Version: Kontakt 5.5.1 / WAV / V1
Cinematic Shakuhachi Flute
Download Method: Kontakt Hub
The Shakuhachi Flute was originally introduced from China into Japan in the 8th century and underwent a resurgence in the early Edo Period.
The shakuhachi is traditionally made of bamboo, but versions now exist in ABS and hardwoods. It was used by the monks of the Fuke school of Zen Buddhism in the practice of suizen.
It was also a favorite of film composer James Horner and used on countless of his film scores.
17 Kontakt Patches and a bonus Taiko drum patch!
FULL version of Kontakt 5.5.1 required. NOT Kontakt Player
TAIKO DRUM PATCH
We even included a multisampled Taiko patch which serves as a nice bonus to tie everything together (said taiko appears in the second demo on soundcloud... "Ninjas in the Mist".)
Let it be known that this library is NOT full of loads of legato articulations, but sets out to be more of an ethnic accent for your game and film scores.
This library was recorded by utilizing a couple of the most amazing Shakuhachi players we could find, Jon Johnston and Jonathan McCollum.
The end result from "the two jons" is a Kontakt instrument which will add cinematic ethno flare to just about any track.
PHRASES + MULTISAMPLES
Stealth Wind sets out to capture that "James Horner" cinematic shakuhachi vibe through the use of carefully selected / recorded phrases (both ethnic and cinematic) along with some craftily sampled multisampled staccatos and sustains.
While the main vibe of the sound is centered around stealth and sneaking ninjas, there are also quite a few ethnic phrases and motifs which are on the lighter and more traditional side of things.
Outside of the two separate cinematic phrase patches and two ethnic patches, there are also various staccato patches, a handful of low "Elephant Calls" which definitely ooze cinematic goodness, and "Enigma Calls" which, as the name suggests, stem from various re-recordings and takes of a certain Shakuhachi sample used extensively by the artist Enigma.
My goto Shakuhachi Flute VI...
Stealth Wind by UnEarthed Sampling: beautiful
The Shakuhachi is one of my favourite instruments. Its ability to transport the listener and be transcendental, along with its versatility of being able to be meditative and threatening and everything in between makes me wish I could play one for real.
Stealth Wind is exactly what Unearthed Sampling say it is: an 'ethnic accent library', but a little more as they underplay the usefulness of the staccato, dual and sustain patches. Using this instrument with a midi controller or keyboard also add authenticity, playability and inspiration making this a great library for
Unearthed Sampling don't hide their instruments behind dressed demos like some other developers. As you'll see in the clip, they show exactly what's included in the library upfront and centre.
Unearthed Sampling's other libraries such as Forgotten Songs, Interplanetary and Hammer On also offer great quality and add a different touch to what other libraries do and they are all more than fairly priced.
Just what I wanted
Great for those occasionally dissonant, ethnic accents.
Sounds of the jungle
The chirps, calls and hisses, performed on wooden flutes have always been a good way to introduce a sense of adventure and misticism into a track. This is not only a case in film music, but also in a large number of pop music tracks, especially the ones from the 80's era. The certain shakuhachi sample was particulary popular, and was perhaps even a bit overused. Nevertheless, for anyone composing music in ambient, new age and cinematic style (myself included) such sounds will come in handy sooner or later. There are several larger and more extensive Kontakt libraries out there dedicated to sounds of wooden flutes, including the shakuhachi, but they can be somewhat expensive for a library you might not need as often as you think at first. So this library is, price and quality wise, a good compromise. The phrases are expertly recorded and sound authentic. Also, the library is recorded dry, so you can easily turn off the built in reverb, and use your own to fit the sounds into your track. My only complain is that the developer should include at least one legato patch, even with the scripted legato (there are couple of sustain patches, though).
UnEarthed Sampling – True sound design which is affordable
I like these kind of Japanese flutes. And this is a really good one.
If you want a few Shakuhachi phrases to dress a track, this is a great tool for just that. It might be difficult to assemble a continuous melody part, but I don't think that's the point here. I've used this for the odd phrase here and there and its been the perfect solution. Its certainly an attractive proposition compared with some of the more expensive alternatives.