Monday, February 23, 2009

That's My Dog(us Balbay)

The Band: We had our usual practice on Thursday. We spent a good amount of time jamming without drums (Keith on bass, me on guitar). It was really nice.

The Studio: Can I have $3000?

Miscellany: Went to the Texas-OU basketball game on Saturday. It was awesome. Our team is very very inconsistent, but bloody fun to watch. I've been hatin on Balbay and Abrams all year, but they were the $ in that game. Balbay's range ends well before the free throw line, but he must have a 40" vert and is an excellent passer and defender. Abrams shoots way too much and should in no way be our main offensive weapon, but he has the quickest release I've ever seen and when he gets hot, look out. That said, UT will lose in the 2nd round of the tourney this year.

The coolest thing about the game was that my seat was directly behind the main ESPN cameras (half-court, 1st row of upper deck). It was neat seeing all the things that go into the broadcast. There were 3 cameras, and each operator had a headset where they were getting directions from the production team and a cheat sheet with all the players pics and notes. Some of the notes were like "people to show during downtime: Colt McCoy, Blake Griffin's parents, Mack Brown and Duane Akina". How did they know Colt and Mack were going to be there? I had a moment of awesome during the game; once, when the camera directly in front of me was live (there was a light telling you when each camera was the one on TV, plus you'd see the cameraman perk up and get all careful)...anyway, once, when the camera directly in front of me was live, he was panning the band. I leaned forward (pretty much right in his ear), and go "More chicky, less bandy." He then panned over to the pom girls. I felt badass.

Monday, February 16, 2009

3 Piece Brutality?

Band: Keith invited a bassist to join the band. Supposedly he's a cool guy. His last band was Christian Rock. I'm anxious about this for many reasons, the biggest being that I'm not exactly stoked about dividing my creative input by another factor, I'm not excited about another personality in the mix, and I ain't thrilled about having my technical deficiencies exposed even further. *Sigh*. Oh well, we'll roll on and see what happens. No word from Hanover's about a future gig.

Studio: I found a sweet glass top desk at Big Lot's for a hunerd bucks. There is VERY little left to do in the studio. Anticipate being ready to self-record in the next 30 days.

Miscellany: Not much going down on the rant tip. Work sucks.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Ten Feet Tall

Despite the fact that I don't think it's very good, I'm putting this song on here for a few reasons:

1. I'm tired of promising something and not having anything for anyone to listen to.
2. I want to give y'all some reference to what I've been blogging about for the last few weeks.
3. I want feedback.

Download the track here (got tired of it autoplaying whenever anyone looks at the blog):

So, as I said before, I'm not all that pleased with the way the 4 songs we recorded turned out. I knew it wasn't going to be professional quality, so I was hoping for something just good enough to send out to the people who book shows at bars in order to secure some gigs.

There a couple of good things about this song. First, I really like the way the guitar sounds. To me, it's a perfect cross between Old 97's "Jagged" and the main guitar on the Counting Crows 2nd albums. Second, I like the way the drums sound. They were miced correctly with quality equipment. They get soloed at the right times and Keith did a great job. Kenny did a really good job mixing the instruments.

My main problems are with the vocals. They ruin the song. For one, it sounds like the same effects as are used for Down Here Together; they're too tinny and clanging sounding to me. Also, I didn't get to record until I got the perfect take because we were rushing. Maybe my voice just sucks so bad the only way to make it bearable is to pile on those fx. That is certainly plausible.

The worst thing about it is the background vocals. I think Kenny went for a sort of punk, off-key equal volume chorus thing. I wanted the background vocals a lot further in the background and more synched in and subdued. He deleted the harmony background I sang, which was good because it sucked, but I would like to go back and take the time to do it right.

Considering how much time he spent (a few days), he did a great job, but all in all, I think we should re-do this and couple of other songs before we pound the pavement trying to get gigs.

Monday, February 2, 2009

What an awesome day

Seems like I've gotten into a rhythm with this blog thing; first a blurb about the band, then the studio, then I post about whatever it is I feel like talking about. So, here goes:

The Band:

I recorded vocals for the demo on Thursday. I re-did "How Do You Like Me Now" and "Ten Feet Tall". Keith had re-recorded the drums and went over my guitar a couple of weeks ago and also added a bass guitar track using my Danelectro Longhorn with the PA as an amp. I'm not all that excited about how it turned out, but no matter what, I think we'll try and use it to get some gigs. Once the studio is done I'm definitely going to try and re-do it all ourselves, because, simply put, I'm not proud of what I've heard so far.

Kenny added the same effects on my voice to all 4 songs (a ton of reverb and some sort of chorus that makes it sound pretty tinny). It sounds pretty good for all the choruses, but in slower, more mellow parts, it doesn't fit. He did let me record an echo track and some background harmonies and staggered choruses on Ten Feet Tall.

Anyway, he's going to give us his finalized 4 song mix on Thursday, so if nothing else I'll post at least a clip up here so you can hear what I've been babbling aboot.

The Studio:

I built a stage to get Keith's drums off the ground, and while it doesn't do a $&%^$&#&%*ing thing for soundproofing, it looks sweet and adds some good storage underneath. I also received the 6 Star Wars movie posters I plan to hang on the walls. I've gotta get off my ass and go get the filing cabinets I need to hold the remaining gear I have to buy to get completely ready to record.


If you lived in Austin, how f'n AWESOME was Sunday? It was one of the best days I've had in months. I woke up next to a beautiful girl, went home and had a good breakfast, then went up to Reagan High School and played touch football for a couple of hours. It was absolutely GEORGEOUS outside (upper 60s, slight breeze, sunshine). After that, I went and had an awesome sushi lunch at Maki. Then I went to Home Depot and bought some stuff for my yard (some fruit trees and Rosemary bushes). I got home and planted it all, then cracked a beer just as the Super Bowl started. I sat out on my patio and watched the first half, then, after a great enchilada plate at La Palapa, went over to a friend's for the 2nd half. I got home at like 10 and crashed out. What a day. Hope yours was the same.