Main Forums >> News
        Print Thread

Pages: 1

Joined: 20/01/05
Posts: 5582
Loc: Cowbridge, South Wales
Hollow Sun 'Sounds Of The Universe' (SOTU) now available...
      #1034224 - 20/02/13 05:46 AM
We are pleased to announce the release of SOTU ... or 'sounds of the universe'.

As you may know, NASA and other international space agencies have been recording radio, light, gamma, gravitational and other waves in the universe for several decades which they have converted into audio so that we mere earthlings can hear the 'sounds of the universe'. And it's beguiling and intriguing stuff - the sort of thing you might expect on an album of abstract electronica or a 'new age' or 'chill out' album. Rich and dense soundscapes of evolving textures that are quite startling to hear.

I contacted NASA some time ago with a view to licensing some of these sounds but they weren't interested so I decided to recreate them here myself. By carefully analysing the sounds, I used the modular system here at HS Towers to produce them.

Each sound typically comprises a low frequency element, mid range content and then higher frequency blips and bleeps and these phase and swirl, chatter and crackle and warble. Those elements were created on the Dotcom with pink and low frequency noise and rumbles, noise modulated voltage controlled oscillators and filters through ring modulators the Q130 Clipper/Rectifier, through the DotCom Q127 Fixed Filter Bank, Q107 bandpass and notch reject filters, the Q150 Moog Ladder Filter and the wonderfully characteristic and very non-linear Suit&Tie Guy VCS3 clone 'Sea Devil' 18dB/8ve lowpass filter/resonator with all its quirks and distortions and with me 'playing' the panel in real-time as the samples were recorded. These elements (many as long as three minutes) were then further manipulated in DSP-Quattro and then multi-tracked to form what I call 'composites' - rich and dense and constantly evolving and blended into organic textures.

But I thought it would be handy for you good people to be able to mix and match various elements so other samples were created - blips and bleeps and bloops, wind sounds, ring mod drones, crackling static noises and so on and using an advanced 'serendipity' button, we made SOTU so that you can generate the sounds of the universe with a single mouse click. But we made it (well, Mario, the resident scriptmeister here at HS Towers made it) so that the random selection is quite intelligent. There are four elements or layers and the 'Mandaloria Scope' centre screen selects one of each...

We added some filters for controlling overall tone, an ADSR for shaping the sound, a stereo width expander, some FM (to reproduce chatter/bad reception) and a comprehensive chain of multi effects of chorus, flange or phaser into convolution reverb with custom sound designed impulses and then - unusually - into echo. This was a trick used by Japanese synth master and the undisputed king of 'space music', Isao Tomita, to create a dense wash of sound that could have come from some massive celestial cathedral on a planet in a distant galaxy.

But we also thought that you'd like some control over the four layers so we bolted on an edit panel...

Not only does this give control of level, pan and tuning but each channel also has simple low and high pass filters and an amplitude LFO to create evolving crossfades.


This is not an instrument for funky basslines, searing leadlines, smooth pads or the usual fodder - it is a 'texture synthesiser' for creating rich and dense soundscapes ('spacescapes'). That's not to say that it is exclusively reserved for lentil eating and be-sandalled weird beards making odd music - it could be just the ticket (even a 'must have') for film and TV soundtrack work as well as other musical genres.

SOTU is available now for a trifling fifteen of her majesty's pounds.


This WILL work with the free Kontakt player but it will only play in 'Demo Mode' and will time out after 15 minutes or so. The full version of Kontakt 4.2.4 or higher is required/recommended. Please be aware of this before ordering.

Website / Music Lab Machines / Blog

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator     Back to top
Pages: 1

Rate this thread

Jump to

Extra Information
0 registered and 1 anonymous users are browsing this forum.

Moderator:  David Etheridge, James Perrett, zenguitar, Martin Walker, Hugh Robjohns, Zukan, Frank Eleveld, SOS News Editor 
Forum Permissions
      You cannot start new topics
      You cannot reply to topics
      HTML is enabled
      UBBCode is enabled
Thread views: 1139

February 2015
On sale now at main newsagents and bookstores (or buy direct from the
SOS Web Shop)
SOS current Print Magazine: click here for FULL Contents list
Click image for February 2015
DAW Tips from SOS


Home | Search | News | Current Issue | Tablet Mag | Articles | Forum | Blog | Subscribe | Shop | Readers Ads

Advertise | Information | Privacy Policy | Support | Login Help


Email: Contact SOS

Telephone: +44 (0)1954 789888

Fax: +44 (0)1954 789895

Registered Office: Media House, Trafalgar Way, Bar Hill, Cambridge, CB23 8SQ, United Kingdom.

Sound On Sound Ltd is registered in England and Wales.

Company number: 3015516 VAT number: GB 638 5307 26


All contents copyright © SOS Publications Group and/or its licensors, 1985-2015. All rights reserved.
The contents of this article are subject to worldwide copyright protection and reproduction in whole or part, whether mechanical or electronic, is expressly forbidden without the prior written consent of the Publishers. Great care has been taken to ensure accuracy in the preparation of this article but neither Sound On Sound Limited nor the publishers can be held responsible for its contents. The views expressed are those of the contributors and not necessarily those of the publishers.

Web site designed & maintained by PB Associates | SOS | Relative Media