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9 Soundware

9 Soundware has released Drum Tree, a new set of presets for Apple's ES2 and EXS24 instruments.

Drum Tree is a collection of presets and instruments for Apple Logic Pro inspired by drums. The concept behind the sound set was to adapt electronic drum timbres, commonly handled as static snapshots in the form of samples, to the keyboard paradigm and reactive qualities of synthesis. In addition to acting as source presets for resampling, these patches allow for heightened flexibility in sequencing dynamic rhythms and interactivity in performance contexts. Featuring three main components, the multi-format product includes files for the ES2 synthesizer and EXS24 sampler, as well as Channel Strips.

ES2 presets
The ES2 component of Drum Tree was designed to repurpose the archetypical, yet immensely flexible, synthesizer as an atypically interactive generator of drum kit component sounds. The presets were designed to be played by MIDI keyboards. They were tuned to maintain percussiveness across the approximate key range of C1 and C6. In addition, each patch was programmed for velocity-triggered modulation. Unlimited by architectures of synthesis modules built into conventional drum machines, the ES2 presets of Drum Tree were designed to challenge orthodox notions of electronic drums.

The ES2 component of the sound set comprises of 100 files. Categories include "Bass Drum", "Snare Drum", "Hi-Hat", "Tom", "Crash Cymbal", "Ride Cymbal". "Side Stick", and "Hand Clap", each consisting of 10 files, with the exception of "Bass Drum" and "Snare Drum", both of which include 20 files.

Examples include bass and snare drums with sustain-capable ADSR settings and tempo-synced LFO modulation, kick drums which can be used to play bass lines, noise-only snares with extreme filter settings, hi-hats which allow for complex pan sequences, and tonal crash cymbals with modulated DIgiwaves.

EXS24 instruments
In contrast to the ES2 component of Drum Tree, the EXS24 component, based on 150 samples from the original Drum Key release (now discontinued), were designed with an emphasis on punch and tightness. Evocative of acoustic drums, the unique, yet versatile, samples serve as a counterpoint to the synthetic character of the ES2 presets. "Thwack" being a maxim behind their design, the kick and snare files, in particular, are effective when stacked with other sounds.

The EXS24 component of the sound set comprises of 20 instruments. Included are 10.exs files which type-specifically reference the bass drum, snare drum, hi-hat, tom, crash cymbal, ride cymbal, side stick, and hand clap samples, as well as 10 drum kit files with keymaps consistent to those used in Logic factory presets.

Channel Strip settings
Designed for use with the ES2 and EXS24 components of Drum Tree, included are 10 Channel Strip settings which alter dynamics. They consist of compressor-based plug-in chains which heighten loudness and punch, those which tighten the decay portion of audio using the Expander plug-in, those with high compression ratios to increase perceived sustain, as well as those which compress reverb.

Pricing & Availability

Drum Tree is a modular product. In addition to the full version of the product which includes all three components, the ES2 and EXS24 components are available as partial downloads. The Channel Strip files are exclusive to the complete edition. The 50 MB download includes 100.pst files, 20.EXS files, 150 WAV files (24-bit/44.1 kHz), and 10.cst files.

Drum Tree is available now for $39.99. The partial downloads for the ES2 and EXS24 components are available for $24.99 and $14.99 respectively.

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