chemical beats
18 June 2010
chemical beats review

Percussive Adventures
Page 1/3
Produced by East/West
chemical beats
Audio 62.04/66.30
Tracks 99 each
2 x Audio CD



Percussive Adventures is a Double CD Audio/CD-ROM set from East/West the first we've looked at from this prolific American company for a little while. The advertising line on the release is " A rhythmic journey of scoring soundscapes delivering evolving rhythmic beds as layered construction tools which are 20-40 seconds in length ! 2 years in the making, the dynamic acoustic & sequenced grooves will astound you !... There is no doubt you'll be reaching for these CD's, plus the extended CD-ROM's to support all of your future projects for many years to come !"

We're reviewing the Audio version of the package, the CD-ROM version comes on no less than 4 CDs - 1 Audio of the full performance beds and 1 CD-ROM of the full performance beds converted into the various CD-ROM formats and 2 CD-ROMs of the elements which are programmed to give a variety of interactive tracks from all the performance layers.The CD-ROMS also include all the tracks found on the 2 CD Audio version, plus additional multi-layers looped in various tempos, one shot-percussive stings, FX and a variety of performance accents. In the UK anyway the CD ROM version is double the price of the Audio version. Though do checkout the Soundsonline website who are the official distributor of East/West CD's, they seem to have a permanent discounts off of this CD.

The CD has been produced by Christopher Page, and ably assisted by Kurt Wortman, Tony Humecke, Kim Edmundson & Jorge Patrono, none of which you may have heard off unless you pay attention to the credits on films. Between them they certainly have an impressive list of credits including Heart of Darkness, Dances with Wolves, Indecent Proposal, Conspiracy Theory and Mission Impossible. This isn't including some major league musicians too Bruce Springsteen, Bryan Ferry & Meticalla to name but a handful.

The CD is pitched at full price and a half, which for a double CD package isn't too bad. The first CD is the rhythms in full, meant mainly for audition and then the second CD contains the individual elements of the loops, either for sampling and reconstructing or just if you want an element or two from the overall sample structure.

Percussive Adventures Inlay Card

The documentation is excellent, you get a very nice 28 page booklet where not only do you get a complete track and sample listing, each with a name, description, duration (in seconds and various frames) and BPM, but also a couple of pages of introduction and biographies and photographs of the artists involved in the project.

One thing you'll also find in the package is a small postcard that needs to be returned to Audio Adventures (who I presume is the Producers Company). You need to register the CD with them before using it and then also give a non specific credit in any packaging that you might use that contains these samples. A step more restrictive than the normal licensing requirements, but I wouldn't have thought any problem for legitimate users.

The CD kicks off with a very well produced, if overlong, 5 minute spoken word & samples demo track, and concludes with another 2 minute demo of the sister CD "Symphonic Adventures". Does rather eat into the sample time, leaving around 55 minutes on the first CD, which is a little light by sample CD standards.

On to the sounds...

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