The Impact of Sound

The Impact of Sound

The first thing that comes to mind when considering audio narratives is “It’s not what you say, but how you say it.” While what you say is definitely important, sound can change the meaning whether through tone, special effects, and music. For example, in Moon Graffiti the music is really what I noticed. When it stopped, the open airy quality of it that made me think of space. The best example I can think of is in horror movies. The music is one of the reasons it feels so suspenseful. Or the sound of something moving in the room that you were sure you were alone in. In the It Comes at Night trailer, the sound of footsteps in the hall when everyone is supposed to be asleep leads people to know that something isn’t right.

Or that loud note when something bad pops out. While the visual can be surprising, the audio adds another layer. Voices can also change the impact of a narrative. For me, as creepy as Pennywise from It looks, I’m really freaked out by the voice because it adds another creepy terrifying layer that I did not need on top of the clown costume.

While both of these have visual attached, the sounds within them change how impact the narrative is. Either strengthening the feeling from the video or creating a new feeling altogether.

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