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Super Adventure Club’s Michael Winger & Jake Wood Make Musical Mayhem with Propellerhead Reason

Super Adventure Club’s Michael Winger & Jake Wood Make Musical Mayhem with Propellerhead Reason

Stockholm, Sweden (October 29, 2009) – Super Adventure Club is the musical pairing of industry vets Michael Winger and Jake Wood, born from the embers of a burning desire to rock with drums, bass and a couple of laptops. Winger has recorded and engineered for big names like Kronos Quartet and Feist. Wood is a freelance drummer and teacher. The duo uses Reason via ReWire to achieve a wide palette of tones and flexible routing options for their composition, and Winger, in his producing role, has used Reason since version 2.

As a "software-only operation" since its inception, Super Adventure Club has always believed in the power of Reason. “As a group, we started using Reason from day one of rehearsals, for all the tones it offered and because it's incredibly stable and processor efficient,” explained Wood. “It seemed like when we first started two years ago, the technology of soft synths and computers had finally reached a level of stability that was comparable to hardware synths. The big push for software was because it offered so much more in terms of sounds and flexibility.”

Wood says it’s the sounds banks in Reason that beckoned for their attention. “Neither of us have much patience for programming synths—there's always the occasional tweak in a filter parameter—but that's okay because most Reason tones are ready for star time, right out of the box. Most of the time we just go through instrument patches when we're writing and when we hear an inspiring tone, we write a song around it. Finding that special tone that ignites inspiration is a priceless commodity, and we've got ‘favorites’ lists teeming with them.”

The group also makes use of Reason for live performances as well as in the studio. Both use PreSonus Firebox interfaces and M-Audio Axiom 25 controllers. Wood also has a two-tiered miniature MIDI controller set up with an M-Audio Oxygen 8 25-key controller directly below the Axiom to allow tonal changes without patch changing mid-song, which allows him to handle the lead synth and drum set simultaneously for an entire show.

“Reason is a huge part of our live setup,” said Wood. “ReWire integrates really easily into our production flow, we can trigger multiple Reason instruments, which eliminates the need for program changes while performing. Since we each play two instruments simultaneously, anything that makes changing sounds easy is a huge help. The flexibility of ReWire opened up a whole new world of sounds that were previously unfulfilled pipe dreams. Reason is such a simple and well-configured program that it's easy to route it into our setups without taking extra time to figure it out.”

Reason tones can be heard all over the Super Adventure Club album, "Üntz." “The Thor patch ‘Vox Pamelia’ is on the bridge of ‘Love Isn't Love Without Adventure’,” said Wood. “That was the first time we really messed around with Thor and we were blown away by how full it sounded, straight off the presets. We didn't have to do a lot to it in the mix.”

“In my own work as a producer,” added Winger, “I used a lot of the sounds on Beth Waters’ self-titled debut album. ReDrum is my go-to drum machine for making click tracks. I also just finished producing a record with Francesca Lee where I used ReDrum and Thor a good bit. Jake and I both played on that record as the rhythm section, too.”

Overall, the biggest bonus the duo has found with Reason is the stability it provides. “We had lots of crashes with our production software prior to integrating Reason into the setup,” recalled Wood. “’Reason’s ‘Mack Truck’ stability makes it so much more efficient and stable than just about any soft synth out there. It’s dependability means less perspiration on stage. Also, the automatic routing when you run out of mixer channels or add an effect is pretty excellent. Anything that keeps creativity happening and allows us to think about music instead of computers is a good thing.”

So what’s in their Reason Rack?
“Thor, for some super cool Theremin sounds that show up on "Love Isn't Love Without Adventure," and a fat bass and lead synth parts. Malström for nasty solo distortion ugliness… love it! NN-XT used for strings and pads. Subtractor for our song "Slay the Dragon" which requires some 8-bit synth cheesiness ala an old Nintendo.”

For more on Super Adventure Club, go to:

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