Saturday, May 10, 2014

Review Revival Giveaway - True Pianos

Exclusive Reviewer's Revival Giveaway Offer!

WOW! 4Front has blessed Reviewer's Revival with (2) licenses of True Pianos to be given away for FREE!

1 FREE license to be given away for every 150 Eligible Entries!

Click HERE to Visit the True Pianos home page.


1. Sign up for the FREE Reviewer's Revival NewsFlash. (Mandatory)

2. "Like" Reviewer's Revival on Facebook (Not mandatory, but much appreciated.) This can also double your chances of winning.


Monday, April 21, 2014

Review Revival Giveaway - Win a Copy of Acon Digital's Verberate!

Exclusive Reviewer's Revival Giveaway Offer!

Have you heard this fabulous, new release from Acon Digital yet? Verberate is a professional-grade, full-featured algorithmic reverb plug-in that has been impressing music producers everywhere! Subscribe to our mailing list for a chance to win one of (3) licenses to be given away FREE!


Friday, April 18, 2014

SonicCouture EP73 Deconstructed Review – Uncontested King of Rhodes Samples?

Uncontested . . . strong word; don’t you think? One would have to make sure that the claim could be substantiated or one would be considered brazen, or ill-informed, or rash, or gullible, or just plain stupid. I honestly hope that you don’t think that dear ol’ Brother Charles fits into any of those categories. *Smile.

SonicCouture have not simply raised the bar; they may even have ‘become’ the bar, as regards Rhodes MKI sample libraries. Man, this library rockZ. I mean it . . . this library abso-freakin-lutely RockZ! The depth and detail of SonicCouture’s sampling process is immense.

The level of realism is tremendous. The release noises, the pedal noises, the triple-layered Round Robin sampling, the attention to sonic detail, the inclusion of close and contact mic’d acoustic/mechanical sounds all contribute to making this perhaps THE MOST unique and authentic-sounding virtual Rhodes to date.

SonicCouture occasionally offer sales, but the Listed Retail Price of $129 is very fair in ratio to the sound quality. I have to be careful that I don’t brag this sample library up too much; we don’t want them raising the price . . . *Grin
Continue reading the full review here:

Thursday, July 11, 2013

ToonTrack EZkeys Essential Pianos Review – The Song Writer’s Piano Friends

I was more than a little ‘jazzed’ when I first heard that Sampling giants, ToonTrack, were adding pianos/keyboards to their industry-leading product line-up. I had already been a more-than-satisfied ToonTrack customer for a couple of years. I rely on various “EZdrummer” modules as my drum sample/construction software of choice. As soon as I’d heard the early release news about the original, ground-breaking “EZkeys Grand” Piano sample library/sequencer, I anticipated that song writers and home producers would be elated with the news. I don’t mean to come across as pretentious, but my assumption was absolutely correct.

The initial release of “EZkeys Grand” created no small ripple in the sampling pool. Not only did “EZkeys Grand” hold up extremely well against its large, multi-gig competitors sound-wise, but it gave something to non-keyboardists that no other competing piano sample library could – built-in midi phrases and song construction tools. ToonTrack serves up first-rate piano sounds, assorted musical styles, transposition, drag n’ drop song construction and an attractive, photo-realistic GUI. The EZkeys line-up will empower novice song-writers and non-keyboardists with professional-grade piano compositional parts, while providing professionals a means of creatively fast-tracking song ideas; quickly and easily.

This review will be an exhaustive inspection of the cross-platform “EZkeys Essential Pianos” collection. This wonderful suite of pianos is comprised of: EZkeys Grand, an impeccably sampled Steinway “Model D”; EZkeys Classic Keyboards, a totally vibe’n set of Wurlitzer “A200” and Rhodes “Mark I” electric pianos; and EZkeys Upright, a harmonically-pleasant, old-time, upright piano. Any one of these packages retails for €139/$179 by itself, with any additional EZkeys library available for only €69/$89. As a bundle, the EZkeys Essential Pianos suite rings in at €249/$325. Just for grins n’ giggles we’ll also get introduced to a truckload of EZkeys midi libraries in the styles of: R&B, Gospel, Jazz, Country, Blues, and Pop.


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SPL DeEsser Review – DeEssser SsuperSstar

Arghhh! The blessed vocal track is just about perfect. The tracking went well, the latest take is free of “pitchiness”, mic placement and EQ are bang on. You apply tasty compression by dialling up your favourite ’76 and 2A just right. That sweet vocal EQ couldn’t be better.

Then your ears are no longer being romanced – they’re raped by one of the recording vocalist’s most lethal foes – sibilance.

. Nasty, in-your-face, brash, piercing SSSsibilance. You try the well regarded VST’s from yesteryear, you try EQing, you try a couple of current payware DeEssing offerings, but then the vocal ‘air’ is lost and the vocal track is very ‘flat’. . . . and at last, you find yourself carefully editing by hand in Wavelab, Sound Forge or Acoustica Premium.

