Sinister, creepy, and suspenseful sounds!
Today I will have a look at Volume 2 of AUDIO IMPERIA‘s debut product, “Dystopian Dreams – Dark Moon Rising” – a cinematic Kontakt library produced by Histibe.
With the second release in this series, they went even darker. Its character is sinister, creepy, and suspenseful. With sounds that will make your skin crawl and the shadows look darker. Just like the first volume, it was produced by well-known sound designer “Histibe”, and provides a wide variety of high-quality horror and thriller sound effects, with a very electronic/mechanic note to them.
Using Jeremiah Pena’s open-source Photosynthesis engine gives “Dystopian Dreams” all the controls a composer could ask for. Sound shaping with filters, effects, a step sequencer, a filter sequencer, and four LFO’s. The interface has so many options and knobs that I almost felt overwhelmed when I loaded the first patch. But the good “out of the box sounds”, combat the risk of losing yourself in the maze of buttons very well.
How it works
When first opening up this library, it’s not instantly obvious how you really utilize its capabilities best. Loading a preset patch and pressing a key to making sound, is of course as intuitive as it is with any other library. But there’s a lot of hidden deeper features, that make this library interesting, and they are sadly not as intuitive to find as I wish them to be. This goes especially for new users, who haven’t seen hundreds and hundreds of different libraries yet.
At first, it’s easy to have the impression, there are just a few sounds per patch, and a lot of the knobs don’t really do much. This is only the case though until you discover that the red-colored keys are key switches that turn different effects on and off. And a lot of the seemingly nonfunctional knobs, actually control these effects. Properly utilized, this mechanic, even if not obvious, is definitely powerful and provides a lot of resources for creative sound manipulation.
Sufficient documentation/instructions on how to best use this library sadly aren’t integrated with the patches. I couldn’t find a respective tutorial video on their website either. There is a documentation file, within the library folder, but this doesn’t provide sufficient explanation to the functionalities either. This might be the only negative aspect of this library, and for any well-versed producer, wouldn’t provide a big hindrance. But I can see newcomers struggling with this, and hope this will be fixed in the future.
Included patch categories:
- Clock FX (Individual FX & Loops)
- FX Markers
- Designed Hit Rips
- Designed Hits
- Power Downs
- Pulsating Atmospheres
- Spiccato Synths
The Braaams, Clock FX, Spiccato Synths, Pulsating Atmospheres, FX Markers, Powerdowns, and Hits are all exciting and full of useful, very fashionable samples. It’s hard not to recall the “blockbuster-franchise-robot-car” films, but in a much darker and creepy version, when playing through the futuristic patches. They pack every bit of bite, digital twisting, and sinister darkness you could wish for.
That being said, after looking through every patch and playing around with it, I can’t help but think “and where is the rest”. And by that, I don’t mean to say that what this library provides isn’t sufficient. I mean to say that looking through it makes me want more, and I can’t make up my mind if that’s a positive or negative trait of this library.
Something to keep in mind is that it’s clear that this library is intended for scoring and sound effects mostly. I can certainly imagine some of the content will also provide value to songwriters. Especially in electronic music. But if you’re thinking about getting this library, make sure you listen to the sound examples. The sound quality is great, but the characters are very specific. So make sure that it will add to the character of your work, instead of breaking it.
“Dystopian Dreams – Dark Moon Rising” provides great value, at a fairly low price point. The sounds are high-quality while also being a very specific genre, and very distinctive. I would recommend using this library if it fits your project, and I would also recommend not overusing it. As with this type of sound, often less is more. Still, it is something that shouldn’t be missing from the arsenal of the media composer.
- High definition 96kHz / 24bit .WAV files
- 106 sounds + 15 synths (another 975+ files) / 1.9 GB
- Custom Kontakt Patches, using powerful open-source engine Photosynthesis
- Price: $ 59.00
Dystopian Dreams Vol.2 Kontakt library does require the full version of Kontakt 184.108.40.2061 or higher (the patches will not run in the free Kontakt Player).