Well, hello. I hope you’re having as good a holiday season as possible, regardless of the increasingly surrealistic state of existence that seems to have defined this year.
Amidst much brow-furrowing and head-scratching at such strangeness, I have been up to some music things:
1: Infinite Regression is a just-released anthology of live electronic performances from 1997, with a 22-year-old me operating very firmly in ambient guitar looping mode. It’s very different from just about everything I’ve done since then, and in a lot of ways it represents the things I was specifically working to avoid in my music for a long time. But in revisiting it recently, I was pleasantly surprised at how well it holds up, and how much I can enjoy listening to it without the anxiety and self-loathing that typically accompanies me hearing myself.
It contains roughly 80 minutes of music, much of which I’ve never made available in any form. It’s newly remastered as of just a few days ago, and available from the venerable Bandcamp for the exceedingly sliding scale of pay-what-you-want.
2: Along similar lines, the Echoplex Analysis Pages, a multi-part live looping tutorial I first published in 2002, has just been revamped and revised after a long period of dormancy. This is a multi-year account of different ways I’ve used the Echoplex Digital Pro, featuring detailed performance annotations, some supremely geeky tech talk, and a bit of navel-gazing philosophizing for good and bad measure. Not for every possible reader, for sure, but if you like that kind of thing, then that’s the kind of thing that you’ll like.
3: Selective Sync Conflict, the EP I made with composer and multi-instrumentalist Ross Garren, has garnered some very strong feedback since its release earlier this year. Serious thanks to everyone who has taken the time to check it out – we deeply appreciate it.
Superb music writer Oliver Arditi just published a review of it here. There’s also a slightly less recent, but still very gratifying, review from Thomas Mathie at Headphonaught.
3.14: Selective Sync Conflict was born from my taking Echoplex guitar loops and giving them to Ross, who then built up some staggeringly detailed and intricate compositions around them. A little while ago, I flipped the equation around by taking some of the parts Ross recorded and whipping up a remix, which is available here:
Supreme geek note and moderate humblebrag: the new guitar loops I recorded fresh for this remix were done not with my usual hardware Echoplex, but with a freeware software looper called Mobius. According to Jeff Larson, the man who created Mobius, the program was originally inspired by my Echoplex Analysis Pages and the music detailed therein. So me trying to learn to use a software program that was originally based on my own work is… a loop of some kind, for sure.
4: Epically Cracked, the funk/jazz/electronic band I’ve played with for the last couple of years, went into the studio earlier this year, where we had the great fortune to be recorded by the fabulous engineer Scott Fraser. We tracked all of our tunes live, and have been editing and mixing the material since then. We’re hoping to have a release available for your perusal early in 2016.
5: Are you patronizing me? Because I might be asking you to.
Not in the talk-down-to-me-sense, so much, but in the crowd-sourcing, subscription-oriented, 21st-century equivalent of passing the proverbial hat around. Patreon is probably the best-known platform for this sort of thing, and Bandcamp has their own subscription service available. I don’t yet know what shape I might want this sort of thing to take, or what exactly I could/should offer – new exclusive recordings? Music for hire? Video lessons? I’m still pondering the possibilities and implications of all of it. If you have any opinions about such things, either good or bad, I’m very curious to hear them.
Finally, and most importantly: it continues to boggle my mind that anyone takes the time to check out what I do. I absolutely do not take it for granted,
So, truly: thank you for listening.
More to come…