THE ONLY 20TH CENTURY client in this collection, NOISE was a 2 man sound design company run by Rex Taylor Smith and Scott Strain. My fondness for this client can probably be traced back to a childhood desire to design album covers. By the time my design career had hit its stride, album covers had shrunk to less than 5 inches square. And the hi-tech startups that dominated my client list in the 1990's gave me a glimpse of the future in which "album cover art" would be a checkbox you would click to see a 1/2" thumbnail image on your MP3 player.
But in 1999, Rex and Scott fulfilled my dream of creating completely conceptual, industrial design for a client who briefly produced some very cool stuff. They weren't a rock band but in a way, they were cooler than a rock band. I visited their studio one afternoon and they shared with me their latest effort; a 5 minute soundtrack to an indy short film. First we watched the film as it was shot, without any sound. Boring, pretentious, amateur junk. But with Noise's masterful soundtrack it looked to be a Sundance winner. On that afternoon, I learned that in film, the ultimate visual medium, it's sound, great sound, that is the most important part.