(2005 Video)

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7/10
Shake, rattle and stomp
Chip_douglas25 September 2008
Here we have quite an interesting little subject featured on The Magic Roundabout 2-disc special edition that gives the Foley artists their 5 minutes of fame. And well it should, for according to Tom Baker's narration, theirs is 'a magical craft'. And I must note that Baker does make the most of every line he narrates. His voice becomes very little when he says 'small' and big when he says 'loud' (or possibly the other way around).

Francis Lindsay -Foley designer, Nigel Heath - Foley recording mixer & Peter Burgis - Foley artist are the men who created the sounds for the many different settings we see in the film. For a project such as this, each sound has to be individually created and both the small things as well as the big ones need to be emphasized. So, we get to watch Peter creating some footsteps for the giant skeleton with a small microphone attached to his leg, see him and Francis play with custard power and crack dry ice by pouring hot water on it. The three of them are visibly exited at creating all these fantastic ice cracking sounds for the movie.

Their special little studio is actually full of holes. Each one hides a different kind of surface (every different kind imaginable, they claim) for them to stomp and grind on. Naturally they have an extensive collection of silly but useful props to work with and use several of them separately to build up each sound effect. For instance we get a look at the rattle track that is used for Train's movements, the guys experiment creating lava sounds with more dry ice (just poor it on and see what happens). And finally Nigel augments their recordings with some electronic synthesizer tricks as well. While I wouldn't go so far as to call what these three are doing 'a kind of magic' as they do, I must confess that it looks like they have a really great job, mucking about and making noise all day. These Foley guys are living the dream. And I mean that sincerely. In fact, I think I'm gonna look for a vacancy in this area.

7 out of 10
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