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Getting that Massive Attack "Unfinished Sympathy" string sound?
Old 26th January 2009
  #1
Gear Addict
 
Siem's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Getting that Massive Attack "Unfinished Sympathy" string sound?

I want to create a similar string sound as the strings used in "Unfinished Sympathy" by Massive Attack ( YouTube - Massive Attack - Unfinished Sympathy (HQ) )
Which string library would get me in the right direction?
Old 26th January 2009
  #2
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
the vienna symphonic library could get strings sounding like that.
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Lives for gear
 
alexp's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Believe it or not, I use the Emu Proteus 1 Orchestral for strings. It can do these strings no prob.In fact, I reckon these strings are already in that module, as MA used a lot of Emu samplers, and the Proteus 1 series is all the samples of the Emulator 3 in a rompler. Best 80 dollars I ever spent.




alexP
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
AFAIK the Unfinished Sympathy strings were recorded at Abbey Road so the Vienna will be a safer bet.
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Guru
 
chrisso's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Yes, it was real strings courtesy of contemporary composer/arranger Craig Armstrong.
You should check out his albums too.
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #6
Moderator
 
Reptil's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
going there and have an ensemble play that might be less expensive than buying the library LOL
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Lives for gear
 
desotoslo's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
learn to play the cello. you could multi-track an entire string section with it.

i'm kidding... mostly...
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
alexp's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso ➑️
Yes, it was real strings courtesy of contemporary composer/arranger Craig Armstrong.
You should check out his albums too.

Wow I did not know that!


Thanks for clearing that up. I retract my previous post. Sorry for the mis-information!!!!


alexP
Old 26th January 2009
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Space Station's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Siem ➑️
I want to create a similar string sound as the strings used in "Unfinished Sympathy" by Massive Attack ( YouTube - Massive Attack - Unfinished Sympathy (HQ) )
Which string library would get me in the right direction?
Someone said the JD990 strings sound very similar to that. I read Craig Armstrong used/uses a 990.
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Gear Guru
 
chrisso's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Armstrong made some interesting collaborations especially in the early 90's (Bjork, Baz Luhrman's Romeo and Juliet).
His early solo albums are a benchmark for contemporary classical music mixed with contemporary electronica.
YouTube - Craig Armstrong - Ruthless Gravity
YouTube - Craig Armstrong - Finding Beauty
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
doubledecker's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
ARP Solina and Roland D 110 samples
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Lives for gear
 
clusterchord's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Space Station ➑️
Someone said the JD990 strings sound very similar to that. I read Craig Armstrong used/uses a 990.
nope.

not a rompler, not a string machine either.


its a real orchestra, so Vienna or EW is your best bet. actually there is a nice preset in Vienna that covers the VLA, VC and CB area, arranged for somthing like this. follow with a saturation plug and a good reverb. these libs always have a problem with too much dynamics, to be realistic.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by alexp ➑️
Wow I did not know that!


Thanks for clearing that up. I retract my previous post. Sorry for the mis-information!!!!


alexP
How could you not know that?! He did the string arrangements for Nightlife as well :-)
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Lives for gear
 
alexp's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by pyvnd ➑️
How could you not know that?! He did the string arrangements for Nightlife as well :-)
Im so out of it.....



alexP
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #15
Lives for gear
 
synthoid's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso ➑️
Yes, it was real strings courtesy of contemporary composer/arranger Craig Armstrong.
You should check out his albums too.
I love the sound of everything I've heard that he's done. A really amazing, talented producer / arranger.

-synthoid
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Lives for gear
 
digital 1010's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brownsound ➑️
I was assistant engineer on that string session!
That's pretty cool. There is a few sessions id like to have been sat in on and that's 1 for sure
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Space Station's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by clusterchord ➑️
nope.

not a rompler, not a string machine either.


its a real orchestra, so Vienna or EW is your best bet. actually there is a nice preset in Vienna that covers the VLA, VC and CB area, arranged for somthing like this. follow with a saturation plug and a good reverb. these libs always have a problem with too much dynamics, to be realistic.
Yeh I know it's a real Orchestra. I was just commenting that Craig uses a JD990 and people have said the 990 string patch sounds similar. The OP was after a similar sound to the record.

