reverse. In many 'possession' cases for example, victims have been known to speak entire conversations in reverse, often in languages unknown to the human victim.
I've also heard of some EVP captures only being understood after being reversed - but up until now, had never even tried to do such a thing to my awkward, nonsensical EVPs. I just put them in the 'Inaudible' category. Then, in December 2020, I tried it. This voice was recorded in A Wing of HMP Shepton Mallet and in it's pure form within the main parent file, there at 2 minutes 20 seconds in file 1114, there's a man saying something. Exactly what, I couldn't tell. So I flipped it. I've named this sort of capture a Reverse Audio Anomaly. Here is the result:
WORDS ARE NOT ENOUGH...
Lately very strange things have happened in conjunction with EVPs.
Here are two stand-out examples:
1) I took a friend's sons to an active location, both with recorders turned on off at EXACTLY the same time, yet both recording totally different things.
2) A month before this incident in the same room, I was going about my recording when there was an extremely loud metallic crash of something unseen. On playback there are screams of a child as the crash happened. I don't normally scream and swear when I'm on location - but I did that day. ( To hear this incident in full see my EVP Videos page)
HOT FUZZ - Filtering out the noise
I tend to work alone, totally solo if at all possible. That way I can cut out any unnecessary audio pollution that simply having one other person with you can produce.
Talking, whispers, sniffs, coat scuffles, tummy rumbles and breathing all becomes hideously magnified with today's digital recorders, so to guarantee that it is JUST ME doing the talking (or what/whoever else may be about unseen..) I go it alone. I give a running commentary as I go, if I hear birds, distant lawn mowers, a train in the distance, my gurgling throat, or other people approaching, I say on record so it can be discounted afterwards.
Then for example, when I playback after a session in B-Wing of Shepton Mallet Prison in Somerset, and clearly hear a child screaming terrifyingly at the top of its lungs, I know it wasn't there at the time. I know it wasn't a gull - I know it wasn't a kid outside the prison walls. I trust myself to set stiff rules as to how I record, and it makes my evidence genuine. I have no time for fakers or those who manipulate other sounds into being those of a paranormal nature.
Here is that very clip, recorded in B Wing on 11/7/2019 at 10:20am.
I was the only visitor in the empty prison.
LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION...
Recording does not have to take place in historic locations, nor even those deemed to be 'haunted'. Sure, some places will ultimately and obviously attract a more dense form of accumulated energy over the years depending on what they have been are are now, but personally I have found it possible to get EVP recordings anywhere.
Those recorded in my own home after strange happenings however, have warned me that doing so can have a direct effect upon the perception of the home being cosy and safe - and therefore I'd not advise it unless you're absolutely fine with what you may get back!
UNDER 'FRIENDLY' FIRE
The 'big guns' in the field however were not so keen on my solo antics and pushed the possibility that I am in the business to fake my recordings.
This hurt me considerably because never EVER would I stoop to such a thing. What you hear and see with my work is real. Can't explain it? It still happened and therefore is real. Might not be the 'real' that we assume with our gut reactions (not everything is a dead person after all!) but in the realm of our perceptions of reality and the human concept of time, it happened, therefore it IS. Who says time is linear? Can our reality graze others, can we loop and intertwine with others? We obviously count 'our reality' as THE reality. But that likely isn't the case.
I have contacted The Ghost Club (the World's oldest paranormal society) and SPR regarding my findings, quite early on into my research. The chairman was interested and very welcoming and offered me the chance to speak at a meeting in London. I'd like to thank them for being so kind and accommodating.
On the flip side another two groups responded in depth in a very lengthy email (my initial inquiry to them was passed around from person to person between groups with the general tone of 'here's another one for you..' ) and largely rubbished my work. It was heavily suggested that I was likely faking, deluded, or that I may have (and I quote) "a glitch in my brain." On the plus side they did say that I presented my work professionally and that I should carry on as I am.
MAKING UP THE RULES
In this field there are no real parameters because it's relatively untapped area of work. The scientific community who still largely deem parapsychology to be a pseudo-science frequented by wannabe hippies and the delusional, seem to reject ideas of actually studying anomalous phenomena, simply because 'it' cannot be quantified or repeated for experimental purposes. Therefore it's not worth bothering with because it doesn't fit into the human view of possibility.
Here's a thought... perhaps all of this is far greater than the human race can begin to comprehend? We can theorise all we like, we likely will never know the answers to our questions - but surely it's important to ASK THOSE QUESTIONS and to not be shouted down?
So basically when it comes to studying anomalous phenomena there are no hard and fast rules, it can be hard to ascertain where the 'cuckoo' stuff ends and the real evidence occurs. And therein lies the problem.
These days you can earn a certificate in paranormal investigation by doing a couple of quizzes online. Hand over the cash, and pooof! You're suddenly a bona fide investigator! It's like buying your way to being able to conduct a wedding.
YOU CAN GO YOUR OWN WAY...
* Quite often I've discovered that certain big groups set their own rules for investigating, for deciding what should be counted as evidence and what should be ignored... Sometimes a little too harshly. Set your own rules and stick to them! Anyone can do this - so buckle up and get out and explore this weirdest and most wonderful facet of phenomena.