Musikmesse 2016: Eventide and Tony Visconti announce Tverb plugin inspired by David Bowie's Heroes

We could be heroes, just in one DAW.
We could be heroes, just in one DAW.

MUSIKMESSE 2016: The secret is out. We knew that Eventide and Tony Visconti were working on a plugin inspired by some of the producer's iconic work with the late David Bowie, and now Tverb, the plugin in question, has been announced.

The development of Tverb was inspired by a meeting between Visconti and members of the Eventide team, in which Visconti discussed the vocal recording and microphone techniques he used when recording the title track from Bowie's 1977 album Heroes. Eventide then committed to creating a plugin that would "mimic and build upon the real world effects that Visconti had created".

Visconti's technique involved setting up three microphones in the hall at Hansa Studios in Berlin's Meistersaal (pictured below), where he and Bowie were recording. The first was for Bowie to sing directly into, a second was positioned about 15 feet away, and the third was placed further back in the hall. Gates were placed on mics 2 and 3 and set to open as Bowie sang louder and louder.

Let's talk Tverb

Tverb takes the iconic effect that was created from this setup as its starting point. It integrates three completely independent lush reverbs, with compression and selectable polar patterns on microphone 1 and adjustable gates on microphones 2 and 3. The effect is said to be enhanced thanks to the use of stereo mics, and you can also use DAW automation to make the mics 'wander' throughout your track.

"I have plugins that emulate rooms but this concept, to have the setup all on one page, I never thought it was possible," commented Tony Visconti. "The three microphones are correct, the room is correct, and now that it's in stereo, you're actually hearing something that I never got around to doing when I was in Berlin. It's just great."

"One of the challenges in developing Tverb was to design reverbs that captured the rich ambience of the Meistersaal and yet were efficient, ensuring that the plugin would run native without burdening the DAW's CPU," adds Eventide's Tony Agnello. "By running the three independent reverbs, the two far microphones can be convincingly placed anywhere in the hall."

Tverb includes presets created by Tony Visconti and other artists, and is available from today (8 April) for Mac and PC in VST/AU/AAX formats for the introductory price of $149. This will rise to $249 after 31 May 2016. Find out more at the Eventide website.

Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.