Why Your Music Needs to Be a Visual Experience
The combination of visual and auditory stimulation is not a new concept, not by a longshot, but its potency as a way to engage an audience can sometimes be overlooked. For artists seeking more effective ways of connecting their audiences to their music, live or not, considering an upgrade to visualization is worth it.
Of course, when we call out the importance of mixing music with a visual experience, we’re not talking about just any kind of visual display. Seeing a simple meter go up and down with the dynamics of the music might be better than nothing, but it’s not going to leave much of a lasting impression. To take engagement to the next level, exploring the nuances of music through visuals - rhythm, dynamics, mood - should be reflected in the display.
Here are three reasons why your music must be both a compelling auditory and visual experience.
Your Audience Can Watch the Story of Your Music
Almost regardless of genre, your music is usually telling a story of some kind. Much of the music we love, after all, is the music that best controls tension and release (think the rising action/climax in a story context). Some songs build up to their choruses incredibly well, compelling the entire audience to sing along enthusiastically at that magical moment. Electronic dance music (EDM) builds tension often to be released by a “drop,” which screams “GO” to the audience.
These moments become all the more powerful when emphasized with visuals. Fans of EDM, for instance, are familiar with the “tension building to the drop” trope in their music and expect it. By giving them visual cues for when they can start going nuts (lights flashing with the accelerating rhythms), they’ll be even more ready to anticipate that “go” moment in the music, creating a more satisfying experience.
Similarly, when a band launches into a massive chorus, the visuals should reflect exactly what the audience is feeling - a cathartic moment. Bright lights and a strong contrast from the verse can help an audience truly feel the moment.
You Don’t Give the Audience a Chance to Disengage
While music can stand on its own as an engaging experience, you’re guaranteed to lock in more of the audience with visuals to back up your work. Remember that not everyone in the audience will be equally engaged at all times, unfortunate as this reality is. People have their favorite songs, and some people might be getting introduced to your music for the first time by a friend who knows your work better than they do. You want all of these people to come away from your performance or your recording feeling like they were truly connected to the music for the duration of the concert (or track).
By giving the audience something to stimulate their visual senses, you’re giving them a better chance of becoming totally immersed in your musical world.
Your Work Will Be More Memorable
Whether you want people to share your music or come away from concerts wanting more, visuals will leave a longer-lasting impression for your audience. When those magical moments occur in your music, your audience will certainly associate them with the visuals they saw while listening - and you want your audience’s recall to be as strong as possible.
Think about it. When you go to a concert, are you more likely to say “I just heard X band last night” or “I just saw X band last night”? It’s likely that most people will say the latter. Visuals matter, whether it’s looking at the enthusiasm of the performers or becoming entranced by a light spectacle that matches the ebbs and flows of the music; these are the details that make performances memorable.
Easy-to-Build Visuals at Your Fingertips
If you’re wondering how you can create quality videos for yourself, we offer a tool that makes it easy for content creators to make visuals that tell the story of their music. Luminant Music makes it easy to produce a video or add live visualizations to a performance, so you don't have to develop an entirely new skill set in videography to engage your audience.
If you’d like to explore what more you can do with visuals, sign up for the 14-day free trial of Luminant Music below: