Bespoke sound design team Slate + Ash have announced the commercial release of a new Native Instruments Kontakt based sound library called AURAS – specifically designed with MPE (MIDI polyphonic expression) devices in mind. We’ve been following the development of the MPE format closely over the last few years, and with affordable devices like the Roli Seaboard Block entering the market recently, the incredibly expressive control format has never been more accessible. AURAS is the first commercially available Kontakt sound library designed for MPE – no doubt it will be the first of many.
Here’s what Slate + Ash had to say on the philosophy behind AURAS –
The sound world of AURAS focuses primarily on abstract and impressionistic textures and rhythms. It is influenced by the styles of composers and artists who blur the boundaries between sound design, orchestration and music. John Luther Adams, Ben Frost, Ingram Marshall, Tim Hecker, Ian William Craig, Machinedrum and William Basinski were all reference points for a library that explores the manipulation of sound as if it were an energetic field or aura of sonic textures that constantly shift in shape and colour.
The ROLI Seaboard enables you to play with this concept due to its intuitive and expressive performance capabilities. Unlike the way a regular sample library gives a strictly defined and static snapshot of a sound, AURAS allows you to play with the shapes and forms of each sound in a dynamic and unique way.
A wide variety of sounds were recorded as material for the sound design, with an emphasis on capturing performance and movement rather than a vast array of multi-sampled notes. Strings, synths, winds, field recordings, percussion and more were used as source material that was processed using a number of techniques and effects to create a sonic landscape that ranges from soft and fragile to complete chaos.
Check out the inspiring 8min demo below. Further release info can be found via their website here. Additionally, if you’re one of the first 150 people to order AURAS, you’ll recieve a free 12″ compliation LP featuring artists like Kuedo, Michael Price and Veils using the AURAS library in songs.