Two new ambience libraries are on the way.
and TONSTURM Mountain Air:
Rabbit Ears Audio has an Animal Bells Library on the way, “for sheep, goats, cows, elephants, or sound designers”.
Chuck Russom FX has released Drones sound library, featuring 26 stereo drones, each is one minute in length. Delivered at 24-bit/96kHz. WAV.
Arrowhead Audio has released Swishes library, including 332 samples at 24-bit/96kHz. WAV.
On vacation in Los Angeles, Walter, the world’s biggest Muppet fan, and his friends Gary (Segel) and Mary (Amy Adams) from Smalltown, USA, discover the nefarious plan of oilman Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) to raze the Muppet Theater and drill for the oil recently discovered beneath the Muppets’ former stomping grounds.
To stage The Greatest Muppet Telethon Ever and raise the $10 million needed to save the theater, Walter, Mary and Gary help Kermit reunite the Muppets, who have all gone their separate ways: Fozzie now performs with a Reno casino house band called the Moopets, Miss Piggy is a plus-size fashion editor at Vogue Paris, Animal is in a Santa Barbara clinic for anger management, and Gonzo is a high-powered plumbing magnate.
In this SoundWorks Collection exclusive we talk with Director James Bobin, Film Editor James Thomas, Supervising Sound Editors Kami Asgar and Sean McCormack, and Sound Re-recording Mixer Kevin O’Connell.
Locate a theater to experience Muppets in Dolby Surround 7.1 at www.dolby.com
[Written by Harry Cohen]
I wanted to write a different kind of article, one that indulges my more geeky-tech side. While the main source for material remains great recordings, there are lots of times when we find solutions to problems in processing; these days that mainly means plug-ins, but that was not always so.
Sometimes, looking back, I see creative sound design moments as being more like a place you might visit, as opposed to a method you might use over and over. Time has shown me that the tools will constantly change around me. My main editing platform has changed three times during the course of my career. And so, some great tools become obsolete or unavailable. For this reason, I always encourage designers, when they find their way to an interesting combination of source/processing, to keep going and record lots of material; the next occasion you may want to repeat the process might not be so easy to get back to ! Some examples from my past follow:
This was a great, if somewhat hard to master, plug-in. It did lots of stuff, eq-wise. One of its tricks was to be able to analyze the frequency profile of one sound, and then to impose it on another. I used it in the film “Wanted” to make some design-ey glass breaks in the convenience store scene by imposing the frequency spectrum of glass windchimes on some explosions:
The Ionizer was so widely cracked that its makers decided not to carry it forward to OS-X; so it has become inconvenient to use, to say the least.
While the NI vocoder Vokator still works, I notice that NI no longer sells or supports it, so it is only a matter of time before it too, becomes unavailable. I have had great luck in using it for creatures. In short, I like to put a series of animal sounds on a software sampler, under different keys, put some under midi fader or foot pedal controller, feed that into Vokator as the carrier, with a mic as the modulator. Set up so you are listening on headphones to your output only, and using lots of gestural control on the faders and pitch wheel, while making ridiculous sounds and screaming into the mic, start to work your way towards interesting sounds. Record your output so that you only have to get it right once, for any given moment ! Record lots of stuff, go through it and pick out the good bits, then edit it together as you would for any creature.
Ah, the synclav. While I have so much to say about how the interface on this wonderful machine shaped the outlook of so many sound designers, for now I will mention only one detail. There was a button combination that would allow you to use the big wheel control to change the octave ratio of the keyboard tuning. This meant that on each side of a breakpoint, as you turned the dial, the sound would pitch up to the right of the breakpoint, and pitch down to the left, by as much as hundreds of semi-tones. It was useful for making some sci-fi type turbine sounds; like this Minbari engine made for the tv series Babylon-Five.
It’s great when you come across someone who is open enough to post a step-by-step brain dump of their sound design process, and especially welcomed when the audio comes married to video pulled directly from a game you can all run off and play.
After digging through his spell book of secrets, it’s clear that Glenn Goa (@SoundWizard) has got the sound design bug and a deep urge to educate the masses. Since July of this year he’s been breaking down each of the featured characters sound sets by: attack, ability, and death sounds. Through each post he brings you into his design process by detailing decisions and sharing his experiences along the way.
An example from the Geomancer:
I was quite puzzled on how I was going to make a loopable sound out of sand that didn’t sound like it was doing damage but loud enough. I found a bizarre solution by simply using various sounds of wind gusts picking up sand, and making it loop with a generated signal sound called a Brownian Noise.
Or this one with the Drunken Master:
For the geysers, I used recordings of a water hose being squeezed tightly to get a harsher sound.
I added that with the sound of waterfalls and buckets throwing water onto the ground.
I basically had to become 12 years old again and do the things my parents told me to stop doing, in other words, I got paid for making a mess.
In your face, parents!
Definitely drop by and read up on some of the cool things he’s doing with sound in the game, then head over and give Heroes of Newerth a spin!
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