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Business Films by Video Artisan

Are you looking for Business Films services in Essex? Look no further than Video Artisan. We are a specialist provider of business video services throughout Essex and East London region. Business Films is what we are all about!

Furthermore, are looking to harness the power of YouTube or website video to improve your search engine optimisation? Maybe you want to develop a series of public information films – or create a one-off company film? Therefore Video Artisan has the skills, resources and creative talents to deliver an imaginative and cost-effective solution for your next company video.

Business Films Location

Our location is perfect for servicing London, Essex, Harlow and South Eastern England with London Underground connections, the M25 and Stansted Airport very close to our studio edit facilities on the edge of Epping Forest.

In addition, we offer freelance camera operator and video editing services to client producers, agencies and other video production companies. With various cameras, lenses, camera mount systems, rails, sliders, dollies, lighting and sound kit we can cater for most video assignments.

Copyright-free music review – AK166 & AK167

Copyright-free music review title
AK166 Electric Guitar Pop & AK167 Weird & Wonderful Vol 2

Copyright-free music review intro

In the past week Anthony McTiffen at AKM Music has kindly sent me their latest two albums for review.  Whilst both are worthy additions to any video producer’s library of copyright-free music, they are both quite different in style and appeal.  The first, ‘AK166 Electric Guitar Pop’, is pretty much what it says on the tin – driving American soft-rock which lends itself to corporate films which need a music underscore to push them along.  The second, ‘AK167 Weird & Wonderful Vol 2’, is an eclectic mix of tracks which are calling out for all manner of images to be cut to them.

To put it another way, AK166 is a follower and AK167 is a leader.

AK166 Copyright-free music review
AK166 Copyright-free music review

AK166 Electric Guitar Pop

This is not going to be a detailed review of each track on this album as they are all very similar.  They are of course different, and their subtle variations are enough to warrant their place on the album, but they all follow a very similar theme and style.  If I had to put a sound-alike label on the music it would range from Bruce Springsteen, to Asia, to soft-Stones to High-School Reunion – and pretty much every one of them could work as a theme tune on an American sitcom.

I can’t say that I’ll be copying this album to my phone and listening to it in the car, but it’s certainly got its uses.  I particularly like the fact that all 10 tracks come in full-length, loop and short versions – which is especially helpful on music which I believe will mainly be used under the images to give them a lift.  Combining all versions you can pretty much extend the music to any length which is always helpful.

AK167 Weird & Wonderful Vol 2

This is what I’d call an inspirational album.  The music ranges from harmonic voice-effect tracks to classical piano pieces – mixed up with Latin, Jazz, Funk, Surfin Dog and others (Surfin Dog will be explained).  There is a pattern or style which links all the tracks but often on a “weird and wonderful” level.  You’d certainly not expect to find tracks ‘10 Bachman’ and ‘23 Junkbot’ on the same shelf as each other let alone the same album – but somehow it all works.

AK167 Copyright-free music review
AK167 Copyright-free music review

AKM Music describe this album as, “A real mix of moods, quirky, curious, light, bright and playful Pizzicato strings, classical string quartets groovy surf guitar, elements of madness and good humour. Fresh and fun. For something different add a little weird and wonderful.”

I’ll definitely be using one or more of these tracks at some time in the near future, but I also think it might help with the auditioning process by giving me a wide selection of musical styles to explore and trial on an edit.  I find that a complete shift away in musical style from my initial ideas often brings out a completely different and more meaningful edit so this album should really help and inspire – and if there’s nothing on it that matches perfectly it will at least give me clues as to where I should be looking.

I hope that I do get to use some of the tracks on this album as there’s not only some very listenable music on it but also quite a few tracks which are crying out to be visualised.  Here’s a few of my favourites…

2 – Klak KloK [1:00]
This conjures visions of a ‘Mission Impossible’ with its piano driven and high-hat tapping rhythm.  It’s jazzy and it’s, “in pursuit of suspect on foot” ducking in and out of doorways, through crowds, down stairs…. It’s tension – in a ‘Man from Uncle’ kind of way.

