Review: Musique Box by Soundiron

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The Musique Box by Soundiron is a collection of 11 deep-sampled music boxes. It will fit perfectly into a number of different kinds of compositions thanks to the realistic playback and  4 layer engine and the FXs that come with this library, you can create a lot of textures and new sounds that can fit into many different musical genres.

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Review: Musique Box by Soundiron

The Musique Box is a collection of 11 antique music boxes sampled by Soundiron, recorded in different environments and configurations. It comes with just one master NKI instrument plus 20 new custom FX presets, each one available as a different NKI file. It’s built for the full version of Kontakt (5.5.2 or later), so it doesn’t run with the free player version.

Musique Box sells for $39.00 from Soundiron

Thoughts


This library comes with one NKI master instrument. The first thing you can notice is that the well-looking GUI is very similar to one of many of Soundiron’s sample libraries that have been recently released, for example, Ancient Greek Strings and Ancient Greek Percussion.
The peculiarity of those libraries is that you don’t get the natural sound of the instrument only but also, thanks to a 4 layer engine you can mix it with ambience and synth textures to create your own sound, which can be used for several purposes including trailer and cinematic music.
By clicking on the main part of the GUI, you get access to a new window with an LFO, a Filter and an Arpeggiator. These three tools are actually very interesting and useful, because you can shape the sound even more.


In the LFO section, you can chose between five different waveforms: Sine, Square, Triangle, Sawtooth or Random. In the Filter section you can select the type of the filter and, just under this zone, you’ll find the “Scale lock” settings. When the lock button is active the instrument will play only the notes in the selected scale. And you can actually choose between several types of scales including Chromatic, Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Octatonic and for each of them, the key in which the selected scale will play. The arpeggiator (ARP) lets you create arpeggios, rhythmic patterns and step sequences. It’s important to keep in mind that this section works per layer, so you can shape the sound of each layer, a feature that makes this library even more customizable.

At the bottom of the interface you can find the 4 layer engine. In the first two layers you can select the type of acoustic sound of the music boxes, choosing it from the list in the low right corner, or using keyswitches available in the lower octaves of the keyboard. You’ll find a dry sound I particularly love in order to use the music box in the more traditional and natural way, but you’ll find also a Large Hall and a Small Hall sound, a Glass sound, which gives the instrument a less direct impact and also two Winding instances, which reproduce the sound of the mechanics of the music box. The third layer lets you add an ambience pad to the overall sound, while the fourth layer (called “Sub-Synth”), selects the synthesizer layer, with a choice of six waveform shapes, but also some noise sounds like the White Noise and the Brown Noise. The lower area contains the knobs to control the parameters of the selected layer, such as attack, volume, release, vibrato and pan. All these controls can be assigned to a CC in order to control them real-time using a hardware controller or using automations inside your sequencer. On the right side, you can indeed choose the kind of sound to assign to the layer. If you click on the FX Rack button at the very bottom of the instrument’s GUI, you’ll access a new window in which you’ll find several plugins and signal processors such as Compressors, Delays, EQs, Reverbs, Tape Saturations, just to name some of them.


Generally speaking, I believe that this is a very good library and, in my opinion, it is totally worth the money. The dry sound is very realistic and you can hear the imperfections of a typical music box. The keyboard is completely filled and, of course, the the more you get away from the sampled notes, the more the sound is stretched. This is not useful if you aim to produce a realistic performance but it becomes extremely interesting if you want to achieve a particular sound. Thanks to the 4 layer engine and the LFO, Filter and ARP sections, the sound possibilities you can reach with this library are actually endless, and you can use it both to emulate a classic music box’s rendition and for experimental, cinematic, trailer purposes, as well as for any other genre of music you want. If you are a fan of this kind of instrument, I definitely suggest you to get this one, and even if you are not, I strongly encourage you to give it a chance because using the layers and the FXs that come with this library you can create a lot of textures and new sounds that can fit into a lot of different musical genres.

Facts

The library includes one master NKI instrument plus 20 custom FX presets
It requires the full version of Kontakt (5.5.2 or later)
Samples are saved as 24 bit/48 kHz PCM wav files
The library downloads as 2.24 GB installed

Musique Box sells for $39.00 from Soundiron

 

Demos of Musique Box by Soundiron

 

Videos of Musique Box by Soundiron

Contributor Giuseppe Corcella reviews Musique Box by Soundiron
“The Musique Box by Soundiron is a collection of 11 deep-sampled music boxes. It will fit perfectly into a number of different kinds of compositions thanks to the realistic playback and  4 layer engine and the FXs that come with this library, you can create a lot of textures and new sounds that can fit into many different musical genres..”