Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Let the waiting begin

Matt came in last week to sing some songs and slay his fuzz-wah bass solo on Lovesong Cockroach. It was a revelation. Up until now it’s just been a whole lot of “Me” getting spread all over this record. Getting Matt in there proper really helps make it sound like a “band” again. All of the best records have multiple elements contributing to the final mix, be it other band members, songwriters or producers. With Matt kicking in and Landy on board for the long haul, I think we’re heading in the right direction. We made a few rough mixes and upon first listen I was disappointed. I’ve had a bit of time to listen to them and investigate what’s actually there and my current diagnosis is that it all sounds great and this is going to be Earwig’s best record yet.

Live, Matt’s backing vocals are pushed towards the realm of punk-rock. In the studio I can really hear what he’s doing, why he’s doing it and what he’s adding. One song that this effect really stands out on is Glorious & Gloom. On the pre-chorus (‘You think everyone is poison…’), Matt sings a contrasting vocal line that makes this part seem like it’s in a minor key almost. It’s neat and it really works well for the song as a whole. Here’s the live solo acoustic version of Glorious & Gloom for you to memorize.
To download the MP3 go to File -> Save as and store the file on yr desktop

The sad part, for me, is that with the holidays upon us Mike and I only have 2-3 days to work before the end of the year! This seriously throws off my schedule as far as getting this record done in time for my original release plans. Oh well, anything good is worth waiting for. Or so I’ve heard.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I know what I want

Staying focused, that’s the key. This stage of working on the record is where darkness and self-doubt start to slyly creep in on me. It’s easy to get lost. We’ve completed a LOT of guitar work and it all sounds undeniably great. But I start to wonder, is it the ‘right kind of great’? This album has been alive in my head for a such long while now and there is some difficulty for me in it actually become animated. It means that I will have to let go of it. That can be a tough thing for me to realize and to accept. In my mind’s eye these songs are awash in greatness, no questions asked. Once I spit them out, that greatness is open to debate. Landy and I have been dealing with this by re-cutting some questionable guitar parts with a different purpose in mind. Approaching a few songs from alternate perspectives to see if there‘s a better fit. A different guitar, a different amp, a different vibe. Sometimes the results are fantastic. Other times it’s hard to tell. Add in the prospect of all of these new options and we’ve created some cold work to sift through. Since Mike (Mike Landolt is the producer and I sometimes call him Mike, sometimes Landy. But I’m talking about the same person.) is a bit newer to these songs he is not as attached to ‘the way they were’ as I am and it’s sometimes easier for him to hear if a new part is working or not. Often I might not be sold on it right away just because it is different from what I’m used to. But I want these songs to break away from what they were and bloom into something new. I know what I want this album to be. It’s how it has to happen.

On the song ‘Next Christmas’, I’ve added in some guitars and a solo that I’ve never played live or even considered for this song before. They’re still settling in. I do like the new solo though, it reminds me of the Cure...just a little bit. You won’t hear any of these new guitar parts on this acoustic demo. Too bad. You’ll just have to wait for the record to be finished like the rest of us (us?!). Regardless, I hope you’ll enjoy this new MP3 of ‘Next Christmas’. Leave a comment and let me know what you think of the new songs. I don’t know how many people actually read this blog, but if it’s 2 or 2000, thanks for listening. Yes, I mean you.
To download the MP3 go to File -> Save as and store the file on yr desktop