Harry Styles Puts New Spin on 'Silhouettes' for Apple's AirPods

MAL's flashy new :60 visualizes Spatial Audio

Harry Styles steps to the fore in a colorful new 60-second commercial from Apple, which continues the recently renewned love affair with its almost-20-year-old "Silhouettes" campaign—originally created for iPod, but now retrofitted for AirPods.

The third-generation AirPods have a feature called Spatial Audio, which brings theater-like surround sound to what you're hearing through the earbuds. The Styles spot, featuring the song "Music for a Sushi Restaurant," from his new album Harry's House, aims to visualize Spatial Audio—with images that multiply like echoes throughout.

AirPods with Spatial Audio + Music for a Sushi Restaurant | Apple

TBWA\Media Arts Lab developed the spot with directors Gal Muggia and Vania Heymann, who've made music videos for the likes of Dua Lipa, Bob Dylan, Coldplay and DJ Snake (and have also worked on Apple spots before, including this one for the iPhone 12).

The resurrection of "Silhouettes" in service to AirPods + Spatial Audio began last October with the spot below, featuring the track "Blue Skies" by Lex Junior.

All-new AirPods with Spatial Audio | Apple

It's fun to revisit "Silhouettes," which Apple launched in 2003 via TBWA\Chiat\Day and which became instantly iconic in TV, print and OOH ads. The formula still feels fresh this many years later, as Styles joins the impressive pantheon of artists—U2, Feist, Jet and more—whose music has featured in an Apple spot. (Styles, by the way, asked Apple to donate his artist fee for participating in the spot to the International Rescue Committee, which is helping displaced Ukrainians, among other humanitarian commitments.)

The only thing missing from the work is the once-iconic white cord, which made the iPod campaigns that much more dynamic and fun to look at—a rare instance of a product improvement having a slight bummer of an effect on the advertising.

The campaign will appear on TV, YouTube pre-roll, OOH, and in retail stores across the country.


Agency: TBWA\Media Arts Lab
Directors: Gal Muggia and Vania Heymann
Production company: Iconoclast, Versatile 
Music: "Music for a Sushi Restaurant" by Harry Styles 

Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd was editor in chief of the Clio Awards and editor of Muse by Clio from 2018 to 2023.

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