Brand Identity Design
A premium drum sample label, working with the industry’s most talented drummers and producers.
Audio samples are viewed as a commodity. In many cases, competitor branding reflects this, with garish artwork fighting for the attention of customers scrolling through online marketplaces.
Dust Palace are differentiating themselves through high-quality products, unusual sounds, and by building a unique and trusted brand.
The curious moniker describes the polished finish of the final product (‘Palace’) contrasted with the edgy, stylistic vibe (‘Dust’).
The client wanted to be perceived unlike a drum sample label and more like an indie record label. To steer clear of clichés we decided to avoid symbolism in the logo—no drums or audio references.
The geometric icon design has an architectural quality, with deliberate proportions and thick strokes. This suggests strength and permanence—lending weight to a new brand. The form is recognisable without being naturalistic. Enclosed in a box, it becomes an abstract marque.
Used alone, without any accompanying type, the symbol is an understated means of identification.
A monochrome palette was discussed with the client in the original brief. This off-black and off-white combination is more comfortable to read, especially on screen, than the highest contrast digital black and digital white.
Set in all caps and a heavy weight, the wordmark is strong and confident. Comparable to a fashion-house, the type is unpretentiously utilitarian yet refined; simple, but with enough personality to be distinctive.
The typeface is a slightly modified version of ‘Stadt’ by Michael Cina / Public Type.
The combination mark uses a stacked wordmark. However, the combination is to be used rarely, due to the double reading of the palace icon and the word palace.
Extensive use of black and white medium-format film photography provides a characteristic look for the brand imagery. The natural grain produced visualises the idiosyncratic nature of the vintage analogue audio equipment utilised in the production of Dust Palace’s samples and loops.
The client commissioned London-based photographer Chris Maas for the images shown here, shot on-site during the making of a sample pack at a partner studio.
Neue Haas Unica was chosen as the default typeface, designed by Toshi Omagari and based on the original ‘Unica.’ It falls somewhere between the ubiquitous Univers and Helvetica—the latter having slightly wider letterforms than Unica.
Set in regular weight and sentence case it contrasts pleasingly with the heavy weight, all-caps wordmark and compliments the restrained typographic style of the whole identity—as demonstrated in the following applications.
Sample pack artwork (exploration)