Sean Folk (a.k.a. "flip362") has been plugged into Source Audio for a long, long time. His relationship with our gear actually dates back to the Soundblox days. But it wasn't until we developed the One Series pedals and the Neuro Desktop Editor with its preset sharing technology that we were able to hear all the great things that he was doing with our gear. Before becoming a husband, dad, and middle school theatre arts teacher in his home state of Texas, Sean studied Film Scoring at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA (also the home of Source Audio). His film scoring chops are pretty evident in all the exceptional sound clips he recorded to demonstrate his presets. We love how Sean dials in tried and true, classic sounds like his "Simple Trem" or "Punk Rawk" presets, but also launches into the contemporary with ambient soundscapes like "Beyond Horizons" or "DreamSphere" for the Ventris Dual Reverb. He's also got a great ear for killer lo-fi sounds like "Bitcrush Square" for the C4 Synth and "Crushed Echos" for the Nemesis Delay.
You can see that Sean already has a large collection of Source Audio pedals (including one of the original hand-painted C4 Synth beta pedals - #43 of 50!), but we still sent him a complementary pedal as we do with all of our Featured Neuro Artists. Sean requested the EQ2 Programmable Equalizer. And FYI, we are constantly on the lookout for the next Featured Artist, so please keep publishing your Neuro presets with accompanying sound clips (the sound clips are crucial to reaping a Feature). We want to hear what y'all are doing with our gear!
We asked Sean to share his thoughts on some of the presets he created. He was more than happy to talk with us, so read on and check out some of Sean's presets and find out, in his own words, the inspiration behind each one.
"Looper Verb" - Ventris Dual Reverb
"I really wanted to try to create a short phrase sampler kind of sound. Bach uses this sort of motif in his Piano inventions and fugues. It allows you to create counterpoint lines with yourself. On piano you would alternate melodies between your right and left hands, on guitar, you just plug into a delay pedal and layer the lines! The Echoverb engine diffuses in a nice way, so you get one to four solid repeats before it smears into a nice wash, depending on how strong you play. You can turn up the Delay Feedback (CONTROL 1 knob) to get even more repeats."
"Simple Trem" - Nemesis Delay
"Honesty time: I rarely ever play with modulation. I don't like how consistent it is. You can set a tap tempo and it almost always swells or moves in rhythm at the same time. I like it when things go fast and slow on command like a Leslie speaker cabinet. (There's the keyboard player in me again). So this was an attempt to achieve that type of sound without being overbearing
---HOW?! I did it with MIDI, but if you have an expression pedal or switch you can do the same thing. I set the expression minimum for the Intensity and Speed controls of the tremolo, then set the max for both parameters. I have it set up to require a hold instead of a toggle, so it would only speed up while I was holding down my switch. I use a Boss ES-5 and it works really well for this kind of MIDI control without having to go into the Neuro app and program it. Though, thinking back on it, that would probably be easier since I could have done it on the computer... Live and learn."
"Bitcrush Square" - C4 Synth
"Back in my younger days, I used to love to create little chiptunes. I'd use some software and have my drum noise channel and then set up the bass and two lead channels. I was playing with the C4 during the beta period and was like, oh snap, I can totally try and recreate that! That was the goal. However, I only used the square oscillator because at the time it was the one I thought sounded the best for the sound I was going after. Something like this, but only using the guitar and a noise drum generator. However, I didn't think to use the C4 to process the drums... I should have done that. Missed opportunity >.<"
"Afterneath 2" - Ventris Dual Reverb
"I've had multiple reverbs on my board, and I've had difficulty kicking off my Afterneath because I could never really recreate its sound with the Ventris. I also used it to cover switching from a dual engine reverb on the Ventris, so I didn't have an abrupt cut of the reverb tails when switching presets. In the last year I discovered that I hadn't been using it for my intended purpose and wanted to really try to recreate the sound I made with my Afterneath. I made one that I liked, then another TGP user showed me one of their presets. I absolutely stole part of their tech, mixed it with mine and ended up with this preset. It ended up being one of those sounds that you can extend out the decay to make a wash for ambient drones, or make it short and have a sort of delay in verb sound reminiscent of the Afterneath."
"Glootchy Mood" - Nemesis Delay
"I'm gonna be honest again. I think that the Chasebliss Mood and Blooper look super cool. They make these crazy sounds that I would love to use as little embellishments here and there in compositions. What I wanted to do was try to recreate one of those sounds where the delay line would repeat up an octave and create those little bloopy bleepy sounds. It makes a cool texture and adds a nice sort of sound to use as an embellishment or a background part. You can mess with the mix to keep the extra glitchy sound out of the way or really prominent, which can make some super cool counterpoint delay lines."
