Sony: Matt Fink—StarVu Session Keys

Having reviewed the other three members of Sony’s Artist Integrated series—Tony Franklin (bass), Siggi Baldurson (drums), and Parthenon Huxley (guitar)—we’ll turn our attention to former Prince & the Revolution keyboardist Matt Fink. Recall that while designed to work as stand-alone sample CDs, Artist Integrated libraries are also intended to function together as a “virtual band.”

Fink tends toward rock/pop, with a hint of funk. The sounds lean on piano, organ, clavinet, electric piano, and synth, and are organized in Sessions—most include chord changes. The sounds do indeed lock in with the Artist Integrated libraries, but the other consideration is how well the sounds work by themselves. I find them generally phrase-oriented, so they work best as fills and one-shots, rather than being loops in the sense of working as repetitive patterns. However, that also means one of the best things about this set is you can put together some really convincing keyboard solos by assembling some of the phrases. In fact, a hallmark of Fink’s playing is that it has a “live” kind of vibe rather than sounding like a “sampling session.”

Bottom line: This set wouldn’t be my first choice if I wanted big grooves to start a song, but it has everything needed to flesh out arrangements with some hot leads, fills, and simmering backgrounds.

Contact: Sony Creative Software,
Format: Two CD-ROMs with 1.17GB/535 files of loops; 173MB of demo song loops; 24-bit/44.1kHz
List price: $99.95