Home Music Articles Forums Blog Chat More...      

B'ak'tun 13 (Doom2012)

Get Flash to see this player.

Composed specifically for the MacJams Doomsday Challenge, this piece is titled for the period in which we live, according to the Mayan civilization of mesoamerica. December 21, 2012 is the last day of the 13th b'ak'tun, and, according to some new age wackos, the end of the world. A b'ak'tun (the name is a "back-formation" invented by scholars) lasted about 394 years, and this is the 13th since the formation/creation of the world, according to them. (If you wish to know more Wikipedia has it covered.) Any new age wackos who wish to sue me for slander after December 21st will, of course, be laughed out of court ;-) This piece is not meant to represent the apocalypse but as a tribute to the Mayans.

The music consists mainly of a doubled midi track, by me, with minor differences, played by two instances of Alchemy synths, played over two drum loop tracks. Towards the end are two short pieces of melody, one played by Alchemy using a male choir chant preset and the other by a GB synth (Hybrid Basic with Parachute preset). The former sounds a little medieval but what the heck. The piece finishes with a cymbal crash which pans around somewhat psychedelically and fades into about 10 seconds of silence symbolizing the obvious.

I hope you enjoy listening: I spent an inordinate amount of time trying to get it just right, and fitting for the apocalypse (13 mixdowns). By the way, the number 13 was apparently of great importance to the Maya, as it is to me, and I believe that an alternate translation for b'ak'tun could be Richard.
Leave a Comment
You must be registered and logged-in to comment.
Song Stats
Hits: 2651
Comments: 24
Fans: 21
Plays: 135
Downloads: 56
Votes: 0
Uploaded: Dec 14, 2012 - 06:38:23 AM
Last Updated: Dec 14, 2012 - 06:48:01 AM Last Played: Jul 31, 2019 - 05:29:24 AM
Song License
Creative Commons License:

Creative Commons

Song Actions
share on facebook share on twitter download song
Skean said 2473 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
B'ak'tun 13
I get a feeling of panic in the Mayans camp just before the terrible doomsday hit them, bravo.
Check out my latest song called Dusk and gone
Char said 2473 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
Pretty heady
stuff, Richard. I like your percussion as there is just enough to give the thing momentum. The chanting is kind of prayerful. Good job. Thanks.
Check out my latest song called Bound, v2. w Music by Dirigent
Jarvoid said 2473 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
Uh oh.........
Heavy......but good !!

Those Mayans what are they like,hope they were just mucking about !! :
Check out my latest song called Port Arthur Blues
SmokeyVW said 2473 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
majestic and mysterious
very majestic, and mysterious...

nicely done! thanks
Check out my latest song called Farther
Les_Kloo said 2472 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
Yeah, I can see the temples and crowds of the faithful. Cinematic it is. The ambient-flavored backdrop is very deep and, yes, mysterious. Not too sure about the snare drum, but what the hell. The deep percussion is perfect. Especially like the chanting.

I enjoyed reading your description, too.

It's not just new age wackos that are spreading this nonsense. Many pseudo-scientific charlatans are draping themselves in the terminology of science to peddle their wares. Shame on them, because, unlike the new age wackos, they know they are full of it.
Check out my latest song called They Don't Lie
alackbass said 2472 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
B'ak'tun 13 (Doom2012)
I think you really captured the spirit of this whole event. There's both an ancient and modern vibe to this. As if it was born in a tropical jungle while predicting the doom of a modern society. Love the chanting and low percussion. Great post!
Check out my latest song called Mean Miss Teacher
gadzooks said 2472 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
B'ak'tun 13
Well done Richard ... you have really captured a doomsday feel. The percussion and chanting, the synth and the excellent mix all carry the theme well. Well done!!
Happy doomsday
Check out my latest song called Emoji
Vic Holman said 2472 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
so who are we going to sacrifice to appease the gods?

