Sounds & Samples
A little over a year since Revolution, their vintage-flavoured drum machine, comes Wave Alchemy’s Evolution. This time the focus is on creating modern-sounding beats, backed by a library of nearly 30,000 samples and 400 presets. Classic digital and analogue hardware is represented, but there’s also modular synths, acoustic sources, re-amped rooms, found sound, Foley and plenty of processing.
Evolution comes as four instruments (with large well-rendered GUIs), which are identical in function except for the increasing amounts of tape saturation on the later three – though it’s a shame that this couldn’t be selected from within a single instrument. Sounds from the library can then be loaded into one of 12 drum voices, each with the ability to layer three elements. These in turn are split into Drum, Transient and Layer types. The raw sounds available are strong and diverse, though if you find there’s too much choice, a quick press of the dice icon will randomly select sounds for all three layers. I was reminded of NI’s Polyplex when first experimenting with Evolution. Each layer gets its own, very comprehensive, editing controls (including an interesting Analog Simulation section), with the final mixed elements then proceeding to Insert, Master and Send Effects sections. My only complaint here is the lack of visual feedback for parameter values (especially in the Compressor section).
You can make use of both the X0X-style drum sequencer and the extensive Global Sequencer for automating sound parameters. This can also be done using the X/Y Pad’s Macro system.
There’s a lot going on inside Evolution, and it is capable of great results. Wave Alchemy are so confident that if you aren’t satisfied, they’ll even offer you a refund. Bruce Aisher www.wavealchemy.co.uk VERDICT 8.9