UK music library’s partnership with Killer Tracks brings new energy and new sounds to trailers and more.
In 2014, London music library Volta Music teamed with Universal Publishing Production Music to create a boutique label specializing in music for trailers. The partnership with Universal Publishing Production Music’s Killer Tracks division soon followed. It’s proven a high voltage match since releasing more than 20 albums of innovative, hard-hitting tracks that have been featured in campaigns for movies, (The Martian, Doctor Strange, Exodus: Gods and Kings, Captain America), video games (Evolve Games) sports shows (UFC: Ultimate Fighting Championship) and much more.
Volta Music was founded by Sara Gilchrist a veteran music producer and mix engineer, who previously worked with the British labels West One Music and Fired Earth Music. Volta’s experience in the trailer world began with producing custom tracks for trailers for films including Tarzan and The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.
“As that side of my work grew, I accumulated a catalogue of fantastic copyrights that deserved to be further exploited,” Gilchrist recalls. “The natural progression was to form a catalogue and Volta Music was born.”
“Worldwide representation with Universal Publishing Production Music allowed us to immediately increase production and reach markets beyond trailers,” Gilchrist says. “We have been able to grow into TV promo and video game markets, which are now amongst our key target areas alongside trailers.”
Drawing on a stable of talent that includes two dozen of the best young composers and sound designers from the UK and beyond, Volta has developed a distinctive and diverse catalog that ranges from epic, orchestral work to industrial, action and sci-fi genres. And it’s gotten noticed. The label’s work is currently nominated for two Production Music Awards. Stahlwerk by composers Raffael Gruber and Matthias Ullrich is up for Best Trailer Music Production Music Track, while On the Edge of the World by Andrew Prahlow is nominated for Best Use of Production Music in Television Factual.
In creating new work, Gilchrist relies on her deep experience and a highly attuned ear for what will resonate with contemporary audiences. “It takes research, research, research and listening to the people who know best,” she explains. “We listen to as much content as possible to determine which trends, styles and genres are particularly popular within each of our target markets. More importantly, we listen to feedback from our end users—music supervisors and editors.
Success takes more than great sounds. Gilchrist notes that production music is a service business and Volta works hard to meet the unique needs of its clients. That includes making stems and metadata available via the cloud so that hyper-busy trailer editors have immediate access to elements.
“Creatively, it’s all about producing something that is going to instantly smack people between the eyes,” she adds. “It could be an ear-melting aggressive action cue or a tear-jerking emotive piece that gives everyone ‘the feels.’ We create those emotions on a huge scale whilst also making sure the cues are hugely editable and useable for sync purposes, be it multiple endings, key edit points, unexpected twists and turns, unusual rhythms, distinctive hits or a slow burning euphoric intro that explodes into a huge climax and takes your breath away.”
Create Advertising, an entertainment marketing agency with offices in Los Angeles and London, has turned to Volta on numerous occasions for fresh-sounding tracks, including campaigns for the films Inferno, Legion and X Men: Apocalypse. “Volta is our go-to music house,” says Heather Kreamer, the agency’s Director of Music. “They understand the trailer world and have excellent taste in music. They invariably provide us with great choices in music and sound design that fit perfectly with our concepts. And, they are a joy to work with.”
Despite its rigorous production schedule, Gilchrist is committed to maintaining Volta’s status as a small and nimble boutique label. Her aim is to keep production “personal and passionate without any fuss.” Staying small doesn’t mean, however, that Volta is not thinking big. Asked what’s coming from the label in 2017, she insists, “A bucket load!”
“We’ll be expanding our sound design catalogue with a toolkit series, and adding some ‘sexed-up’ rock hybrids, intimate indie piano and strings, aggressive action setups and more! It’s going to be a noisy and exciting year.”
- JVC Flexes Its Muscles For Strongman Competition Livestreams - November 22, 2021
- CONNECT ramps up its NMS SaaS offer with a new cloud-powered solution - November 18, 2021
- Chulalongkorn University Uses Blackmagic Design Workflow for Online and Streaming Classes - August 25, 2020