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Posted by on Apr 22, 2013 | 7 comments

3 Deaf Mice: A sound-music game

David Sonnenschein, the author of Sound Design: The Expressive Power of Music, Voice, and Sound Effects in Cinema and founder of, has a new project. 3 Deaf Mice is an audio-music discovery game (initially targeted for PCs and Macs) where the mice need help in designing their next hit song. It aims to enhance listening skills and creativity with sonic treasure hunts and puzzles. Thanks to Aurelien Folie for this interview with David about the game and the sounds that make it.

3 Deaf Mice just launched as a Kickstarter project. Show your support by checking it out!

3DM KS head130225-2 copy

What is 3 Deaf Mice?

3 Deaf Mice is a game aimed toward our sound design community and beyond, where you discover the root of listening and how we create through sound. We do it through the story of the 3 Deaf Mice, who have been playing loud music for too long and have lost their hearing, so the player has to help them make their next hit song. To do this, the player has to perfect their abilities to listen to the world in different ways.  By solving sonic treasure hunts and audio puzzles, they’ll be able to piece together a song called “Cheatin’ the Trap”, which consists of 10 verses, 10 tracks, and 10 game play levels. Once the player has made it all the way through the game, unlocking all 10 tracks and 10 verses, they’ll be able to create their own remix by manipulating all the elements of the song. We’ll also expand this into contests for the community to interact with one another.

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Posted by on Mar 20, 2013 | 0 comments

Not Mentioning These Would be a Disservice

Neglecting to mention these two Kickstarter Projects, while we’re in the middle of the “Sound Design X Music” theme would just be incredibly foolish.

Soundself – Sensory Exploration Game

Find the project page here.

Buchla – Documentary about one of the pioneering figures in live electronic music

Find the project page here.

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Posted by on Mar 5, 2013 | 0 comments

In Pursuit of Silence…

It’s not often that we post Kickstarter projects here on the site. Then again, it’s not often we find one for that is so focused on sound, let alone a film focusing on one. Make it a documentary, and now it’s all kinds of special. This is the pitch for “In Pursuit of Silence,” from a filmmaker who’s done some pretty stellar indie work in the past (La Source, The Philosopher Kings). It only has 3 days left, and is currently short of its goal. Give it a look, and decide for yourself whether or not you think it’s worth backing. Personally, I’ve seen some of the director’s previous work. I didn’t even hesitate…

The Kickstarter page is here.

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Posted by on Nov 7, 2011 | 1 comment

“Cabbit”, Exclusive Interview with John Kassab

“Cabbit” is a short animation film by the artist, Soogie. It has been in production for over 3 years and is now being co-produced and sound designed by John Kassab (Kickstarter campaign). We spoke to John about his sound design work on ‘Cabbit’ and why he decided to sit in the producer’s chair.

What attracted you to Cabbit?

I am a huge fan of visual art and animation so, predictably i watch a lot of animation on Vimeo and often go to art galleries. Unfortunately, this sort of saturation had began to create a numbness in the way i looked at art. When i saw a trailer for ‘Cabbit’ on Vimeo, it made me completely still and my throat dried at just how beautiful it was. Its just so honest. Everything down to the clunky editing and animation flicker. Its just so raw – which is quite punk with all this clean cold dehumanised refinement thats going on in animation at the moment. i loved the handmade-ness of Soogie’s work. Its simplicity is brutal and the complexity of the cross hatching is mesmerising. I was instantly inspired.

I understand this is your first experience as a producer. Is this something you want to do instead of sound?

No, not at all – first and foremost i am a sound designer. However when i was starting to get to know Soogie early in our collaboration, I learned that he had not really considered a festival plan and was struggling to make ends meet working on a mini-mac from his home in montana. Furthermore, he is largely housebound due to illness and did not have a network or means with which to complete his film properly or get it out there. As I work with producers everyday, i see how they go about things and i have always been interested in how they operate. Similarly, so much of what i do as a sound supervisor involves this kind of organisational tasks and dealings with other businesses and facilities. So i have become well versed in this kind of stuff anyway. Plus i have dear friends in virtually every department of filmmaking which makes it easier when seeking guidance and favours.

On a more personal note, I took on this role because i felt so strongly that Soogie had created a true thing of beauty that i really wanted to be apart of. So i decided to offer all of my efforts to give this film the exposure i feel it deserves.

What is your brief for the sound and how have you undertaken the sound design?

‘Cabbit’ has a very nostalgic feel to it. Not only in the way that it looks but also in the way it recounts its story. it plays like memories and so we wanted it to sound like memories too.

Seeing that the film was going to be grounded in wall-to-wall music, i felt the sound should be impressionistic and minimal – as in, i wanted to hint at the sound things made without being overly detailed and clear about it. I felt that reverbs could be used effectively to creating this effect.

So I decided to bus the tracks into three separate AVID TL Space reverbs that were tuned differently:

1. Recent Memory – this is a light reverb i added to foley which i wanted to feel most present.

2. Fading Memory – this was a heavier/wetter reverb with a longer tail. This was used for the fore-and middle ground sounds such as vehicles, war and industry. I started to think of these as “impression sounds” or “sounds the future would rather forget”.

3. Distant Memory – this is the wettest and longest reverb used. This one was used on the back ground sounds and as reinforcement to the fading memory cues if i felt a sound was somewhere between fading and distant, if you know what i mean.

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Posted by on Jul 5, 2011 | 0 comments

The Uptown Trolley Sound Library

photo hotlinked from Rene Coronado's blog

I had been considering something like this, but Rene Coronado beat me to the punch! He’s opened up a Kickstarter page to fund the chartering of an antique trolley…of course, he’s going to plant it with mics in places the transit authority don’t even know exist. The project page was launched today, and has already reached it’s goal. That doesn’t mean you can’t go add to the funding and get in on the sweet gifts he’s offering for your contributions. Head over to the kickstarter page to find out more and get in on the action. [Did I mention that this is the only way to get these sounds...he WON'T be selling them in the future.] Maybe we can convince him to charter out more than one of these antique trolleys. ;)

The Uptown Trolley Sound Library on Kickstarter

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