BFD & Trilogy
Spectrasonics’ Trilogy bass module and FXpansion’s BFD drum kits are examples of sampling done right; they offer an amazing array of sound-customization tools. Both the RAM-intensive Trilogy and the CPU-hungry BFD support
the Audio Units, VST, RTAS, and ReWire plug-in formats of major sequencers, as well as Propellerhead’s Reason sampler-and-synth app. (Apple’s Logic and MOTU’s Digital Performer support Audio Units; Steinberg’s Cubase supports VST, and Digidesign’s Pro Tools supports RTAS.) BFD also includes a standalone version.
BFD’s superb quality is complemented by its flexibility. Multiple drum kits and solo drums were recorded in a variety of ways, and you can mix and match the variables at will. You can also create rhythmic patterns, or use the stylistic varieties in BFD’s Groove Libraries and fills as a drum machine.
The clean interface makes it easy to audition, specify, and tweak sounds and to save tones and sets.
Trilogy offers 3GB of bass instrument samples with comprehensive sound and parameter controls. The electric-bass sounds include picked, slapped, and muted four-, five-, and six-string basses. The jazzy Jaco Fretless sounds wonderful. There are LFO filter and envelope controls for every sample in Trilogy, which help to modify the tones. Each sound file consists of two layers that can be specified and edited independently. The layers are invaluable palettes for creating masterful sounds.
The app’s only weaknesses are in its installation and OS 9-only manual. To get going in OS X, register at Spectrasonics’ site and download OS X CD Joiner.