A new installation in London’s Soho aims to allow visitors to experience music from the inside out – to understand how sound works, how it layers into music and why it is that music resonates with us on such an emotional level. The installation, currently on show at Phonica Records, was created by Anyways Creative with Sonos and The Google Assistant to celebrate the integration of the latter with former for the first time – with the help of a few exciting names, including The National and slowthai.
Opening today, 2 August, The Brilliant Sound Experience is open to the public until 4 August and features two experiences, separated into two rooms. The main room is titled “Structure of a Song” and explores the moment in which sound becomes music. Guests will be invited to explore the dynamic and layered composition of tracks: Rylan, from The National’s new album I Am Easy To Find, and slowthai’s new single, Toaster, from his debut (Mercury Prize-nominated) album There’s Nothing Great About Britain, taking visitors through multiple sound wave-producing “instruments”.
Scott Devendorf of The National says: “For many of our fans, Rylan has taken on a life of its own. It’s great we’re able to give people the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the song – both audibly and visually – through The Brilliant Sound Experience.”
The second room, on the other hand, explores the evocative nature of music – aptly titled “Emotion of Music”. Visitors to this part of the experience will be given an EEG headband while listening to a song from the renowned Beggars Group labels: 4AD, Matador, Rough Trade Records, XL Recordings and Young Turks. Able to see a visualisation of their own emotional responses to certain songs, this section attempts to better understand why and how the brain responds so strongly to music.
Sonya Kolowrat, vice president of communications and press, and US head of catalogue at Beggars Group adds: “Music has the unique ability to make us feel more deeply, and for us to be able to leverage our catalogue of artists in partnership with Sonos to tap into those powerful emotions is incredibly exciting. We have thoughtfully curated emotionally-driven playlists and hope fans will be delighted and surprised by the eclectic mix of artists.”
On how it tackled such a complex and nuanced brief, Anyways tell us: “We wanted to uncover what makes sound so brilliant, so together with Sonos, we landed on an experience that would let us hear, feel and see sound first-hand, guided by the Google Assistant. We explored how sound works, how it layers to create music and why music resonates so strongly with us on an emotional level. We worked with interactive sound and visual designers Dave & Gabe to take visitors on a journey of sound. The installation features Sonos’ new visual language to design the event identity, from e-vites and signage, to vinyl and furniture.”
While there is space for walk-ins, to guarantee entry to the experience, you can sign up here.
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Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor. Get in contact with Ruby about ideas you may have for long-form stories on the site.