It isn't any fun – editing out plosives and/or sibilance “by hand”. It’s time consuming and can result in audible editing clicks when the resultant editing is processed within your DAW. Sibilance has been the bane of many an engineer’s existence. Actually, nasty, piercing SSSs just plain suck!

Wouldn't it be just wonderful if there were a way to easily remedy sibilance with just one or two knobs, and keep the quality of a vocal track intact?

Guess what!? There is . . .

The $199 SPL DeEsser Collection plug-in can be properly reviewed with one, simple word. “Amazing.” If I were to end this review right now, without typing another letter on the page, the review could be considered complete. This set of powerful, specialized plug-ins is nothing short of amazing. Nevertheless, it’s no fun to be a professional writer and not actually . . . write. *Smile. Stay with me, I promise, I won’t keep you long, but I really am very excited to share my experience and findings about the SPL DeEssers Collection with you. *Quick Note: Until July 15th, 2013, this plug-in is on sale for only $149.

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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Email Subscriptions Now Offered. Coupon Codes, Giveaways, and "Hot Off The Press" Notifications

Yes, that's right. Reviewer's Revival is now one year old and I have some great news to share with you.

Not only are a lot of the RR readers liking the web site and the reviews, but some of the devs are showing a lot of appreciation to RR readers. Every once in a while, Reviewer's Revival will be offering EXCLUSIVE Coupon Codes, Giveaways, and of course personal notifications when new articles are published. I've been hearing from some of the readers, and they are totally down with this cool, new idea. And yes, EXCLUSIVE means that these will be Giveaways and Coupons that are exclusive to Reviewer's Revival subscribers - these will not be "public" offers.

Sign up today and stay in the loop. No SPAM! NO trading or selling email lists. NO JUNK! Only notifications of the latest REVIEWS, and exclusive COUPON-CODES and occasional Giveaways. If you're interested, pop over to Reviewer's Revival and subscribe on the "Reviewer's Blog" page.

Just wanted to let ya'll know . . .

Thanks & God Bless,
Bro. Charles


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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

EmberTone Shire Whistle Review – Aye, Lad, Tis A Sweet Song!

Of Scottish ancestry, I grew up naught but 100 yards from the Atlantic shoreline in Englishtown, Cape Breton. The plaintive sounds of Celtic instruments always bring a wistful sigh upon me heart and beckons myself home; Embertone’s “Shire Whistle” is just such an instrument. With only a pair of Sennheiser headphones, it fairly addles me into fancying that the scent of salt brine is wafting on the evening air while distant, haunted, echoing cries of Atlantic Gulls are heard off the point, beyond the lighthouse.

The greenery of mountain spruce and tender, meadow moss lie to the south. Amidst the hum of busy bumble-bees, flittering sparrows melodiously call to one another with one happy tune after another. What’s that to be heard just over the crest? Yes, indeed, tis “Shire McGuire” expressing thanks and merriment for yet another day of blessing and growth upon his beloved garden and vale. His wizened fingers dance over the holes of his fondest keepsake; his father’s Irish whistle.

EmberTone captured the essence and charm of this poetic instrument and have lovingly wrapped it for us as a Kontakt sample-set. This blessed little gift may be had for only a wee bit of coin from a trader’s sporran. Tis no more than $20 middle earth dollars.


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

XILS-Lab PolyKB II Review – Get Your Analogue On

PolyKB, Diva, SynthMaster, Dune, Predator, Tone2 Saurus, ZT3A+; what do these all have in common? They are each industry-leading soft synths, that’s what. Most of these are not “dedicated” emulations of famous synths from yesteryear – albeit, each of these may certainly be considered a “new” classic. That’s not to say that products such as Dune, Synthmaster, Predator, and etcetera, aren’t extremely well suited to modern dance and electronica.

I would never be so bold as to try determining that any one of them is “The Best” because they are all very good. Of course, it’s generally understood that many synth players typically have a personal favourite or two; one of my absolute personal favourites just so happens to be the PolyKB II. And, this synth just so happens to be an emulation, but it’s not the standard fare – not by a long shot.

Are you one of those who like to visit a developer’s web site and keep “checking out” a favourite plug-in or VSTi? It’s ok to admit it; you’re among friends. *Wry, knowing grin. Long before I actually had PolyKB II in my possession, I would visit the XILS-Lab web site and listen to the remarkable audio samples of this fantabulous synth in action. It has a “vibe”, a sound, a character that is uniquely its own. It’s deep, lush, ‘alive’ and decidedly analogue-sounding. I am excited and more than a little bit happy to bring my review of the astounding PolyKB II to my friends and visitors here on Reviewer’s Revival.

I’m glad you dropped in. Grab a snack and a fresh cup of joe. Please settle in for one more peering investigation of yet another “must have” VA synth. We’ll do ‘er up in good ol’ Reviewer’s Revival style.


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