- A GForce Software and Streetly Electronics collaboration
- Tape banks from the original UK 'Tron masters
- Derived from original EMI tape-stock
- 24 carefully curated sounds for M-Tron Pro
- 35 notes per tape bank
- Exclusively available via download - 600MB
- 100s of patches, many from luminaries including Jem Godfrey (Frost), Dave Spiers and Tony Durkin.
Descriptions by Martin Smith, Streetly Electronics.
Combined Choir - A vast compelling ensemble of men, ladies and boys going AHH!
Cor Anglais - Gorgeous reedy gentleness.
Cymbals & Marimba - An odd and rare selection of percussiveness for the bottom 5 notes before a gentle, rumbling lo-fi marimba.
12 Violins - The origin of these edgy violin recordings is unclear but we think they originated at Strawberry Studios and may well have been organised by Mr. Godfrey of The Enid fame. Of course, this could just be two spherical objects in a bag!
Fairlight Arr - Instantly recognisable, a popular Fairlight preset. All 4 bit and grundgy.
Fairlight Sax - Another famous Fairlight voice that fits nicely in the mellotron canon.
Italian Accordion - Just right for advertising a new deep pan pizza with a Snickers bar in the crust.
Lowrey Thru Leslie - A wonderfully cheesey organ.
M300B Violins - A gem! This is a solo violin recording which can best be heard on Watching and Waiting by the Moodies. Very warm and melancholic.
M400 Vibes - A bright recording with good attack to each and every note with a gentle vibrato. A classic.
Male Choir - Four gentlemen in unison down the Dog and Doublet toilets.
Medieval Woodwind - Bassoon, Oboe, Flute and Clarinet summoning up memories of plague, famine and pestilence, Shakespearian style. No crumhorns were injured.
Miller Brass - Dear old Glenn, who successfully transplanted saxophones with clarinets and gave birth to THAT sound. This is a mellotronic tribute.
Moog Trumpet - A Minimoog farting after one too many lagers.
Oboe - A Tangerine Dream fave. Just check out Rubycon. Very effective for a lead line but a chordal cluster sounds like traffic jam in Milan.
Orchestra - A Les Bradley mix and one of many probably as Les used to do these on the fly when requested. We just happen to have this one documented for all time.
Pinder Smooth Organ - The lovely Mike Pinder used to create fabulous pitch slides with this warm and evocative sound. You will hear it used in this way on many of the core 7 Moody Blues albums.
Rhodes - Not that well known, this is a strangely effective and compelling Rhodes rendition from the output of our Skellotron.
String Section No Cello - This is the old String Section after a calorie controlled diet having shed some weight. Powerful nonetheless.
Ted Taylor Choir - This is a weird recording that lacks clarity from the start but if you want a dense vocal sound deep in the mix, this could be the very thing for you.
MKII Violins - THE MOST FAMOUS SOUND EVER! This is why you all love Mellotrons. This is why we are here. This is why you are reading this now. If there was one sound that defines all our obsessions with the ‘Tron, this is it.
Trombone - In Britain back in the '60s we had a TV celebrity named George Chisholm. He was a comedy trombonist. Try pitching that to an executive at the BBC. George was also a celebrated jazz musician and this is his trombone rasping down a microphone circa 1963. Listen to Bungalow Bill and Flying by the Beatles, whoever they were!
Two Trombones & Trumpets - George Chisholm again, doubled. The trumpet player remains incognito.
Viola - A very close miked Viola. A little too close maybe. Maybe the engineer and the player were having a fling. we'll never know but a very useful recording came out of their sordid affair.
The Original Instrument
Made with the help of Streetly Electronic's John Bradley and Martin Smith, this film is a comprehensive and fascinating story of the trials and tribulations then ultimate resurrection of an iconic instrument which still grabs our sonic attention nearly 50 years after its birth.
There's enough info in this film to educate even a hardened Mellotron® enthusiast and there’s no doubting the formidable expertise that Streetly have garnered since John’s family commenced manufacturing and sales of the original way back in 1963. Indeed, the truth is whenever we go to visit them we talk little else but ‘tron and we always leaved armed with more nerdy nuggets of ‘tron information. We also now own one of their magnificent Streetly M4000 ‘trons which is the only currently manufactured ‘tron that’s faithful to the original instrument’s tape replay ethos.
While we love and admire the engineering of the original hardware machines, we also think hardware and good software should sit side-by-side. Because although the hardware versus software debate still rages, ad nauseam, the simple truth is that there's no definitive answer as to which is best. Just as there is good and bad hardware, there is good and bad software and the answer to this conundrum will depend on all manner of things including your personal perspective, available space, your technical savvy, your preferred working environment and of course your finances.
For example, do the majority of musicians looking for ‘that sound’ really care to maintain a forty-plus year old instrument, sourcing rare parts when they wear out or break?
Naturally we care, because we feel that we’re custodians of these instruments and while many other software companies simply hire-in instruments to record or model, we consider this bad practice. In our opinion good practice is when you've lived with and loved the original instrument's character and foibles for a considerable time before beginning any emulative process. Because, then and only then, do you stand a chance of capturing some of the instrument's soul and character within the software alchemy.
It's a simple dogma but you'd be surprised at how many software companies ignore this in favour of marketing hyperbole. Indeed, when we explained our philosophy to the marketing director of one such company, he said "No one really cares" and strolled off to no doubt perpetrate more marketing myths.
For us that fundamental understanding and love for an instrument is what really matters when trying to transplant its character. You see, we can tell the difference between good or bad, lazy or indifferent, marketing bullshit versus a real love for the authentic, because we’ve been immersed in these instruments for over 30 years. And in the case of Streetly, over 50 years!
But ponder this - while we’ve thrown countless bags of money at the purchasing and maintenance of all manner of tape replay instruments from Chamberlin’s to Mellotrons, we’re the exception. We’re committed (some would say ‘certifiable’) and we do it so that you don’t have to.
If you want an M400 plus all the tapes we supplied with the M-Tron Pro, you'd be looking at £20,000 plus, as opposed to the M-Tron Pro's £140. Likewise, if you wanted to buy the physical tape frames of a Streetly Tapes Volume for your original M400 you’d be looking at a price tag of at least £5,000, whereas at 1% of that each Streetly Tape Volume represent amazing value for money.
It’s something worth bearing in mind the next time that someone tells you that hardware is better than software.