Rating: **** 4/5 Stars.
The more popular virtual drum instruments such as Toontrack’s EZdrummer or NI’s Battery can be populated with a bewildering array of excellent sample‑based acoustic drum sounds. That might lead you to wonder whether there is still room for a more old‑school approach; a drum sample library that you can use in any software‑based sampler. That’s something that Yosh’s Drum Warehouse Vol 2 puts to the test. Well, sort of, because as well as the WAV format samples (all in 24‑bit/48kHz), you also get the samples (and some presets) for use with Slate Trigger 2.
The library is a collection of drum samples from seven‑time Grammy‑winning recording/mixing engineer John ‘Yosh’ Jaszcz, whose credits include George Clinton and Bootsy Collins (amongst many others) and, as the name implies, it’s a follow‑up to the earlier Vol 1 release in the same format. It includes samples from three full kits — the DW Collector Series, Pearl Reference Pure and a 1974 Vintage Ludwig kit — as well as additional snares, toms and various cymbals.
The sampling of each drum/cymbal follows a similar format, with multiple performance articulations, different ambiences and three dynamics layers (soft, medium and hard) provided. So, for example, for each of the snares, you get rim, centre, sidestick, flams and wallet articulations, each with three dynamics, and all then available as dry, room and hall ambience versions. Auditioned in isolation, you could have no complaints about the quality of the individual samples; right across the board the sounds are very good indeed and, while Yosh is perhaps best known for his work in funk, R&B and gospel, the underlying sounds would work in a wide range of genres wherever a classy‑sounding acoustic kit would suit the vibe.
Auditioned in isolation, you could have no complaints about the quality of the individual samples... and the underlying sounds would work in a wide range of genres...
I had no problems dragging and dropping the samples into different drum samplers including Steinberg’s Groove Agent and NI’s Battery. Yes, building your own kits in this fashion is a little time‑consuming, but it’s a one‑time process and it does let you craft the drum combinations to suit your own needs. And, while three dynamics layers might seem a little skimpy compared to some sample‑based drum instruments, the end results sounded excellent.
For users of the paid version of Slate’s Trigger 2 plug‑in, you also get all the same drums ready to drop into Trigger 2 for drum replacement duties. A real drum performance (as opposed to a programmed one) can add a special ingredient to a song, but it is sometimes a challenge to get the perfect sound even in good recording environment. The option to retain the performance, but replace or layer your original drum recordings with some pristine samples, is therefore an attractive one.
I suspect Trigger 2 users will be a big market for this library. However, the underlying sounds are very good so, if you are happy to do a bit of old‑school sample‑based drum kit construction, Yosh’s Drum Warehouse Vol 2 provides a very good selection of sounds to work with.