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FEATURE: The Science of Sound

Posted by: Creativematch Graduate Recruitment

Date added: Wed 04 Jul 2007

Andrew Diey, of Manchester based creative audio company Radium, has been appointed as one of only two UK representatives to an EU funded, European networked research group looking into sonic interaction design (SID).

Sonic Interaction Design is the use of sound as one of the principal channels conveying information, meaning, and aesthetic or emotional qualities in interactive contexts - including sound branding (think of Intel or the Brian Eno composed Microsoft Windows start up sound).
Diey was nominated to the post by a German professor, who is highly regarded as one of Europe’s leading researchers in sonification and will represent the sound design industry.

He has worked extensively within the games industry and in-house at the BBC after winning a BBC New Talent for Sound Design in 2006. Radium’s client list includes Bentley Motors, National Geographic, Sony Games, Midway Games and D&AD.

Diey says: “What we do is really misunderstood. Sound design is a craft, involving recording original sounds from scratch which we then use in many of our projects. We are currently working on a Playstation 3 game that’s set underwater so we have to go out and record underwater. We’ve recorded in tanks, in fighter jets, in Ferraris… We do everything that a Hollywood studio does in terms of audio except we don’t put it in feature films. We put it into interactive games, short viral adverts or on a website, or we score in surround sound for broadcast.”

An interesting application includes the work they do for Bentley, creating the interior sounds for the Continental GT. he continues. “Bentley has a brand that says quality. Whichever way a person approaches Bentley, whether online, in print or via a showroom, the brand has the Bentley luxury feel to it. It was the same with the production we did for the sound design.”

Radium’s brief was to replace the sounds in the car that were generated by computer. “So for example,” explains Andrew, “we replaced the click and the clack of the indicator noise, generated by a metal solenoid in the mechanism, with a recording of a tick and tock of a grandfather clock.”

Diey’s new post in the research group will allow him to hone his craft even further. “There’s no other place on the planet where I can rub shoulders with people that are not only researching an area that is going to be very important to sound in the future – interfaces and interface design – but also to be able to bash out ideas with people who understand the parameters and specifications of what I do.”

Watch for a series of sonification discoveries in the near future, for more info www.radium-audio.com or contact Andrew: Andrew@radium-audio.com


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