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Can’t talk now! I’m in the studio!

July 20, 2008

This weekend has been a weekend of catching up on all the music writing that we missed out on last weekend, when John went fishing at some lake and I went to Massachusetts to visit my family. It was a relief to get out of New York, which can be deadly in the summer–something about the buildings trapping in heat and lots of pissed off New Yorkers planning their days around finding their next air conditioned refuge. Oh, and John’s car’s AC totally conked out on the commute over to the studio on the hottest day ever, so now our commute to the studio in Brooklyn is AWESOME (note my sarcasm). Man, you gotta get that fixed pronto.

In terms of the music, we had already passed what John likes to refer to as our “first hurdle”–namely, arranging our first song from start to finish, which we are tentatively titling “212.” In a future blog post yet to be determined I will spend a little more time talking about my own writing process (and John will hopefully chime in with his own personal take on writing music), but for that song, I basically just started with two or three lines that popped into my head with this catchy little melody, which I tried to expand into a larger melody with a story behind it (basically, that sometimes I get anxious being alone in the apartment at night and nothing freaks me out more than weird late night phone calls from numbers I don’t recognize).

Anyways, this weekend we arrived in the studio to work on our second jam “The Rain.” I had thought up this song on some rainy days in June and we had already laid down some ideas around the verse and chorus melodies I had thought up. Listening back to it the past few weeks in the comfort of my own home, I just wasn’t feeling the chorus anymore. It just kind of seemed like the verse was rad, but then the chorus would hit and it was a let down, so I muted the vocals and tried to think of what I heard in the music that we had already constructed for the previous chorus. I came up with some ideas and tossed around some new lyrics for the verse, recorded them at home and sent the mp3 to Johno for his take on the new ideas. He liked them, so this weekend we returned to the tune with the new ideas and started to nail down the entire song.

When we arrived at the studio I was kind of bummed to find that someone had accidentally broken the paper lamp I had brought last time. We try to set the ‘mood’ when we write, and the bright lights in the Brooklyn space can sometimes feel like we are in a mall rather than a studio. So I brought this paper lamp in to the space–a remnant of my brother’s July 4th rooftop party–and suddenly we weren’t getting frustrated or antsy about writing music. It’s amazing how the little things can effect the creative process. Clearly, I was somewhat attached to this paper lamp. Perhaps you could even say that I thought of it as some kind of mystical good luck charm. Perhaps. Keep in mind that I also consider beer a mystical good luck charm. Whatever works to get the creative juices going, you feel me?

Anyways, we played around with some samples of sounds I had to create this super weird beat that sounds like an industrial explosion of water that runs through the entire song. Basically, we just would listen back to the song after doing each arrangement or test of adding/dropping out instruments or beats and then figure out if we thought it worked, and if not, what it needed to achieve the effect we wanted.

Today we will be back in the studio to finish up arranging “The Rain” and maybe even start on tackling some of the other half tunes that we have drafted up. There is talk of bringing a camera to the space and/or maybe even filming us working on stuff so we can upload it to the blog, so keep your eyes peeled for an exclusive photo of our paper lamp good luck charm, which despite being mauled by some other band’s gear, still works!

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