Review: Alchemy Electronic Bass

Two years ago Camel Audio released the synthesizer Alchemy, a great VST plugin with lots of synthesis possibilities. This knob dialers heaven features the standard virtual analogue waveforms like the triangle, square or sawtooth, but also sample import. Alchemy has great effects, a flexible modulation system which allows users to modulate almost every rotary knob found on the screen, and a remix pad for smoothly morphing between eight programmed sounds. The cpu usage of this synth is relatively low, a great achievement.

Alchemy’s Factory Library consists of 600 sounds including roughly 70 bass sounds. The bass sounds of the Factory Library sound great, but if you want more basses to choose from you might consider the package Electronic Bass. This sound library contains 150 bass sounds for Alchemy and the (simple) Alchemy Player. Eight sound designers have contributed to Electronic Bass, including the Dutchman André Ettema who also creates sounds for video games, TV commercials and musicians like Tom Holkenborg, alias Junkie XL.

After installing Electronic Bass you can find the 150 bass sounds in Alchemy’s preset manager. The bass sounds are elegantly categorized into Classic (40 ), Distorted (23), Layered (17), Sweep (17), Short (16), Wobble (14), Sub (8), Arps (8) and Loops (7). The categories allow users to find the desired bass sound more quickly. Maybe this sounds like a cliche, but the Factory Library lacks this these sub categories. There is not enough room for that in the preset manager. So in the Factory Library you may spend more time to find the sounds you want.

As shown in the categories mentioned above, Electronic Bass contains a lot of different bass sounds. From simple, supporting bass sounds to big juicy sounding or extremely loud screaming basses. The sound library has bass sounds which suit in every electronic production like breakbeat, drum and bass, dubstep, hard dance, trance and techno.

The 150 presets generally sound great. All presets use Alchemy’s remix pad, which allows smoothly morphing basses. This is great for live performances or finding new bass sounds. You can automate the movement of the cursor on the remix pad in your sequencer.

Every preset contains more sounds because of the usage of the remix pad. Sometimes you may find the bass sound you need by moving the remix pad’s cursor. Camel Audio mentions that you get eight different sounds with every preset. This is true, but these sounds are not always basses. The remix pad sometimes also controls filters cutting off lower frequencies. That’s nice for sweep effects but in this case the bass sound disappears of course.

Electronic Bass is a little bit pricey. Because of the €49 price tag the rating is lowered with one point. Electronic Bass is a great package with lots of nice, inspiring bass sounds for electronic music productions. Hint: don’t forget to play on the higher octaves on your MIDI keyboard while browsing the bass presets now and then. By playing the higher octaves you could stumble on that perfect lead sound for your music production.

Rating: [8/10].

For more information visit the Camel Audio website.


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