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Impact Soundworks releases Koto Nation: Classical Instruments of Japan

Impact Soundworks Koto Nation

Impact Soundworks has announced the release of Koto Nation: Classical Instruments of Japan, a koto, bass koto and shamisen library for Kontakt, featuring world-class performer Masayo Ishigure.

We created Koto Nation out of a desire to see traditional Japanese instruments receive a deep, thorough sampling treatment, much like our acclaimed North Indian sample library Sitar Nation. While there are a handful of libraries which include samples of the koto and shamisen, they feature only the most basic articulations and few (if any) velocities or round robins. To our knowledge, the bass koto has never been sampled at all! Given the popularity of the shakuhachi and taiko in many Western film soundtracks, we wanted to allow film composers, hobbyist producers, ethnomusicologists, anime fans and everyone in between access to these classic instruments and complete the repertoire of traditional Japanese sounds available.

This library includes a massive number of samples spanning a wide variety of both traditional and extended playing techniques all recorded by koto legend Masayo Ishigure (Memoirs of a Geisha). We’re confident that this is, without a doubt, the most comprehensive koto, bass koto and shamisen library ever to be released!

Koto Nation features

  • World-class performances.
  • Up to 8x round robins and 5x dynamic layers.
  • Traditional and contemporary techniques.
  • Close and room mic positions.
  • Special FX patches.
  • Nearly 9gb of unlocked, 24bit audio.

Koto Nation for Kontakt is available to purchase for $99 USD.

More information: Impact Soundworks / Koto Nation

Loopmasters releases Shamisen

Discovery Sound Shamisen

Loopmasters has released Shamisen, a sample library featuring Shamisen loops by Discovery Sound.

This painstaking work faithfully reproduces the shamisen’s unique tones, from delicat reverberations to impassioned, soul-stirring phrases.

There is a historical “period drama” boom among the younger generation, fueled by the film and music industry. One theory holds that the driving forces behind this boom are director Hayao Miyazaki’s most recent works. These animated features feature historical “old Japan” as their setting, and have been record-setting national hits within Japanese audiences. These successful films have granted us a fresh opportunity to see our country in a different light.

The instrument known as the shamisen can be traced back to the biwaand other similar instruments derived from China; there is arguably no sound to which the Japanese ear is more accustomed. The shakuhachi has little intonation, and the koto, while gorgeous, has no lightness. A mere three strings of the Shamisen spun of silken threads express a vast range of human emotion with rich feeling.

Discovery Sound Shamisen includes 106 inspiring Shamisen loops (16 Bit 44.1Khz .wav format). It can be purchased from Loopmasters for £19.95 GBP.

More information: Loopmasters / Shamisen