Welcome to another edition of This Thing Rules! It’s been a long time as I’ve been crazy busy releasing my 3rd albumHead Like Fire, but I’ve got almost a dozen products to review and I should hopefully be banging out one after another over the next few months. The first one up is actually two in one, and both of which I used quite a bit on my new album. They also both happen to be from a company I’ve reviewed before. Today I’m reviewing Ample Sound’s Guitar M II and Bass Upright. Lets start out by checking out the original demo I made, “By The Moonlight.”
In “By The Moonlight” the only sounds you’re hearing are these two products from Ample Sound, and drums coming from other software. I have one looping bass line that I created in Ample Sound Bass Upright II and then four different layers of Ample Sound Guitar M II.
Starting with the Bass, this software lets you create a pretty much perfectly realistic sounding upright bass sound. The library was meticulously recorded with 4.26GB of samples taken from every fret of the upright bass. There are 6 articulations – sustain, mute, natural harmonic, hammer on & pull off, legato slide, slide in & out. The bass has a great, smooth sound to it, and of course the software has many features for allowing you to dial in that sound exactly how you need it, as well as quickly switching between those articulations.
The Guitar M II is sampled from the Martin D-41 Acoustic Guitar, and it sounds beautiful. As with their TC II guitar that I reviewed previously, this guitar can sound as real as you want it to as long as you put the time in to play with its features. There’s a tab player that can load in tablature to play for you, and tons of adjustable features to get this to sound like a real guitar. In “By The Moonlight” I am playing some layers with individual notes on the keyboard to create melodies, and some I’m using the Strummer feature to automatically strum chords for me. Strumming also has an extremely natural feel and is fully adjustable to get the exact speed and style you want. For another example of just how realistic this thing can sound, check out this short demo video direct from Ample Sound’s website (I didn’t make this one):
Ample Sound’s Guitar M II and Bass Upright II are both available directly from Ample Sound at http://www.amplesound.net/en/purchase.asp. Guitar M II costs $169 and Upright Bass II costs $149. This company makes a whole host of different kinds of guitars, and their engine makes it very easy to get great sounding results, so really, any of their products are highly recommended.
David Rosen is an award-winning music composer. He composes original music for films, commercials, jingles, video-games and all other kinds of media projects. He has a vast music library of original tracks available for licensing and is also available for custom compositions. Contact him on theABOUT page for pricing and availability for your next project.
So here’s something new that I’ve never done. A follow-up This Thing Rules about something I’ve already discussed before. It’s time to revisit u-He’s excellent synth Hive.
After my initial review of Hive (which is a much more in-depth review and I encourage you to check it out if you haven’t already), it became something I’d go to every so often for really nice, juicy synth sounds. But not something I used on a really regular basis. As I started adding more synth-heavy sounds to my new album, Head Like Fire, however, it quickly became my go-to for all things synth. Check out my newest music video, “Butterfly” (created by Tobias Steiner).
“Butterfly” is a song that really came to life thanks to the sounds and features of Hive. It should be pretty obvious to anyone who has used this synth before that that huge arp that takes over the song half way through is from Hive. There are also multiple other instances of Hive, some subtle, and some bigger that come in throughout the track. I’m also using automation on the filters to make the sounds grow and change as the song builds, and the smoothness of this software really lets you do just about anything you can imagine (and all with very low CPU usage).
Hive has a ton of well laid out knobs for adjusting and effecting the sounds you’re using to get things tweaked exactly how you like it. We all have tons of synth VSTs, but I can’t think of one that’s this easy to get results with. And for inspiration, there is a community of people out there making incredible and varied presets that you can load in as simply as dragging files to the Hive folder on your hard-drive. I literally have installed 100s of presets… Maybe even 1000s, all for free. And there are amazing sound designers making paid content packs as well. Those preset starting points not only help you get where you need to be, but can be used like a roadmap to find out how a sound was dialed in so that maybe you’ll know what to mess with when you need to edit a sound. It’s all just incredibly powerful and easy to use.
All of this is to say, if you skipped Hive before, I think it’s definitely worth another look. My review was pretty glowing in the first place, but as I began the finishing stages of building up the songs that would become my new album, I found myself finally returning to Hive and really making use of it in a way I thought I would, but didn’t at first. I’m really glad to have pulled myself back in.
David Rosen is an award-winning music composer. He composes original music for films, commercials, jingles, video-games and all other kinds of media projects. He has a vast music library of original tracks available for licensing and is also available for custom compositions. Contact him on the ABOUT page for pricing and availability for your next project.
Welcome to a new edition of This Thing Rules! This week I’ll be checking out Air Music Technology’s The Riser, which I’ve been using quite a bit on my new album.
Speaking of the new album, I’ve recently gotten really busy what with finishing it up, as well as working on music for a couple of films, so these reviews are going to be coming a little less frequently than I had hoped. But rest assured I’ve got plenty This Thing Rules reviews on the way… As a matter of fact, I’ve got 8 in the works currently!
Welcome to another edition of This Thing Rules! This is going to be a slightly different one as I’ll sort of be talking about TWO products this time instead of the usual one. The main review is about Ample Sound’s excellent Ample Guitar TC II, but I’ll also be talking about Jamstik+, a really cool guitar instructional tool that doubles as a MIDI guitar. While I’ll eventually be doing a full review of the Jamstik+, I had just gotten it when I received this new Ample Guitar software, and since their products are setup to quickly and easily use with a MIDI guitar, I figured it would be a great match.
Before diving any further into the review, take a listen to the demo I made called “Stand Up.”
Welcome to another This Thing Rules! This time we’ll be taking a look at Interstellar for Omnisphere by Subsonic Artz. You may remember my review of Gaia from Subsonic Artz, another Omnisphere expansion pack that I checked out last year. Well they’re back with another collection of beautiful sounds for Omnisphere, and the theme this time is something I think a lot of you will recognize.
Before digging into the review, check out my demo “Another World” which I created entirely with sounds from Interstellar.
Welcome to another edition of THIS THING RULES! It’s been a little while as I’ve been going back and forth between being sick and busy, sick and busy, sick and busy… But I’ve got 7 of these reviews lined up right now, with 3 that are close enough to finished that I should be able to push them out over the next three weeks… And first up, is this sequel to one of the first products I ever reviewed on THIS THING RULES, Applied Acoustics Systems’ Chromaphone… This is Chromaphone 2!
Welcome to another installment of This Thing Rules! Today’s track is going to feature a lot of feedback and distortion, because I’m taking a look at Guitar Feedback, a new loop collection from Uebershall. This is my first time getting to check out one of their libraries, so it will also be my first time talking about their own sample player, Elastik. Lets dive in by listening to the demo, “Falling.”
Welcome to another edition of This Thing Rules! As soon as I finished my recent review of Sonic Zest’s excellent Ambient Cinematic Guitar 3, I was asked if I’d like to check out their brand new instrument, Cinematic Percussion Engine. Only a half hour into playing with it, I can tell you right away that they’ve got another winner on their hands with this one. Check out my demo “In The Fire.”
Welcome to another installment of This Thing Rules! This time I am going to look at a monster of an expansion for my favorite synth, Omnisphere 2. I’ve covered PluginGuru’s software before in two of my first reviews, Omnipulse and Omniverse 1 & 2 (which I still use all the time). I’ve purchased many of their other packs over the last couple years, but I’m glad to be finally covering them again with their new OMG! Drums Vol. 1 for Omnisphere 2. Before we dive into some of the features and what I liked about it, check out my demo “Nebula.”