Today we will look at something that gets often overlooked at first: Mallets. For the longest time, my only association with them was the little Xylophone I had as a kid, but they are actually a very powerful and versatile group of instruments. There are some certain moods and sounds that are so specific, you could not get them any other way.
Lucky for us, that we don’t have to. Frank Ricotti and Spitfire Audio recently came out with Ricotti Mallets, a really mind-blowing mallet Kontakt sample library, including a Glockenspiel, a Marimba, Crotales (which a little like tiny tuned cymbals), and my old friend the Xylophone.
Spitfire Audio themselves say it’s an “encyclopedia of mallet instruments recorded with the greatest scrutiny in an environment that gives you a choice of sonic possibilities… “, and if you ask me, they are not lying!
The way this library sound is really what makes it outstanding. Spitfire is providing four super deep-sampled Instruments, with a ton of round robins, dynamic layers, beaters, bows, and articulations. Which sounds good but also very technical.
It basically goes to a level of sound quality where I feel I can hear the texture of the wood or metal and have to suppress the impulse to look around to see if that really just came out of my speakers, or if there is a secret Marimba player hiding in my room somewhere.
And Frank Ricotti is a living legend. He played music for so many big movies that you are bound to have seen at least 2-3, not to mention all his other projects. Having his hands for the recordings is what I suspect to be responsible for the soul that is audible in this library.
The Interface hasn’t seen much innovation. But this is one of the few rare cases where that is actually not a bad thing. Spitfire Audios interfaces change only slightly on the different recent libraries, adjusting to the specific capabilities, and that’s because what they have has been perfected over the years.
The simple, uncluttered, easy to get interface they have on almost all their products, offers all the depth you need, without making a big deal out of it. It’s one of the reasons I so regularly reach for Spitfires libraries when it has to be fast. Even picking up a new library from them I can bet I will know how to work it to at least 80%.
The missing 20% are usually something I look forward to discovering, as they almost always have subtle new details in each of their products.
- Price: £149
- 19467 Samples
- 35.6 GB Uncompressed .WAV
- 16.5 GB disk space required
- 33 GB disk space required during install
- Kontakt Full Required
Like I mentioned in the beginning. Mallets are something that is often underestimated, and they can be immensely powerful. Not just in cinematic pieces but in all kinds of music. It is fair to say that if you are purely focusing on producing Hardstyle or 16 Bit Chiptune, this is probably not a must-have. That being said, if you do want to use Mallets, this is what you should get. It’s a no-brainer.
The atmosphere and character these instruments have are unmatched by anything else I own, and I suspect the sound is definitely something that will be noticed and well received by future clients. This library is one of the secret gems that go unnoticed by the masses.