Big Fish Audio | Future Music Magazine (US) James Rotondi | Nu Jazz City Product Review
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Nu Jazz City | Future Music Magazine (US)

Reviewer: James Rotondi Back to Nu Jazz City product details

Nu Jazz City and Jazz Quartet

There's been a landslide of Great Funk, Hip Hop and R&B samples coming out of Big Fish Audio recently, so it's fitting that they should turn their attention to the bluesy jazz that started it all. Two new samples libraries-Jazz Quartet and Nu Jazz City-put the accent squarely on the trad and contemporary jazz idioms with only a tasteful dip into '70s fusion. (Maybe Big Fish will grace us with a serious '70s fusion disc one of these days soon!)

Nu Jazz City is a beautiful collection of WAV REX and Apple Loops construction kit files that takes its cue from Europen Nu Jazz, Acid Jazz, Soul Jazz and Latin Jazz, paying homage to artists like Donald Byrd, Gerry Mulligan, Dave Brubeck and Eddie Palmieri. But it even steps into surging LA. Express and Jazz Crusaders-approved Contemporary big band stuff. There's so much here, a surplus of fat altered chords on piano and puckish, bohemian flutes; buttery licks on hollowbody guitars along with ringy drums; and of course, timbales, and horns galore. With listed tempos from 85 to 160, and key designations for each file, each folder contains a full mix of a band performance and then gives you each component broken down into phrases, loops and licks.

The same basic format is used for Jazz Quartet, which goes for a more traditional Thirties and Forties-style sound. The format of the quartet makes these construction kits very simple to use and to mix-and-match as each of the 80-plus construction kits breaks down into just four components. Some of these phrases are long, up to a full 16 measure in some cases, and they range from blues shuffles, ballads, slow brushes, uptempo bob flavors and walking bass workouts. Again, they're all offered in WAVs, RED files and apple Loops, arranged into separate folders, so you can easily browse for the ones that work best in your DAW.

These sets are amazing for composing jazz tunes an grooves on the fly, but they're also a must-have for practicing your jazz guitar, bass, horn or piano chops. While Big Fish no doubt designed these libraries as a producer's toolkit, they also supply the kind of ready-to-jam backing tracks that will keep you up practicing your bop licks into the wee hours-or well after midnight, at any rate.

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