With an extensive kung fu movie collection between us it was probably only a matter of time before we paid homage in the best way we know how. "How might that be?" you may ask. By creating a treasure trove of sounds and samples in their honour of course.
Theres something about those vintage kung fu flicks that inspires what we do. Those movies encapsulate a vibe of knowledge and spirit and from a musical stand point are still very interesting to listen to. From the fight sequences to the dialogue to the use of instruments, early synthesisers and percussive sounds there is really no end to the inspiration. With this in mind we created our new Percussion sample pack 'White Lotus Percussion'.
When we thought about ideas for this sound library we agreed we wanted to capture that vintage vibe from the movies that have brought us so much entertainment over the years. After some digging, lots of listening and revisiting countless DVD’s and VHS’s, we decided to focus on the percussion sounds for this one. In many ways the use of percussion through out these movies was such a prominent thing. They would be used to inform the audience of plot lines, of peoples characters, to change the mood, control the pacing of the action, even at times representing both life and death and all that lies in between. In many cases its the percussion and sound FX that play a big part in giving these films their distinctive sound.
We spent a lot of time digging for sounds in the early stages. We set about recording chimes, singing bowls and various other percussion instruments we have at our disposal and sampled an enormous amount of open sounds. We visited a Japanese garden in London to record some of the SFX and ambience there. All our location sounds were recorded on our Marantz PMD43O Portable Cassette Recorder. We did this to mirror some of the early techniques used at the time in making some of the vintage classics we hoped to emulate. Back then the likes of the Shaw Brothers used hand held tape recorders to capture their foley and sound effects before cutting their mix to 1/4” tape. Our Marantz PMD43O was perfect for this thanks to its DBX setting meaning you can push the recording signal into the red and get this nice full compressed sound.
The reason cassette tape has a definite sound to it is because there is a natural compression / saturation that tape has and there is always some bleed over from one channel to another, perfect in this case to bring some extra vintage flavour to our sounds. Once we had a grabbed all our source material we set about layering and sculpting sounds individually, filtering out what we did didn't want. To give the samples a boost and some shine we ran them thru our SSL compressor into our Ensoniq ASR-10 sampler. Finally we processed each sample inside of Pro Tools with some EQ, FX and Transient shaping. The overall sound of this kit is in keeping with the 70’s kung fu flicks that helped inspire its creation, full of one-shot percussion and FX samples with a healthy dose of vintage character.
Just like all our kits at Wavediggerz we wanted to bring our users a vibe that can be tapped into during the creative process whatever the type of music you create. You may be thinking where do these fit in todays music standards? Well the truth is there are no rules in the way these sounds can be used and they will fit in and add flavour to any type of beat you can imagine or even the next soundtrack of your own. White Lotus Percussion delivers over 100, seventies, kung fu inspired cinematic percussion sounds for you to dig thru. How you use them is up to you. You can find out more info and listen to the demos here.