Monday, April 8, 2019

REVIEW: FLOW by Triple Spiral Audio





Flow by Triple Spiral Audio is an instrument for Kontakt that focuses on Ambient sound and Motion.



Overview:

 The library contains 192 soundsources in the following categories: Ambiences, Motion, Pads, and Soundscapes





                      
There are 4 layers that contain separate controls for the ADSR, LFO, Volume, Pan, Filter and Filter Envelope.

There is also a random feature that can randomize all 4 soundsources




On the main control page you can control each of the following effects – Filter, Skreamer, Chorus, Flanger, Stereo Width and Rotary. You can then select multiple effects to be controlled at the same time. Each of the effects can be further adjusted on the FX page.





On the FX page you will find the settings for the Reverb, Delay, and more.



Flow contains a collection of 100+ presets Flow contains a collection of 100+ presets. Triple Spiral Audio states new snapshots will be added in future updates.

Flow requires the full Kontakt 5.8.1 version and does NOT work with the Kontakt Player and installation size is 1.1 GB



REVIEW


This is the 1st Kontakt instrument designed and released by sound designer and composer Jaap Visser of Triple Spiral Audio. To be clear, I was debating whether I should review Flow because I was offered the chance to do one of the demos for this instrument and didn't want to appear biased in any way. After thinking about it, I decided, I had to share my experience. First off, Triple Spiral Audio has never let me down with their products. Jaap is one of the hardest working sound designers out there and it shows. He continuously puts forth top quality releases and has impressed me with his attention to perfecting his art. Sound designing is an art and Triple Spiral Audio has been validated as a big player in this game.

So, what about Flow?

To be honest, in the early unreleased version of Flow I became concerned with some minor glitches that had occurred while I was working on my demo during the testing phase. However, I'm here to tell you, Triple Spiral Audio addressed the problems and released a product with none of these issues. I told myself, no matter how great it sounds, if any problems remain, my review must be honest, good or bad.

When I first saw the design of Flow, I was very excited to see there were 4 layers with their own controls (ADSR, LFO, Volume, Pan, Filter and Filter Envelope). You can load up any one of the 192 soundsources within any of the four layers which makes creating your own original sound extremely easy. There is also a centralized Random button where you can randomize any of the 4 layers. I remember buying a sample library a long time ago that only had 1 preset that focused on strictly randomization and that was it. I won't say what it was but let's just say it was an extremely frustrating library to find a sound I liked, and to this day it was never used in any of my productions. To be fair, randomization was fairly a new thing at that time. So, when you can randomize 4 layers and then pick whatever preset you might want to interchange, well, this opens thousands of possibilities.


Getting around the GUI is simple and easy. There is only one more page that can be accessed from the bottom where you can further adjust the effects. The big knob in the middle of the main page is where you can control the amount of multiple FX applied. As you turn the knob up, it gradually lights up blue to deep purple. You can also adjust the big control knob via the mod-wheel.

The CPU load was light and the preset load times were instant. Now depending on your setup, you may want to do a batch re-save within Kontakt but with my system it wasn't necessary. If you don't know how to do a batch re-save you can read the Flow PDF here where you are provided with detailed instructions. One of the most frustrating things I find that interrupts my creative workflow is when a preset takes seconds to load even after a batch re-save. This library kept me inspired and driven with its fast loading times. I put Flow through heavy testing, and it passed with flying colors. I also made a preset walk-through demonstration video that will show you exactly how fast and how efficient Flow is on my CPU. In the video, I used a laptop with only 8gb ram with a second gen i7 running windows 10. It does run a bit long at 1 hour and 20 min.

 

So, how does Flow Sound?

The presets in Flow are divided up into 4 categories: Ambiences, Motion, Pads, and Soundscapes. I found these presets have a great balance of mood and tone. The characteristics of the sonic environments are magnetic. Creating beautiful textures and deep atmospheres is not only simple but extremely quick. I own several atmospheric and ambient based libraries but for some reason I was never able to get the sound I wanted that easily compared to this library.

Flow contains complex layers, emotional landscapes and a sound design that is truly cosmic. Triple Spiral Audio hits another home run in 2019 and releases a Kontakt library that is extremely compelling. This will find a lot of use in my productions and I believe you will find it to be an essential part of yours. Flow is a perfect ambient scoring tool that will promptly inspire your musical writing process. 


5 Out of 5 Stars

















(Please note: below is the Demo I did called 'Transcendence' using only the instruments in Flow. There is nothing else added from any other libraries.







Written by 
Steve Montgomery 
(Infinite Mindscape
& Darkmood music)

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