The Epic Online Orchestra is a free browser-based orchestra sequencer based on Sonuscore sample libraries.
The Epic Online Orchestra, or EOO as I’ll call it from now on, is a free online orchestral sequencer. EOO takes samples from Sonuscore and allows you to trigger chords and arrange sequences.
There are two modes, Simple and Advanced. In simple mode, there are no chords built on sharps or flats. There are sharps and flats within chords in Simple mode, but all root notes are white keys. In Advanced mode, you get everything.
The best thing about the sequencer is that you can export your creations. Another pretty cool feature is that it provides examples of common harmonic progressions representing varying emotions or environments.
When you click on an example emotion/environment, like Protagonism, it will add two chords to the sequencer. Two chords aren’t exactly a definitive progression, but it’s a good starting point.
The examples are solid, for the most part; if we look at Protagonism again, it puts forward a C major to D major change. That particular chord change is perfect for protagonist themes because it has an augmented fourth from the Lydian mode, which is the backbone of many epic film scores.
If you select Sadness, you get a C major to E minor change, which is a diatonic mediant, and very common in sad or reflective scenes.
The chords don’t go beyond basic triads, which is kind of fine and kind of disappointing.
It’s easy to say I want to see altered chords in the mix, but it’s also easy to overcomplicate string arrangements/progressions, so basic triads will be fine.
The samples sound useful, and I believe the chords are available as a playable Kontakt instrument. I see several reasons to use EOO; firstly, it’s free, it’s easy, and it sounds good enough for some cinematic content or even video games. To be clear, it’s not like some ridiculously expensive orchestral library that will blow you away, but it isn’t trying to be.
Secondly, I think it’s good for beginners to study how common cinematic changes sound and play around with ideas. Similarly, it could be helpful for more experienced composers who want to test ideas without loading Kontakt or their DAW, etc.
I love cinematic freebies, and some of my favorites come from the LABS series, like Vintage Drums and Foghorn. There’s also the Sonixinema Freebie series, which is great.
Even when surrounded by keyboards, pressing buttons to trigger chords online is strangely addictive; try it.
The Epic Online Orchestra (works in your internet browser)
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