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Harmony of a Champion Fan Album Coming in 2016

Harmony of a Champion Logo

The Shinesparkers have created several albums in the past dedicated to things they enjoy and this announcement is no different. Harmony of a Champion - launching in 2016 - is the fifth album by the Shinesparkers and is a tribute to Pokemon Red and Pokemon Green on their 20th Anniversary. Be sure to check the press release below for more details...

Harmony of a Champion

Shinesparkers are very happy to announce our fifth album, Harmony of a Champion, a musical tribute to Pokémon Red and Pokémon Green, which were developed by GAME FREAK inc and published by Nintendo. For almost twenty years, Pokémon has been a beloved franchise for gamers across the world, and one that shows no sign of slowing down. Our aim has been to create a fitting tribute to mark the 20th anniversary since the release of these iconic games, and connect with the audience that first experienced them all those years ago. Development for the album began in December 2014, just after the release of Harmony of Heroes: Final Smash. 

The Project

Our previous albums have featured a variety of remixes and arrangements from the Metroid and Super Smash Bros video game series. For this project we have decided to take a different approach, by creating a story-driven experience. Harmony of a Champion will tell the story of Red and his journey from a ten year old boy who grew up in Pallet Town to becoming a Pokémon Champion and the most powerful trainer in Kanto. In order to build this story, we have incorporated sound design across the album to add narrative and express the story more effectively. In an effort to connect this tribute to the original games, we have also placed a focus on chiptune and sound effects from the original games, recreated using sample libraries to mimic the original Gameboy sound chip.

Like our previous albums, the music will feature a variety of genres. Metal, Electronic and Orchestral arrangements will all be heard in Harmony of a Champion, along with many others. There will also be a number of live-performed pieces, including a string quartet, choir, and orchestra. We have attempted to make each genre complement the locations of the game, with a few extras thrown in here and there to add to the diversity our albums have been known for. Fans of previous Harmony albums will be happy to know that we have many returning musicians, as well as some fresh faces who will be making their debut for the very first time.

We have also been hard at work putting together a selection of artwork for Harmony of a Champion, based on locations from Kanto. Art Director Heather Wright has been working with a team made up of returning artists from Harmony of Heroes, along with some new additions, to provide several pieces of artwork to support our music. The art collaboration focuses on two central themes: colour and character. Colour was a major theme for the first generation of Pokémon games, as many will remember from the town names (Pallet Town, Cerulean City, Lavender Town, etc.) We decided to use this theme for our artwork.

Each painting uses a specially-selected palette of two main colours relating to the colour of the city. As with any story, the character is the heart of the tale. In this case, the art pieces focus on the central trait of each environment such as the vivacity of Saffron City or the haunted nature of Lavender. We hope this concept is appreciated by fans and hope they will take the time to appreciate the challenge and hard work that our team has committed to.

Meet the Team

Once again, we are delighted to have the support of a core team who have been working hard to ensure our album runs smoothly. The album is once more being directed and produced by Darren Kerwin, with the assistance of Stephan Wells, Laura Intravia and Bernardo Limon. All three have been long term supporters of our previous albums with Stephan Wells reprising his role. We are incredibly proud to have their dedicated support.

We are also very excited to introduce Emmy-Award-Nominated Gina Zdanowicz, who is our lead Sound Designer for Harmony of a Champion. Gina and her team have been hard at work creating sounds for our album which have been an essential tool in our efforts to tell an effective story. Gina's previous work includes over 80 mobile and casual games as well as console games such as The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, Bioshock 2 and the upcoming Just Cause 3. Her commitment to the project has been exceptional, and we can't wait to share what she has produced.

On July 13th 2015, the team was saddened by the news of Satoru Iwata's death, former programmer and president of Nintendo. He was held in high regard by many members of the team. Iwata-san had a huge impact on many games during his time as a developer, especially Pokémon. For instance, created compression tools to reduce the size of Pokémon Gold and Silver to allow Kanto to be included in the games and on top of that, he was responsible for porting over the battle logic from Red and Green to Pokémon Stadium without reference documents. Ultimately, he performed an instrumental role in the Pokémon franchise and Nintendo as a whole, and because of this we have decided to dedicate Harmony of a Champion to his memory.

The music of Junichi Masuda has touched the hearts of millions of Pokémon fans around the world and continues to be appreciated almost twenty years later. We are incredibly proud to be putting together a non-profit album fuelled by the love and appreciation of a committed team of musicians, artists, sound designers and engineers.

Our launch window for Harmony of a Champion is the first half of 2016, and will be available as a free download. You can follow the progress of Harmony of a Champion via our Facebook and Twitter pages!


~ The Harmony of a Champion team

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