Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Wrench, part 2: Bare hammer

Continuing the story from previous post, I created the second sample set of the wrench. Previously, I've been hitting the middle of the flat side of it, using a hammer with a dampening pad. Now the wrench has been treated with a bare hammer hitting the lower sharp side, which sounds quite different. This set is cleaner and sharper and it does not feature little noisy critters. Also it's heavier, as it has more samples for round robin. Here's a quick improvisation, fiddling with Kontakt's factory effects - auto panning, vowel filter and reverb:

The download - 42MB, includes 9 samples in wav format, mono 96 kHz / 24 bit. There are mappings for sfz and Kontakt 2. This time, I also made a patch for Kontakt 4.24 on which I put a simple, custom GUI, to make myself more comfortable while playing with Kontakt's build in effects. It's the one I used while making the demo. This patch is build of Kontakt's factory graphics and presets, so I don't know, if it will work in newer versions. Again, the download is free, have fun.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Wrench.

I have this big bicycle wrench, which makes nice sustained tone, like a bell. Recently I recorded some hits to build a sampler based instruments. I hung it by a thread and I've been hitting it with a hammer, which I slapped a dampening pad on, to soften the sound. The wrench was dangling freely, twisting and swinging around, creating a sort of vibrato effect. I picked five samples and mapped them in round robin. The wrench would vibrate for quite a while, but for practical reasons I cut them down to about 20 seconds, still at lower notes it can go on much longer, so it's suitable for long lasting low drone sounds. This thing is dark, gritty, fairly unstable and full of little noises, those noises are mostly the thread tearing the edge of suspension point. Some may find them annoying, but I would say it's instrument's character. It works best with some deep reverb on, here's an example:

Download package - 25 MB, 5 samples in wav format, mono 96 kHz / 24 bit. There is a mapping for Kontakt 2 (or newer) and a draft version for SFZ. In Kontakt version you can use mod wheel to control release time. Also there is bonus Kontakt program with a pad sound, where the samples are layered in stereo. Both programs are dry, so you may want to pick your own reverb. This wrench is free to download and use.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Scratch the balloon.

This is something I found on my hard drive. From a recording that I made seven years ago, a set of scratchy noises, that I produced by tearing a rubber party balloon with a wet finger. Yesterday I mapped them in Kontakt to use as an "instrument". It sounds like this:

Download package - 3 MB, 32 samples in wav format, mono 44,1 kHz / 24 bit and a mapping for Kontakt 2 or newer. The scratches are simply assigned to keys, from F2 to C5 and mod wheel controls the sample start position. I find it most fun to play scratch sequences while fiddling with pitch and mod wheels. As a bonus there are 4 "hit" samples, which are sounds from the same session, made, as you may guess, by hitting the thing, instead of tearing it. These are mapped to C1-E2 range in some awkward way. Free to download and use.