Heavyocity’s commando percussion team return to the sound stage tooled up and looking for something to break.
Crash! Bang! BOOM! And furthermore, Gzzzt! Such ear‑splitting noises abound in Damage 2, the latest destructive juggernaut in Heavocity’s pulverising percussive range. The all‑new library was recorded at Skywalker Sound, scoring stage of George Lucas’ $100 million Skywalker Ranch complex. Such was the lure of recording in this hallowed environment that Heavocity’s creative team upped sticks and travelled 3000 miles from New York to California to work on the project they proudly refer to as their new ‘cinematic beast’.
Damage 2 (hitherto referred to as D2) contains a large collection of orchestral, rock and ethnic drums (including taikos), cymbals and gongs, played solo and in ensembles of up to eight players, and an array of junkyard and found sounds. These organic sources are supplemented by an extensive loop collection and a huge menu of processed hits, impacts and sound design elements, with a strong emphasis on the sonic destruction Heavyocity are famous for. The library (22.6GB installed) runs on Kontakt and Kontakt Player 6.2.2 or later.
Work on the original Damage library began in 2010, making this release a 10‑year anniversary. Was it worth the wait? Come with me into the depths of this large percussion collection and we’ll endeavour to find out. Don’t forget your ear protectors.
D2’s 41,395 samples are presented in three types of Kontakt instrument, each crammed with features and ‘snapshot’ presets designed to get you started on your rhythmic odyssey. The Ensemble Designer NKI contains 732 multi‑dynamic sound sources which you can use to create playable setups of up to 36 ensemble or solo sounds. Alternatively, you can load premade banks of 12 sources into three designated one‑octave keyboard zones. If you’re looking for instant rhythmic action, Loop Designer provides 864 tempo‑sync’ed loops divided into straight and triplet‑based rhythms, while Kit Designer gives a nod to Maschine and MPC‑type controllers by laying out the samples on 16 pads using a General MIDI mapping.
An excellent new MIDI Performance Tool allows the creation of real‑time, customisable crescendos, swells, flams, rolls and repetitions of different lengths which add expression and realism to the straight hits. In addition, the Loop Designer’s stutter keys trigger instant slice‑stuttering in a choice of eighth, 16th, 32nd and 64th notes — when you release the key, the loop resumes playback without losing sync. A great idea which takes the labour out of stutter edits.
Distortion lovers will be pleased to see the big ‘Punish’ knob unleashed in the original Damage library still occupies pride of place, this time with even scarier graphics and three levels of aural devastation. As the gentleman in the walkthrough video warns, “However much destruction you want to inflict will be up to you.” Also on board are parametric EQ, filter, compression, saturation, delay and reverb modules which can be reordered into custom effects chains.