CMusic Saxband Review


CMusic’s SAXBAND is a new a collection (Soprano, Alto, Tenor and Baritone) of saxophones for full-version Kontakt 5 that will instantly supply your composition with an affordable alternative to the never-on-time-for-the-session/creatively-temperamental/I-can’t-afford-you sax-playing diva you wish that you had on-call!
   The instruments (unlike other sax libraries) are available for individual, “solo” purchase at a very reasonable price. However, the price break on the bundle makes it most attractive.
   Its creator – Vladimir Kuznetsov – has obviously labored long and hard to provide a product that achieves that fine balance between a generous variety of articulations (legato, staccato, marcato, swells, runs, flutter, trills, vibrato, solo/poly, slides etc.) and “out-of-the-box” ease of use.
   Unlike most “orchestral” or “session” libraries that include saxophones, Saxband instruments are mic’ed with an initial sound that can, with or without the included convolution reverb/EQ/compressor, give your performance a sound that is anything from an intimate studio to a “rockin’-in-your-face” sound stage, to a smoky jazz club and all the in-betweens. Give the sax the “feel” that YOU want – not what somebody else thinks the finished sound should be!
   SAXBAND provides the realism lacking in other sampled sax libraries, by preserving things like the sounds of the player’s breath and the subtle clicking of the valves – so often lost by over- processing the samples.
The manual is, like the instruments, straight forward and easily understood. (Available on their website) Frankly, these instruments are so intuitive, you won’t need the manual.
   SAXBAND is deeply sampled, and so takes a moment or two to load into Kontakt. But, the brief wait is worth it. You can download demo versions to try before buying. I think that you will find Saxband instruments to be created with great care and amazing attention to detail. NO big learning curve involved here: Just load it and let the creative process flow!
Will your first sax solo with a SAXBAND instrument sound like Coltrane, Dulfer or Koz? That pretty much depends upon you. But, one thing is for certain: these saxophones won’t stand in the way – in fact, quite the opposite. Hard to find any fault here. I believe this to be an affordable, high quality, easily playable, convincingly realistic product that will quickly become a regularly-used part of your musical toolbox.
So, what are you waiting for? Here’s your chance to make some “Saxy” music!