Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Library: Wave Alchemy SFX Collection Vol. 1
Format: Download WAV, Halion, EXS, Kontakt, SFZ, and NNXT
Distributed by: Loopmasters
Demo: On Product Page.
At the heart of it, dance music is all about the manipulation of energy. Effective dance tracks use different musical techniques to tease the listener with various builds and breakdowns, slowly upping the ante until the pedal hits the metal and the energy levels peak and much booty-shaking ensues. Learning to transition between these various energy levels takes time and skill, and these days, it usually involves some clever sound design as well. Much like a crash cymbal can act like the 'tape' joining two musical sections smoothly, in dance music rising synth tones, a gigantic sub drop, white noise sweeps, robotic time stretches, and the like can serve much the same function. They're great for lending a sense of atmosphere to stripped down breakdowns and drops, too. The problem is, however, it can sometimes be difficult to come up with new ideas for these creative musical FX, and even if you have an idea, what if you don't have the equipment or skill to make it sound as slick and professional? Have no fear, Wave Alchemy has your back.
Wave Alchemy SFX Collection Vol. 1 is a 1.5 GB collection of 24-bit sweeps, swishes, impacts, stabs, textures, and transitional FX specially tailored for use in dance music. All FX are sorted into categories such as Cymbal FX, Downlifters, Impacts, Short FX & Hits, Stabs & Acid Hits, Sweeps & Drones, Textures, and Uplifters. These are arranged into 9 ready-to-play sampler instruments for Kontakt, EXS-24, NNXT, and SFZ with a different sample on each key. This is great for auditioning different sounds quickly while you're working on an arrangement which otherwise can be a bit of a laborious process.
Various high tech tools were used in creating the sounds including the Eventide H3000 and the Sheman Filterbank, and it really shows. As with previous Wave Alchemy releases, the sound quality is unrivaled. There is a presence and clarity to these sounds that all but clobbers you over the head with how professional they sound. Obviously, you need to have a good track to begin with, but it is easy to hear how judicious use of these samples could definitely take your productions to that elusive next level. This isn't one of those collections where you get dozens of slight tweaks on a single ho-hum sound. There's plenty of variety and there are really no clunkers to be found, so it shouldn't take you long to find the perfect element to add to that remix you're working on. Just in that time-saving aspect alone, this is worth a look for professionals on a deadline who might not have an extra couple hours to muck around with convoluted chains of plug-ins trying to come up with something truly stunning to make that breakdown gel.
I'm not going to bother trying to describe the sounds themselves, as that can be difficult to transfer into words effectively, but it's safe to say that Wave Alchemy has covered all the bases for just about any type of musical FX the average dance musician might need. The unexpected additions like the stabs and acid sounds are really nice too and the quality and attention to detail on even these minor sounds is stellar. Even the most minor sounds still have a really IMPRESSIVE quality to them, and nothing seems like a phoned-in, lazy sound just to fill out the library. If you create dance music or remixes of any kind, you should consider this an essential purchase. And if Wave Alchemy continues to keep the standards as high in the future releases, they're a company you ought to be keeping your eye on. [10/10]