owner | elliot callighan
Composition, Sound Design, Implementation
Originally a violinist, Elliot began his journey in music and audio using the Suzuki method at the age of four. While he loved his experience on this instrument, it wasn't enough. He began playing piano at eight, guitar at 12 and at 20, Daft Punk convinced him to give the computer a shot, too. (Thankfully!)
To pursue music and audio, Elliot enlisted in the Army National Guard. This path led to degrees in Music Composition and Sound Design, a commission as a military Officer, and his work being featured in campaigns for United Airlines, Instagram, Spiderman: Far From Home, GMC, The Godrej Group, Chevrolet Motors, the Goodman Theatre and the Joffrey Ballet as well as many independent films and games.
Elliot always focuses on creating distinct personality and aesthetic in all audio while maintaining that memorable "hummable" factor in his music. He brings this sensibility to his work in games, film, trailer and commercial projects. He has served as Soundpost Co-Chair for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Overture Council and teaches as Adjunct Faculty in the Film and Game programs at DePaul University.
collaborator | george hufnagl
Sound Design, Dialogue Editing
If we met in real life, I would shake your hand and say, “My name is George Hufnagl. It’s great to meet you!” And it would be great, because meeting new people is great, and names are great, and you’d tell me yours, and we’d be off to the races. Or wherever! You would describe your interests and concerns (I would let you go first), and then I’d explain my passion and experience working with game developers, live performers, toymakers, writers, and other creative people. I’d be like:
SO, I DO SOUND DESIGN. That includes sound effects, user interface audio, ambient tones, whooshes of all types. Basically I can help you create a great user experience for the audience you want to reach.
I’M A COMPOSER. From catchy, melodic hooks to upbeat backtracks, I excel and delight in creating music that’s playful and fun.
DIALOGUE EDITING? Yep, I definitely do that! Whether you need something simple like removing pesky pops and spit, or something more challenging like getting rid of room tone, I'm here to help make your dialogue sing (not literally, of course).
If we hit it off, which I bet we would, we might share ideas, throw most of them away, but then find that one idea that just…you know. We’d nod. You’d say “Whoa.” I’d say, “Yeah.” Then we’d talk business.
collaborator | john robert matz
Best known for his work on video game scores as diverse as the BAFTA-nominated "Gunpoint", "Artemis: the Spaceship Bridge Simulator", "For The King", and the award-winning “Fossil Echo”, John Robert Matz is a Chicago-based composer, arranger, multi-instrumentalist and music educator.
Classically trained, he has incorporated his educational multi-disciplinary musical training throughout his works, performing a variety of wind, brass, string and percussive instruments in his game and film scores, and using his knowledge to stretch instrumental timbres and find new sounds.
John Robert is a member of the Materia Collective, ASCAP, and the Game Audio Network Guild, and has recently been honored with a nomination for "Best Video Game Score" for the ASCAP Screen Awards, and in the 2017 G.A.N.G. Awards, winning “Best Interactive Score” for his work on “Fossil Echo”, and being named G.A.N.G.'s “Rookie of the Year” for 2017. In his spare time, he enjoys worrying about his Steam backlog, reading good books, and removing cats from his MIDI controllers.
collaborator | spencer reidel
Sound Design, Implementation, Programming
Spencer is a technical sound designer who has designed and implemented audio systems for games such as Rapture Rejects for Cyanide and Happiness and Undermine. He’s at home implementing Middleware and coding in game engines, but perhaps his most important job is helping sound and game designers communicate. With his background in games, sound, and music, he finds unique solutions to problems at the intersection of game design and sound design.
He received a bachelor's in Music and Interactive Audio from Columbia and has worked with sound designers, game designers, and was even head writer of the tabletop RPG, Madcap.
collaborator | chris prunotto
Sound Design, Implementation
Chris has bounced through the ranks from Student to Freelancer, eventually landing as Audio Lead. He's worked on a variety of IPs from many companies both at home in Chicago and abroad. He has collected expertise in field recording, metadata cataloging, linear and nonlinear sound design, dynamic mixing, dialogue recording, and implementation in a variety of engines.
In a word, Chris is versatile.
His experience and background brings the “extras” surrounding game development to the team: He's versed in scope management, debugging, profiling, and affirms a deep appreciation for robust version control solutions. Outside the studio, Chris makes the rounds as a guest speaker at various industry panels, conventions, and other professional (and casual!) get - togethers.
facility partner | BAM studios
Facilities, Sound Design, Voice Recording
BAM Studios is Unlock's facility partner for all things game audio. When scope or timeline requires extra hands, Unlock goes to BAM. With locations in downtown Chicago as well as the Cinespace lot, BAM regularly handles audio needs for international brands like Nintendo, Corona, and Panasonic, episodic productions such as Chicago Fire, Shameless and Veep, and even feature films like Toy Story 4, Shrek and Zero Dark Thirty.
Unlock team members contribute music, sound design and implementation to BAM when a project includes games or more advanced technologies to ensure the end experience is exactly what the client wants.
Between Unlock and BAM, there's nothing we can't handle.