The most popular format of the Velvet Paw of Asquith Novels are their Cinematic Audiobook editions. The stories’ international jet-setting adventures are enhanced by the audiobooks’ lush orchestrations and cinematic soundtracks. The Wrong Books, in comparison, are shallower and far less sophisticated in their humour, with failed, pithy one-liners and a poor attempt at unsophisticated sophistication. Nevertheless, the two series are intimately related, with the Wrong Books providing a background and context for the creation of the Velvet Paw of Asquith Novels. It is, therefore, perhaps unsurprising to learn that the upcoming release of the second Wrong Book’s audiobook edition will also be accompanied by music. Rather than lush orchestration and filmic qualities, however, the music will be light-hearted jazz and bossanova more suited to the book’s superficiality. Simon Skatté, producer of the project at BM Media’s Studio 57, gives some insight into the audiobook’s unconventional implementation of supportive soundtrack.
“The team involved in producing the Cinematic Audiobook editions of the Dooven Books rarely last the distance,” he says. “Thomas’ writing and narrative, let alone his social ineptitude, means he alienates virtually everyone he comes across. In fact, I’m only overseeing the series’ production because I’m contractually obliged to and because I feel incredibly sorry for the guy. The point is that when we realised that the Wrong Books are even less impressive than the Dooven Books, we knew that our audience was not only going to be seriously disappointed, but probably require even more therapy than Thomas does. As a result, we decided to do the same thing with the Wrongly Writing audiobook as we have with the Dooven Books: produce a score that underpins the story. The problem is that persuading our team to put in the extra hours to include this aspect to the production was impossible, as the only thing keeping them sane was knowing that it would be over sooner than later. In fact, the very suggestion that the project’s schedule could be extended had several members leave on Health and Safety grounds, and another to undergo spontaneous gender reassignment. To keep the team intact, and ensure the well-being of our listening audience, we agreed on a compromise: the score would underpin the narrative with no consideration given to the appropriateness of music with story. That is, the tracks would be randomly inserted beneath the studio’s narrative recording in order to reduce our sound technicians’ exposure to Thomas’ voice, and minimise the psychological harm to the team overall because of it. Interestingly, this lack of consideration of synchronising music with narrative had a very interesting consequence. It appears that throughout the audiobook—and yes, these are tissues in my ears to absorb the bleeding—there is a unnatural juxtaposition of story and music that borders on intriguing—a word not normally attributed to Thomas’ work. Light-hearted passages are sometimes accompanied with an unsuitable nostalgic track, whereas some of the sadder parts are accompanied with jaunty bossanova. This gives a peculiar liquidity to the production, and although it’s certainly an unusual listening experience, we’re hoping that it’s one that will distract from Thomas’ appalling writing and ghastly vocal timbre. In that much alone we’re doing the world the sort of favour his books most certainly aren’t.”
Studio 57 has recently patented the concept as Non-associative Asynchronicity. Here's an example: