New Kits: Galactic Brine
It’s been quite a jam packed year here at Sunhouse and we are so thankful to all of the fantastic musicians who have joined the Sunhouse family. Because you all are so great, we thought it was high-time to release some new kits! We call this collection Galactic Brine and it includes twenty completely new kits.
Half of these kits include tonal features, ranging from the strange and bubbly to moody and sinister. The other half are percussive kits inspired by the crunchy, slurpy, sloshy and more interesting sounds of nature in the Elements pack. Check out Sunhouse Artist, Jonathan Barber playing a few of these kits!
In 2016 the Guardian reported 12 million Americans believe that a race of reptilians — disguised in people-suits — control the world’s governments. Look no further than this kit for proof. A prominent politician (we won’t say who) stopped by our office, removed his person-suit and laid down some spicy sawtooth synth-bass notes and chords. He used those sounds to make this kit— it was incredible to watch him work, his scaled-green claws gripping the drumsticks and playing rhythms and sounds only an inter-planetary-reptile could dream up.
Drumline + Pit
You can control the sounds of a full percussion ensemble with this kit, which includes sounds from a marching snare and bass-line, congas, xylophones and marimbas, as well as various other percussion instruments. Individual sampled notes from the mallet instruments are mapped to Drum 3.
The mallet sounds are controlled by the random-sample-playback function, but — since they are all C-tones performed in various octaves and at different velocities — they can be (and are) quantized to a lydian scale (controlled with a center-to-edge timbre assignment).
Finally, to make the melodic sounds of this kit even more interesting, we duplicated the mallet-instrument sampler and used a random LFO to auto-pan the two samplers exactly opposite one another in the stereo image. The result is an immersive, melodic, stereo-experience.
In this kit, Drum 3 has a cycled progression of seven marimba chords, and notes mapped to Drum 2 are controlled by a center-to-edge timbre assignment.
The interesting thing about the melodic content in this kit (and in Drumline + Pit, and Reptiloid) is the sensitivity parameter on the center-to-edge pitch controller.
We made sure that it’s easy to play the tonic of the scale by simply striking the drum somewhere near the center. If you play very far out to the edge, then you will produce the higher notes of the scale.
The kits: FireWater, Space Dirt, Larsen C, Sinister Brine, iceHeart, Stannic Core, Hexed Terrain, Ruptured Brain, and Cosmic Junk Yard are comprised of samples from the brand new Elements folder. We armed our sound designer, Steven, with a field recorder and water-proof microphone, and sent him to various parks in NYC, icy ponds, Coney Island, the Catskills Forest Preserve, a make-shift junkyard, and various other places.
On those journeys, Steven recorded a total of 1,276 samples and categorized them by element type: Earth, Fire, Ice, Metal, Water, or Wind.
The kits made from this raw material are quite different from other Sensory Percussion releases. We designed them with the idea that you will control soundscapes in intuitive ways with your playing.
Pretty much all of the kits have interesting sonic effects hidden behind stick-shot and damped gestures. Some kits, like Stannic Core, have no acoustic or electronic drum sounds, but instead rely on percussive, earthy and metallic samples to fill those rolls.
Malbonsanco is a tonal kit built atop the 90s NYC Hip Hop preset. The grimey synth tones mapped to Drums 2 and 3 are selected by a center-to-edge timbre controller.
There’s this wildly talented but notably shy music producer who goes by Akkorokamui, and she happens to be a blue-ringed octopus. She recorded all of the sounds we used to build this kit.
Inspired by the sounds of artists such as RZA and KRS-ONE, this kit became a favorite of drummers visiting our booth at various festivals, so we’ve finally decided to release it. Here one of our favorite drummers, Lenny Reece, is playing a kit that he built on top of the BoomBapTonal preset (he added his own bass, and vocal sounds that do not come with this kit):
Fun Melodic DM
Another crowd favorite at festivals, in this kit DM just stands for Drum Machine. This kit is comprised of samples we squeezed out of a few different drum machines here at Sunhouse HQ.
The three drunken chord sounds on Drum 3 are cycled (making it really fun to play buzz rolls), and the sampler length on the center/edge pad of Drum 2 is modulated by velocity (harder hits make the electric keyboard sustain longer).
We plugged in the MuTaNt ScHeMeR drum machine (made by our strange and fictional friends at JeRoMe AvE LaBoRaToRiEs) and teased out all of the sounds used in this kit. The D♭/F descending progression is controlled by playing from center-to-edge on Drum 3. Why don’t you try mixing it up by making it random or controlled by some other controller type?
When we built this kit we imagined a maze of sounds to explore with Sensory Percussion. One of the most fun aspects of this sonic world is unlocked by striking the rim of Drum 4- almost all of the sounds on the drums fade into something completely different.
This kit has only a few active sound zones per drum, but even then Sensory Percussion is still following the nuances of your playing and this kit is a complex sound environment filled with delays, pitching, and other heavy modulation effects.
On some cold nights in Fall, a Hazannette piano is rumored to appear on the glacial boulder that juts out of 12th street and 43rd road in Queens, NY. Some say it is put there by Heinrich Steinweg’s ghost.
So we staked out the spot one night, and, sure enough — when no one else was looking — the mythical electric piano materialized on top of the boulder. We quickly sampled it and featured those samples in the kit, Hazey.