We had the pleasure of working with animator Fern Reay to create soundtracks to several of her projects, and this sting for the Portobello Film Festival was one of our favourites.
The festival was started in 1996 to give a platform to new film-makers and independents, and it takes places in a disused part of the London Underground, where you can hear the rumble of the other trains. Primarily attended by fashionable 30+ Guardian readers, the films are often niche, experimental and pushing at the boundaries of mainstream film-making – an underground movement in every sense. It has been described as “the wild side of Brit Film” (Metro), and a “pioneering film festival” (Evening Standard) and we wanted to take all of this into account when composing the soundtrack.
Underground jazz bars immediately sprung to mind so we went with this feel, whilst also trying to evoke the feel of train rumblings using percussion. The jazz-bar mood matched the cool and on-trend nature of the festival’s main audience base, and also allowed for the music to be mostly improvised to give it that experimental feel to match the films.