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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > FREE Sample Issue > Metropolis Ark 2

Metropolis Ark 2

Orchestral Tools follows up its exceptional Metropolis Ark 1 library by spiriting us off to an altogether darker place. Dave Gale descends to the realm of the Nibelung to examine its epic depths…


Not so much industrial as epic, Metropolis Ark 2 is also available as a download

German-based company Orchestral Tools has managed to establish an excellent reputation within a short space of time with its ever expanding libraries of predominantly orchestral flavours, but having covered the main symphonic bases, the company took the decision about 18 months ago to release Metropolis Ark 1.

This stunning library, which is loud and epic in nature, is now followed by something completely different. Metropolis Ark 2 is billed as offering ‘low dynamic epicness’, and in keeping with its beautifully Germanic roots, offers a palette with far more than simply pure Wagnerian dark sonority, thanks to some really useful and interesting inclusions.

Let the games begin

Helpfully layered into usable sections, the 21 instrumentation assignments are allotted to ‘Districts’, in some post apocalyptic, Hunger Games-esque categorisation, beginning with District One – which offers the main orchestral samples, drawn from strings, wind and brass. Starting with the strings, these are organised into High, Mid and Low assignments, so starting with a High patch, I was immediately treated to a level of legato assignment which, frankly, is a bit special. Now, this effect is always a difficult thing to achieve, as the movement from one note to the next has to be treated carefully, especially when trying to take the specifics of the original instrument into context – and what we have here is something which is, by design, a leisurely movement from one registration to the next. This library is about sonority and darkness, not epic volume, so you wouldn’t expect the legato movement to be too fast: rather, just on the back of the time, to make it sound realistic. In context, this can almost be a little too on the back of the time, so some helpful thought in the programming here will assist. But this shouldn’t detract from the quality, which is purely outstanding. Not surprisingly, this level of excellence is continued through the Mid and Low strings, but if leisurely legato is not the order of the day, there are plenty of other choices.

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About MusicTech

The new issue of MusicTech Magazine is on sale Thursday 16th February and this issue we reveal the studio gear and production trends for 2017. Also this issue we have part 2 of our studio to release guide detailing the process your music needs to undertake to get in the charts. We review Orchestral Tools Metropolis Ark 2, plus new gear from Nord, Rob Papen, Spitfire Audio and more, we’ve also got tutorials covering Roland mimicking in Modular, how to use two Macs with Logic and continue the lazy guide to Live. Plus a huge DVD featuring 1.1GB of samples…