Review: Voice of Wind Audrey by Soundiron

by

Soundiron have released their third entry in the Voice of Wind collection, namely Voice of Wind Audrey. This edition focuses on the airy, sultry and captivating voice of mezzo-soprano Audrey Howitt. By fusing together a whole host of vocal articulations, round robins and vocal styles, Soundiron have produced a vocal toolbox that can help lend a professional vocal hand to any musical production.

Jump to the Videos of Voice of Wind Audrey by Soundiron

Jump to the Demos of Voice of Wind Audrey by Soundiron

 

Review: Voice of Wind Audrey by Soundiron

In recent years, there have been many releases of cinematic vocal libraries, giving us composers a huge range of choice. The Voice of Wind series focuses each time on a different style using a different vocalist. This third entry keeps all of the qualities that make the series so functional and has at the forefront yet another exceptional feature. The library is split into three sections. Firstly, there is the playable instruments which are legato, staccato and shorts. Following this are a variety of phrase instruments and finally “FX” based instruments which are either playable or phrase based. Provided you like the voice of Audrey Howitt, which is absolutely superb, the phrase “bang for buck” has never been so apt. At $99 we are given so many options and natural performances to create realistic vocal performances or magnificent sound design creations.

Voice of Wind Audrey sells for $99 from Soundiron

Thoughts

Upon loading the legato, which is the benchmark for any vocal library, we are greeted with an attractive and no nonsense GUI. I use various Soundiron products and their GUI design is always tasteful, which is no exception with the owl that dominates the instrument.

In the middle, you can decide between the different legato styles which are Ah, EE, Eh, Mm, Oh and Oo. The playable range is just over two octaves from a low A to a high B with each legato articulation being keyswitchable. The vocal timbre of Audrey is angelic and cinematic with a natural feel and beautiful vibrato and when combined with the modwheel can create ever more expressive performances. Having played some of my own phrases, the legato out of box is ready to fit in my cues. I really like how smooth the transitions are in both legato speed and volume. Nothing sounds jumpy or uneven, even when playing through a variety of dynamics, this is one smooth ride.

Should the legato not be 100% to your taste, you can use the controls to change the feel. The swell, attack and release all affect how the vocal is produced with the offset allowing you to start at a different point of the sample. By adjusting these controls you can go from subtle and angelic to powerful in an instant. Underneath are the legato speed and vibrato controls. While the legato speed is important for a natural feel, I’m a huge fan of any instrument that gives you controllable legato. I found myself assigning these to my midi controllers to create a really expressive, lifelike and human performance. Finally there is an auto-pan feature which controls the stereo spread, creating more expansive sounds. I found this to be more effective with the FX or chordal playing. On the far right there is a sweep icon which purges all unused samples to reduce the already small footprint.

The second page features Soundiron’s signature effects which enable you to create a whole host of sound design vocals quickly and creatively.

There are 13 different effects with eight rack slots. These range from chorus, flanger and delays to tape and transient effects. Underneath are two post/send slots and Soundiron have included a number of presets which sound great in their own right or can be used as jumping off point for your own sound design. The options here can easily create massive sweeping vocal lines or close intimate vocal timbres. The possibilities are endless.

The sustain and shorts articulations both offer some great possibilities. The sustains have six phonic sounds and are recorded with both piano and forte dynamics. They sound great although they are not mapped to the modwheel for maximum expressiveness. A little adjustment later and that is fixed, allowing me to create wonderful choral patches. By using the effects and tweaking the controls, it’s easy to build luscious soundscapes and expansive sonic beds. The shorts continue this trend as they naturally lend themselves to sound design. Out of the box they sound wonderful and can be used to create arpeggio patterns. They remind me of acapella groups during their more percussive moments.

Moving onto the five phrase-based instruments, we are given three tempos, 100bpm, 120bpm and 140bpm with bright, dark and hum characters. This is a total of five phrase-based instruments with around 48 phrases mapped to the keyboard. The phrases are all tempo synced and sound lyrical and sublime. I always look for a way to change the key which is a really important factor for phrase-based libraries. Firstly, in the middle, you change the phrases into one of six different keys. Here, the phrases are all different depending on the key so that is 288 phrases in total. If you need to adjust to the key you are working in, you only ever need to go a semitone either way to achieve this. This means no crazy pitch shifting and all of the performances remain intact. There are enough phrases in this category alone to fill any composers’ vocal needs for a long time. In addition, there is also a phrase-based sequencer so you can map the phrases you want to use and trigger them in global performance.

Finally, the FX NKI files are designed versions of the content. These are all expectedly programmed and can be used as they are or tweaked to your sound design needs. They show clearly how much the library can be tweaked and controlled to create different sonic timbres. There are 20 of these in total and all have the same controls with the vocal phonic or pitch options, depending on which source they are based upon. I had a great time working with these and using them as a jumping off points for my own sound design.

Soundiron have extended their Voice of Wind range with a beautiful sounding and customisable vocal instrument. The legato is smooth, controllable and the addition of a vibrato control is a great touch. The sampling is first rate, and the instrument can be used for both softer passages and in more vibrant sections. For me, this is a great addition to my vocal toolbox and I can certainly see myself utilising this in the near future. For any cinematic or media composer, this would be a great instrument to have in your instrument inventory.

Facts

Downloads at 2.38 GB

Vowel Sustains, Staccatos, Vocal SFX and True Legato

Live Phrases sorted by Song and Key with a powerful Phrase Sequencer

3,254 stereo samples

NKS instrument required free Kontakt 6.1 or later

Voice of Wind Audrey sells for $99 from Soundiron

 

Demos of Voice of Wind Audrey by Soundiron

Videos of Voice of Wind Audrey by Soundiron

 

Contributor Pete Checkley reviews Voice of Wind Audrey by Soundiron
Soundiron have released their third entry in the Voice of Wind collection, namely Voice of Wind Audrey. This edition focuses on the airy, sultry and captivating voice of mezzo-soprano Audrey Howitt. By fusing together a whole host of vocal articulations, round robins and vocal styles, Soundiron have produced a vocal toolbox that can help lend a professional vocal hand to any musical production.”