Review: June Miller Dark Complex Drum & Bass sample pack
I’ve been following Bart van Dijk and Mark McCann on SoundCloud for a while now. Collaborating under the alias “June Miller”, the two have been steadily gaining momentum in the drum and bass and dubstep scene ever since moving from their hardcore/punk roots to the electronic music scene.
In 2007, inspired by Black Sun Empire’s Blackout gigs in Utrecht and Breakage’s This Too Shall Pass album – an all-time favorite of myself – they decided to focus on producing drum and bass. And not without success.
With the Dark Complex Drum & Bass sample pack, the sounds of June Miller are now available to use in your own productions.
Dark and Complex Drum & Bass includes 803Mb of Crisp Cutting Beats, Deep Atmospheric Soundscapes, Dark Menacing Basses, Emotive Melodies, Huge Impacts and Dramatic SFX.
If you like Drum and Bass Hard and Dirty with dramatic emotional backdrops then June Miller is guaranteed to take your productions to the next level. Taking inspiration from Artists such as Breakage, Spirit, Photek, Ed Rush & Optical, Sabre, Burial and Shackleton the guys have produced one killer pack so check out the demo and sample June Miller TODAY!
Here’s a short breakdown of what’s included in the pack:
- 30 athmos loops.
- 30 bass loops.
- 35 drum construction kit loops.
- 9 top loops.
- 15 atmos one-shots.
- 22 bass one-shots.
- 49 drum one-shots.
- 27 risers and fx one-shots.
- 25 sound design one-shots.
- 34 sampler patches for Kontakt, EXS24, HALion, NN-XT, sfz + 4 Kong kits.
Starting off with the atmos loops, what I hear immediately gets me excited about this pack. Lots of reverb drained soundscape type atmospheric beauties. The material is highly musical, with quite a few loops including a variety of sounds and instruments, and well worked out movements/progressions (up to 1 minute long even). Listening to these individually, many of them sound not as dark as I had expected, but rather uplifting really.
In the bass section we find some great gnarly, filtered bass lines. More futuristic, aggressive, and quite nasty sounding actually. In a good way of course. The sounds and melodies are well programmed.
The drum loops include 10 construction kits with the full loops and individual elements, the majority being 16 or 32 bars long. Normally I’d say just give me the full loop and drum hits so I can construct my own variations and elements, but in this case these hard hitting loops actually sound so good I don’t mind the construction kit approach. It’s also a great way to learn how full sounding drums are done. I just wish there were more of them.
The last loops folder has a bunch of top loops, including some shakers, hihat loops and a drum kick roll. Nothing earthshaking, but useful nonetheless.
Everything is tagged with bpm (all are 172bpm) and key info where applicable, and REX versions are included as well.
In the single shot sample folders it’s more of the same high quality sounds. Interestingly enough, the atmos and drones do sound quite a bit darker and creepier than their looped counterpart. There’s a good variety of themes in these original sounds. The two soundscapes (1.11 and 1.51 minutes long) are just stunning.
The bass samples seem to be taken from the sequences that created the loops. So basically shorter versions of the loops, equally nasty, filtered, modulated bass hits.
To complement the drum loops, June Miller has also included the kicks and snares from said loops, alongside some additional one-shots. Hihats (incl. cymbals and rides) and percussion samples sound great.
Another highlight is the sound fx folder, full of well-designed samples. I don’t know all the technical terms for the types of effects included, but it’s all high quality material. Very useful to beef up your tunes with for sure.
A collection of 25 sound design samples round up this pack. These are somewhere between the atmos and the sound fx. Lovely cinematic sounds, including cavern type water drips, wailing synth, lots of glitchy hits and more, all drowned in reverb.
The included sampler patches map the samples of each category across the keys for ease of use, and the drum single-shots have 5 kits patches included as well.
Have a listen to the official demo track of Dark Complex Drum & Bass below to hear what all these loops and samples sound like.
So what do I think?
Format: 24bit Wav, REX + sampler patches (other formats also available)
Price: £29.95 GBP
Like: Outstanding production, inspiring sounds
Don’t like: Leaves me wanting more…
With Dark Complex Drum & Bass, June Miller delivers a fantastic collection of loops and samples. It has the genuine feel of their style and sound, and it shows great technical skill and musicality throughout the whole library. The loops and samples have a consistent quality.
While there’s certainly a dark and complex feel to the pack as a whole, I was pleasantly surprised by the positive vibe of many samples when used individually.
The only bad thing about June Miller’s debut sample library is that it tastes like more, so I’m already looking forward to volume 2!