sleeping rays of jupiter

Sleeping Rays of JupiterRehearsals continue, different venue this time.

I’ve got simultaneous Sleep-ins action going on right now, working with Stefan and Josh to record the new record, and rehearsing with Mike Johnson and James Butler to prep for some shows coming up this Summer. We’ll be playing songs by the Sleep-ins, the raydons, Jupiterboy, Jimmy the Wigwam, kingsizemidget, and lonesomerobot.

I took some time away from playing and it some ways it shows, but in other ways it’s just like picking up from where I left off. Playing live shows is the best practice, though.

quick update

Had to rework some release dates on Ingot Rock — essentially, moving everything back a couple of months while the holidays and some very bad weather dominated our lives here in NC.

Still in the studio, diligently working on the Sleep-Ins, because it truly never ends! The good news: Running Out Here is absolutely done and sounds better than it ever has. The bad news: sometimes improving one song makes another sound less-than-stellar, as a result. Realistically, there’s not much more that can be done, though, so here’s to hoping I really can get those tracks finished by summer. I’m going to say I can… there’s really only 2-3 left to do, and all that’s left are tiny details.

And yet they matter SO much.

Even moreso, the homeowners (waxon, the spoots, gas station sandwiches, the butter spot). More music I’ve been making. It’s a secret. Maybe you’ll get to hear it one day.

Also, a quick word about the apparent and imminent demise of another wonderful label, Karmic Hit. This is truly a shame, as there are few labels left in the world that so obviously relished the opportunity to bring good music to the rest of us. All the best to John Kilbey in his future endeavors; when I was in Australia he was the first to give me a chance at doing something worthwhile, which is something that I’ll always appreciate & never forget.

Until next time,


buried in the mix

lansdowne01-05-2005after stepping away from the sleep-ins project for several weeks’ time, i’ve finally gotten a chance this weekend to get back to mixing. now, it seems like it should be easy, mixing. but it’s not — although i must admit the difficulty is inherently ego-driven. there is some truth to the notion that i might be more perfectionist about my own projects. that isn’t to say i just phone it in when i’m mixing someone else; on the contrary, i suspect that what i need is what others seek when they ask me to mix for them: a different perspective. i might mix a better record for someone else precisely because i won’t get caught up on the minor issues i do when it’s my own music i’m critiquing.

those minor issues become major hang-ups when it’s your baby.

are the vocals too loud/not loud enough/in pitch/lacking proper inflection? is that guitar part interesting enough? why doesn’t the bass have the growl i want? are the drums too sibilant? why isn’t everything perfect?

catnfid12alas, the many distracting sideways journeys that detour the progress of the album’s completion. years have passed while i’ve wracked my brain and tortured my ears with hundreds, even thousands, of repeated listens to music that needs finishing. only recently have i begun to just declare warts and all an acceptable product, because i just don’t have enough time on my hands anymore…and the thought of dying having done a lot with little to show for it is not a very welcome one.

so on that, uh, note – a bit of the awesome happened this weekend. while i didn’t finish the album (that’d be the sleep-ins, songs about girls and outer space), the final track count looks to be 8 songs and here’s how it looks (listen to most of these at ingot rock):

  1. silver state – is finished(?) although i might still have to dial back the ‘shimmer’ on the drums.
  2. chrome skull cap & matching codpiece – also finished(?), not sure about one vocal trick in there
  3. angelina – is finished!
  4. running out here – might be finished as of last night…
  5. tonya, extraplanetary spaceship girl – thought i had the magic but another listen says otherwise; vocals just too rough.
  6. astro-not – could be finished; this one got a cool treatment a la the warriors.
  7. desert song – is done.
  8. bug on my face – stef came up with what he calls a final mix, but man, those vocals…

not exactly a magnum opus, but a nice project nonetheless. there might be exactly zero people waiting for me to finish this, incidentally. ok, that’s not true. there must be at least 3 australians. and a couple of english gits. but no americans. maybe i should rename it ‘death panels’…

studio notes…

  • just finished mixing chrome skull cap & matching codpiece for the sleep-ins cd. that one’s due in june.
  • some new lonesomerobot songs in process, should have 9 or 10 songs total. the album is to be called dulce periculum.
  • that should be out later this year (fall?)
  • man i have a lot to do.
  • don’t you just love unordered lists?
  • also working on a side project, codename: the homeowners. don’t know what to make of this one yet.