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Tonehammer announces November 2008 launch

Tonehammer

Tonehammer — founded in August 2008 by British Academy Award Winning (BAFTA) Composer, Troels Folmann and Mix Foundation / TEC Awarded Sound Designer and Musician, Mike Peaslee — has announced it will be launching November 15, 2008.

Tonehammer is about creating innovative, affordable, high quality and instant downloadable samples for composers. We believe that composers should be able to pick individual instruments instead of buying massive libraries and only use a fraction of the samples. All our instruments are priced between $29-49 and we only sell instruments that we use ourselves for multi award-winning soundtracks, commercials and trailers.

The launch will include 8 different instruments for Kontakt 2:

  1. Epic Tom Ensemble Vol. 1
  2. Epic Tom Ensemble Vol. 2
  3. Hang Drum
  4. Marching Band / Drum Corpse
  5. Old Busted Granny Piano
  6. Frendo (custom designed instrument)
  7. Emotional Drones Vol. 1
  8. Whale Drum

All the instruments are recorded in excruciating detail and we typically record at 8-10 velocities and 8-10 repetitions (RR) pr. note, including all imaginable- and unimaginable articulations. The majority of our instruments are recorded in a dedicated orchestral hall with state-of-the-art Neumann microphones.

Visit the Tonehammer website for a pre-launch teaser trailer.

Soniccouture releases Hang Drum for Logic EXS24

Soniccouture Hang Drum

Soniccouture has released a Logic EXS24 version of Hang Drum, a sample library of the Hang Drum.

Hang Drum features

  • 2.4 GB Library
  • Includes both Mk.1 + Mk. 2 Hang Drum Models
  • Over 1000 24 bit Stereo 44.1 Samples per Drum
  • Hang Jammer – KSP Random Pattern Generator
  • Multiple Articulations
  • Up to 21 Velocity Layers

Hang Drum for Kontakt and EXS24 is available for download for £49 GBP (£52 GBP on DVD).

Visit Soniccouture for more information and audio demos.

Soniccouture Christmas Sale

Soniccouture Christmas Sale

Soniccouture is having a Christmas Sale, offering discounts of up to 40% on selected products.

Christmas Sale includes:

  • Abstrakt Bass – Complete bass solution for your DAW (Kontakt 2).
  • Abstrakt Breaks – Collection of complex, exciting hi-tech drum loops.
  • Abstrakt Breaks 2 – Abstrakt Breaks continued…
  • Abstrakt Vol 1 – Advanced sampling and synthesis for Kontakt 2.
  • eBow Guitar – Sampled eBow instrument for Kontakt.
  • Hang Drum – Hang Drum instrument for Kontakt.
  • Kim – Sampled dulcimer / zither instrument.
  • Konkrete 1 – Glitch drums and synthetic percussion library.
  • Konkrete 2 – Electronica drum and percussion library.
  • Synthi AKS – Sample libary featuring the E.M.S. Synthi AKS.
  • Variable Ambience Drums – Over 1300 24 Bit samples expertly programmed into 9 great kits.

The sale will end at Midnight, Christmas Eve, 24th December. (GMT).

More information: Soniccouture

Soniccouture updates Hang Drum and eBow Guitar

Soniccouture eBow Guitar

Soniccouture has released updates for Hang Drum and eBow Guitar, two sampled instruments for Native Instruments Kontakt.

The update includes Kontakt 3 compatible versions of both libraries.

The Hang Drum Hang Jammer (KSP script) now has a page for controlling it by MIDI controllers.

You can now control the following by MIDI controllers that you specify:

  • Jammer On/Off
  • Jammer Speed
  • Random Velocity Depth
  • Random Note Depth
  • Random Timming Depth
  • Random Octave Depth

The eBow Guitar update adds 13 new presets using the new Kontakt 3 effects.

You can find the updates on the Soniccouture free downloads page. Check the wonderful free goodies there as well if you have not yet done so.

Review: Soniccouture Hang Drum

Soniccouture Hang Drum

Soniccouture recently released a unique sample library for Kontakt: Hang Drum.

So what is a hang drum exactly?

