Happy Valentine's Day! I wanted to make a romantic song built from decidedly un-romantic sounds and images. I mined a lot of half-finished darker, sadder songs that hadn't gone anywhere and assembled a mini-library of static, buzzes, and odd percussion. I did the same with old sad, political or angry poems for the lyrics. [more inside]
I miss the lazy rock of the 90's. Lean into the derivative. [more inside]
My first time wrangling Ableton to do what I want, and the first song I've posted to MeFi since moving to SF. [more inside]
A rough demo mix of a new tune I’ve been working on for a loose band project called The Wishing Well Divers. This particular recording is an experiment in recording and producing only on an iPhone and was recorded, mixed, and mastered in a day or so using only my phone, my voice, and an acoustic guitar and bass. [more inside]
It's been a while since I posted anything, so here goes with a slightly off-kilter, folksy, moody vocal and guitar piece.
This is a funny one - a collective demo that I suspect will always sound far, far better than any band recording we manage to cobble together. As the band's guitarist it burns a little bit to not have played or written a single note of this, but I can't argue with the end result.
All this awful flood action has inspired me to dig up the sad old tail of Highway Boy, raised by his trucker brother, because his father was a hurricane and his mother was a cellar door. [more inside]
As long as I am posting moody, folksy songs with voice and guitar...here's another one!
Punk, metal, jazz, slack, folk and noise. This pretty much typifies the grab bag that was my band, Big Ghost. Like trying to get Pavement and RHCP to agree on California rock. It's a mess, but it was our kinda mess. [more inside]
Vocal and guitar, one rough take, one track, melodic and intense two minutes and thirty seconds
First song written and recorded since I moved to Napa. Spooky grungy punk that maybe doesn't reflect my sunny new locale. Written about my drummer's frustration with dating, online and otherwise. Lyrics in fold. [more inside]
This piano part and vocal melody have been rattling around in my brain for a while--finally wrote some lyrics and fleshed it out a bit.
Not a cover of the Faith No More song. Oh no. [more inside]
A quick and scarcely rehearsed lofi recording of my take on the classic folk standard/gospel/African American spiritual, with an overdubbed chorus and acoustic guitar.
This is a really rough early home studio demo of a song in development for my new recording project, The Wishing Well Divers' "Tragicomic Americana." Ironically, just as I've been working on this song, which thematically concerns stigmitization and marginalization, and well, being face down on the floor, I had a health scare last night that left me literally face down on the bathroom floor for a half hour. I've got no job, health insurance, family support, or cash cushion right now, so this song has taken on new personal meanings for me just since I started recording it a couple of days ago, with new worries about health problems and their potential to make it harder to find work and insurance. [more inside]
An upbeat ditty about falling in love, blah blah blah. Cobbled together during my currently-on-hiatus 52 weeks project. Inspired by Holiday-era Magnetic Fields. [more inside]
This song originally came together accidentally while I was setting up my VR drum kit for my son for Christmas, as I posted about here at the time. Yesterday I decided to try to do a studio version and this is how it's coming out so far. It's pretty far along but I expect to add some horns before it's all said and done. [more inside]
This is a working rough mix of a song I originally posted a rough acoustic guitar demo of here on MeFi music a couple months back... This version gives the tune the full band treatment, and is part of a larger full-length project, "Tragicomic Americana," I'm working on with a new group called The Wishing Well Divers. [more inside]
So this is another song, audio is taken directly from the youtube video here. This is a live performance, did a session in the lighting hire and install company I work for over the weekend. This video forms part of a competition entry for our band. [more inside]
I got an urge to do a slower, gospel inspired cover of this song written by Nick Lowe (probably best known for the version popularized by Elvis Costello) and my friend helped me make it happen today in a quick fit of studio fun.
A fast and dirty lofi cover of a beautiful song originally by Crooked Fingers that's meant a lot of different things to me at different times in life. [more inside]
A song we played when I was in The In Out circa 1994-1996, but I don't know if they ever recorded it after I departed. So I decided to cover it twenty years later. [more inside]
Something fairly new. This is two of us playing live, me on bass and singing, and synth and drum machine from Magnus. [more inside]
New track recorded today in Ableton. Solo, original, home recording. First attempt at playing with vocal delay (delay delay). [more inside]
I've been cranking out a lot of songs almost involuntarily lately and many of them seem to sort into a genre I think of as "Tragicomic Americana," a traditional mode of American blues, country, and folk songwriting that ruminates on heartbreaks and losses exaggerated to such dramatic extremes, the effect becomes darkly comic, like Hank Williams's "There's a Tear in my Beer," for example. Well, FWIW, here's my latest attempt to make a minor contribution to that grand tradition... [more inside]
This is a lo-fi demo of a new song I wrote recently. It was an experiment in seeing what I could sketch out with the least effort just using my phone. I doubled and harmonized with my own vocals in the chorus, but didn't have any multitracking software on my phone to do it, so I used a freeware app that let me record and mix a second vocal as input to the waveform of my original performance. [more inside]
Another acoustic song! I'm really digging this thing where I limit myself to two strings, probably because I'm lazy.
