Native Instruments releases Kinetic Metal for Kontakt

NI Kinetic Metal

Native Instruments has introduced Kinetic Metal, a new Kontakt virtual instrument for creating ethereal sound beds, shifting textures, and delicate, tonal percussion.

KINETIC METAL combines creatively-sampled, unconventional metal objects with artificial waveforms and is aimed primarily at producers and sound designers seeking atmospheric textures, mallet-like lead sounds, and delicate percussion. Two large, easy-to-use modification wheels allow users to quickly manipulate the sound. An auto-motion feature allows producers to set one or both of these wheels turning on their own, giving them freedom to focus on performance.

KINETIC METAL consists of over 200 individual, multi-layered patches. These were created by sampling a wide range of non-traditional sources such as cauldrons, broken clocks, kettles, and swords. Each patch is made up of a combination of four of these sampled sounds plus four artificial waveforms. The four most distinct ‘personalities’ of each custom patch are set as starting points on KINETIC METAL’s Forge wheel. Turning the Forge wheel continuously, clockwise or counterclockwise, morphs the sound through different combinations of these four ‘personalities’. Furthermore, eight sliders allow manual adjustments to the level of each sample and waveform in the mix, allowing a fine degree of customization of each patch’s overall sound.

KINETIC METAL’s FX wheel provides another level of sound manipulation. It controls a set of custom effects that are mapped to blend together as the wheel is turned. Like the Forge wheel, the FX wheel has four main settings. The combination of these two wheels provides near-limitless possibilities for sonic sculpting. Producers can also design their own combinations by adjusting any of the eight effect knobs linked to the FX wheel – the new setting automatically maps to that position on the FX wheel for instant recall within the session. The Motion button turns KINETIC METAL into a dynamic performance instrument, freeing producers to play chords, melodies or percussion while the textures morph automatically. When Motion is engaged, users have three options, depending on user-definable settings – it automatically turns either the Forge or FX wheel, or both wheels together in sync, providing a sound that evolves over time.

KINETIC METAL was envisioned by renowned sound designer Jeremiah Savage. For over a year, Savage recorded a huge inventory of unconventional samples, then chose the best of them to create the sound palette in KINETIC METAL.

Kinetic Metal for Kontakt 5 and Kontakt 5 Player is available to purchase for $99 USD / 99 EUR.

More information: Native Instruments / Kinetic Metal


Review: Native Instruments Sonic Fiction

Sonic Fiction is Jeremiah Savage’s second sound library for Native Instruments’ Kore and Kore Player.

Similar to Acoustic Refractions, in Sonic Fiction Jeremiah takes sampled material and shapes it into completely new and playable instruments with the help of the advanced synthesis and sound processing capabilities of Absynth, Kontakt and Kore.

Native Instruments Sonic Fiction

Expanding on sound design paradigms established with Jeremiah Savage’s previous ACOUSTIC REFRACTIONS collection, the sounds in SONIC FICTION are inspired by imaginative Science Fiction scenarios and concepts.

Jeremiah’s passion for the philosophical hypotheses in the best of sci-fi literature and film translates into 100 evocative, otherworldly and yet always highly-playable instruments, with 800 individual sound variations.

I am not too big on science fiction but I do enjoy sci-fi sounds and since I enjoyed Jeremiah’s Acoustic Refractions much I had high expectations for Sonic Fiction.

The introduction video on the Native Instruments website shows the ways Jeremiah created the sounds of Sonic Fiction; turning non-musical objects into flexible instruments.

Sonic Fiction uses Kontakt, Absynth and Kore FX engines for processing the sampled sources. You get a total of 100 Kore presets, with the usual 8 variations per preset for a total of 800 sounds.

I went through these presets and picked a few personal favorites to show you.

Note: The 5 star rating doesn’t mean anything more than a way for me to remember which ones I wanted to play in the video, so don’t think I disliked the other ones.

So what do I think?

Product: Sonic Fiction by Native Instruments
Format: Kore / Kore Player
Price: 69 EUR / $79 USD

Sonic Fiction is exactly what I hoped for; another collection of unique and well designed sounds. Although the sounds in Sonic Fiction are all sci-fi inspired, they are more versatile than you would think. Many sound variations offer radically different sounds. Soundscapes, massive percussive hits, pads, bells, glitchy effects, and lots more.

I find Sonic Fiction one of the most inspiring SoundPacks to date. I truly liked every single sound in the pack. You can find some great musical audio demos on the Sonic Fiction product page. Although Sonic Fiction will probably appeal mostly to those who are into sound design, the audio demos demonstrate that these sounds can be used in any all kinds of electronic music.

More information: Native Instruments / Sonic Fiction


Native Instruments releases Sonic Fiction

Native Instruments Sonic Fiction

Native Instruments has announced the release of Sonic Fiction, a new KORE-Powered instrument that combines inventive field recording with advanced synthesis into an arsenal of hundreds of genuinely otherworldly sounds.

Designed by prolific sound design artist Jeremiah Savage and usable with KORE 2 and the free KORE PLAYER, the instrument provides musicians and producers with a inspirational resource for movie and game scoring, modern sound design and various electronic music styles.

Expanding on sound design paradigms established with Jeremiah Savage’s previous ACOUSTIC REFRACTIONS collection, the sounds in SONIC FICTION are inspired by imaginative Science Fiction scenarios and concepts. Unusual, complex acoustic sources ranging from volcanic mudpots to television static were carefully captured in extensive field recording sessions, and combined with the vast synthesis and sound processing capabilities of ABSYNTH, KONTAKT and KORE. The result is an array of previously unheard, charismatic instruments that are both alien and organic in their sonic character, but also highly playable and of profound musical value.

