Feb 13
Alexander Gastrell

Ringing, rest, relaxation and more

In between producing and uploading more sound effects ourselves, fulfilling a recent sound request and preparing for the implementation of a website refurbishment, as ever we’ve been on the lookout for talented sound designers to join our growing community of contributors. I’m pleased to welcome Alexander Gastrell, who’s produced a number of really interesting libraries that range from an exploration of the irritation and isolation of tinnitus to an interesting variety of alarms and warnings. He’s very generously selected a batch of prime cuts from his libraries for you guys and here’s the guided tour.

I’ve never had to go to Google before to identify a sound source, but that’s precisely what I had to do when confronted with Alexander Gastrell’s field recording of a Yabby pump. I felt slightly better though that Alexa didn’t seem to know what one was either. For those of you, like me who don’t fish, it’s a pump that you stick into the sand at the edge of the sea to suck up sand, water and hopefully, yabbies, which make good bait. This article explains in more detail if you’re interested.  Anyway, the important thing, of course, is not what it’s called or what it does, but what it sounds like and it can make a wonderful sequence of squirts and plops that could have a very broad range of applications particularly in animation, but also, perhaps, in horror. Check it out here.

We also get a number of surf sound effects. One of the categories of sound I’m particularly picky about is ocean noises. It’s amazing how many different sounds a body of water rolling in and out can make depending on the weather, the coastline etc and so choosing the right seaside sound for a scene can make a big difference to its mood. I honestly believe that we’re lucky enough to have some of the best beach recordings I’ve ever heard at Zapsplat and these are no exception. There are some here, like this one, that really remind me of my childhood. There’s also this idyllic sound of gentler waves lapping.

It’s not all quite so leisurely and relaxing though. We have two sound designed assets that replicate the annoying ringing or rushing you get in your ears from tinnitus, which are anything but. Sounds like this are ideal when a character in a game or film is close to something very loud such as an explosion and you want to simulate the sound of temporary deafness. We also have sounds that we might use for the cause of such an explosion – energy weapons. I particularly like this one.

The science fiction theme continues with a couple of nice, modulated robot style sound effects and, of course, some alarm sounds, ideal for any high-tech or futuristic emergency. Additionally, there’s a futuristic impact and a texture with lots of bass.

Sticking with the drones, there’s a texture to illustrate and icy planetary atmosphere and a strange, eerie, fuzzy texture. The jewel in the crown for me though as far as the sound design elements are concerned is this evolving, majestic, euphoric, musical texture, which could work as a bed.

All these sounds are really evocative and would raise the standards of any production they were used in. Thanks to Alexander Gastrell for all of them! Be sure to check out his contributor profile to find your own favorites and then head on over to his website for the full libraries.

If you’d like to get involved with us, whether you’d like more exposure and promotion for the services and content you offer, would like somewhere to showcase your sounds to help your portfolio or whether you just want to give something back to the audio community, why not get in touch with us and become a contributor.

About The Author

Justin Macleod is a sound designer based in the UK who runs SkyClad Sound. You can check out his sound effects here at zapsplat.com and follow him on Twitter @SkycladSound