Sentric’s advert syncs of the year 2014
2014 is drawing to a close and like a survivalist counting tins of corned beef we have been checking and re-checking all the syncs we have licensed over the past twelve months. What a year it has been with an unprecedented amount of sync action coming from a larger number of our artists than ever before; therefore we have decided to put together two blogs featuring our favourite syncs of 2014. This first blog will look at our best advertisement placements and the second will be looking specifically at our favourite TV sync placements.
I’m sure you need another end of year countdown like the NME needs another article on Oasis reforming, but we shall be shedding some insight into how each deal came to be and why we think each placement is in the top five this year. So for all you artists interested in landing a sync this could contain some great ideas for your music.
(I would prefer it if you read all the bits in bold in a Tony Blackburn voice please, for those too young for big Tony read it as Grimmy or whoever does the Top 40 these days)
Straight in at number 5: Sunglasses Hut – Labyrinth Ear
This sync was landed back in sunny June and features the woman of all talents Chelsea Leyland being given the keys to the Sunglasses Hut store in New York’s, Times Square for the night. Chelsea and her glam pals get to muck about and try on loads of cool shades after hours, the British equivalent of this would no doubt be Paul O’Grady and his dogs trying on frames in Specsavers.
This is a classic example of the fashion promos we often work on, musically it does exactly what the client was after. The main criteria for this sync were that they needed a really feminine sounding track to tie in with the visuals. Chelsea Leyland is also primarily a DJ as well as being a fashionista so the track needed to be electronic but still be accessible and fun. The boxes where clearly ticked by Wild Flowers from the London duo Labyrinth Ear, but for me the thing that sold it was the soft and dreamy vocals which really complimented the whole tone of the ad.
Non mover at number 4: Johnnie Walker Blue Label – Capac
One of our more recent syncs comes from the famous whisky brand Johnnie Walker and their behind the scenes look at a recent online advertisement. We picked this one as visually it’s an incredible advert, even though it does make your toes curl watching that bloke going to the bottom of that creepy cave lake. Horror movies have taught us that being on your own in water is bad, just think of Deep Blue Sea… I had nightmares for months.
We have worked with Capac for a good few years now and placed their music productions before, but this advert and its serenity really fitted with their music. They produce very unique sounding electronic/ambient music. This said uniqueness is great for our clients to capture for their advert as it sounds like no other, therefore making it stand out against the competition. This was also a deep catalogue cut of Capac’s, but shows how any material has its own value in the world of sync as is explained below…
We spoke with Gaz from the band about his thoughts on the Johnnie Walker advert and working with Sentric – “We’ve been working with Sentric since their formation and over the years they have secured various sync opportunities for us, providing us with income to reinvest in the project. Every now and again we get the added bonus of a sync from a track released some years back, which definitely makes it worth having all our material on our Sentric profile.”
Climbing the chart at number 3: Phones 4 U – Saint Motel
The saxiest thing since Careless Whisper is how I once described this track, Saint Motel’s My Type was a true stand out for 2014. You might have heard this track on various other placements such as FIFA 14, Channel 4’s The Last Leg, or even a Russian sitcom! But we think this sync on the Back To The Future styled Phones 4 U advert was the best yet.
As you can see this advert was a primary campaign for the brand and it had a large budget involved, meaning it was a great one for us to land for the band who where up against big competition. This sync catapulted the band into the public at a pivotal time of the single being released and within one week of the advert going on TV it was the second most Shazamed song in the UK. The second week of the advert saw the band break into the UK top 40 and resulted in an influx of sales and exposure for them. Unfortunately the future of Phones 4 U wasn’t so rosy with them going into administration a few months after the ad, but we think Saint Motel are going rise to great success in 2015 (we should know, we have heard some unreleased tracks!)
Just missing out at number 2: Miss Guided – Weekend Money
Is there anything better than some models doing model stuff to hip-hop? If there is then I don’t even want to see it. Hip-Hop can often be a difficult genre of music to work with for sync, mainly because of the old effin’ n’ jeffin or it being less family friendly than other genres. Which is why it’s all the more rewarding to land a sync for the excellent Weekend Money and their track Hol’ Up.
I would like to take this opportunity to say ‘In order to help land a sync it’s INSTRUMENTAL to have some instrumentals’. Hopefully that nifty line will help all you artists to get a vocal free mix of your tracks done while recording. Fun fact time in the UK last year 75% of syncs where of instrumental tracks, I learnt that at a PRS conference, so its pure industry gold I have just dropped for you.
Sorry back on track… Miss Guided loved the vocal version of the track, its attitude and swagger was perfect for their advert. However it was rather explicit… I’m talking lines such as “F*** the cops, F*** the cops, F*** the cops, F*** the cops, F*** the cops, F*** the mother****** cops” so as you can imagine it was a no go. That was until we managed to get over an instrumental over to them in time and they loved it even more, so there it is the reason why instrumentals are so important!
Here it is the number 1 advert for 2014: Crabbies Grand National – Cerebral Ballzy
“This makes me want to ride a horse and punch things” probably isn’t your average reaction to an advert… until now. I vividly remember the first time we watched the advert in the office before its release. In traditional Sentric fashion we all huddled round the office TV to check it out for the first time, two minutes of silence and then… “PLAY IT AGAIN!” we must have watched the advert at least 20 times that day.
This advert was so important for Crabbies as a brand; it was the first time in nearly a decade that that Grand National was to be sponsored by someone new due to John Smiths pulling their sponsorship with the race. Crabbies & Channel 4 both wanted to shake up the event, give it a fresh approach and makes the audience sit up and take notice. A lot of money was put into the creation of the advert, which meant that the music had to be absolutely perfect for them. Thankfully we held the key.
We love the advert due to its contrasts, the idea of getting a New York punk band on a British TV advert for a posh horse race still makes us smile and I think it’s that juxtaposition that makes it so great. Musically and lyrical the track fits perfect and it’s a really good example to artists out there producing music that they love but feel it wouldn’t stand a chance when it comes to landing a sync. This track was not written with any intention of being synced, yet here it is synced to a fantastic advert. Sometimes the advert fits the music instead of the music being tailored for the ad; they always work the best!
As attentions inevitably turn to 2015, here at Sentric we want to stress the importance of not forgetting about this 2014 just yet. Your activity over the past 12 months can help fund your plans and ambitions to take your music career up a gear in 2015. Hopefully this post can help you focus your plan of action for the coming year and by working alongside Sentric we can make it happen. Will you be behind our favourite sync in 2015?