Riot Audio has released PUTTY PIANO, a new prepared piano instrument for Kontakt, sampled from an upright piano dampened with poster putty – in the UK often simply referred to as “Blutack”. They say that the sample library was created as a fresh take on a timeless classic and is targeted at score composers and producers who are looking for a different sonic approach to a universally-loved instrument. Here’s the details in their own words…
PUTTY PIANO is based on 0.95 GB of meticulously sampled recordings of a 1950s British upright piano (Bentley) dampened with a strip of poster putty (Blutack). The library contains three round robins and three dynamic layers (p, mf, f) for each note which are dynamically cross-faded using Kontakt’s AET Filter Technology. The piano was recorded at close range using a spaced pair stereo microphone technique.
PUTTY PIANO has two layers of mechanical noise from the piano: the sound of the hammers falling back onto the felt after release, as well as the sound of the sustain pedal being depressed and released. The library also contains a layer of human noise – player-generated rustles, swooshes and breaths as well as the sound of pages turning. This layer is added to allow the user to add realism to their sound by simulating a real pianist in a recording session.
In addition, PUTTY PIANO comes with a special “Body” layer, a blend between a sine wave and a recording of Ebow-generated notes from the same piano. This “Body” layer is designed to allow the user to add longer sustain and more resonance in the mid/low-mid frequency range to the basic dampened sound which by itself is more dry and percussive.
PUTTY PIANO is a simple one-page instrument with a clean, easy to grasp user interface. It allows for control of the following parameters:
• Levels for the noise layers
• Body layer level
• Decay shape and brightness controls
• An effects section: delay and reverb with adjustable times and lengths respectively
The sound of PUTTY PIANO is a unique alternative to more traditional piano sample libraries. Its short decay and peculiar muted resonance opens up new possibilities of sonic exploration and expression in place of a regular piano sound. It can be made to sound almost like a dry mallet instrument such as marimba or xylophone and the opportunities for inventive applications are numerous.
It can also be used in place of a regular piano where the short decay and soft, rubbery resonance is a welcome departure from the usual sound.
PUTTY PIANO at a glance
Pricing and Availability:
£59 for a limited period until July 10th, then for £79