Jabun's 3rd album Generation Supernova has been released! Patreon rewards out in celebration, a new track to share from World Beyond, Better Than The Book back on the radio + some recording updates!
Hi everyone and hope you're having a great April so far! It's been a busy 2 weeks since the last blog post and a BIG blog post it's going to be this time with some HUGE news (as if you already couldn't tell from the title)! Alongside prepping for the release of Jabun's 3rd album Generation Supernova (more on that in a moment), I've also been working hard recording electric rhythm guitars for Better Than The Book's upcoming 3rd album as well, and am currently a little over halfway as I type this with 6 tracks left to go, 2 of which are about half done. Having a tonne of fun recording properly for the first time with my Orange Micro Dark amp too; a lovely and contrasting flavour to my usual Marshall! Anyways, with that quick recording update I think it's time to get straight to the BIG news this week! Let's get started!
First of all this week, I’m super excited to finally share with you my 3rd album as Jabun – Generation Supernova, which was released last night! Check out the album teaser video below:
(Featured music: “Deep Space” – Jabun)
The album preview on SoundCloud featuring all 4 tracks:
And listen to and pick up Jabun’s Generation Supernova album now on Bandcamp:
Generation Supernova is a 37+ minute collection of 4 tracks exploring generative music methods in the studio. Each track utilises a carefully designed system set up to generate a never-repeating and ever evolving soundscape which was conducted and guided to build an emotional and developing journey from the first note to the last.
(SKIP THE FOLLOWING FOR A SPOILER FREE EXPERIENCE BEFORE YOU LISTEN)
Track 01 – Supernova utilises 2 short free-time recordings of Rhodes piano performances which were then duplicated and layered playing at different harmonic and sub-harmonic pitches/speeds either forwards, backwards, or bouncing between both, with some added echo for extra ambience and polyrhythms. Each layer was faded in or out to build and reduce the intensity of the composition throughout its duration. The title Supernova was chosen to reflect the feelings this track brings to me, a great expansive explosion of sounds gradually fading out much like the astronomical phenomenon; beauty with hints of sadness, and later something else.
Track 02 – Deep Space utilises 2 random arpeggiators each given a set of notes to choose from and told to play a note at a consistent regular interval, the first once per quarter note (at 100 BPM) and the second, once per second (60 BPM), along with a randomly triggered note-repeater leading to more interesting polyrhythms. Beneath this is a short free-time performance which was then duplicated, reversed and played back at 2 (sub)-harmonic pitches/speeds. The piece develops with an improvised synth melody (later returning in reverse) as well as a programmed drum machine performance. Unlike the warmth of Supernova, Deep Space feels cold and isolated to me, the persistent ticking of time, that feeling of drifting perhaps aimlessly reflected in the improvised synth and its subsequent return. Nevertheless, the regular beat of the drums keep marching on.
Track 03 – Turing Machine utilises 4 evolving sequences generated using an initial input fed into a deck of cards and a coin flip acting as a very basic modular synth style Turing Machine. You can see the original handwritten manuscript including the sequences, generation rules, and more in this album’s bonus materials (on Bandcamp and Patreon). These 4 generated sequences were then arranged for synthesizers to create an intensely building track accompanied by multiple layers of random arpeggiated heavily distorted electronic drums/percussion, additional orchestral and electronic percussion, as well as a carefully arranged string orchestration developing on one of the Turing Machine sequences for added harmonies and tension. The hypnotic and minimalistic atmosphere of Turing Machine reflects the relentless and driving inorganic computations and calculations I’d expect from a complex machine, and being based around a Turing Machine inspired set-up, the title seemed rather appropriate.
Track 04 – Voyagers utilises 2 instances of an 8 note looping sequence, the first consisting of 32 steps, and the second only using 31 steps (shortening the final note), resulting in a gradually phase shifting relationship between them throughout the piece in a similar way to Steve Reich’s Piano Phase. These sequences were then arranged for string orchestra and pipe organ on opposite sides of the stereo field, gradually building the piece by adding additional instruments and layers at harmonic/sub-harmonic pitches as well as additional glitching sounds using randomised arpeggiators, another set of phasing sequences for synthesizer, and additional percussion. The two phasing sequences which form the basis of the track, I like to think of as representing the twin Voyager space probes launched to explore interstellar space, each on their own undoubtedly lonely, but unfathomably awe-inspiring journeys into the unknown. Even as they explore further than humans might ever reach physically, no matter how far apart they drift, they’ll always be connected by their origin on our small blue planet.
(READ THE ABOVE BITS AFTER LISTENING FOR A SPOILER FREE EXPERIENCE)
Generation Supernova was a fun and rewarding exploration into generative music methods, with each piece very much the result of the unexpected fruits of conducted chaotic experiments in the studio, much like the 15-4-20 album. Whether you sit down to listen intently, have it on in the background while doing something else, or simply immerse yourself in the sounds, I hope you enjoy these semi-ambient, generative experimental soundscapes, from the strange early months of 2020.
In case you’ve not seen them yet, you can also check out the full album credits, special thanks and descriptions on the Jabun – Generation Supernova Bandcamp page! Read more below and I hope you have fun exploring:
All tracks written, performed and produced by Nick Standing [Jabun]
Recorded, mixed and mastered at JabunAudio by Nick Standing [Jabun]
Album artwork, images and photography by Nick Standing [Jabun]
In celebration of Generation Supernova’s release, there’s whole handful of rewards for my supporters on Patreon!
For the $1 patrons, you’ve got the full mp3 album and artwork including alternative album covers, the original unedited album cover photo, and a high resolution scan of the original handwritten Turing Machine Generation Manuscript! Pick it up below:
$1 rewards: https://www.patreon.com/posts/46779681/
For the $5 & $10 patrons, you’ve got all that + the highest CD quality WAV files for all 4 tracks, and for the $10 patrons, you’ll also be getting an exclusive unused unreleased demo from the writing sessions for Better Than The Book's upcoming 3rd album! Check out the rewards below:
$5 rewards: https://www.patreon.com/posts/46779658/
$10 rewards: https://www.patreon.com/posts/46779682/
If any of that sounds good to you, then become a patron today for as little as $1 a month and remember that you’ll be also getting access to all past rewards for your tier including the full Better Than The Book and Jabun discographies, many Patreon exclusive bonus tracks and more! I hope to see you there!
Become a patron: https://www.patreon.com/NickStanding
Explore past rewards: https://www.patreon.com/posts/44575319
And that’s it for this set of rewards! Now that Jabun’s Generation Supernova album is out, I’ll be uploading tracks from the album to YouTube and Newgrounds each Wednesday until mid May, and with such a big release, I’ll also be taking a short break from rewards to update the Patreon REWARD ARCHIVE posts again, but will be back with new rewards for the $5 & $10 patrons on the final Wednesday of May, and the first Wednesday of June for the $1 patrons! Until then I hope you have a great month ahead and enjoy the new music, and thanks as always for supporting Jabun, Better Than The Book and my various projects here on Patreon! More music to come soon!
And speaking of new music, next this week I have a wonderful cover song to share with you from my friends over at World Beyond! In Vlad's own words, this cover from Hans Zimmer's Pirates of the Caribbean was his most challenging production to date with over 140 production hours and over 9400 notes on the arrangement timeline, and I really think him and featured violinist Maritza have outdone themselves this time! I'm not playing or engineering directly in this one, though the last few weeks have been spent as Vlad's extra set of ears reviewing mixes and squeezing the last few drops of greatness into this production! I'm super pleased with the way it turned out and I hope you enjoy it! Pick it up and listen below, and Drink Up Me Hearties Yo Ho!!!
Listen and purchase the track here: https://fanlink.to/DrinkUpMeHearties
Finally this week, a little extra cool news as Better Than The Book was back on Button Down Radio again with The Hardest Part from the Hopes and Dreams album! Always nice to know that people are still enjoying the tunes and thanks so much to Button Down Radio for sharing them again! Check out Button Down Radio and the playlist for the show below. Great listening if you need more ska in your life!
And that wraps things up for this post! No doubt it'll be a busy few days for me with more promo for the newly released Generation Supernova album, and I'll also be taking the time to update the websites and such, as well as fit in a bit more recording for Better Than The Book is I can! Next week starts the weekly streaming uploads for the new album so look forward to track 01 "Supernova" being shared in the next blog post, along with any other updates and news I can find! Until then, thanks so much as always for supporting Jabun, JabunAudio, Better Than The Book and my various projects and I hope you enjoy listening to and exploring my latest album as Jabun - Generation Supernova! All the best, take care and see you next time!
Nick Standing; Better Than The Book; Jabun!
Keep up to date with all of Nick's projects on a monthly basis right here!