a fitting soundtrack piece for sure richard. the percussion here is really great and gives it a nice boost
Check out my latest song called Life In A Car
abzwork said 2472 days ago (December 14th, 2012)
Rich, colorful, and Majestic..
Most excellent is the flava here my friend..:):):)
Check out my latest song called "BusyBody"
djdrshaman said 2472 days ago (December 15th, 2012)
I think you really capture the energy of the Doomsday challenge with imaginative and cinematic production that has a strong storytelling element. plus, you keep it interesting, with a momentum that drives
Check out my latest song called The Stoning
michaeljayklein said 2472 days ago (December 15th, 2012)
Excellent storytelling in music...
...from the beginning to the climax, this really paints an exciting and thrilling picture for me; really great work Richard.
Check out my latest song called There Ain't Nobody Here but Us Chickens!
awigze said 2471 days ago (December 15th, 2012)
wonderfully mixed and the separation of the voices is excellent. This is a good one......
Check out my latest song called If You Can Hang On by Outtaorbit
carbon said 2471 days ago (December 16th, 2012)
very enjoyable, contemplative piece. listening to this sparked a conversation between my wife and i about how soothing listening to chanting can be. excellent work and thanks for sharing.
Check out my latest song called unnamed
Doug Somers said 2470 days ago (December 16th, 2012)
Time well spent!
Snare and bass drum work for me amidst the ambientesque bed. I like how you pick up the drum energy at 1:20. There is definitely a feeling of foreboding you build here. The vocals sound like they are out of time and not quite from this space - a good thing that adds mystery.

It's interesting how you used a double midi track, which reminds me of how you did Riding, and you get great results from playing with sound this way. The 13 mixdowns and the inordinate honing that you put into this piece show up in its spot on final character - perfect to describe the scene you lay out.

Oh, and thanks for the dload. Another Richard13 favourite!


Check out my latest song called Western Stranger
ste said 2470 days ago (December 17th, 2012)
The marching beats and monkish effects. Lots of atmosphere!
Check out my latest song called songbreak
Philip18 said 2469 days ago (December 17th, 2012)
Doom 2012
The drums add some tension (a touch military in style), but there's warmth in the synth sounds, the gentle melody and the voices. Much enjoyed!
Check out my latest song called Refuge
Henke said 2468 days ago (December 18th, 2012)
Maybe not Mayan in style itself, but a great tribute. Really well done, thanks.

Take care,
Check out my latest song called Summer (Promenade) (WIP)
DWL said 2468 days ago (December 19th, 2012)
It's all doom and gloom these days
I'll be happy when it's all over especially as I got to hear this first ;-)

Nicely done Richard, suitably doom laden!



Check out my latest song called California Snow Day
VicDiesel said 2467 days ago (December 19th, 2012)
The chanting gives it the requisite tribal feel. Nice.
Check out my latest song called Frippery
egobandit said 2466 days ago (December 20th, 2012)
drifting to the end
doubled up and making images appear dig the toms very cool!
Check out my latest song called Cook the goose
airportseven said 2466 days ago (December 20th, 2012)
I was born on the 13th
time well spent - the mix is excellent - great space and positioning. Really cool piece. I never bought into the doom business - but I do believe it's a time of transition. Does that make me a new age wacko?
Check out my latest song called 4.22.13 first thing
oldlibmike said 2466 days ago (December 20th, 2012)
Very nice impressionist piece. Paints an image. I like it! I agree the chorus is more midieval but then no one recorded the Mayans so who knows? :) Much enjoyed!

Check out my latest song called Parabola
davajonah said 2466 days ago (December 21st, 2012)
Shame on me.
I went through all the entries for this yesterday and have just realised I missed yours. I'd decided to leave listening to them all until neared the "event". [which is yet to happen, here in the U.K.]

Anyway. Here I am listening. Very cinematic. The underlying synth work is very good and suggests doom certainly, especially the voices chanting, [I really like those Alchemy voices; nice to see someone else using them!] though I note you have posted this as a tribute to the Mayans themselves and not the supposed apocalypse. Ha! I like that.

Really nice piece Richard. The panning cymbal crash is a fitting ending to the music, though not to the end of all things, it would seem.
Check out my latest song called Lost and Found
Diego_B said 2465 days ago (December 22nd, 2012)
still alive
It snows in Hamburg, we're still alive and everything's fine... I enjoyed your tribute to the Mayans and now we're waiting for the christmas eve. :)
Check out my latest song called Fairy Song
Artist Info
artist photo
Name: Richard M
Location: near Peterborough Ontario Canada
send a note
What's past is prologue 23 September 2016 Howdy! After an absence of two years at MacJams I'm back and making some noise. I haven't been totally absent but my interest in music was practically nada. My wife Anne died last year after a... [see more]

Check out some of my other songs:

Who's Online
Invisible Members: 0
Visitors: 80