We have enjoyed the sound packs from the Particular team that we’ve had the pleasure of reviewing in the past and the Interstellar Textures sample collection is no exception. It is part of the ongoing Space Rangers series, which is quite good all the way around. The only complaint we really have about this set in particular is the way it is organized. Specifically, there are three folders that make up this sample pack and each one contains audio files recorded at a specific BPM (120, 124 and 127). But the naming of the files is what leaves us wanting a little more, as they are basically just numbered 1-57, 1-53 and 1-43 respectively.
Other than the naming scheme for the audio files, we found the Interstellar Textures collection to be an amazing set of sounds that is sure to please the most critical of sample connoisseurs. Each sample is crafted with passion using some serious gear and software combinations that result in incredibly rich textures and character, while delivering superior sonic quality consistently from one file to the next. Here’s a short list of some of the gear used in the creation process: Nord Lead A1R, SCOPE modular 4, Oberheim OBMX, Origin, Moog Slim Phatty, Virus TI2, Genoqs Nemo sequencer, Future Retro Zillion sequencer, SSL X-Rack system, API 2500, Neve Portico 542, Elysia Xpressor and Nvelope, Kush Clariphonic, and a whole armada of exotic VST effect plugins.
One thing that really stood out to us while working with these sounds is the length/duration of each sample. There is so much audio to work with in this collection of samples that there is really no limit to what you can do with them. We had a ton of fun stretching them out to ridiculous lengths to make drone layers. We chopped up and mangled them in many ways to create new one-shot samples that can be used in percussive kits. And we plan on continuing to play with the sounds found in the Interstellar Textures set for the foreseeable future. Below is a short demo track that we produced for this review. A total of 18 samples were used. A couple of the samples have been stretched or transposed for variation. We did use a touch of reverb and subtle panning to create a little more separation in the mix, but the rest of our process involved no further processing of any kind. We do not use or apply any mixing other than volume fades and the track is left unmastered. We do this to ensure that you are hearing a fair and honest representation of the sounds as you can expect to hear them when you use them yourself. We split the demo into two main parts, free-form and rhythmic. The only sound use in this track that was not part of the Interstellar Textures collection is the kick drum, heard in the second movement.
All-in-all the Interstellar Textures sample pack is a definite win for anyone who grabs it! We believe it is best to embrace and enhance the techniques and gear used in the creation process of these sounds and therefore recommend using a classic optical circuit type in your compressors. You may also want to experiment a bit with both serial and parallel reverb processing, as well as nested reverbs, as these samples have quite a bit of depth to them. Each of the audio files has been expertly processed, but be aware that many of the sounds have both high and low frequency presence that you may want to wrangle in a bit to reduce unnecessary decibel loads and stave off frequency competition when layering.
The samples in the Interstellar Textures collection from Particular were designed with layering in mind. You should feel encouraged to mix and match these samples freely and without hesitation to discover new variations, unlock call-and-responce rhythmic elements and find both complimentary and clashing combinations to enhance the mood of your projects. Although many of these samples do just fine when dropped directly into an arrangement, try using a sampler to manage your pitch and ensure a perfect fit every time you introduce a new one in your music.
We whole-heartedly recommend the Interstellar Textures sample collection for anyone looking to add depth, character and atmosphere to their projects. It’s perfect for both music production as well as cinematic and gaming work. Every sound we tested stood up to all types of processing and maintained overall quality even when heavy modulation and mangling techniques were applied.