Review: Trailer Guitars II from Audio Imperia

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 Audio Imperia delivers another standout sonic masterpiece with Trailer Guitars 2! Combining all of the eight string tonal elements needed to deliver an A-rate performance in both trailers and cinematic scores, Trailer Guitars 2 has everything you need from clean tones to gritty distortion and sonic drones, loops, kits and curated content. Maximum playability with a complete effects section and sequencer combined with an amazing new interface.

Jump to the Demos of  Trailer Guitars II from Audio Imperia

Jump to the Videos of  Trailer Guitars II from Audio Imperia

Review: Trailer Guitars II from Audio Imperia

Trailer Guitars II sells for $249.00 from Audio Imperia 

At the time of posting the library was on extended intro price of $199 till October 3, 2017

 

Thoughts

What do you get when you combine an Ibanez RG 2228 8-string guitar with the bottom dropped down to A#, add DiMarzio D-Activator pickups, stereo inputs, combine it with the usual sound design magic of Audio Imperia and a dynamite new Steampunk interface? You get Trailer Guitars II.

Audio Imperia have once again teamed with guitarist Paul Ortiz and sound designer Bryan Leach to bring us an extra special treat.

If you think the interface is as amazing as I found it to be, just wait till you hear the guitars!

From my perspective this is a bit of a multi-headed beast; not only do you have access to an entire 8-string guitar recorded in stereo DI that will effectively hold its own against most guitar libraries out there, but you also have access to a variety of Kits, Loops, Drones, Pulses and a whole host of Hybrid processed material. Whether your guitar needs are gentle and cinematic in nature or downright brutal and pulsing, Trailer Guitars II will deliver.

It’s no secret that I have been a big fan of the Audio Imperia interface since it has been redesigned and I find the workflow to be one of the best out there. What came as a total surprise to me was the advancements in the interface design with the brilliant new Steampunk presentation. This library is literally just screaming at you “play me!”. As with all of the current Audio Imperia libraries, the Main page is divided into essentially three sections with the top being Volume, Pan, Big Knob, Attack and Release.

The center section identifies the Sample being played, and controls for adjusting Pitch and Sample Start position. The bottom section is devoted to LP (low pass), EQ and HP (high pass) controls to further sculpt the sound as you like. Each section that you want to use to affect the sound needs to be turned on by clicking on it. Everything in the control layout is actually quite straightforward. This gives you a basic order of control but in order to really refine and bend  the sounds to your will, you will want to move to the Effects page.

Trailer Guitars II is the first library from Audio Imperia to feature my most requested update – A latching feature for the Step Modulator! Latching is now included so that you can lock your selection in by clicking on it rather than having to keyswitch it  if you want to be able to play with both hands, or have a complex set of changes that you want to employ where you do not always want the latching feature turned on for a specific setting.

Trailer Guitars II is the first library from Audio Imperia to feature my most requested update – A latching feature for the Step Modulator

A powerful Step Modulator offers you four Volume, four Pan, one HP and one LP modulator which are accessible via keyswitch or latch if you click it and can be used in any combination that you would like. I personally really like using the panning effect variations and find the results to be to be quite unique. You can also conjure some very lovely sounding guitar riffs using various combinations of effects here. Underneath the graphical display of the Step Modulator you can define the Step Count, Frequency and Intensity as well as whether you want the retrigger on or off. As in all the FX sections, you can save your Step Modulator values as an nka and then recall them when you need to.

Allowing you to change the overall intensity of the FX applied to each of the individual samples, the Big Knob is in my opinion the burning heart and soul of the sound sculpting capabilities for the Audio Imperia libraries.

Quite simply, it allows you to apply everything from subtle to intense changes to your overall sound by simply turning the dial up once you have selected your effects. You can mix and match your choice of Insert FX using the Big Knob with Compressor, Distortion, Lo-Fi, Rotator, Chorus, Flanger and Phaser by simply clicking the drop- down and then turning the chosen FX on by clicking the Power icon.

The FX option selected will offer a different set of controls based on type to refine your sound. I typically use premium plug-ins for effects and mix in-the-room. I know that sounds like a commercial which is included in all of my reviews, but all FX are not created equal. That said, I am in this case, in favor of not only using the included FX signal chain but also augmenting it with premium plug-ins like amp and effect pedal simulators to spice things up even further.. This is actually something that Audio Imperia includes in their marketing material, which I found especially useful with the dry guitar patch.

You can also save your favorite creations as an nka file and load it at a later time.

To me it’s a big plus that you can come back to the favorite effect chain without having to tinker to get back a particular sound that you wanted.

 

In addition to using the Big Knob to control Insert FX and dialing in their depth, you also have the ability to use those same seven Insert FX on the Inserts/Sends page. Here you can also add Reverb and Delay in the Sends. When it comes to reverb, that sentiment to use external plug-ins probably comes into play here – not to say that there is anything wrong with the included convolution reverbs as they are quite adequate, but compared to the allure of using them with the Big Knob, I can replace these easily in my mix.

 

I have covered the functionality of Trailer Guitars II and talked briefly about the instrument and the recording process but I would be remiss if I didn’t get into more specifics about the other side of that dry DI stereo guitar, which is all of the Kits and sound designed content from Paul.

The Kits come in 3/4 and 4/4 time signatures in both a cinematic crunchy style and also a heavier kit. Both of them are going to deliver the punch required for action with the heavy kit having its emphasis on upping that just a notch. There is a lot of content for both of these that from my perspective just does not disappoint. They are recorded at 120bpm and I found them able to time stretch up or down by 35-40 bpm without any noticeable artifacts.

There are a collection of Simple Loops that include things like dead notes, muted power chords, open power chords, as well as open and muted singles. You also have a collection of Pulses, Drones and a really nice collection of sound designed extras from Bryan Leach which are always welcome called Angels and Demons. There are also tonal, atonal hybrids, rises and bowed guitar.

There is a treasure trove of sonic capabilities here that are waiting to be mined.

I spent a lot of time working with Trailer Guitars II and using it on a project. As a multi-instrumentalist and composer, I really looked at this as I said in the beginning, as both a fully functional 8-string guitar as well as an elaborate library of designed sounds to be used for not only trailer tracks but also in many cases this library has you covered wherever you need to guitar, well at least an electric guitar.

The dry guitar part is self-explanatory from an application perspective where I think the potential appeal lies in the design and content is as I said not only in trailer tracks but in scoring applications, electronic music, video game soundtracks and using some of the more pristine sounds, even in underscore. There is a treasure trove of sonic capabilities here that are waiting to be mined. I have a significant collection of guitar Vis in my studio and Trailer Guitars II is going to be sitting right up there at the front for a really long time. I definitely have to give this the Sample Library Review Thumbs Up!

As always, please check out the audio and video demos with the links provided below to make sure that this is the right tool for your unique needs.

Facts

Trailer Guitars II downloads and installs at 6.5 GB and requires a full Native Instruments Kontakt 5.6.8 or higher license. Native Instruments Kontakt Player is not supported. The library contains 34 patches.

Trailer Guitars II sells for $249.00 from Audio Imperia 

At the time of posting the library was on extended intro price of $199 till October 3, 2017

 

Demos of Trailer Guitars 2 by Audio Imperia

Videos of Trailer Guitars 2 by Audio Imperia