We're cheating slightly, as I've already uploaded a version of this song. But hopefully everyone will agree that it sounds a whole lot better. Plus we've added some (discrete) synth parts and have even gone to the trouble of making a video. More tunes on our Soundcloud.
I've been listening to a lot of riot grrl and wrote this for a friend
This mp3 was converted from a video I made, recording stereo audio straight into my phone. It's a rough draft with minimal instrumentation and arrangement I'm hoping to develop further with a group that recently started coming together called The Wishing Well Divers. [more inside]
The road trip song - a galloping guitar ramble underpinned by soaring synth strings. By Sredni Vashtar
Inspired by the Adam Curtis documentary, recorded with a variety of gear and 'mastered' using LANDR.
The first track off of my new album with Teen Mom, called Groovy, that we released today. [more inside]
What a difference a few months makes. The original has been reworked and extended and was recorded live a few days ago on the London stage (the Alleycat in Denmark Street). A song by Sredni Vashtar.
Two of my favourite bands in the world are Stereolab and Cocteau Twins and another band whose music I find greatly inspiring is Pink Floyd. This song is a pure project of this triangular love for these three bands. Enjoy!
An experiment in writing songs without choruses. [more inside]
Somewhere between Show of Hands and the Mountain Goats, we find this story of a man in a boat off the coast of Cornwall, drunk, armed and fearful. [more inside]
Short and sweet. A song about aeroplanes overhead with minimal vocals. Live rehearsal recording by Sredni Vashtar
When you live in a country where something called a 'melting pot' falls into play, you sometimes don't detect marked differences in sounds and influenced within the larger meld of rock music (maybe it's a little clearer for pop music - I'm not sure)... In any case, here is one track created at the foothills of Ukraine's Carpathian mountains... You may hear a distinct Carpathian whistle and even gamma in this song. I think it gives the song a distinct and tasteful 'ethnic' flavour. This is 'BFD' by Ummagma and I hope you will enjoy it.
Some of the most inspiring music out there focuses on the positive elements of humankind and society, blah blah blah. But there comes a time when even musicians' gearing towards that tendency get fed up and write something outside of their 'regular' thematic 'boundaries'. This seems to be the case with this Ummagma song. Enjoy and visit the band on Facebook...
There is one thing that I really admire in certain artists and that is flexibility. I love it when a band can perform across a spectrum of genres and especially when they manage to pull it off well. Starting out with Ummagma's Balkanofellini, which seems appropriately named when you envision those awesome soundtracks to all of Federico Fellini's films (by Nino Rota), combined with all the Balkan eclecticism of Emir Kusturica's films (soundtrack by Goran Bregović). Well there you have it. A hybrid. Thought you might also like a few quick offerings of other Ummagma tracks, so here is Human Factora">, Risky, NIMBY, and Upsurd, Orion, BFD and Outside
When Sonic Youth surprised the whole world by pulling off the most amazing cover of a song by The Carpenters ever (I couldn't really fathom listening to any of the originals, to tell the truth), who would've thought what a big impact their version of 'Superstar' would have had. Still to this day, this songs is constantly referenced whenever people speak about Sonic Youth. Here's presenting one track with a similar vibe. 'Back to You' by Ummagma [more inside]
My friends and I have been playing together for a few years, we get a couple shows each year here in minneapolis. We recorded a few of the new songs, this one is a straight ahead pop song
Let's throw in a juxtaposition in sonic terms just for the sake of diversity. Here is a free download of Ummagma 'Titry', alongside one right here for 'Live and Let Die'. The first is an instrumental folky track somewhat like Peter, Bjorn and John's 'Young Folks' crossed with Tortoise (with their more upbeat side of postrock). The second is also upbeat in the best shoegazey dreamy fashion - but with ethereal yet solid vocals... Enjoy both :) [more inside]
A cover of the MGMT song. Just me on vocals, guitar, and bass. Inspired by a recording I have of Ben Lee playing this song live. [more inside]
We made an EP.... here's the title track. Featuring Sredni Vashtar's usual swirls and loops and noises, it was one of four songs recorded and mixed late last summer in South London [more inside]
Where does one genre begin and another one stop? I'm asking myself the very same question every time I hear that this song is indie or pop rock or folk rock or dream pop. Well, whatever one calls it, I hope you enjoy this. [more inside]
My Christmas card to you all.