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Posted by on May 17, 2011 | 3 comments

“There’s no excuse for having a mental or creative block in sound. You can just go out and collect things in the real world – they make the sound, not you. It’s very restricting to always use a library for sound effects. It’s much more interesting and freeing to go out and record new sounds because you never know what you’re going to get.”

- Gary Rydstrom

David Sonnenschein Special: Sound Spheres Pt. 2

Posted by on May 14, 2011 | 2 comments

Following up on David’s previous post, the excerpt from his Sound Sphere article, he and I had a conversation over the phone to go into a little more detail. Here’s the full transcript.

David Sonnenschein: So, I know you read the excerpt that was posted for Designing Sound, but have you read the whole article as well? [ed. full article appears in "The New Soundtrack" volume 1, issue 1]

Designing Sound: Yes, I read the whole thing, but it’s been a few days and the two are kind of merging in my mind. If I remember correctly there were a few more examples…

David: Basically, yeah. It has more examples, and it also has a section of applying this model more specifically to film sound. So it was bit more detailed, and there was some exploration of where it could go…some possibilities of expanding it into other arenas. The earlier section was also relating it to previously established models. It just kind of expounds a bit more in an academic way on the whole issue. So, we can just talk about some of those things in general, or specifically if you want to. Or there are other questions you’ve mentioned that are really pertinent. And people can read more in the article itself. It’s available some place else. So I like this idea of talking about it in ways that are a little bit new.

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The Recordist Releases Snowballs HD Ultra and Free Bear Trap Libraries

Posted by on May 13, 2011 | 2 comments

Frank Bry has released two new libraries on The Recordist. The first one is Snowballs HD Ultra, a package loaded with 298 snowball sound effects. The second one is a free library with great metal sounds recorded from a bear trap,

Presenting Snowballs HD Ultra Sound Effects Library. My first 24-Bit 192kHz sound effects library release. Recorded over the 2010-2011 winter season here in beautiful North Idaho. This collection contains 69 multi-take wave files totaling 298 individual snowball sounds. These snowball sound effects were captured in many types of snow conditions. Wet, dry, normal cold and extremely frigid snowballs were dropped, hit, kicked, rolled, slid, rubbed, scraped and crushed along with very big chunks of snow dropped from my trusty JD tractor.

Highlights include: Large heavy snowball impacts, movements on very dry cold snow pack and falling down snowbanks. Some of the intense tension rubs and squeaks make for perfect avalanche and snow glaciers breaking apart.

Medium and small snowballs are also included and round out this diverse collection of snowball effects. Recorded with a Sanken CSS-5 and a Sennheiser MKH-416 in stereo and mono, both 192K and 96K versions are included.

So, in appreciation and thanks to all who have followed my crazy recording experiences and have purchased my work, I give to you: “The Danger Bear Trap Sound Effects Collection”. 15 multi-take sound files recorded and mastered at 24-Bit 96K. I have included full Metadata and have provided three versions of what I recorded that short day, The composite mix, The MKH-416 (mono) and the CSS-5 (stereo).

If you want to know more about the bear tramp recordings, visting the original blog post is highly recommended. Snowballs HD Ultra is available at $50. If you want to know more about the process behind, let’s read what Frank said to us:

Recording and Mastering Snowballs HD Ultra

First, a little background and set up on how I made the giant snowballs used in this sound effects library.

North Idaho gets quite a bit of snow in general. Some years more than others and this last year was one for the record books. I had a sense at the beginning that lots of snow was going to fall so I prepared massive snowbanks in my yard with my JD tractor. I piled it up high. One of the things I did not plan on was the six long weeks of bitter cold that started in mid December of 2010. This worked to my advantage though as I was able to carve out massive chunks of snow from these snowbanks I had built with the tractor. Once on the snow cover ground I could have my way with them. These snowballs were so frozen and light they could be picked up with one hand and thrown all over the yard. So, that’s what I did for six weeks in brutally cold sub-zero temperatures.

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Rabbit Ears Audio Releases “Bells”

Posted by on May 11, 2011 | 0 comments

Rabbit Ears Audio has released Bells, its sixth sound effects package, loaded with 440 sounds of awesome bells of all kinds and sizes.

Bronze, Brass, Chrome, Gold, Stainless Steel, and Steel are just some of the materials that forged this library. We spent a day at one of the few remaining bell foundries in the United States and we rang bells until our ears nearly fell off. We hit them with mallets, clappers, and shook them with our bare hands. We also spent time on an old barge and percussion rental facility for rare and unusual bells.

Each bell was recorded from multiple perspectives . . . if you need a heavy attack or just a warm roomy bell toll . . . we’ve got it.

All the sounds were recorded at 192k and are available at REA in two different versions: 96kHz at $50 and 192kHz at $70.

Interesting release, huh? Let’s hear about some details of the process behind it:

Designing Sound: How did you get started with this library? Any special inspiration?

Michael Raphael: I love the sound of Bells and the way that they generate rich overtones. Most recently I was inspired by a sound installation by Stephen Vitiello called “A Bell for Every Minute”. It was after hearing that piece and talking with Vitiello that I really started to think about how often we are surrounded by bells, and subsequently how useful they could be for sound editors and musicians.

http://www.thehighline.org/about/public-art/vitiello

It is a multi-channel piece installed at the High Line in NYC and Vitiello went all over recording different types of bells. Each minute a new bell tolls and then on the hour they all play simultaneously. It was after that piece that I really started to think about how often we are surrounded by bells, and subsequently how useful they could be for sound editors and musicians.

