When you hear a wiry bird sound in the city, chances are it’s a male European starling (Sturnus vulgaris) singing to claim territory and attract a mate.
In the spring male starlings perch up high with a long view in all directions. Then they lift their beaks, puff out their throat feathers and sing. “Notice me!” they say.
But it’s not a pleasant song. It reminds me of the sound made by fast-forwarding an audio tape. (That’s how old I am.)
Listen to this recording from Norway, Xeno-Canto #XC383674 by Terje Kolaas. That ticking (at 0:20) and whirring static is a bird!
When starlings drop their mechanical sounds they sometimes mimic other birds, though with a wiry edge. Here’s a songster in Italy, Xeno-Canto #XC394233 by Marco Dragonetti.
When you hear sounds like these, look up and you’ll find a starling.
(photo from Wikimedia Commons; click on the image to see the original. Audio from Xeno Canto)