Of all the sample library makers I think UVI is one of the best. They have good taste and also wrap their sounds in a nice way. This time they do a take on the Fairlight called the Darklight IIx. I love these very Trevor Horn sounds so much. Think Art of Noise, late Yes, Yello, Herbie Hancock… I had a few of the type of sounds on my first sampler a Roland S-50. There have been a few recent sample libraries and an iOS app but I’m betting this one from UVI will be the most useful. It has 3 pages/screens. Page P is where you load and change the sound, Page B is a digital drum machine (yay) and Page U is a sequencer. $200 USD.
“UVI Darklight IIx is the latest UVI product, inspired by the most mythical Computer Music Instrument of the 80’s. We took our obsession to the next level, creating a complete set of instruments, sounds and sonic tools deeply inspired by the original digital monster. A unique, hybrid process of exhaustive multi-sampling, analysis, and advanced audio processing allowed us to not only capture the original character of this machine but to enhance its ability with a host of today’s most powerful analog modeled filters, LFOs, envelopes and effects–packaged beautifully in an old-school interface.” – UVI YouTube
The original Fairlight CMI is heading to the iPad soon. In the past I’ve mentioned the great sounds which are definitely associated with the 1980s the CMI produces. My first sampler, a Roland S-50 had a very nice set heavily inspired by the CMI. You can read that blog post which also talks about my father buying me the S-50 here: My father and my Roland S-50 sampler. You can also get a faithfully recreated CMI Reason Refill from PowerFX. If you’re unsure of the type of sounds I am talking about the best example is the song Close to the Edit from Art of Noise (video above). Lastly, if you don’t actually want to make some noise but still want some black and green screen nostalgia there are some nice Fairlight CMI iPad cases, T-Shirts, coffee mugs and more on Cafepress: cafepress.com/fairlight. The iPad CMI should be in the App store soon with a price of 50 Australian dollars.
“In early 1983, two of Trevor Horn’s production team, programmer JJ Jeczalik and engineer Gary Langan were working on a scrapped drum riff from a session from Yes’s 90125. They sampled it into a Fairlight CMI, using the then new Page R sequencer. This was the first time an entire drum pattern had been sampled into the machine. They then added non-musical sounds on top of it, before playing the track to producer Trevor Horn… The technological impetus for the Art of Noise was the advent of the Fairlight CMI sampler, an electronic musical instrument invented in Australia that Horn was reportedly among the first to purchase.” – Wikipedia (Art of Noise)