‘The Soundscapes of Jóhann Jóhannsson’ by Alex Hobbs

A fascinating read into Jóhann Jóhannsson’s work and the impact of sound in film.

Depth of Field

According to Emilio Audissino, referencing the work of Laurent Jullier, the typical mainstream film has become a “film-concert”: an event “in which the sound elements are being foregrounded to such an extent that the enveloping and saturated aural experience […] is one of the biggest attractions”.[1] Expanding on this, Rossella Valdrè describes the film-concert as a “sensations bath” designed to provoke an intense emotional and physical response from the audience by creating or imitating a “growing similarity between emotions felt in reality or at the cinema”.[2] However, she quickly dismisses the film-concert as only applying to a few specific films and asserting that cinema is not purely “an amusement park”.[3] Similarly, Audissino frames his discussion of the film-concert as a criticism of mainstream cinema. He mourns the reduced importance of music in film, which he suggests has been undermined by new digital technologies that allow hundreds of…

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