SONIC FICTION provides 100 KoreSounds with eight morphable Sound Variations each, resulting in 800 individual sounds. Concise parameter assignments allow for immediate, intuitive sound tweaking in KORE 2 and KORE PLAYER. Full musical metadata for all presets also makes SONIC FICTION integrate seamlessly with any individual collection of KORE-Powered instruments.

Sonic Fiction features

  • 100 KoreSounds (800 sound variations).
  • Sound Categories: Pads & Strings, Soundscapes, Sound Effects, Synths, Mallets, Bells & Keys, Percussion.
  • KORE integrated engines utilized: KONTAKT, ABSYNTH, KORE FX.
  • Download size (Mac / PC): 1,03 GB / 746 MB.
  • System requirements: KORE 2 or the free KORE PLAYER (Mac: Requires an Intel® processor!).

Sonic Fiction is available to purchase for 69 EUR / $79 USD.
More information: Native Instruments / Sonic Fiction


Review: Native Instruments Acoustic Refractions

Native Instruments Acoustic Refractions

Acoustic Refractions is Native Instruments’ latest addition to the KORE SoundPack family.

From the product page:

The brand-new ACOUSTIC REFRACTIONS KORE SOUNDPACK delves into a weird and wonderful world of highly idiosyncratic sound design. Ever wondered what it would be like to turn the Golden Gate Bridge into a giant instrument? Or what musical potential can be found in blocks of ice? This KORE SOUNDPACK is packed full of bizarre, inventive, and beautifully playable instruments that won’t be found anywhere else.

Acoustic Refractions includes 100 instruments created by musician and sound designer Jeremiah Savage. I couldn’t really find a lot of information on Jeremiah, or the “Echo Exist” he apparently founded, which is a shame because I’m interested in reading more about him and his approach to sound design.

Jeremiah describes some of the instruments in Acoustic Refractions on the NI website.

Acoustic Refractions - Bridge Nether, Rain Blade & Pagophone
Acoustic Refractions – Bridge Nether, Xer Pagolin, Rain Blade & Pagophone
  • Bridge Nether“Walking under the Golden Gate Bridge I found the sound of metal clanging and gates shaking an interesting idea for a playable soundscape and textural noise. With the addition of slight synthetic and tonal characteristics the sound can be played across the range of a keyboard. Proving that any physical object can be made in to a musical instrument no matter how complex.”
  • Xer Pagolin“This sound was made from sampling Dry Ice with various pieces of metal rubbing against or placed on it. When you do this it causes the metal to vibrate at various frequencies causing the metal to sing creating different noises depending on how it is applied.
  • Rain Blade“While I was driving in the rain I realized the effect of the rain pelting the window and the windshield blades clearing it away had sort of a hypnotizing effect. I wanted to produce a similar effect with this sound. The friction of the blades on the window and the sloshing sound of the rain evoke this image.”
  • Pagophone“I replaced the standard xylophone (latin for wood) blocks with pagophone (latin for ice) blocks to create this instrument of ice. I also samples and created various wintry effects such as melting ice and arctic winds to complete the impression of it being a cold instrument. It can also be morphed into scraping pad sound. Inspiration came from the musician Terje Isungset who creates all his instruments out of ice. But he can only play them in ice caves. You will not have that limitation with this instrument.”

I think that should give you a good idea of what Acoustic Refractions is all about. Check the demo sounds at the Acoustic Refractions product page for a taste of what some of these instruments sound like.

Acoustic Refractions is available as a digital download from the Native Instruments online store for $79 USD / 69 EUR.

So what do I think?

A breath of fresh air. That’s what Acoustic Refractions sounds like to me. It is a wonderful library, full of truly unique and intriguing instruments. Some of them are real works of art IMHO. However, this SoundPack is not going to appeal to every KORE user. I’m thinking this will mostly suit people who do soundtracks, experimental music, or just enjoy playing with unique sounds/instruments.

I’m not saying there shouldn’t be a Massive Expansion Vol. 3 (4, 5 or even 6 perhaps), but I think Native Instruments totally hit the mark with this different kind of SoundPack. It’s fresh & unique. I hope NI will find some more sound designers like Jeremiah Savage to work on SoundPacks in the future.

More information: Native Instruments


Native Instruments releases Acoustic Refractions

Native Instruments Acoustic Refractions

Native Instruments has released Acoustic Refractions, a new KORE SoundPack which delves into a weird and wonderful world of highly idiosyncratic sound design.

This new KORE SOUNDPACK is a fresh and exciting exploration of the world of sound. Combining curious and engaging sampled material with advanced processing in KORE, ABSYNTH, and other sound engines included in KORE and KORE PLAYER, this pack contains 100 completely original yet highly playable instruments that will resonate with modern musicians and sound designers.

Acoustic Refractions features

  • 100 instruments: Beautifully sampled from such diverse sources as ice instruments, spinning washing machines, traffic on the Golden Gate Bridge, carpets being ripped, underground parking garages, and rain on a car windshield.
  • Created by Jeremiah Savage, an experienced musician and sound designer, and the founder of Echo Exist.
  • Processed using KONTAKT, many of the sounds have distinctly fast attacks, which then flow into atmospheric, fluid sounds via processing in ABSYNTH, KORE, and other audio engines.
  • Utilizing the morphing features of KORE 2 or KORE PLAYER, it is also simple to create radically distinct sound variations from the same intriguing source.

Acoustic Refractions is available as a download for $79 USD / 69 EUR.

Visit Native Instruments for more information and audio demos.


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