"S/L Modulated Plate" - Ventris Dual Reverb
"I'm primarily a keyboard player... Cat's out of the bag. I love to play guitar, but I still bring my keyboard tendencies with me when I play other instruments. One of the things that is really important to me is being able to change things on the fly (with or without MIDI). Sometimes you want more reverb on just one note, sometimes you want less, sometimes you want to play your pedals like an instrument. Whatever floats your boat! The Ventris covers that for me. I can have a simple small plate and then with the push of the button, no MIDI required, have a completely different sound on tap and switch back and forth as I please. This plate does that for me. The subdued version of this preset is assigned to Reverb A, hitting the OPTION footswitch of the Ventris brings in Reverb B and adds a lot more depth and sustain. Function!"
"Saw Trance" - C4 Synth
"For this clip, I really just wanted to play around with the smart harmonies and create some rhythmic chords. The C4 is really good at that. Were I to try again I'd smooth out the filter so it isn't as quacky, but it does help with the impact/energy of the sound a little bit. I made this sound for a church song, but the night before we were going to play the band got a 2nd keyboard player to cover the part, so I didn't end up using it live. Still it's become one of my most downloaded presets"
"Beyond Horizons" - Ventris Dual Reverb
"When I make my reverbs, I really tend to come at them from a texture point of view depending on the mood I'm going for. When I was working on "Beyond Horizon," I was in a melancholy mood, and it felt like time was dragging on and holding on to every moment when I just wanted it to hurry up and rush by. I really wanted to express that holding feeling of slow time passage. One of the things that I love about the Ventris is that many of the engines will offer Pre-delay feedback. This is something that works really well for turning a reverb into a bunch of little delays, or really holding out notes to make the reverb last a lot longer, even with a lower decay. I use this function in a lot of my more ambient style presets. Also E-dome is just amazing all the time. Big, small, mega... It doesn't matter, it plays with other reverbs so well. I love it."
"Crushed Echos" - Nemesis Delay
"The Degrade engine was one that I had never really touched until I started messing with more destroyed, lo-fi textures in my own compositions. The engine degrades in a nice blooming kind of way as it descends into a broken noise sound. I actually ended up using a medium hall reverb from the Ventris, so all the bit crushing and distortion is coming from the Nemesis! The ping-ponging of the delay also helps add that spacious soupyness when it's all put together."
"DreamSphere" - Ventris Dual Reverb
"I had just learned this song on the guitar. It's just this beautiful melancholy folk ballad. I was practicing singing and playing at the same time and I wanted something that would fill up everything so I could focus on the words of the song. Something where if I didn't get the rhythm right or play every note on time the energy wouldn't just die. It's really easy (now... I struggled when I recorded it), but I wanted it to just expand and take up LOADS of space. I always try to write fun preset detail things from my imagination, but this one is especially true. "Swap from E-dome to Reverse and change the flow of your dreams. Sometimes you want to sound like a washy swirling Angelic orchestra while you are playing solo guitar." Orchestra is the wrong word, but it is something that just pads along behind you, fills up space, but never really gets in the way. I needed it while learning a new song. It was a crutch, but it made things better!"
"FCP - Intro" - Nemesis Delay
"I chose the Fall of Troy because I think they are awesome (I <3 you, Thomas), but this sound really works for any sorta dotted 8th rhythm or lead line. They had just recently teased one of their new singles in like four years and that made me go back through their discography. He (Thomas Erak) uses delay/loops a lot in their songs to create these cool riffs. I just wanted to recreate that with a really usable sound. Is it simple? Yes, but if it's not broken, don't fix it!"
"Lo-Fi Machine 1" - C4 Synth
"You know how when you buy a big fancy sound box you feel like you have to use ALL the bells and whistles on EVERY preset? I'm guilty of this. I feel like I have to use the C4 for synth sounds, and octaves, and really specific things. This pedal is a tool box. You have all kinds of filters and distortions. It doesn't have to quack! It doesn't have to generate synth sounds, or various octaves. I really wanted to see if I could make something musical without sounding too cheesy that was just Lo-fi. There is a filter to tame that high end ringing that occurs when you start degrading the signal. It makes this cool sorta vibe when you get a spacious verb behind it (#probablyE-dome). I like how the frequencies interact with each other creating a beautiful sort of dissonance."
We gotta send out a huge THANKS to Sean Folk ("flip362") for diving in deep and creating all these fantastic presets and sharing them with the rest of us - there is no doubt that a lot of people will find great inspiration in each one. If you want to check out the full collection of @flip362 presets click the button below. So bye, bye until next month. Don't forget to keep creating and publishing new presets, we're always on the lookout for the next Featured Neuro Artist. Adieu.
YOU TOO CAN BE A FEATURED NEURO ARTIST!!
Every month we feature an extraordinary Neuro preset creator. If we choose you as a Featured Neuro Artist, you will win a Source Audio One Series pedal of your choice. All you need to do to be eligible is publish cool presets with accompanying YouTube or SoundCloud links of the preset in action. Show us your presets!!