In Bartlesville, Oklahoma there is a place called Harmony Park, located by the Price Tower and the Performing Arts Center. Six musical instruments can be found in the park, each of them has tools attached for playing music. Yotuber Esabelle recorded an Instagram video of herself playing the instrument at the far right in the background image of the instrument the one that looks like a panpipe. Despite the audio was plagued by strong wind and cicada noise, I decided to accept the challenge and create a few playable instruments for Kontakt. I was able to extract 4 notes from the melody Esabelle plays in the video, which I used to create a bell-like instrument, as well as heavily downpitched sub bells. I then proceeded to stretch those 4 notes, and reverse them, adding a bit of Soundtoys Crystallizer to create an evolving pad. However, the real challenge came from the cicada sound: being unable to isolate an interesting part of the sound, I decided to chop it and combine the bits together, and finally apply a gate to it to create quite a few different loops at different pitches, therefore obtaining “kick”, “snare”, and “hi-hat” sounds. I asked my peer and collaborato Joshua Sohn to create a few extra loops alongside those I created myself. Last, but not least, I made one-shots of the kick, snare and hi-hat, so that one can programme them as one desires.
Original video of Esabelle playing the instrument at the park: https://www.instagram.com/p/CRjl9-mKbLs/
Reviews for Bells & Cicadas
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Great for ethereal and ambient cues!
Really love the evo patch on this one. Has a super fun texture to it that could be layered into more developed orchestration, or be the centerpiece of a more ambient, ethereal cue! The drum machine is also fun to mess around with, and has loops that feel like they'd sit right at home in a nice drama setting. Not too intrusive as to forcing you to build an entire track around. You could just lay a loop down, and add some nice extra suspense! Some clicks, and issues with the attack here and there, but for my personal uses, I'm not too bothered!
I wasn't into the Drum Machine personally but i think it could be really cool for someone who is into glitch hop. I really liked the pad though. I adjusted the attack so it just swells in like a pad and it was a really beautiful sound with weird things happening in the background. The bells also had cool sound that i can see myself using in the future. I agree with what the person above me said about how the GUI looks really busy because there are so many knobs on-top of an image with a lot going on already
Really complex GUI...
First of all, I love the sounds that this library has. They're all super interesting and the rhythms for the cicadas were really creative. My only concern is that the GUI is pretty crowded. This library might benefit from some beta testers to provide feedback about how to lay it out and design it. Really solid and creative work here!
Warm pad generator
Using this with soundguru's The mangle, I got some really nice pads, including evolutions patches. Sound: setting attack at 50ms worked for me, since bells themselves dont start with a transient. Character: warm, tho you might need to EQ it a little bit. Playability: Out-of-the-box experience, I recommend to overlay it with other instruments such as Glockenspiel, Xylophone, Vibraphone If you want to get the most juices out of this. GUI: functional
Fun but glitchy percussive loops
If you like percussive loops that are not based on drums, and if you like things on the glitchy side, this just might be the library for you. The instruments sampled are all really glitchy, and that glitchiness is added to by the fact that many of the samples don't start from a zero crossing, and there hasn't been a fade in applied in kontakt or in the DAW where these sounds were processed. So, you're going to notice some pops and clicks. It's clear that TONS of time went into creating the GUI, but it ended up looking cluttered and somewhat overwhelming. There's a lot of potential to these sounds. I think it's important to find a way to present them that's more usable and user friendly and to find a way to present the controls in a streamlined and well organized manner.