Encounter at the Theme Building
Page 4 of 6
Marc: There are many unique furnishings and fixtures at Encounter. Any stories you can pass along about them?
The reception "desk"
Eddie: Ellen Guevara worked very hard with me on the interior and she brought many new materials to the project. We wanted the inside to feel like an "intergalactic in flight" lounge. The kinda place George Jetson, James Bond and Barbarella could drink together. That meant we needed to create an other worldly feel. She brought me some samples of pearlescent paints and that kicked off this idea of designing the space so the time of day would change the feel and color of the room as time passed. The "cloud" shaped booths reflected color a certain way and the sculpted "moonrock" walls were base coated in metallics so they have a glow about them when lit too. It is a different place at night entirely. The bar tops and window screens are opalescent glass too and radiate color. It is really wild.
Marc: I'll second that... Opalescent surfaces are everywhere, and the way they react with the various lighting and textures is pretty weird.
Eddie: That way you can water down the drinks and the room can make you feel bombed.
Marc: Yeah... Typing these questions wasn't easy! I thought it was the whisky.
It's a beer tap, believe it or not.
Eddie: One distinctive thing is to have cool things in the "close up" that you leave talking about. We designed beer taps and bar guns that dispense beer lit by fiber optics and emit a ray gun like sound. The bartender points the gun at your glass and Zzzzzzzap! out comes the mixer glowing lime green into your glass. Guests love it.
Eddie: The idea is to attempt to have a project that appeals on many levels. For example, the lava lamps work for dad as something he recalls, but they are redesigned to look modern so the younger audience will see them as new and cool, and not Hippie-esque.
Marc: They strike me as kind of "super-science".
Eddie: As long as they don't look "super-market", I'm happy.
Marc: No. (laughter)
Marc: How do you decide which music to go with?
Eddie: You want to emphasize the "swank" feel you are trying to deliver. I wanted this chic party track happening that recalled old things to older people but never was strictly retro so it had new cutting edge music for the informed crowd. I just updated it all and included new bands to juxtapose with the classics.
The soundtrack is 6 hours long and includes new electronica from neolounge bands like Ursula 1000, Nicola Conte, and Fantastic Plastic Machine, mixed with old favorites like Mancini, Esquivel, and Tony Hatch. There are soundtracks too but covered in strange new ways. It's the only place to hear "Goldfinger' as a mambo! Even tracks from the Thunderbirds puppet show and Pan am ads from the 60s are part of the mix.
Marc: 6 hours! I didn't realize it was that long! That's a lot of appropriately themed off-the-wall music. I recognized a couple songs at Encounter from your music loop for Tokyo Disneyland's Tomorrowland. Is that incredible Moog Muzak version Soundgarden's Black Hole Sun in that 6 hour soundtrack?
Eddie: Why yes..(LA Band "Moog Cookbook") good ears! TDL's Tomorrowland track borrows heavily from Encounter. Bands like "Air" (Moon Safari) and "Thievery Corporation" are featured as well.
Marc: How do you go about coming up with that stuff?!
Eddie: I happen to like it personally and seek it out in record shops wherever I travel. In Tokyo, I used to hang out at "WAVE" in Roppongi at listening posts for anything that may fit. I ended up with Sushi3003, a compilation of Japanese club remix music. It has a great rendition of "Bond Street," the theme from "Casino Royale" by Les 5-4-3-2-1.
Marc: Roppongi... Fitting. The women there are as beautiful and dangerous as Bond girls!