Review: Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore

by

While Origins Volume 5 provides two basic playable instruments, its strength lies in the Multi-Arpeggio-Designer and inspiring presets.

Jump to the Videos of Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore

Jump to the Demos of Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore

 

Review: Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore

The Ukulele and Muted Piano are the subjects of Sonuscore’s Origins Series’ 5th entry. This series, designed by Dynamedion, focuses on intimate, and often ethnic, solo instruments run through the Multi-Arpeggio-Designer engine to create modern pulses and arps. It’s clear from the first key press that this library’s focus is the Arp presets, but the playable version of the layered ukulele and muted piano is also a joy to finger through, thanks to its dreamy and almost otherworldly tone. However, the strength of the Origins series is its ability to create modern rhythmic beds with organic DNA, and volume 5 is definitely no different.

Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore

Thoughts

The origins series interface is split down the middle in every panel – ukulele on the left, muted piano on the right. The main panel has basic volume, pan, attack, and release controls alongside a toggle for the arpeggiator. Each one also has a solo button so you can focus on one instrument at a time. The top section of every panel is reserved for the two drop-down menus for ARP and Color presets.

This is where you can dig into the details of the MAD engine. The bottom section has your step counters, which can be affected by the “bar reset” dropdown above to choose a time signature. You also have controls for swing, transposition, octave jumps, rate, and note order. I personally find these things a bit tiresome to play with, but that’s why Sonuscore was nice enough to provide a variety of presets in different meters!

The FX rack is divided into three categories: dynamics, modulation, and delay/reverb. These are all your standard Kontakt FX and they are utilized well in the presets to build more creative sounds from the simple sources.

The plain, raw sound of the Ukulele and Muted Piano combo is an exceptional key sound. It’s intimate and detailed thanks to the delicate pluck of the ukulele, but it has a solid low-end foundation provided by the muted piano filling the spectrum. The default reverb and delay adds a nice open and dreamy quality to the sound as well. Solo’ing the ukulele provides a light and harp-esque timbre. The muted piano on its own is less useful in my opinion, being a bit muddy. But the option is there, and I’m sure it will get some use. While the instruments themselves aren’t the main focus of these libraries, I do find myself wishing I had a more detailed playable version of each of these sound sources!

The raw sound is definitely worth using on its own, but the MAD engine adds a ton of potential for more “weird” and modern sounds. The included presets range from simple organic arps to modern textural pulses that might surprise you, considering the small pool of samples to build from. The presets are categorized into “normal” and “odd”, the latter of which contains the stranger meters such as 5 / 8 and 7 / 8. The “Color’ presets also work independently of the main presets, so you can apply different pre-made timbres to any of the included arp patterns very easily. The sounds you get out of the presets are definitely different and creative, but they never stray too far from their organic origins, so there’s certainly a “flavor” to all the sounds you get out of these libraries, which I consider a pro. If you want creative and modern scoring pulses that still feel intimate and recognizable, this is a wonderful source of inspiration.

Facts

Origins Volume 5 combines the sounds of a muted piano and ukulele into Sonuscore’s proven “MAD” (Multi-Arpeggio-Designer) engine, offering two basic playable instruments and a highly customizable arp engine with 80 rhythm presets and 12 color presets. This library only requires 158 MB of disk space, and runs in the full retail version of Kontakt 5.8.1 or higher.

Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore

Demos of Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore

Contributor Steven McDonald reviews Origins Volume 5: Ukulele and Muted Piano by Sonuscore
“While Origins Volume Five Provides two basic playable instruments, its strength lies in the Multi-Arpeggio-Designer and inspiring presets.”