For this two-CD set (1.3GB of 24-bit Acid loops), producer Mark Whitcomb painstakingly recorded 15 full-length cuts, tracked out as construction kits, using 19 superbly talented players, including himself on guitar and engineering duties. Fortifying every ounce of funk, the project was recorded on an Otari two-inch tape deck with a 100% analog mix path before going to the computer for editing. Tracking to tape, Whitcomb pushed the iron particles hard for natural compression, attack and release sculpting – the end result being that these loops sound freakin’ fantastic!
The stereo drum mixes, in particular, kill with their amazingly wide open sound. A ’74 Fender Jazz bass recorded direct with just a bit of Manley compression, and Ibanez hollow body run through a vintage Fender blackface amp, both have gorgeous tone and character. The amount of wah and reverb seem perfectly suited for the piece — when they were used — but you don’t get any dry alternatives. While you’ll probably be playing your own keyboard parts, the vintage tone and ace playing of the supplied real Hammond, Wurlitzer, Rhodes, and Clav loops will duly serve as inspiration. All files are provided as stereo stems by instrument group, incorporating any panning that resulted from mic placement or mixer-level decisions.
About the only oversight I could spot is that root notes aren’t listed in the file or folder names, although a helpful lookup table is on the disc in both ASCII and Excel formats. Don’t let the title fool you — the musical directions that you can go with this library are wide open. Whether drafting breakbeats for a commercial spot, a cool horn line as the hook on a hip-hop track, some laid-back R&B groove builders, or phenomenal conga and bongo patterns in a Latin-inspired pop track, you’ll find it here.
PROS Fifteen fully-tracked sessions with A/B verse parts, fills, intros, and endings. Recorded to analog tape for natural compression and saturation. Superb playing. Flexible use.
CONS No dry alternatives to tracks recorded with wah or reverb.
FORMATS Acidized WAV.
INFO $69.95, sonycreativesoftware.com