Review: PowerFX World Loop Spice Rack

PowerFX World Loop Spice Rack

PowerFX recently released World Loop Spice Rack, a sample library featuring authentic ethnic instruments from around the world.

World Loop Spice Rack includes over 1,200 loops, both melodic and percussive.

From the product page:

World Loop Spice Rack contains 1,220 melodic and percussive loops and riffs of authentic ethnic instruments from Africa, Australia, China, India and the Middle East.
These acidized wav files are perfect for spicing up any track and is an excellent global sound resource that includes rare and stunning instruments like the Pipa, Rebab, Sarod and Surbahar.

I’d heard of the Pipa before (Kong Audio has a sampled instrument), but I have to admit the other ones didn’t ring a bell.

Looking through the list of instruments on the WLSR page there are actually a whole bunch of names I haven’t a clue of what they are. This could mean a few things.

  1. PowerFX went to great lengths to collect samples of the most unusual instruments in the world.
  2. I’m not very educated when it comes to ethnic instruments…

Let’s say it’s probably a bit of both…

PowerFX CEO Bil Bryant says:

Here we have recorded rarer instruments that have not been sampled much like the Afghani Rebab or Sarod from India, which both have a stunning natural reverb sound due to the construction of the metal finger board and sympathetic strings or the Pipa which just reeks of soothing Chinese court music. These loops are faithful recordings of indigenous music styles played by masters to obtain and retain the unique sound characteristics of these cultural treasures”, continues Bryant.

To help you find the sort of instruments you’re looking for, the samples are divided into folders for easy browsing: Africa, Arabic Percussion, China, India, Indian percussion, Middle East, Oceanic, South America, Vocal One Shots and Worldbeat drums.

There were dozens of musicians involved in doing these loops, and as they were recorded in both studio and on location you’re going to have a variety of ambiences to them (i.e. the Chinese samples sound intimate and delicate, while the didgeridoo loops sound quite wild).

The .wav files are Acidized so when you use the samples in your sequencer they will adjust to the correct tempo. They are also labeled with BPM and key information.

So what do I think?

World Loop Spice Rack is aiming to be all-round rather than very detailed, so you shouldn’t expect the full sonic capabilities of individual instruments.

That said, I found these loops to be quite inspiring. They are great for adding that authentic ethnic vibe to your music, or even be the center of your production.

Due to the nature of the recordings the quality of the samples varies, but overall it’s great. PowerFX definitely captured that authentic feel with WLSP.

If you have some creative slicing & editing skills, you’ll be able to stretch the usefulness of these loops considerably (there are no single shot samples on WLSR).

PowerFX World Loop Spice Rack sells for $79 USD.

More information: PowerFX / World Loop Spice Rack

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