Whether you want to add an emotional vibe to your video, make your action scene more unpredictable, or spruce up your project with a professional-looking montage, the music you choose and the way you use it during these moments has an incredible influence on your viewers’ experience. Below are some useful tips you might want to tap into to ensure your videos are a success.
Matching the Visual Tone
Pick a song or composition that reflects the intended tone of the visuals. You want your viewer experience to be enhanced by the audio, not distracted by it. So, finding something fitting with the emotional tone can really help.
The best places to start looking for the right music are content marketplaces that offer great music tracks, songs, effective background compositions, stock sound effects, and much more.
Whether it’s a slow emotional song, a faster track without any emotions, or something in between, pick music that matches and keeps the intended pace. Thus, a slow-moving Milky Way time-lapse video doesn’t really work with death metal. Nor does the video of a demolition derby work with a corporate soundtrack. Don’t be afraid to step back and think about what you’re trying to say with your video and choose the music based on the visuals and emotional tone.
Mismatching the Visual Tone
On the flip side, you can use music that contrasts the visuals to convey the opposite emotion. Using a calm track and a chaotic scene, for instance, can slow it down and lead your audience to think about what’s happening more. It lets viewers know that there is humanity amongst all the madness that’s going on. An upbeat track during a violent or harrowing scene can become iconic just based on the fact that one of the characters is doing something awful, but dancing happily. This contrast can also create a humorous or sarcastic effect in your videos.
Diegetic music is music that’s happening from the source within the world of the video. This could be a car radio, an intercom, or any other audio source that the characters are listening to. You may want to use diegetic music if there is a need to show the reaction of a certain character or see the scene by adding the source to the audio affecting the characters.
Non-diegetic music, to the contrary, is added outside of the story space. This is basically any musical work or soundtrack that your characters aren’t interacting with or reacting to. This type of music is typically used to affect the overall mood of the video.
Diegetic music doesn’t always have the same emotional reaction as its non-diegetic counterpart, since there can be a barrier preventing the audience from seeing more. However, if the diegetic music transitions and becomes non-diegetic, also known as trans-diegetic, you can immerse your viewers into the atmosphere of your video and let them relate to the event portrayed. This has the added benefit of being a great way to transition between moods or locations.
Accentuate Important Moments
You can really utilize an epic song at the right moment to hone in on the emotion you strive to convey in your video. Your music can slowly build along with the scene, or it can happen all at once when the moment unfolds. For instance, sports movies are notorious for huge swelling songs that bring on a rush of elevated emotions. Should you also bring on such an epic piece of music, your audience will definitely get swept by the storm of vivid emotions induced by this type of music. So, make sure the moment warrants it. Sometimes, it’s the subtlety of the music during the slower sections that reinforce the effect of the meaningful moments. So, don’t be afraid to pull back until it really counts.
Remind Your Viewers of the Good Old Days
Most music is tied to a certain time period, which means that viewers are likely to be affected by their memories from those times. You can set a scene and tap into those emotions by choosing era-specific music, Whether it’s old timey radio or 70s disco, the audience can get a sense of what to expect or even get overwhelmed by the sweet emotions evoked by nostalgia for the past. Along with invoking a certain time period, you can teleport your viewers to a different location or emphasize a culture by your choice of music. A sitar, bagpipe, or flamenco music can all be different influences on how a video is understood in the context.