Exit Music (for a Film)

July 15, 2012 10:40 AM

It's probably a different film now (could still be Romeo & Juliet, but they might have to use chainsaws now). Headphones are best, for maximum crunchification.

INSTRUMENTATION:

guess! (hint: nothing electronic)

posted by askmeaboutLOOM (28 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

Correction--technically, one electronic. It barely counts.

A note about the vocal performance: it was only made possible by a case of phlegm-y lung death that's been plaguing me for the last week. The higher part at the end is normally right in my wheelhouse, but I had to push and push to get it out this time, and the final line's repetitions were, in fact, while choking back yet another coughing fit. The whole thing resulted in a rasp and a layer of sincerity that I wouldn't be able to capture, had my voice been in top shape.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 10:48 AM on July 15, 2012


I really like how you stripped it down to its elements, but retained a giant sound. It feels like sticking your head into a dollhouse, only to find yourself in a cathedral.
posted by hanoixan at 11:08 AM on July 15, 2012 [4 favorites]


Loved this! This is turning out to be such a great challenge!
posted by TwoWordReview at 1:16 PM on July 15, 2012


Yeah, great stuff Mr Loom, lush sounding and I agree with the big sound comment too.
posted by marienbad at 3:28 PM on July 15, 2012


It feels like sticking your head into a dollhouse, only to find yourself in a cathedral.

This is the kind of review that makes me listen to a song.


instrumentation: chord/air organ?

yeah, whoa, this is really good. the decay cutting on the reverb threw me a bit at first, but when everything's roaring it furred up nicely.
posted by dubold at 4:00 PM on July 15, 2012


decay time / cutting off the tail of the reverb, sorry.
posted by dubold at 4:00 PM on July 15, 2012


instrumentation: chord/air organ?

Close, but no cigar. Hint: There are three instruments, apart from voice.

Thanks for all the positive feedback, all! This mix actually came about by accident--the original idea was going to include banjo, mandolin, drums, and a lot more voices, and be completely clean--more of a Bertolt Brecht/Jason Webley affair, but we had a bit of a hangup in coordinating with our resident plucker for a recording session, and man vs sun turned distortion on the master track as a joke, and we kind of had an "Aha!" moment. Now, there's distortion on all the individual tracks to the point where it sounds like a chorus of chainsaws, an NES bassline, and an etude for melodic chainsaw, with vocals by the guy from My Morning Jacket, amped to 11. Hooray for plan B!

The decay tail cutting off, dubold, was intentional--I wanted it to sound unsettlingly unnatural (mission accomplished, I think).

Finally, the tape cut ending serves two purposes: a) I wanted it to end that way because our version of Let Down that will follow when the album is all pieced together could not be more different, and b) it needed to cut off before the instruments started to taper off, and the distortion wore off, so the instruments would start sounding like themselves again; that's no fun.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 6:47 PM on July 15, 2012



Close, but no cigar.


melodica?

I wanted it to sound unsettlingly unnatural

yeah, the artificial-ness of it was apparent, which works well in context.
posted by dubold at 1:20 AM on July 16, 2012


melodica?

Nope. Closer. One of the instruments is actually directly responsible for bringing about this lung plague. I may just post the clean version later in the month, if no-one guesses. Remember, three instruments, plus voice.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 10:36 AM on July 16, 2012


One of the instruments is actually directly responsible for bringing about this lung plague

asbestos kazoo?
posted by dubold at 11:44 AM on July 16, 2012 [5 favorites]


It feels like sticking your head into a dollhouse, only to find yourself in a cathedral.


This needs to be the music video for this recording. Perfect.
posted by Doleful Creature at 12:10 PM on July 16, 2012


In terms of a vid for this the first thing that came to mind was some kind of montage from Lindsay Anderson's "If"....... Oddly enough, filmed in the town where I'm currently working - Cheltenham, England.
posted by MajorDundee at 12:29 PM on July 16, 2012


I so want to spoil this guessing game, but for now, I'll keep my filthy mouth shut.  
posted by man vs sun at 1:06 PM on July 16, 2012


asbestos kazoo?

Hahaha, may as well have been, but no on both parts.

This needs to be the music video for this recording. Perfect.

If someone has the wherewithal to undertake such a venture, you have my full endorsement.

I so want to spoil this guessing game, but for now, I'll keep my filthy mouth shut.

It is filthy, and needs to stay shut.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 3:11 PM on July 16, 2012


Were you wearing a kilt?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:25 PM on July 16, 2012


No; it's a skirt, and I don't wear it around other peo--whoops, didn't mean to share that...
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 4:05 PM on July 16, 2012


I'll post the clean version at the end of the week, whether anyone guesses correctly or not.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 9:52 PM on July 16, 2012


Q: What's got reeds and bellows?

A: Angry Marsh-Troll!
posted by TheRedArmy at 4:19 PM on July 17, 2012


1/3 goes to TheRedArmy: the main chord structure is accordion. Keep going--there's still the bass and the melodic etude instrument left! Another hint: the undisputed God of one of the instruments passed away yesterday.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 7:10 PM on July 17, 2012


Also, the accordion is responsible for my lung death--it's rather old, and likely caked with decades of dust and whatnot. While I've played it before, I usually improvise, and don't actually look at it while I play. This time, since I was playing a chord progression (and suck at the damned thing), I had my face buried in it for a good hour and a half while recording, without a break.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 7:11 PM on July 17, 2012


I've played piano for a quarter of a century, and I fucking suck at accordion because I can't make sense of a keyboard from that angle. You really cannot look at your right hand if you want to play comfortably but I really cannot play it without looking at my right hand. Accordion players are badasses.
posted by TheRedArmy at 7:34 PM on July 17, 2012


Doesn't help that it's also tiny. Then there's the whole left hand situation. What the fuck's that all about?
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 7:59 PM on July 17, 2012


I think the left side is a calculator.
posted by TheRedArmy at 9:22 AM on July 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


May as well be. I've looked at charts of where the chords are, and it just never translates to my brain, or even as conceivably translatable by any brain.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 11:18 PM on July 18, 2012


How did I only just find this? Your voice, in the "now we are one" bit, is sensational.
posted by greenish at 5:26 AM on June 6, 2013


Thanks! It's that way because it was...well, rubbish. Accordion dust killed my voice when I recorded its part, then when I came back to do the vox a week later, I had almost no voice. My vocal style has actually changed all around, as a result of that fit, in the last year.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 10:11 PM on June 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you can have a partially-lost voice and still sound that good, well, that makes me want to kick you in the shins.
posted by greenish at 2:24 AM on June 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ha. By the end of the night, it was completely gone. The clean version shows just how much I was struggling to get it out. It was one of three takes (well...two and a half...) that evening, and the only one that didn't include an incredibly broken pitch.
posted by askmeaboutLOOM at 2:32 AM on June 26, 2013


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