By John Pellegrini
Omega Productions has been around for 10 years, primarily focused as an imaging company for numerous radio and TV clients around the world. They offer voice-over, production, sweepers, commercial production, and sound effect and music libraries. Their services can be heard on major market stations in the USA, Canada, UK, and Greece. In the music and sound effects category, they offer six CDs (called libraries, here), with a large variety of sound effects, sweepers, stingers, promo beds and commercial beds. Because they’re a newer company they have the advantage of not having their music tracks burned out all over the American airwaves, which is appealing for those of you who are always looking for something that no one else is using. For this review, they sent copies of their two newest discs, Noise II, and Reaxion. Both are perfect for Alternative Rock, Rhythmic CHR, Hot AC, Hot CHR, Urban, Sports, or any dance format.
Noise II is just what the title implies; a huge collection of 88 sound effect stingers and sweeps, and 11 beds. One of the problems I’ve always had with similar collections is that the name of the track hardly ever describes what the track sounds like, and with upwards of 90 or more cuts, it gets rather tedious finding the right sound. Not so with Noise II. These tracks are named with exact descriptions of what they sound like. Tracks like “Stutter Static Sustain,” “Gun Digital Boom,” “Downward Laser,” and “Filter Scratch” give you exactly what you expect to hear. The promo beds from cut 88 to 99 would be great for contest staging, or could be mixed together in a variety of fashions. Hot music format Imaging Directors will find this disc to be very useful, although I noticed that some Classic Rockers and Newstalk stations are on the list of active users of this disc. If you’re looking for hot sounding effects for punching up music beds, or punching in between tracks, this is it.
Reaxion is filled with longer format music beds for promos and commercials. There are 61 separate music beds on this disc, and 25 sound effect cuts. Omega Productions is promoting this disc as their best collection of European Dance beds. Dance format stations could use this disc immediately, as well as CHR, AC, Hot AC, and even Smooth Jazz stations. Although many of the tracks are keyboard and drum dominated, I heard enough guitar and brass to keep the variety intact. In the case of cut 44, one of the lead instruments is a basketball court buzzer, which, to paraphrase Chauncey and Edgar, is something you don’t hear every day. All the music beds are about thirty seconds in length, but each sounds like they could easily be looped out longer. That’s one of the features that I prefer for libraries to have in these formats—plenty of looping possibilities. There’s enough of a melody to each cut to keep them interesting, but they’re repetitive enough that you could loop them out to whatever length you need, without any problem. Everything starts on the first beat of the count, which will make editing these tracks a dream. I have a couple of colleagues who work at Rhythmic CHRs who I know would have no difficulty working with these beds. Also, if you’re musically inclined, you’ll find that the tracks lend themselves to adding in vocal shots or extra lead tracks. Several cuts had me thinking of adding a vocal line or instrumental solo over them, for either jingle purposes, or custom music mixing. The 25 sound effects that round out Reaxion aren’t mixout sounds from previous beds (as some libraries have), but entirely new sounds that could be added to the beds on the disc, or used somewhere else. That’s a nice feature.
All the music beds are flawless in production, and the sound quality is first rate. Not a bad track in the entire lot. You’ll find yourself thinking of places where you could use each cut the moment you first hear them. Omega Productions offers all their libraries on a buyout basis—good news, especially for you independent producers out there. They have an excellent Website at www.omegaproductions.com where you can download demos and find out more about their voice-over and production services. Or you can call their Newark, Delaware offices at (302) 456-9898. Omega Productions does a lot of work in Europe, especially Greece, and you can even get demos in Greek. I don’t understand a word of Greek, but their production sounded excellent.