Take a tour of New York in the new Levi's "Commuter" film

Levi's just released the first of their new "Commuter" summer series of films, and things couldn't have started with more style. We had a lot of fun working with our buddies at Instrument on this one.

This inaugural video rides around NYC with Kyle Garner, owner of Sit and Read Furniture. The scenery is bustling and full of life, showcasing the grit and beauty that is to unique to The Big Apple.

As mentioned previously in an earlier post, Marmoset's Original Music Team took the path of a modern Motown vibe, crafting a chill, vintage sound that resonates cooly fresh, yet at the same time, familiar and timeless.

Using the city as a muse, we paid respect to the urban landscape while adding a flare of soul into our score.

Starting out with warm bass grooves and organ textures, the soundtrack lays a rich bedding underneath the narration throughout the film. Keeping things steady, the music ascends into focus with lively percussion and horn arrangements, bursting out at the seams.

Stay tuned for more explorations in this Levi's exclusive film series.

Telling a story without words // An interview with Ezaram Vambe about his film "In Havana"

Vibrant. Colorful. Emotional - Three words that describe "In Havana," a new short film by Ezaram Vambe. In this beautiful portrait of such an intense and historic location, you're transported to an intimate tour through the hidden streets of this living, breathing city. So many incredible things are conveyed without any dialogue, having the captivating imagery and orchestral soundtrack lead you through the poignant landscape.

We caught up with Vambe to get more insight into his process of capturing the "feeling" of Havana and how he found the right score for this film using the classical music from Broque.


M: What inspired you to make a film about Havana?

EV: I've often been asked about my experience in Havana by friends and family and I've always struggled to find the right words to effectively describe this place and its people. I wanted to make a video that would somehow recreate the "feeling of being in Havana" as I found Havana to be an extremely unique and captivating city that captures a traveller's attention on many different levels. 

M: What was your experience like traveling in Cuba?

EV: Traveling in Cuba has been interesting and rewarding and, although I have come across less than ideal living conditions when compared to western standards, I have found the atmosphere to be magical and part of that magic is due to the character of the people. 

M: What went into finding the right soundtrack for this film?

EV: For this film I wanted to use a soundtrack that could somehow compliment the images without transposing their meaning. I wanted to chose music that would reinforce the atmosphere and the emotion created by the images and felt that an instrumental track with a latin tinge would be a good place to start. On finding "Tarrega Minor" by Broque I immediately felt that this piece expressed the same tenderness and melancholy that I was looking for. I was able to filter through the wide selection of music on Marmoset by using filters such as genre, mood and instrument. The process of choosing the right music for my film was made easier and in the end I was very satisfied with the result.

M: What projects do you have coming up?

EV: Currently I am working on an idea for a short documentary film that I would like to shoot in Cuba in 2015.

Travel around the world with Budo's Electro-Pop

The synthetic meets the organic.

Drawing from a deep well of production experience with the likes of Macklemore, Grieves and Slug (Atmosphere), Budo's hypnotizing electro-pop transports you to serene states of mind. The music from Budo combines so many different electronic and acoustic elements into his music, he's more a chemist than musician. 

Here are 3 songs that inspire travel and adventure...

First, let's go to the eastern hemisphere with "Istanbul." This powerful piece starts out with melodic plucking from violins, ascending into a beautiful chorus of horns and and piano. Cascading up and down hills of intensity, electronic textures softly move in and out of focus building into an emotional and orchestral summit at the end.

Bound for Europe, "Helsinki" travels in chill, dreamlike state. Keeping on a positive and hopeful note, synthesizer, piano and strings lock into a dance groove with drum machines. Ambient electric guitar hovers, diving down into a string section that feels like a night at the symphony. This composition is a steady journey through reflective states of our human story.

Bringing everything closer to home, Budo lands in the Pacific Northwest with "Fremont." Horns and string plucks kick things off. Continuing in cinematic fashion, subtle piano moves between relaxed electronic beats. Stoic, yet calm, this piece tells a tale of revelation and perseverance. 

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