4 – Meadow [0:59]
I imagined seeing this on a trailer for a new and youthful day-time TV magazine programme for the under 80s presented by the Chuckle Brothers. You know it’s going to be light and possibly funny.  In truth it’s hard to imagine where this will end up being used but its got character and its plucky strings, strumming bass and piano signatures leave you feeling very positive.

5 – Der [2:19]
Expect to hear the word “Der” a lot on this one as it’s a harmonised voice-effect track with calypso bongo breaks.  You also get the occasional “Wooo” too but the lyrics are still easy to remember. It builds in complexity towards the end – right down to the last, extended and harmonised “der”.  I like this kind of track because it’s hard to imagine where you might use it, but if you ever do it’s so perfect you’d think it was written specially.

8 – Spring Onions [2:41]
If I ever had to do a spoof Blues Brothers film this track would help me pull it off.  It could match perfectly to lines such as, “There’s 106 miles to Chicago, we’ve got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it’s dark out, and we’re wearing sunglasses.”  Again I don’t know if I’ll ever actually get to use it but I hope I do.

12 – LED [1:20]
A medium-paced rhythmic electronic score which I could imagine being used on a car commercial.  Not just any car though, the Coolthrash 8000 with super-booster charged engine and hand-crafted mermaid skin trim, walnut dash and more computing power than Belgium.  Luxury, style, dosh!

14 – Rainbow Drops [1:17]
I’m a massive Elbow fan and it would be an amazing compliment if I ever compared a piece of copyright-free music to theirs.  However, with the wizard that he is, I bet if Elbow’s lead singer and lyricist, Guy Garvey, was let loose on penning words to this it would hold up pretty well.  The pictures would therefore need to be something equally deep and meaningful – but that’s really handy if you need to create any motivational content.  The ending is a bit of a non-event though.

15 – Latino Disco [3:20]
Purely selfish I know, but as I produce quite a bit of ballroom dance related content this track is going to be really handy.  At over 3-mins long the track develops through different stages – some less complex and reflective, others more full on, but all following a disco-fied Cha Cha rhythm (I know because I’ve tried doing a Cha Cha to it).

18 – Surfin Dog [1:25]
This is on my favourites list just because it is so well titled.  I can actually imagine a dog surfing to it – so much so that I’m seriously thinking of getting a dog and training it to surf just so I can use this track. It’s also another score I could use in my Blues Brother spoof.

19 – Terraformer [4:16]
A great track for producing a documentary or serious package on a hi-tech company/product.  Slow in pace, with whirly orchestral whooshes and whale-like sound FX – driven on by piano and drums interspersed with less complex passages.  Would suit anything pharmaceuticals, time-lapse construction, architectural and futuristic subject.

20 – Thinking of You [3:52]
Picture the scene… a sparsely populated Las Vegas hotel bar in the early hours.  It’s jazz time and I think I could write the words to this one! Piano, drums and bass – and Steve Martin singing…  “I think I love your smile, the diamond twinkle in your eyes, your blush that colours all my dreams – and then.  I always want it to be, you and me in eternity, but more than that I want to know – if so.  That when I’m thinking of you, for perhaps a moment or two, that you’re also thinking of me – and then….” (© Kevin Cook).  Listen to it, sing my words, it works (if only in my head).

22 – Edge of Beyond [5:44]
We’re at the end of a Quentin Tarantino film where the hero is looking at the death and destruction surrounding him and thinking, “WTF was that all about?”.  They walk off into the sunset and the end credits start (and the music plays on through them).  Very spaghetti, very steel guitar – very hard to find the right bit of film to use it on but perfect when you do.

24 – Shotgun Runway [2:04]
I can’t get a fashion show catwalk out of my mind on this one, after which we all popped of to the nearest rave.  It’s not fast paced by any means, but it’s got an incredibly strong beat to it and lends itself to hard cutting, artistic picture grading and perfect for music-driven caption/graphic animations.

The Rest
Whilst the above are my favourites I think all 25-tracks are worthy of space on this album – and when any of these are used on a project the music is going to play a major role in telling the story.  When I’d finished listening to it I had to go the AKM Music website to preview Vol 1 (AK090 – The Weird and Wonderful) as I’d not heard it before. It was good, but I think Vol 2 is way better on would certainly sit somewhere in my top-5 list of AKM Music albums.  Buy it – if only to try out my lyrics for track 20!

