Review: Multipass from Kilohearts

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We’re big fans of creative multi-fx type plugs here at APG. There’s something infinitely pleasurable about taking an innocent, unadulterated bit of source audio and mangling it into something beautifully grotesque. Multipass from Kilohearts is definitely in the top few on our list of favourite plugins for this kind of audio alchemy… wanna know why?

Suitable Fifth Element Quote Not Found

Multipass!
We did look for one… we’ll try and work ‘big bada-boom’ into this review somehow.

But we’re not just here for the puns. Let’s talk about Multipass and why we freakin’ dig it. Multipass is a host for Kilohearts’ snapin modules. Snapins are individual effects plugins that can be used alone or loaded into Multipass (or Snapheap, which is the more straightforward (or parallel) host (and FREE!)). Multipass’ special feature is that it splits incoming signal into four EQ bands, which can then be processed separately with whatever combination of snapins you like. On top of this there are LFOs and envelopes available to modulate any variable available in a variety of interesting ways.

It really is a lot of fun.

Turn on, Snap in, Rock out!

Let’s talk about snapins. They can be bought individually (some are free and the rest are often on sale) or in a bundle. They’re very collectible, you will want to catch them all. All together they include: 3-Band EQ, Chorus, Delay, Gain, Limiter, Stereo, Bitcrush, Comb Filter, Compressor, Distortion, Filter, Formant Filter, Frequency Shifter, Gate, Haas, Ladder Filter, Phase Distortion, Phaser, Pitch Shifter, Resonator, Reverb, Reverser, Ring Mod, Tape Stop, Trance Gate, Transient Shaper, Carve EQ, Disperser, Faturator and Slice EQ.

Quite a selection that pretty much covers all bases.

The system allows you to place any of these in series after each band split. As you might imagine, the possible combinations are infinite. Add in the modulation and the combinations become more than infinite, which is totally a possible thing. The whole thing is programmed to avoid any kind of weird phase issues, which is always good. If you’re anything like us you will spend hours on Multipass and end up with a huge bank of bizarre noises to use wherever you can.

Multi-reasons Why we Dig This

So if you know about us, then you know that we’re not here to bore you with reams of writing on every plugin. That said, we’re gonna add a bit more about what this wonderful machine can do. Which is a lot. Did we mention the more than infinite possibilities? Here’s a tiny selection of those possibilities we particularly enjoyed. We’ll focus on the more creative combinations, but there are plenty of functional snapins like EQ and compression to keep everything under control.

Multipass on Drums

Put the full kit through it. You can set the first band to deal with the subs. Use a gate to clean up the tails then give it a little EQ boost and a touch of distortion for character. That’s your tight low end sorted and now you can really f*ck about with the rest!

One cool trick around the mids is to use the Reverser snapin and blend it in to create a push-pull effect. Using the Delay around the upper mids can add rhythmical interest, use the ping-pong setting to make that extra wide. Speaking of width, the Haas and Chorus snapins on the high bands can really increase the spread around ya head. Try using a volume triggered LFO to control some parameters around the snare frequency every time it hits…

To add even more complex movement, link one of those LFOs to the crossover point between two bands… this will then change the frequency range sent to the plugins either side over time.

Multipass on Bass

Tame the low end with Compressor and add a little saturation then use LFO controlled filters on the middle bands to create some lovely wom interplay. You can also put snapins on the pre- and post- channels so if it helps you can use some compression and corrective EQ on the way out to tidy it up.

Multipass on Pads

Trance gate on more than one band takes a bland, static pad and creates a mulit-rhythmical playgound. Link the bitcrusher to a slow LFO to gradually fade some crunchy distortion in and out… Comb filter that sh*t!

Use the pitchshifter to double an upper mid band up an octave and put some phase distortion on it.

Multipass on EVERYTHING.

You will love it. Honestly, we can’t emphasise enough how many ways there are to get interesting, usable (and unusable) results from this plugin. The above is just the tiniest, minuscule drop in the endless ocean of possibilities. Try it and see for yourself.

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