Review: Norse Myths by Subsonic Artz

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Subsonic Artz have released Norse Myths, a 151 preset soundset for U-He’s Diva. By drawing upon Norse mythology, Norse Myths promises to deliver a palette of Nordic timbres to bring a touch of analogue noire to your productions. From sweeping soundscapes to poignant keys, Norse Myths will be a great addition to any dramatic composer’s toolkit.

Jump to the Videos of Norse Myths by Subsonic Artz

Jump to the Demos of Norse Myths by Subsonic Artz

 

Review: Norse Myths by Subsonic Artz

Subsonic Artz have proven time and time again to produce soundsets of the highest calibre. I have been really excited to play through this one as not only do I compose a lot of Nordic inspired underscore, I also have a huge fan of Diva. Citing composers such as Olafur Arnalds and Nils Frahm, this promises to be an atmospheric and emotional offering across it’s 151 presets. The sound set has been divided into 9 Arpeggiators, 12 bass lines, 14 Effects, 11 keyboards, 4 leads, 27 Pads, 32 Pulses, 9 Rhythms, 23 Soundscapes and 10 Synths. There is more than enough here to create your own Nordic inspired drama cues with a touch of flair.

Norse Myths sells for €24.71 from Subsonic Artz

Thoughts

To begin, the nine arpeggios instantly capture the Nordic vibe. Firstly, the sound design is clear without the use of too many effects. These sounds are production ready with very little postproduction tweaking required. Out of the box, presets like “Gersimi” scream instant underscore at you and could easily be used for the intro to a television drama due to it’s soft, pulsing movement. It is impossible not to be inspired by these sounds and we are only in the first category. “The Ancestors” is more dramatic, atmospheric and uses less movement yet again can provide the foundation for an inspirational cue.

Moving to the basses, the sinister titles “The Death’s Gate” has a brooding intensity that evokes feelings of terror and dread. “Skadi” ramps up the tension with it’s more psychological chaotic side. The basses are easily able to sit directly in the mix and provide much needed movement and momentum. When combined with the FX section of the soundset, the magic starts to happen. The FX are essentially epic soundscapes which place you directly on the Nordic battlefield. The level of detail in these is incredible, with “Fog and Horn” and “The Kraken” being two of my personal favourites. Even though these are designed for dramatic underscore, they are also perfectly suited for modern cinema, crime, tension and horror. In fact, that comment applies to the entire soundset.

The Keyboards range from delicate timbres to thick and majestic melodic instruments. The quivering “Elr” or the majestic “Fulla” offer something different to the melodic palette and also have some really great descriptions of the characters they are modelled on. “Fulla” is the messenger, spreading the news and stories of the time. Aside from composing with great sounds, I’m also getting an education in Norse mythology! But this care and attention in the descriptions really shows how much care and attention the developer has put into the sound set. A great touch.

Moving through the leads, while there are not many, there is a great range of timbre. “First Snowflakes” is one of the most delicate sounds in the library yet can be instantly used for high, ethereal melodies. This brings us to the pads, 27 to be exact. Pads are a critical part of any underscore and these are beautiful, tormented and just downright angelic. “Ash Log” is perfect to set the scene with its ethereal atmosphere and reversed elements. Again, with just this pad and a key instrument, you can create a stunning underscore. It would be so easy to lose hours of composing time just playing through these pads, and that is exactly what I did. Each pad as good as the next they go from beauty to uncertainty and dramatic tension. In short, the pads are some of the best I have heard with Diva and some of the best overall. The modwheel has been expertly programmed and here the sounds and textures significantly vary to give many more sonic options.

Pulses are usually required to add movement and texture throughout underscore. These pulses work both great as either bass or treble instruments and are generally slow, atmospheric and often use reverse techniques. Again, the modwheel is utilised so that a single note can tell a thousand stories. Well, maybe not a thousand but a patch like “Jeg Elsker Deg” can create a swarm of emotion. In total, the 32 pulses do a great job of providing momentum through the underscore. The same can be said for the percussive content that is equal measures of powerful and intense.

The soundscape content is much the same as the ads and FX. Beautifully programmed and a range of sonic beds to build your competitions upon. Often, I feel soundscapes are atonal yet these are just pure atmosphere and a well placed snippet of a soundscape can tell an aleatoric story. They really add a sense of drama and confusion to the proceedings. Finally, the synths tie the soundset together with poignancy and no real resolution to what confusion has been created. Again, I really have enjoyed the softer side to Diva and the use of reverses and subtle reverbs.

Norse Myths from Subsonic Artz is a wonderful soundset full of sonic possibilities that really capture the Norse aesthetic. Above all else, each preset is incredibly inspiring and just invites you to start composing. While it’s possible to create full underscores with just this soundset, when combined with other libraries it’s really a magical experience. Yet as composers, starting a composition is for me the hardest part and a singular pad, soundscape or pulse has been enough to kickstart the creative process. This soundset comes highly recommended for anyone who not only composes dramatic Nordic underscore, yet any music that requires emotion, sonorous timbres and often tense overtones. This can be added to the brilliant range of Subsonic Artz Soundsets who are becoming a force to be reckoned with in sound design.

Facts

151 Nordic inspired presets for Diva 1.4.3 or better.

Norse Myths sells for €24.71 from Subsonic Artz

 

Demos of Norse Myths by Subsonic Artz

Videos of Norse Myths by Subsonic Artz

Contributor Pete Checkley reviews Norse Myths by Subsonic Artz
“Subsonic Artz have released Norse Myths, 151 preset soundset for U-He’s Diva. By drawing upon Norse mythology, Norse Myths promises to deliver a palette of Nordic timbres to bring a touch of analogue noire to your productions. From sweeping soundscapes to poignant keys, Norse Myths will be a great addition to any dramatic composer’s toolkit.”