Kevin Cook F.Inst.V. (Hon)

Note: Get 20% off either the CD or CD DOWNLOAD with this promo code ‘HDSLR1’.  Click the links in the album titles above to audition.

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Up-beat music for your business films

Music for business films
Aimed directly as those producing business films

Music for Business Films

You’ll have guessed from previous copyright-free music album reviews that I’m a sucker for them. Having a wide collection to hand is great for my line of work as I can quickly audition, ingest and edit my music score and, most importantly, distribute my completed works pretty much anywhere and anyhow without thought to obtaining further permissions and paying potentially expensive licence agreements. The more copyright-free albums the merrier in my mind – and as wide a variety as is imaginable.

With most of my work being in the business films sector I keep a special ear open for anything new that’s been composed for this purpose. Whilst music suitable for business films is a very broad genre, it is the middle of the road stuff that you’ll need most of the time – and this new album from AKM Music, AK157 Positivity, fits the bill perfectly.

Available on Audio CD, CD-ROM and download, AK157 contains 12 full tracks which are all uplifting, inspirational, joyous and triumphant (with one exception which you’ll read about later). AKM describe this as “feel-good” music and that’s pretty much what you’ll get – with all tracks building to a positive conclusion. There’s certainly enough variety, mood and pace with each track having a slightly different feel to it making the collection suitable for a wide variety of business film commissions.

Track 1 – Positivity 4:55

I guess as the title track this is the score that started it all off. With a gentle and repetitive piano intro which leads to an uplifting strings section, and then back down to the calm of the piano. Waves of this seem to come and go before there’s a change of feel about half way through with the introduction of electronic synth instruments. This score is typical of much of the music produced for business films and usually ends up well under the main soundtrack – being inoffensive and unobtrusive but at the same time adding a bit of warmth to the pictures. I don’t think this is the best track on the album – but it’s got a strong opening and closing so I’ll probably use it one day.

Track 2 – Aspire 3:20

Think of a Lloyds Bank commercial and you’ve got this track playing in your head. A classic orchestral strings and piano piece with medium-paced soft rhythmic beat that you can imagine a middle-aged VO voice popping through every now and then telling you what a lovely bank they are. But hang on… Midway through it gets a little bit weird (I like it when it does that) and goes all Blade Runner – before getting back on with the job of helping you to tell a feel-good story for the bank. Great ending.

Track 3 – Celebration 4:08

‘Together in Electric Dreams’ with the Backstreet Boys doing the dance routine. Sad but true – well in my mind anyhow. With its Euro Pop-style synth beat and keyboard passages I could really see this being used on the Eurovision Song Contest trailer. I would say its medium-fast pace, but with breaks of orchestral strings stabs that would be neat to cut to. I can’t think of anything I’ve produced to date that this would fit – but who knows what business films are round the corner?

Track 4 – Climbing High 3:04

Your head lifts from the pillow and the sun sprinkles its dappled pattern across your face. Ahead of you a day full of hope, kind faces and happy thoughts. I just can’t get ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ out of my head when listening to this but not the original BBC drama, which was one of my favourite TV treats as a child, but rather an updated modern version produced by Channel 4. I can imagine lots of gliding, craning, sliding and certainly aerial shots over a green landscape of opportunity.

Track 5 – Corporate Technology 3:38

A strong beat leads you through this one. Again lots of big orchestral string sections but backed up by an electronic swirling underscore which I’m sure is the inspiration of its ‘Corporate Technology’ title. It does go a bit ‘Do the Hustle’ in parts but never strays too far into the world of disco beat. Quite fast paced, but I would tend to use the slower swirling string parts as my inspiration to edit with this. Could be a bit more ‘Techie’ for my liking.

Track 6 – Green Day 2:49

Oh out come U2 again. What is it that makes U2’s music the inspiration behind a lot of business film music scores? I’ll tell you – much of U2’s is very anthem-like – and that’s often what you need in order to give your film a positive, uplifting feel. It doesn’t get all rocky, but more of a gentle guitar and drum driven tune with a nice subtle keyboard lift that builds. At its crescendo orchestral strings drift by driving the rhythm onwards. It doesn’t have a pronounced end to it though, but rather drifts away.

