The Dutch samples library developers Sonokinetic can usually be relied upon to come up with something a little different whether it be an orchestral phrase library like Minimal or a Middle Eastern instrument collection such as Sultan Strings…
Manufacturer Sonokinetic Ltd
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For their latest release, Toll, they’ve been climbing cathedrals (on the inside we hope) and risking deafness sampling sixteenth and seventeenth heavy cast bells. The complete 3GB collection covers a variety of European bells as well as recordings of South East Asian ceremonial bells from countries such as Vietnam and China.
Programmed for Kontakt 4.2.4 and 5 there are four main categories: Carillons, Historical Bells, Silk Road Bells and Tower Bells. With a range of five octaves and a wonderfully evocative sound the familiar peal of the Carillon (church bells) is the star of the show as far as we are concerned. Two versions are available, hard and soft. Both are beautifully pitched and just the job for adding a touch of grandeur to all kinds of production styles.
While the Carillons are perfect for melodic work, the Historical and Silk Road bells are tuned in a pre-modern fashion and suited to adding dramatic production effects. The Cathedral Tower Bells, too, are very weighty sounding.
The main UI is simplicity itself although, because of the small text and murky icons it’s difficult to read exactly which bell collection is selected. Other controls include release tail length, EQ, reverb selection and round robin. Four adjustable reverbs are included.
Round robins are well catered for and they cycle for each key for a natural playback. Which sample is playing can be observed by following a marked MIDI key towards the bottom of the keyboard. A useful feature is the option to repeat a sample (freeze), exclude one or mark a sample to play first in a chosen RR set.
We can’t fault this collection. Large historical bell samples are quite hard to come by and for the money, Toll is hard to beat. The exquisite sounding Carillons are easily worth shelling out the asking price for.