Music Spikes: “It’s a Progressive Move - Especially in Asia”

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INFLUENCER: Big Sync’s Angel Lee on judging the 3rd Music Spikes in Singapore
Music Spikes: “It’s a Progressive Move - Especially in Asia”

Angel Lee (far left of photograph) is country manager, APAC, for Big Sync Music. She was a member of the Music Jury at Spikes Asia 2018. The jury, whose President this year was Laura Nakhla, Head of Synchronisation, Warner Music Asia, awarded a Grand Prix to #GiveABeat for Max Healthcare and Max Group by Propaganda India.

Music is an intrinsic part of creative work. So to see it being honoured in the realm of advertising, especially in Asia, is a very progressive move. This is only the third year of Music Spikes, but the sheer volume of entries that we looked at, with all their musical nuances, went to show that both consumers and brands in the region are paying more attention to music as a strategic storytelling tool. It’s an exciting time to be in advertising from a music perspective.

I’ve attended Spikes for the last two years and so it was refreshing this year to be on the other side of the festival. To be on the Music Spikes jury is a once in a lifetime opportunity and I loved being exposed to so many different bodies of work – it was truly eye-opening. The festival as a whole was well-rounded and immersive. I got to judge, sit in on some fascinating talks and connect with industry folk from all over the region.

The panel consisted of jurors from all parts of the music industry so everyone had their own angle, coming to the table with their own particular perspectives and musical expertise when it came to judging. The all-encompassing nature of the group made it very easy to have open discussions and reach a unanimous decision. There were good round-table discussions and interesting points of view from everyone. A collaborative team effort that made it very easy to work together.

The quality of work submitted for Music Spikes was top notch. There was a spectrum of work from music videos to film ads, non-profit work to branded partnerships - and every category was well-represented. The branded partnerships were innovative with good use of tech apps and social platforms (Shazam, YouTube, social) down to even customised music platforms. We saw quite a number of entries that used music to promote social causes, including vinyl pressing with air pollutants, some incredible out-of-the-box originality shining through.

China and Japan were at the forefront of the technology driven projects with some really strong, forward thinking innovations - proving that there really are no limitations to music and how it can be manipulated. That said, countries that resonate better with the more traditional uses of music, such as re-records and original compositions, demonstrated high levels of craft as well. They showed that simplicity and understatement can be truly powerful and will never go out of style.

My favourite submission that didn’t quite make it, was OK GO’s ‘Obsession’ made in conjunction with Double A paper. A classic OK Go music video that was playful, vibrant and the right amount of creativity mixed with countless hours of strategic planning and effort.

But for me personally, the Gold Spike for music really stood out; Disgusting Stories by TBWA\Santiago. It was simple - distraught yet powerful. A classic, stripped down re-recording of Natalie Imbruglia’s ‘Torn’ for a non-profit ad that called for help for sexually abused children in The Philippines. The song added a haunting depth to the contrasting cartoon sketches in the film. Truly disturbing and gut-wrenching and it was also, at the end of the day, very effective. It said the least but told the most. It was really tough to watch but absolutely stand-out, with a powerful use of music that made an impact.


Angel Lee is country manager, APAC, for Big Sync Music

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Big Sync Music, 1 year ago