Solar System for iPad

Condiment Junkie have just completed the interface audio and background sound design for ‘Solar System for iPad’, our first partnership with Touch Press, the people behind ‘The Elements’.

Working with the great team at Touch Press, we have designed sounds that completely enhance the product and the user experience, and are proud to have been involved in such a fantastic project.

Our favorite feature is a deep rumble in the 3D orrery, that makes the screen vibrate as you zoom into a planet, evoking the gravity and mass of the celestial bodies. This is a great example of using sound to communicate through other senses - it adds a tactile, physical level to the experience too.

The new title includes an haunting and majestic track specially adapted by Björk from her forthcoming Biophilia project, and for the moment is available only in Solar System for iPad.


Action & Alert study

We teamed up with architectural firm Nightingale Associates on a research project to define the sensory design factors that contribute to optimal learning environments, looking at the key issues of transitions (after lunch, between moments of activity and concentration), communication and self-esteem.

We created a 5:1 soundscape that took on several key pieces of psychoacoustic research on the effects of music and sound in learning environments. 

It was designed to blend in to the background and not grab the pupil’s attention. To achieve this there is no repeating rhythm and no catchy melody. Natural sound effects such as recordings of rain, woods etc. were included in the soundscape, as they contain white noise which helps to minimise distraction from the world outside the classroom. There is also an argument for these types of sounds having a positive effect on our mental state, through an evolutionary link we have with the natural world.

The intervention has been running at All Saints primary school in Anfield, Liverpool.

Results should be in soon....

Sound of a City

Creating a sonic identity for a whole city, that permeates down from all marketing and branding, to the actual experience of being in the city and navigating around it.

Meydan is a new city being built in the desert outside Dubai. Themed around horses, the city is made up of 4 districts - Residential, Leisure, Financial, and the Racecourse.

We created a soundtrack for the city, with each district having it's own variation of a central theme - like the different movements of a film soundtrack.

We can then take the tone, melody and rhythm of each district's theme, and create mnemonics that can be used on all audio alerts and signals in that district, giving each area its own sonic identity and creating a musical harmony across the city.

Here as an example, we take the soundtrack for the Leisure district, and use it as a mnemonic for the tram system - signaling you've arrived in the area, without the need for voice announcements.

1. Leisure soundtrack

Leisure theme by Condiment Junkie

2. Leisure theme - mnemonic - mnemonic 2 - on the Tram

Tram mnemonic by Condiment Junkie


Fat Duck seascape

Condiment Junkie are fascinated by how sound can enhance other senses, and how we can take people to different times and places so powerfully when we combine sound design with other sensorial stimulus.

For this project, Heston Blumenthal created a dish that encapsulates the seaside, and wanted a sonic seascape to accompany the dish that would immerse the customer in seaside memories. The idea is that the seascape will enhance the fish's flavour.

Condiment Junkie designed the perfect sonic backdrop for Heston's dish by creating depth in the soundscape. Children playing, a distant foghorn, seagulls flying overhead and circling the listener. All come together to draw a powerful sonic picture that the customer, eating the dish, is taken into.

A similar seascape is here for you to drift away and spend a few minutes lapping up the seaside vibe. If you want to go the whole way - get some sushi in too and taste the sea.

Seascape by Condiment Junkie

Phaidon iPad app sound design

Phaidon iPad app from Condiment Junkie on Vimeo.

We've recently finished the sound design for this iPad app's functionality.

Phaidon create high end coffee table books and have taken their 'Design Classics' edition, a collection of 1000 items over 300 years of design, and put it into a new iPad application.

The sound design had to represent the level of craftsmanship and quality of the product design contained within. Condiment Junkie looked to the world of precision watch making as a source for the sounds.

Adding sound to the functions and navigation of apps makes them more tactile and engaging, and can also help to communicate the design, content, and the brand identity in a more immediate way. People have also learnt, through film and tv, that these types of technology will sound a certain way in the future. The future is here, and it should sound how we expect it to.


Creative Director Russ Jones Mobile Entertainment article

How important is sound to mobile applications? Much more important than you might think, says Russ Jones.
Games developers think about it a lot, but the quality is more variable for non-gaming apps. In fact, many don’t have sound at all. That’s not something that London firm Condiment Junkie thinks is a good thing.
The company describes itself as a sonic art and sound design house, and works with brands to create ‘sonic identities’ across different platforms, including in products, TV and radio ads, websites and now mobile applications. If you’ve used Jamie Oliver’s 20 Minute MealsiPhone app, that’s them – working with developer Zolmo.
“Sound is such a powerful way of forming memories and joining the senses,” creative director Russ Jones tells ME. “We all have our own experiences of sounds, and we’re pioneering ways to use audio to express brand identities and engage people.”


Introduction - Sound and the senses

Throughout this blog we will investigate the links between sound and the other senses. How multi-sensorial experiences become amplified, and tap into our memories and emotions far more than single stimulus ones (or whether single sense experiences actually exist!). How we can learn from the condition Synesthesia and the way in which those with synesthesia (myself included) experience the world. And how this knowledge can help us create more engaging experiences, more memorable branding and marketing content, and convey information efficiently and effectively.

At Condiment Junkie, Scott King and myself have taken our ideas on this subject into the worlds of branding, experiential events, architecture and design, HMI and interactive systems, healthcare and education, food, and the art of restauranting.

We believe that with well designed sonic environments, in collaboration with other sensorial stimulus, we can create incredibly immersive and memorable experiences, where participants take away powerful emotional, sensorial memories.

This understanding of multi-sensorial stimulus and sensorial memories signifies a change in how we can communicate with consumers, express brand identities, and create amazing, memorable experiences.