Track 7 – Inspiration 4:03

We’re back at Lloyds Bank with this one, but with an urgent beat generated through stabs of orchestral strings that make things appear a bit more serious and upright. Lots of edit points in this one as the stabs continue and are joined by more strings in slow swirls. I like tracks with this feature as you can cut them down easily without any seams. More and more instruments join these repetitive passages until they finally burst and then fade to the twinkling sound of symbols. Phew – I’m glad that’s over! The full track is a bit much but edited it’s got a lot of potential.

Track 8 – Opening Up To Grace 3:14

I didn’t know what to expect when I read the title of the track. On listening to it I can see the point entirely. The soft, slow, thoughtful opening passage with solo piano, choir-voice and low orchestral strings had be thinking of some deep-voiced classical actor reading the Ten Commandments. Just when you think they are going to go one and read the whole flipping Bible, a crash of symbols breaks the pace and lifts us into a more positive tempo with string and choir-voice stabs. The main feeling I got from this track is one of benevolence rather than conjuring up a ‘Seen the light’ experience. It’s therefore really suitable for charity-based business films where you are trying to win the hearts and minds of your audience. Massive ending which is spot on for a, “donate here” call to action.

Track 9 – Orange Sky 2:50

This starts with a melancholy piano solo telling a story or woe and despair which is not the kind of stuff you’d expect on an album called ‘Positivity’. More instruments join the gloom but the story doesn’t get any happier – just more gloom. The final part to this track is back with the poor old lonely and depressed piano soloist who just plays on till he drops. If this music was used in a film about Bob, the old faithful pet bloodhound, I’m sorry to have to tell you that Bob dies in the end. Maybe not right for this album but a proper bonus track if you are ever commissioned to make business films about sad and hopeless causes. Filmmaking is, after all, about message and story.

Track 10 – Rising Up 4:04

Do you ever dream about running across the finish line in gold position at the Olympics? If you do the opening of this track is probably akin to the music going on in your mind at the time. It’s got a very positive feel about it and has similar electronic passages as the Euro-pop styled ‘Celebration’. Again there’s lots of edit points in this if you need to pad out or reduce the music length logically. Didn’t think much of the ending though – it kind of just ends.

Track 11 – The Perfect Moment 3:45

We’re halfway between Lloyds Bank and All Creatures Great and Small’ here. It certainly has a countryside feel about it. I could easily imagine this track being used on a documentary about a country house – which in turn would make it great for a top-notch country house hotel promo. Musically it’s another blend of orchestral strings and piano with a swirling upbeat rhythm. Words that come to mind are ‘quality’, ‘expense’, and ‘luxury’ so it could work well on a promo about other luxury goods or lifestyles. Neat and tidy on the end too!

12. Trust 4:40

Our final track tells the alternate story of Bob so wickedly written off in track 9. Here Bob not only avoids demise but he gets a whole lot better and goes on the win the ‘Bloodhound of the Year’ competition seven times and then fathers lots of competition-winning pups. The story finishes with Bob walking off into the sunset with his master – a contented dog. To be honest this one got on my tits a bit after a while – but in the vein of Positivity this track has it oozing out of every crevice. I’m sure it will go down well State-side.

Conclusion

This is another welcome addition to my copyright-free music collection – and I’d hazard a guess that one of the tracks will be used on my next film. This type of music is always useful as nearly all business film commissions are about telling a positive story – and this has it in oodles. It will certainly be one of the first places in my collection that’ll look.

Album cover
See notes at end for 10%off code

From early October onwards you’ll be able to download the tracks individually for just under £11 inc. VAT each but you might as well go the whole hog and buy the entire album on CD (Audio CD format) or Download (WAV format) at £36.00 inc. VAT (£38 if you want the WAV file version shipped on a CDROM). As with all AKM Music albums you can preview AK157 on their website (www.akmmusic.co.uk) and the cost includes the all-important commercial licence to use the music on all your future business films.

Kevin Cook F.Inst.V. (Hon.)

Notes: You can get 10% off this new release by using the following promo code at the online checkout (www.akmmusic.co.uk) or when calling AKM Music on 01926 864068 : AKM5XA

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