|MIX VERDICT: KIT Plugins BB Mo-Q
|THE TAKEAWAY: “There is simply something magical with the BB Mo-Q. It’s extremely subtle, even when dialed to the extremes, but it still provides the power to profoundly shape a sound.”
|COMPANY: KIT Plugins • www.kitplugins.com
• Subtle, even at extremes
• Not a surgical EQ—but it’s not meant to be.
New York, NY (November 14, 2022)—Every few years, a plug-in comes along that makes you question how you were ever able to close a mix without it. The KIT Plugins BB Mo-Q is one of those plug-ins. It is subtle yet amazingly powerful, and in more cases than not, it’s all that’s needed to lift your mix to the next tier.
Taking the company’s collaboration with the legendary Blackbird Studio one step further—I use the KIT BB N105 plug-in emulation of Blackbird’s Neve 8078 console modules every day—the BB Mo-Q is KIT’s latest release. It was created with KIT Plugins’ Gen 2 Full Range Modeling technology, ensuring pristine emulation of the original hardware.
Blackbird Studio owner John McBride’s arsenal of gear is likely the largest in the world, and among the “really”prized possessions is an original Motown EQ—one of only a handful built for Motown Records and used on such hits as Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On” and The Temptations’ “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone.”
Like the hardware device, the plug-in is simple. It features seven pre-defined, passive frequency bands (50 Hz, 130 Hz, 320 Hz, 800 Hz, 2 kHz, 5 kHz and 12.5 kHz), a bypass switch and gain control. Each frequency can be adjusted ±8 dB, and like the hardware device, the plug-in’s frequencies and curves have been meticulously designed for maximum creative control. Extreme settings yield smooth and natural results while retaining their musicality.
The BB Mo-Q is AU, VST3 and AAX-compatible, and unlike most plug-ins, its window is fully resizable, making it easy to simultaneously see multiple instances of the plug-in or to fill your screen with the simple-yet-beautiful BB Mo-Q graphic.
This is in no way a surgical EQ; it’s better thought of as a tone control on steroids. It’s extremely musical, and you would be hard-pressed to find a sound source that it didn’t complement. Since installing the BB Mo-Q, I haven’t closed a mix where it wasn’t strapped across the stereo bus. I’ve found that once I get my rough mix balance intact, I’ll use the BB Mo-Q as a tone control to get the overall mix into the sonic ballpark. This often eliminates the need for additional EQ plug-ins on the individual tracks.
The Mo-Q works equally well on virtually any sound source.
Keyboards can be sonically fashioned to better fit into the mix without occupying too much space. The 12.5 kHz band allows ample levels of air to be added to a vocal without a hint of harshness. It works wonders on the stereo return of my Bricasti reverb, allowing the tone of the reverb to be easily tailored to match the track perfectly. The broadband EQ filters complement electric guitars and acoustic instruments, and it works wonderfully on individual drum kit inputs or strapped across the drum bus (or both!).
There is simply something magical with the BB Mo-Q. It’s extremely subtle, even when dialed to the extremes, but it still provides the power to profoundly shape a sound. And yes, when I use it, the plug-in’s subtle harmonics give me the sensation of channeling Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On.” I have to admit, it’s inspiring as hell.