The North Face: Question Madness

Music for Commercials
Music Licensing
  • Agency

    SID LEE

  • Director

    Stacy Peralta

  • Production Company

    Nonfiction Unlimited

Exploring tests us to the best of our abilities. And there isn’t a brand quite like outdoor clothing company The North Face that encourages adventurers like they do.

So when they tasked us with the responsibility of sourcing the right song for their ‘Question Madness’ campaign, we knew it had to be sonically inspiring.

Challenge

The campaign focused on the adversity that explorers have to overcome in order to push through and succeed in their missions. And this spot sought new ways to entice intrepid explorers to buy from the brand while also offering them inspiration and a safe haven to retreat to through tough times.

The challenge lay in finding a suitable piece of music that could be both reassuring and nourishing, ambitious and motivational.

Approach

To fit the impressive The North Face campaign from SID LEE, we looked at the tough challenges people face during extreme outdoor activities – receiving scratches, grazes, tugs and tumbles in gale force winds, snowstorms and more. We wanted to incorporate all of these sounds and elements into the overarching piece.

We decided that a soft comforting track would fit the bill – one that could instil a sense of strength, determination and patience, reflecting the necessary mindset for completing an adventure.

Solution

Our New York team found Cat Stevens’ track ‘Miles From Nowhere’ which perfectly suited what we were looking for and we oversaw the music supervision and licensing aspects of the process.

Overlaid on top of the song, we weaved in sound effects that hinted at the physical stresses and strains involved in undertaking an epic exploration, indicating the endurance and resilience required.

Combining tears, screams and heavy sighs between snow shuffles, wind breaks, tent shakes and sledge hammers hitting on ice, the composition masterfully blends an immersive soundscape spanning freedom and strength to represent the madness it takes to progress athletically.

Explorers are pioneers – they feel the fear and do it anyway, inspired by what sets them free. The track – together with the visuals – offers a new perspective to the world of adventuring.

Results

The music, much like the campaign’s visuals, reflects the happy-go-lucky nature of explorers while highlighting the madness required to commit to such a trip.

The brand’s tagline: ‘#QuestionMadness – never stop exploring’ suggests the necessary stealth and grit to continue especially when the going gets tough.

Our efforts were also recognised with this campaign scooping up a Bronze at the Clio Music Awards 2017 in the ‘Use of Music / Licensed’ category – making us feel grateful to being a part of bringing this epic campaign to the forefront.