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Posted by on Feb 4, 2011 | 0 comments

Having Fun with The Recordist’s Ultimate Mud and Ultimate Splash [Review and Demos]

I admire Frank Bry a lot, not only for his great design work and philosophy, but also for the incredible job he does at The Recordist, one of the leading companies in this era of sound effects independence. Today I’ll talk about two of his recent libraries: Ultimate Mud and Ultimate Splash.

Apart of the great sounds included in Frank’s libraries, there’s a lot of “hidden” lessons inside. With that I mean that you can learn a lot from just listening those recordings and checking its beautiful metadata. For example, I never thought about the incredible amount of things you can record from Snow, until I worked with “Ultimate Snow”. Also, Frank’s metadata process has influenced me a lot. I simply love his great organization and fantastic taggin approach.

Ultimate Mud

This one is a collection of all kinds of disgustingly incredible mud recordings.. Mud is an incredible thing to record. It feels really organic, and when you capture all those movements and muddy elements like Frank did, what you get is an incredible amount of cool sources that can be used in a lot of things. I’ve recently used some of these recordings to make a variety of things. From blood, juicy hits and movements, to waterfalls, whooshes and footsteps. I’ve also been experimenting by processing the recordings in different ways and it’s very cool! You can get crazy sounds with a very nice organic feel.

The word “Mud” doesn’t explain either the half of the content included there. You can find a lot of different elements. That includes bubbles, air pressure releases in mud (fantastic for those big dirty creatures), splashes, movements of all sizes, impacts by different objects, muddy footsteps, and more! There’s a total of 343 files, recorded in high quality and perfectly edited and tagged.

Now let’s hear some examples of the mud sounds in context. Remember that these are just a few things you can do with those sounds, but there’s always a lot of possibilities with this kind of libraries. In the first example, I used some mud small movements as some layers for designing sound of bloody impacts (Dragon Age redo). You can listen the sound without and then with the muddy layers.

The second one is the same thing but this time the mud was used to give a dirty element to the water (BioShock redo). First you can listen to several water layers, then mud layers and the all merged together.

Ultimate Splash

When Frank released this library I was working on the BioShock video, so was a perfect moment to play with it. I already had a lot of my own water sounds edited in the video. I got those from different sessions, including one in a pool and others in my house (bathroom stuff, kitchen, taps, buckets, etc). I added several things from the library to my designs, and I also replaced some of my sounds with splashes including in the library.

For example, I was needing a really huge sound for the water fall at big sister¡s arrival in the last sequences of the video. I made one processing small water falls I recorded in a pool, and it sounded cool, but when I was listening to the contents of Ultimate Splash I found a big splash made with huge amounts of water. I processed it a bit and it better than my sound, so I replaced it. You know, is not easy for me to get a tractor, go to different lakes and record huge water splashes. That’s why these libraries are so cool!

Ultimate Splash includes splashes created in different environments and using all kind of things interacting with the water. As Frank said: “Rocks, cement blocks, chimney casings, wood logs, sticks, metal barrels and buckets were used to create the largest and smallest of splashes. I also employed my trusty JD tractor and dumped various amounts of water onto the ground and into bodies of water”.

A cool example of the variety of the sounds included in The Recordist’s libraries can be this: First listen to this hit made by the big sister (in the BioShock video) when she is hitting the glass underwater. I already have some layers ready, but I tried experimenting with the bucket barrels impacts and one of those had the water+metal impact I needed. I added a very special thing to those impacts.

That’s a cool element, huh? Now let’s here something completely different: a subtle water movement, also included in the library.


As you can notice, The Recordist’s Ultimate collections are not the typical thematic collections. They’re full of nature, full of soul and full of variations and unique sources. These two packages are not an exception and could be incredibly useful for lots of different tasks.

As usual in these independent sound libraries, the kind of content is perfect for me. A lot of this things are from stuff that I’m not able to record easily here, and even with that possibility, each recordist has his sauce and ingredients, so every sound taste different, and that only means one thing: lots of new options.



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