Thursday, June 13, 2013

Review: Do Dough Music NDS-6 House Music Vol. 2

Product: NDS-6 House Music Vol. 2 sample library
Developer: No Dough Music
Format: 24-bit 44.1k WAV
Price:  $54.99
Demo: Audio demo on the product page.

"House Music Vol. 2" is the latest sample library from No Dough Music.  This time out, they've focused on a collection of sounds evocative of classic and deep house. A generous selection of loops and single-shot samples alike comprise the 2,000 samples in this library.  Furthermore, the single shot samples are offered in two flavors: unprocessed and "British", which are processed through a variety of high-end analog hardware.  So, let's have a listen, shall we?

The main library is split into 2 sections - The Loops & Beats and The Drum Hits.  So let's start with the loops.  The loops folder is further subdivided into folders for Music Loops, Shaker & Rider Loops, Bassline Loops, and Beat Loops.

Music Loops - This folder contains tons of different musical elements, fully produced and effected and ready to be dropped into an arrangement.  Pads, organs, textures, synth riffs, lead lines, and more are all clearly marked with key and tempo info, making a good fit easy to find.  There are some sample-based sounds here, but overwhelmingly the sound here is vintage analog.  I think my ears hear a lot of old Roland gear for sure.

Shaker & Ride Loops - I bet you can figure out what this one contains - tons of shaker/tambourine/etc. loops ready to drop over your kick and snare to add some groove and energy to your track.  Some of the tracks sound "live" and "real", while others deliberately sound artificial, so there's a nice mix of organic and electronic.  The selection here is quite nice and roams outside the typical kind of shaker/tamb loops.  You'll also find stuff on every point of the swing continuum from straight 16ths to loose and funky.

Bassline Loops - Like the Music Loops folder, this folder contains musical loops, this time focusing on the bassline.  Again, the majority of sounds you'll find here are classic analog, full of warm and snap.  Some punchy digital and sample-based basslines are also present for a different kind of retro vibe.  Everything here is tastefully processed and produced.  There's a nice weight to these, as there should be to any good bassline.

Beat Loops - Finally, we have the Beat Loops folder, which is made up of drum loops.  The loops are presented in multiple variations often with just the kick, just the kick and the hats, the tops, and the whole thing together.  This gives you a lot of flexibility for building your tracks and avoiding that canned "looped" sound you get from using the same loop for the entire song.  Production here is really nice, with a nice, round bottom end and some tasty saturation.

The drum hit library is also subdivided into categories: Kick Drums, Percussion, Toms & Big Drums, Atmospheric, Background, & FX, Snare & Claps, and Hats & Cymbals.  Each of these folders is further subdivided into folders containing the unprocessed samples and the samples processed through analog gear.  I love the option of processing the sounds on my own if I want to, so kudos for offering that flexibility.

Kick Drums - This was probably my favorite section.  As you might expect, you get tons of 909 kicks processed and tuned in different ways, clicky Linndrum like kicks, sustaining 808 monsters, doofy synth kicks, and everything in between. The processed versions in particular really shine with just the right mix of warmth and punch.

Percussion - The Percussion folder is a grab bag of all manner of percussion.  Tribal toms, synthetic chirps, congas, cowbells, wood blocks, and more are on offer in many different versions.  Again, a mix of synthetic and organic sounding samples are presented.

Toms & Big Drums - This folder is filled with tom-tom like sounds including some absolutely spectacular-sounding 909 toms (seriously, these are punchy as hell!)  Many of these sounds have enough low frequency oomph that they would be good candidates for layering with kick drums.

Snares & Claps - This was probably my least favorite of the library.  While there are some nice, solid 909 snares, the majority are extremely dated sounding sampled drums.  I understand this might be appropriate for some styles of classic house, but honestly, you probably already have a lot of similar snare and clap samples already.  I would've liked to have seen more creativity here in melding the old and the new.  Obviously, you can layer and process these yourself to build your own hybrids, but I didn't hear anything here I was dying to load into my sampler.

Atmospheric, Background, & FX - Here you'll find another grab bag of all sorts of FX, textures, and odd sounds to add some sonic interest to your tracks.  There's some cool stuff here, but little of it struck me as being particularly 'housey'.  That said, who can't use some more FX samples?

Hats & Cymbals - Finally, we have a folder chock full of hihats and cymbal sounds.  This folder is subdivided into separate folders for closed hats, open hats, and crashes.  Among the hats you'll find the expected 909 cymbals and a heaping of sampled hats of all sorts.  The crashes, unfortunately, just consist of the 909 crash at several different tuning values.  Granted, that's a staple of classic house, but I definitely think some other options here would've been nice.

If you're looking to put together some house tracks, this is certainly a fine collection to get started with.  The sound quality is great, and the British versions of the single hit samples in particular have that perfect slamming club sound.  As previously mentioned, there are a few weak spots, but for the most part the library is really nice.  I don't even make house and I look forward to playing around with these samples! [8/10]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Lol @ the title...

I believe your missing a(n) "N" Tom...