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Cinematic Trailers, New Library of BOOM Available for Pre-order (Save 25%)

Posted by on May 11, 2011 | 0 comments

BOOM Library has published details for their upcoming library called Cinematic Trailers, a huge collection of sources and designed sounds of whooshes, stingers, impacts, rises, and more, all of them delivered at 96kHz/24-Bit with Soundminer metadata.

As usual in BOOM, there are two packages available:

Construction Kit – Over 2000 WHOOSHES, STINGERS, IMPACTS, RISES and more, delivered as high quality source recordings. This collection is ideal for all kinds of headlines, titles, transitions, cuts and fadings. Any movement you can think of in your trailer, presentation, movie, or game – give it a boost with these sounds.

Designed Pack – 150+ “ready to use” sounds, pre-designed huge IMPACTS, WHOOSHES, TRANSITIONS and RISES. You want to get incredible sounding results but only have 30 minutes to go? You can do some real magic with this collection! Pull out some sounds – put them in your production and blow away your audience.

Cinematic Trailers is available for pre-order at BOOM Library with a 25% discount. The price is €119 for the construction kit and €79 for the Designed package.

Interview with Eric Lalicata & Dan Snow of Anarchy Post

Posted by on May 11, 2011 | 1 comment

Hollywood Shorts has published an interview with Eric Lalicata and Dan Snow, talking about relationship with filmmakers and work flow at Anarchy Post.

Eric Lalicata is an Emmy Award winning Supervising Sound Editor and Re-Recording Mixer specializing in sound supervision and sound mixing for television and feature films. Eric is the co-founder of Anarchy Post with Dan Snow, a veteran Post Operations executive with extensive film and music video production experience.

As co-owners of Anarchy Post, along with film producer Ryan Harper, they strive to help filmmakers avoid many of the pitfalls that can plague the post audio process. Anarchy Post just won the MPSE GOLDEN REEL AWARD and CINEMA AUDIO SOCIETY AWARD for their work on Sony’s 30 Days of Night: Dark Days. We asked Dan and Eric to share some of their insights on what filmmakers should know to ensure a great sound design and mix for their projects.

Continue reading…

Via @postaudiomixer

David Sonnenschein Special: Sound Spheres

Posted by on May 10, 2011 | 4 comments

David has offered up an excerpt of his article, “Sound Spheres: A Model of Psychoacoustic Space in Cinema,” to our little community. The full article appears in the Volume 1.1 of The New Soundtrack, available through Edinburgh University Press (an excellent journal that I highly recommend). David and I will be having a phone discussion on Friday about this new model of his, to be transcribed here on DS. So, if you have any questions or feedback about this article, make sure to leave a comment. I’ll do my best to include each one in our conversation.

Genesis of Sound Spheres

As a sound designer, musician and filmmaker, much of my creative work is based on personal experience in the world, based on my own senses. I have spent a great deal of time alone in the wilderness listening to unknown animal calls and finely sculpted natural soundscapes, as well as in foreign countries that offer unexpected sonic reflections of human culture. Through the simple act of listening and observing my own physical, mental and emotional reactions to the surrounding sounds, the stories of these places, people, creatures and events began to coalesce into a pattern. This pattern was drawn from the previous theoretical structures I had learned from studying and creating films (traditional models mentioned above), but extended beyond into this dynamic model that I now call Sound Spheres. (more…)

Peter Brown on Giving Hollywood Vehicles a Voice

Posted by on May 10, 2011 | 1 comment

The Car And Driver website has interviewed Peter Brown (from Soundelux – Fast Five, Fast & Furios, Spider-Man) while he recorded cars at the California City airport. It is an interesting article as it is connected less with the technicalities of recording cars but more about the usage and capture of such sounds in the context of a Hollywood film, while achieving the director’s vision.

California City is one of those places with no apparent reason for being. It’s stuck out in the middle of the Mojave Desert where it’s brutally hot in the summer and windstorms will sandblast the paint off your car any time of the year. Fewer than 15,000 people live here, and if they didn’t have jobs at Hyundai’s nearby proving ground, a lot of them would leave. But California City has an airport. And since that airport is never, ever busy, it’s the perfect place for Peter Brown to record car sounds.

Click here to read the complete article.

Chris Sweetman: Audio Director of “Brink”

Posted by on May 10, 2011 | 0 comments

GameSpot has published an interview with Chris Sweetman, the audio director of Splash Damage’s upcoming sci-fi game Brink. He talks about his career and his role as an audio director/sound designer.

Splash Damage’s upcoming futuristic shooter looks to stands apart from other shooters by focusing on parkour-style movement along with gunplay. The gunplay is what falls into audio director Chris Sweetman’s territory, a role where all things related to audio must come together and not sound like a garbled mess. In this e-mail Q&A, Chris shares how he got into sound design and the work that went into making all of Brink’s weapons sound unique.

Read the interview here.

The “Brink” developer diary also has a feature on the sound of the game. Sweetman explains his approach to the game’s design and also the use of multiple perspective samples, detailed Foley and a granular system for the gun sounds. Read it here.