By John Pellegrini
One of the greatest things about the digital revolution in the computer age is the incredible affordability of recording studio packages. Now anyone with the savvy and the musical ability can produce their own music. Yes, there are drawbacks to that statement, but the benefit is when you get people with true talent, the results can be highly rewarding.
For many years, make that decades, radio station producers have largely relied on the big name libraries to provide production music. The obvious reason was most radio stations couldn’t afford the expensive recording studio set up and the full time musicians and composers needed to put together a massive enough library that could encompass every requirement a station could have. For that reason also, most libraries were a one-size-fits-all conglomeration of music tracks that could fit every single format on the planet. Unfortunately, the drawback there is that if a producer wanted a certain sound for a specific format, you either lucked out and the library had it or you didn’t. Plus, if the library did have the sound you were looking for, there might only be a few tracks of that particular genre which would quickly lead to burnout. The libraries did what they could, but getting into format specifics is expensive, and not every station would be purchasing these offerings.
Enter the age of digital and personal computers. Now there can be specific production music created for specific formats and at an affordable price. Such is the case with REVOLT from the friendly gang at The Audio Farm. REVOLT is specifically geared for imaging high-energy dance formats including Hot AC, CHR, Rhythmic CHR, Alternative, and anything else that fits that niche. The library consists of over 400 cuts of Logos, Sounds, and beds on two CDs, and one handy CD-ROM, which allows for instant accessing of tracks in your DAW programs via .wav files.
Disc number one contains a huge variety of sounds including mixes of various lengths that are perfect transitional effects for putting inside promos, beds, or even music sets. There’s also a collection of bleeps; radio tuning distortion; manipulations which sound like tape rewinds and pink noise effects on steroids; impacts both short and long that can blow out anyone’s speakers; phone effects both standard and weirdly unconventional; cash effects that can really light up your VU meters; backwards effects to make you sit up and take notice; computer effects right out of SCI-FI; Electricity and other shocks; fuzz effects that would make Jimi Hendrix proud; Internet effects; Rewinds; Static; Vinyl scratches; and Voice effects that might remind you of Stephen Hawking’s voice box. 99 cuts in all with many offering multiple indexes. It’s a lot of audio for one disc. Of course, there’s more.
Disc number two has logos and beds of various categories including space, starters, heavy, lite, phone/cash, scanner, chatter, sustains, and beds. The Space category puts countdowns, radio transmissions, and sound effects over drone beds that will get anyone’s attention. Starters are countdown and beginning type logos that can be used to jump-start program elements, promos, or shows. Heavy is just what you’d expect, hard hitting ballsy logos that can blow out speakers at the right volume level. The group of cuts under the name “Lite” are logos that aren’t as massive as “Heavy” but are by no means fluffy either. They get attention very well. The Phone/Cash logos can make your contest beds shoot your listener’s eyes out. Scanners just plain kick ass—excellent stuff to drop in anywhere for ear candy. The “Chatter” tracks can make any segment where you put them come alive. Sustains are hard-hitting drones for impact moments in programming. And the twenty remaining beds that round out the collection must be heard to be believed.
Suffice to say this library will have you wanting to remix every promo and sounder you currently have on the air. Or you’ll likely be grabbing these discs first from now on when you go to find the right elements for any imaging project you’re contemplating. My main criteria for every review is whether or not the tracks make me instantly think of places where I can use them. REVOLT fits that bill quite efficiently and then some.
REVOLT is a buyout package, great for you independent producers as well as station-employed folk, and sells for $750.00. You get a good deal of stuff for your money. You can obtain information, or your very own copy of REVOLT at (919) 562-6090. They also have a handy website for those without long distance privileges at www.audio-farm.com. You can download demos and submit an order request off the website.