A few nights ago an Adelaide retailer called Everett Brookes invited me to a watch launch. The occasion marked the arrival of mid range brand March LA.B to Australia. From what I could see the event was a rip roaring success and many timepieces were actually sold on the night. Although Everett Brookes sell a range of different watches, this is not their core business. What makes the company unique is their jewellery personalization service. Effectively customers can visit the premises and either design or remodel their existing rings. Within the jewellery industry this is a rare occurrence but is becoming more common in the world of horology. In fact watchmakers like Thomas Prescher, Richard Paige, Torsten Nagengast, Frank Heydrich, Martin Pauli and Yvan Arpa pride themselves on this type of service.
Like most watch writers I find inspiration for articles on social media websites like Facebook and Instagram. Sometimes brands post images of prototypes or limited edition pieces on these portals. A perfect example of this is idiosyncratic Swiss watchmaker ArtyA. Most of their creations are highly exclusive and are normally 1/1 unique pieces. Essentially Yvan Arpa left his very successful management position at Romain Jerome to explore even more creative and experimental avenues.
A few weeks ago Yvan Arpa informed me of an unusual timepiece he thought I would be interested in writing about. I love most of their watches and so was delighted to be awarded the opportunity. The timepiece in question is called the Son of Sound Skull “Black Essence”. Dimensionally the timepiece has the same 47mm diameter case as the ‘Son of Gears’ and Quadri Rotors models. Ultimately these proportions should appeal primarily to a select variety of masculine buyers. However I would like to see a supersized and more exaggerated 60mm (or larger) creation in the near future.
Visually the Son of Sound Skull “Black Essence” has the same idiosyncratic façade as their other models. What makes this timepiece so extraordinary is the wonderful see through dial with suspended skulls that appear to be floating in mid air. This characteristic gives the watch a really cool and gothic aesthetic. Other features include delicate hour/minute hands, central disk with illustrated skull and personalized rotor with three bullet cartridges (visible through the sapphire crystal exhibition case back). Overall the composition is bold and the attention to detail is first rate.
At the heart of the watch is a self-winding Swiss made caliber ETA 2671 that has been modified by Concepto. This movement comprises 25-jewels and oscillates at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour (4Hz). Functionally the Son of Sound Skull “Black Essence” features hours, minutes and seconds. The timepiece also has a power reserve of 40 hours.
The Son of Sound Skull “Black Essence” has a high quality black leather strap with matching steel buckle. Priced at: 12,900CHF (approximately $13,332).