From Wikipedia:

A hang (pronounced ‘hung’ or ‘hong’) is a melodious percussive musical instrument, similar to a steel drum. It uses many of the same physical principles to operate. However, since it is struck with the fingers, the sound is generally much softer than a steel drum, and can be played in many ways to produce a wide variety of sounds.

First invented in 2000, these instruments are hand-built by PANArt (Swiss). Hangs are hard to find since PANArt only produces them on demand (and if they agree to build you one you might have to wait a few years before actually getting it).

If you’re unfamiliar with the sound of the Hang, just check some of these videos on YouTube.

I don’t know about you, but I fell in love with the sound of these instruments instantly.

Soniccouture’s Hang Drum library has two types of Hang:

  1. The Mk 1 had 8 notes around the Ding. These were available in 45 different tunings, and PANArt produced nearly 4000 of them.
  2. The Mk 2 is basically the same shape but has a brass coating on the top as well as around the rim. The Mk 2 comes in only five different tunings and has only seven notes around the Ding. It is a more sturdy design, stays in tune better over time, and has a slightly longer and purer ring.

Both hangs were sampled in great detail, resulting in over 1000 samples (24 bit, stereo) per drum, with up to 21 velocity layers. There are up to 3 alternate round-robin versions for each hit (different samples alternate as notes are repeated).

Various areas of the hang were recorded (Gu, Ding, Outer Ding, Tone-field Centre, Tone-Field Edge, and in-between the Tone-field), and played with finger, slap and knuckle. These modes can be triggered by simple key switches.

Several key mappings (chromatic, octaves, two hand, etc.) are included with the instruments, so it’s easy to use your MIDI controller to play the hang drums. (hmmm, yet another reason to get a PadKontrol…)

Here’s a little sound clip I came up with after a few minutes of playing around with the Mk 2. It only features the Hang Drum, Lazysnake and 2 beats I did earlier (14 sec. 192kbit).

Hang Drum demo loop

Soniccouture has a bunch of audio clips available on the Hang Drum page, so check those for more examples what the Hang Drum library sounds like.

Both Hang Drum instruments include a Kontakt script called the “Hang Jammer”.

The Hang Jammer page of Mk 2
The Hang Jammer page of Mk 2

This generative pattern sequencer tool allows you to create patterns, randomly built upon the notes you play. You can set a number of randomize levels (i.e. velocity, timing, notes, etc.) for a human feel. This can be a great feature for live performances.

There’s also a Tweak page which allows for control of built-in delay, filter and reverb effects, so you can easily manipulate the sound of the hang drums.

So what do I think?

Well, I’m pretty excited about this instrument!

Not only is the sampled material of the unique Hang instruments of outstanding quality, the massive amount of individual samples (2.4GB) makes for a very “realistic” instrument with a lot of depth, an absolute joy to play with.

Soniccouture’s Hang Drum is probably the closest you’ll ever get to playing a hang without actually having one in your lap.

To top it off it has a very reasonable price of £49 GBP (~$100 USD), so thumbs up for Soniccouture Hang Drum.

More information: Soniccouture / Hang Drum

Soniccouture releases Hang Drum (Kontakt)

Soniccouture Hang Drum

Soniccouture has released Hang Drum, a Kontakt library of the Hang Drum.

From the product page:

Soniccouture’s quest for the exotic, the unique, the esoteric, and the downright weird and quirky, brings us to our latest obsession, the Hang Drum.

Features

  • 2.4 GB Library
  • Includes both Mk.1 + Mk. 2 Hang Drum Models
  • Over 1000 24 bit Stereo 44.1 Samples per Drum
  • Hang Jammer – KSP Random Pattern Generator
  • Multiple Articulations
  • Up to 21 Velocity Layers

This seems to be quite an unique instrument, developed by the instrument builders of PANArt, Felix Rohner and Sabina Schärer. You will not be able to buy one from just any store. According to Soniccouture you would have to have to wait up to 2 years before you can get one from the PANArt, that is if they’d agree to build you one…

Hang Drum is available for download (49 GBP) and on disc (52 GBP) for Kontakt 2.

Visit Soniccouture for more information and audio demos.