ReFuseniks: Branding

By Ti Published on .

Upstart clipcaster Fuse has fired off several rounds in the rapidly escalating music channel wars with a riotous new branding and ID package from TeamHeavy, a unit of entertainment and marketing company Heavy. Under the direction of co-founders David Carson and Simon Assaad, TeamHeavy created a voluminous and stylistically diverse package that leverages an array of pop culture cues while simultaneously aiming to deflate the balloon of wankery that so often floats alongside the world of "music TV."

Heavy began its relationship with the music channel four years ago, when it entered the U.S. market as MuchMusic USA. Now fully owned by Rainbow Media, the rebranded Fuse launched into the U.S. this spring supported by an ad campaign created by Amalgamated (see p. 22) and Heavy's ID efforts. A sampling of the numerous IDs reflects the influence of everything from proto videogames, Russian Constructivism, game shows, anime and general video channel bling-blingery. Some of the segments' highlights include Senor Pain, a creature of indeterminate evolutionary origin who uses hot dogs as drumsticks as he bangs out a raucous hardcore ditty about meat; a hairy man who recurs in various shaving scenarios; and a faux '70s sitcom about a Swedish dad adopting two black kids, called The Shuttlecocks.

The aim is to "be outrageous, be funny and make sure we keep the foundation in music lifestyle and grow from there," says Carson. "To the extent that we're building an entertainment brand, as opposed to selling a car, the personality of the brand is something that's constantly evolving, and having the logo reflect that was part of the strategy," adds Assaad. Heavy also tapped outside contributors for the project, including Toronto's Chokolat and designer GMunk.

www.teamheavy.com www.heavyindustry.net

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