Music Tech Recommended Award
Like the original Alien Guitars, Alien Guitars 2 extends lightyears beyond most guitar sample collections. In fact, well beyond anything that sounds even remotely guitar-like. The two-audio plus two-.WAV/Acid CD format offers masses of space for producers Christopher Libertino and David Siskovic to indulge their warped sense of what's possible with a set of wire strings and a roomful of hardware, software and 'demented wetware' (er, no... we don't know either).
The library extends from individual sonic events to complete soundscapes - a good proportion of which really do sound quite alien. You could also add words such as 'dark', 'gothic' and, in some cases, downright 'sinister'.
The accompanying booklet goes some way to describing this aural smorgasbord - and indeed, matches it with some pretty colourful language. One senses that the producers had almost as much fun describing these alien landscapes as they did creating them. Ever wondered what the 'sound of hopeful machinery' is like? Find out in the Eden 2.0 section on disc one. Care to dip into the 'well of harmonic motion'? Check out the Aquatica section on disc two.
Although perhaps not of universal appeal, Alien Guitars 2 has much to recommend it as a genuinely imaginative and creatively useful sample library. If a few more guitarists coaxed sounds like these out of their instruments, the history of rock and roll might have been very different.
A refreshingly bold attempt to take the electric guitar to the absolute limit of its sonic potential.