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Angel Thompson
Angel Thompson

Sample Logic Fanfare


Sample-based cinematic construction kits currently seem to be all the rage, with a growing number of products designed to satisfy the demand for mix'n'match sounds that can be layered together to make 'production ready' soundscapes and musical effects. Sample Logic's recent Cinematic Guitars had its own unique take on the genre, being based entirely around sounds that use guitars as their source material. Cinematic Guitars also introduced Sample Logic's innovative 'core effects sequencer'; this utilises specially created KSP scripting to apply multi-layered, tempo-sync'ed modulations to Kontakt's built-in effects, giving complex rhythmical textures to the source samples. (For a detailed explanation of the core effects sequencer, a look at the Cinematic Guitars SOS review from January 2011 is recommended.) Using this same approach, Fanfare does for brass what Cinematic Guitars did for, er, guitars. However, this is not the orchestral, pop or big band brass you might expect: this is the Blue Devils, the USA's top marching brass band (see box 'The Devils' Work').




Sample logic fanfare



While the layered soundscapes of the Multis and the off-the-wall synthetic treatments provided by the core effects sequencer are a prime feature of Fanfare, there is a particular emphasis on clean, naturalistic brass. After all, why go to the trouble of creating such a library if it wasn't musically useful in the traditional sense, or if it wasn't actually recognisable as brass? These 'natural' samples can be found under the Instruments main category, in the Traditional folder. This is sub-divided into Individual, Sectional and Stadium categories, the first two of which are sub-divided into instrument types. Individual (ie. solo) instruments come in Euphonium, Mellophone, Trombone, Trumpet and Tuba flavours, while Sectional (ensemble) instruments omit the Trombones.


Both the solo and ensemble tubas pack bottom end 'oomph', although I could have done with some fff samples, just to scare the horses. Although a token set of trombone sounds (marcatos and some rather obvious comical slides) are included in the Individual folder, as a rule drum corps use the piston-valved Euphonium as substitute for the slide trombone, which explains the lack of the latter. I can only assume this is because the trombones' long slides would be smacking people in the back of the head in close-formation displays. Even so, some Solo and Sectional trombone sustains would have been welcome additions.


Individual and Sectional instruments were recorded indoors with close, 'mid' and far mics, and the main mixer page of the user interface provides control over the level and panning of each mic, as well as effects assignments and send levels. The on/off status and send levels for each mic's effects can be linked to work globally, or unlinked for individual treatment of each mic. These multi-mic instruments also have access to Fanfare's Spinner effect, intended to simulate rotational movement in space by simultaneously modulating the three mics' pan positions and levels. Front to back movement is achieved by modulating the mic-channel levels in sequence, to create a 'Mexican wave' effect. The Stadium samples were recorded using surround-sound recording techniques, utilising five mics (left, mid left, mid right, right and surround), and in this configuration the Spinner effect only modulates pan position.


Fanfare can be said to be the best marching brass sample library out there, not least because there doesn't appear to be anything else quite the same that could compete with it. It's also a further demonstration of how the Kontakt engine can be manipulated to make any sound unrecognisable, but still musically useful and inspirational. Sample Logic clearly intend Fanfare to appeal not only to composers and arrangers in the traditional mould, but also to educators, pop musicians, experimentalists or anyone who simply wants the power of the Blue Devils at their fingertips.


If we were talking alternative orchestral, jazz or big-band brass libraries, there would be a number of options. However, after conducting an intensive search for alternative marching brass libraries, I could find nothing. If there is anything out there at all, it's keeping well hidden, which suggests that Fanfare is currently unique in being dedicated to samples of a top American marching brass band, with the added benefit of combining them with Sample Logic's core effects sequencer.


The indoor samples for Fanfare were recorded by Leslie Ann Jones on The Scoring Stage at Skywalker Sound and the outdoor performances were captured on the field at Ralph Wilson Stadium (home of the Buffalo Bills football team), by Grammy award winner Frank Dorritie. The arrangements were by John Meehan, Brass 'Caption Head' for the Blue Devils.


Tapping into the mind of premier wind and brass arranger John Meehan, Fanfare features a broad array of samples recorded by Leslie Ann Jones on The Scoring Stage at Skywalker Sound (a Lucasfilm Ltd Company) and on the field at Ralph Wilson Stadium (home of the Buffalo Bills) by Grammy Award winner Frank Dorritie.


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them by presenting similar collections consecutively. A few things to consider when choosing a brass library or really any acoustic instrument sample library:


This collection sounds incredible from the first note. It is a symphonic collection that features solo horns, trombones (including bass and contrabass), trumpet, tuba, contrabass tuba, and cimbasso (which has become highly desirable in film scoring in the last several years for its raspy quality). The horns, trumpets and trombones include a2 and a6 samples which sound huge and majestic. The contrabass tuba is a nice addition for a beautiful rumbling low-end sustained growl.


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them byPlay Video2. Kirk Hunter Concert Brass 2


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them byPlay Video4. EastWest Hollywood Brass GoldX


This is the only instrument in this article that is not Kontakt-based. Instead, EastWest supplies its own plugin called Play, to access their sample libraries. They also offer a subscription-based model that can be attractive for those that desire access to an enormous collection of quality samples for a nominal monthly fee (starting at $24 for a ton of libraries). Student pricing is also quite reasonable. If you do decide to get the whole package, I highly recommend getting the samples delivered on the supplied hard drive. Download times are excruciatingly slow (perhaps by design).


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them byPlay Video5. Symphobia 1 by ProjectSAM


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them byPlay Video7. Swing More! by ProjectSAM


As the names implies, this library is focused on Big Band sounds and ensembles. It features three mic positions, several legato styles and big band chord voicing with inversions. Aside from a full complement of brass samples, it includes saxes, clarinet, guitar, bass, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, drum kit, piano, vibes, percussion, strings and female vocals!


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them byPlay Video8. Fanfare by Sample Logic


The unique qualities of this library make it fit comfortably into sound design or instrumental library categories. I include it in this article because although many of the presets are heavily processed, a large number have brass samples as part of their genesis.


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them byPlay Video10. FORZO by Heavyocity


Back in March, I wrote an article highlighting selected string libraries. What follows are some of the best sampled brass libraries currently available. With the exception of one, all of these are Kontakt-based instruments. They are in no particular ranked order, but I have tried to organize them byPlay Video


Google+ seems to be continuing building steam and putting itself on the map as a contender, not merely an also-ran to the Facebook behemoth. Part of its strategy is to enforce the use of real names, not just the more common online pseudonym. The logic goes that this will reduce the likelihood that cybercriminals might


Amidst a lack of fanfare this past weekend on a mailing list, a memory exhaustion hack popped up for the Apache webserver that may result in a Denial-of-Service (DoS) style attack. Since the Apache application serves up north of 65% of the websites on the internet, a plausible attack becomes quite an issue, especially if 350c69d7ab


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