In fact I just googled it. Craig uses/used the JD990 string patch to create the track and then gets the string section to copy it!
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #18
Lives for gear
 
huub's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Craig Armstrong is sooooooo awesome.. Robyn's 'with every heartbeat' is also his arrangement (kind of a unfinished sympathy feeling... Genius stuff
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #19
Lives for gear
 
huub's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brownsound ➑️
I was assistant engineer on that string session!
Dude, you are a part of popmusic history!
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #20
Gear Addict
 
sheever's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by alexp ➑️
Believe it or not, I use the Emu Proteus 1 Orchestral for strings. It can do these strings no prob.In fact, I reckon these strings are already in that module, as MA used a lot of Emu samplers, and the Proteus 1 series is all the samples of the Emulator 3 in a rompler. Best 80 dollars I ever spent.
alexP
yeah Emu samples are famous in chello,marcato cases.
even my EMU II+ have a great cello samples in unbeievable 1 mb size

EMU III has he greatest samples so far in my experience.
I prefer to use just 1-2 pack of string and lets say max. 100mb size.
all Vienna and East West stuffs come with bloody 8-20GB library.
the lifetime is not enough to check it out.
waste of time.....
I like producing music instead of searching that samples.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #21
Gear Addict
 
sheever's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brownsound ➑️
I was assistant engineer on that string session!
Congratz!
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #22
Gear Guru
 
chrisso's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheever ➑️
all Vienna and East West stuffs come with bloody 8-20GB library.
the lifetime is not enough to check it out.
waste of time.....
I think the library size is more about detail and realism than different samples you need to search through.
If you need a small ensemble string section, you just open that section in the software whether it's a few mb's or several gigs.
The time consuming factor is getting very realistic orchestral samples programmed in the song. In that case it's quicker and easier to use synths and smaller sample sets. This is why Armstrong writes with the JD990.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #23
Gear Addict
 
Jens's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
OT:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brownsound ➑️
I was assistant engineer on that string session!
Wow!!!!! Where you behind the desk for Hymn Of The Big Wheel as well? One of my all time fav. songs. Actually been at #1 for the last couple of years. Crazy Vibe

Any anecdotes from that/those sessions? Love to hear it.

Thanks,
Jens

PS. Hymn Of The Big Wheel reference in Peep Show. Classic!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?hl=en&v=vWY63LFrb8o&gl=US
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #24
Pip
Lives for gear
 
Pip's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Robyn's 'with every heartbeat' - what a srting sound - so who can help with how that was played? Awesome.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #25
Lives for gear
 
Phaidon's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brownsound ➑️
I was assistant engineer on that string session!
Well, if you were, you should know that it was Will Malone and NOT
Craig Armstrong pulling the string thing on "Unfinished Sympathy".
Craig Armstrong did the latter stuff.

Cheers
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #26
Lives for gear
 
Phaidon's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
..."Unfinished Sympathy" was done with just an Akai S-1000,the live strings and a bit of Ensoniq EPS.

Cheers
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #27
Gear Guru
 
chrisso's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaidon ➑️
Will Malone and NOT
Craig Armstrong pulling the string thing on "Unfinished Sympathy".
Ohh yeah.

Quote:
Craig Armstrong did the latter stuff.
Actually the very next album 'Protection'.

There's also a video clip of Massive Attack playing Unfinished Sympathy with Armstrong as orchestral conductor, which probably led to my confusion (and others).
Old 29th January 2009 | Show parent
  #28
Lives for gear
 
huub's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Errrmm... Hmmm yes, it was will malone also doing robyn's every heartbeat..
I was lazy and just assumed the earlier poster got the name right...


I was wrong and am now ashamed..........
Old 2nd February 2009 | Show parent
  #29
Lives for gear
 
KEYBEEETSSS's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheever ➑️


all Vienna and East West stuffs come with bloody 8-20GB library.
the lifetime is not enough to check it out.
waste of time.....
@ "Man are u serious's" to this quote; !st, please point me to a Vienna package that small with a lot of choices & 2ndly, I take time to go thru samples all the time in no time may I add & it definitely pays off...
Old 2nd February 2009 | Show parent
  #30
Gear Addict
 
sheever's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I am serious.
Be a honest most of the time U need only few great samples to done it well.
if you ve got that few great ones u dont need to looking for any others.
of course if you work on soundtrack or symphonic material then is different thing again.
but show me your track if you using hundreds of chello samples.
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