Steven Slate Drums 4 – Chris Lord Alge expansion – Review
Its time for something i like allot, A Drum sound/expansion review!
Steven Slate Drums 4 aka SSD4 is a flexible drum instrument plugin with excellent sound, fast workflow and easy to use GUI. Today we will have a look at the new Chris Lord Alge expansion for Steven Slate drums 4, This expansion is also available for Trigger.
Steven Slate know that to come with something new to the Recording world is tough, And when he wanted to make an Expansion for SSD4 and Trigger it had to be exceptional.
To manage this he brought along a man who know and understand every detail drum recording, and can set that exceptional drum sound, MR Chris Lord Alge!
In the Spring of 2012, Chris Lord Alge revisited his recording engineer roots and recorded multiple world class drumkits at OCEAN studios in Burbank. He then mixed all the drums in his classic style in his LA mixroom using the same processing chains that you’ve heard on all of his records. He even printed a sample layer of his famous SONY reverb unit on the kicks and snares. The result is some of the fattest, punchiest, most mix ready virtual drums in the industry! And now you can use these classic Chris Lord Alge drums in Steven Slate Drums 4 Virtual Drum instrument and Steven Slate TRIGGER Drum Replacer/Enchancer. Source
12 Drumkit Presets (SSD4)
Kick Drums: 22” and 24”
Toms: 10”, 12”, 14”, 16”, and 18”
Ludwig Black Beauty
Ludwig Chrome Plated Steel
Pearl Reference Maple
Pearl Reference Brass
Pearl Steel Sensitone
Tama Bell Brass
A closer lookHere is the CLA Rock 01 loaded up in SSD4 kit view, as a VSTI in PreSonus Studio One PRO v2.
The Chris Lord Alge expansion comes with 13 ready to use presets, But when we start digging deeper we find that there is more to this expansion that allows for great tweaking options and a huge variety of sound.
Here is the CLA Rock 09 loaded up in SSD4 Cell view, as a VSTI in PreSonus Studio One PRO v2.
When we go into the Instrument section of SSD4 we find that the kicks comes with additional features, HB=Hard Beater, SB=Soft Beater, wS= With Snare and OT = Over the Top. OT (Over the Top) have a crushed ambient sound (especially on the Overheads), this is meant to be used as blends for more more excitement and low end punch.
Taking a look at the Snares section we find that there is a nice variety of Snares in the Chris Lord Alge expansion I know people have been asking for “The Dong”, One of the snares that I like to have in nearly any setup is the Dry Pearl as it only has a slight OH bleed so I can use it to get more od that nice snap to the Snare sound.
As we head into the SSD4 mixer we find Close mice channels for Kick in / Out and Sub, Snare Top, TopB (second mic taped to 1st ), Snare Bottom, Toms, and Hi-Hat. These are followed by a FX, OH, RoomA , RoomB and and Mono Channel. I love the Room A/B feature as it allows me to tweak specific room sound for specific drums this is simply said even more flexibility.
Working with the Chris Lord Alge expansion
The Chris Lord Alge expansion follows the original SSD4 standard and I just love how fast I can load a kit, change some instruments to my liking and adjust the bleed levels.
Then I decide to either keep all channels on one buss / channel in my DAW or set multi out option for further tweaks, Adjust some EQ and one of my favorites is to use the FabFilter
Pro-C a great compressor that is great for anything such as parallel compression.
I can not mention this enough but the room A and B feature is nearly addictive, I can alter sound in so many ways and I can get the room spread for a perfect mix.
And Remember all SSD4 instruments including the Chris Lord Alge expansion responds well to additional Tweaking for even more personalization.
Here follows a video of some of the Kits and MIDI grooves included in the Chris Lord Alge expansion. In the end of the video is a tweaked kit where i also tweaked the drum sound with additional effects.
In these modern times with a lot of great sounding Drum plugins on the market it is hard to create something new, but If you read my SSD4 Platinum review you will know that i highly recommend it as its very fresh, flexible, easy to use and just sounds AMAZING!
When I got the Chris Lord Alge expansion and loaded it in SSD4 I was shocked over the detail and extremely nice punch it had, how many options I got with just a small twist of a bleed knob or adjustment of a channel level. The more I messed around with the expansion the more I found how exceptional it is, the special tweaked individual kicks and snares adds that extra feel to the sound, Using the DRY variations allows for some very interesting personal tweaks and the RoomA and RoomB channels opens up a huge variety of options.
Since SSD4 has a fast and easy workflow, and it allows you to easily combine the SSD4 instruments with the Chris Lord Alge expansion you will be able to quickly get YOUR sound! In the end it is how you combine and tweak the sound that gives the personal touch, and the options are nearly limitless!!
So If you want one of the best sounding expansions available on the market today, And you own either Trigger or Steven Slate Drums 4 then the Chris Lord Alge expansion is a must have! If you don’t have Steven Slate drums 4 I recommend you to get it… it is that good!
The price for the Chris Lord Alge expansion is at the moment set to $199, A good price for what you get.
If I miss something it would be a optional tweaked version of the Toms , a easy way to get a 5 Tom setup and maybe one or two presets that use 5 Toms and Double kick for the metal maniacs.
The Chris Lord Alge Expansion is just amazing, Good job everyone involved in Steven Slate drums 4 and the Chris Lord Alge Expansion.
I want to thank Steven slate drums for letting me do this review, And to my readers…