Tuesday, May 26, 2015

building the Depression Monster i

A while back, I mentioned that I was starting my new album Depression Monster. This is the first of my recording blogs.

Last time, I started the recording process when I had enough songs for an album. Between then and now, I've been kind of prolific. This time I came to the process with sixteen completed songs. There are others, but they're either going to need severe revision or abandonment. The sweet sixteen? I'm pretty confident in most of them.

I do not, however, have a clear perspective on them. I only had two that I am completely sure of, and the others, well, I can't yet come to any clear judgments. And for that reason, plus the fact I had Skeleton Coast pretty exquisitely mapped out and wanted to really shake up the process, I felt the urge to get more outside opinions.

So step one was to share the songs with my coconspirators. To this end, I ordered a fairly cheap yet surprisingly decently sounding in spite of its insanely high gain USB microphone and did single track "mic in the room" demo recordings. I tried to get these as good as I could, but as these were only for internal use, I didn't get perfectionist on them or anything. I then sent these out to the guys (via Facebook message, although we plan to mostly share via SoundCloud...but I've been busy) for their takes on track choice and arrangement.

I got producer-man's take on the songs yesterday. He selected eight tracks for us to record. The two I would've fought for made the cut. I'm surprised by two other selections...but they all work together pretty well, so it should be good.

He also included his thoughts on arrangements and such...and they were fairly insanely detailed, much more than I expected. The album will be constructed on a firm sonic landscape. It will be much more open and airy than the last one; that one tended to adhere, for various reasons, to the Wall of Sound/Everything but the Kitchen Sink school of song construction. I think Pink Floyd would be a good reference point (particularly as, I am dramatically out of touch, I don't get the references my producer gave me).

I had a few suggestions on the arrangements, mostly having to do with adding a bit of grit, mostly in terms of adding weird distorted bass (as well as a touch of the obligatory distorted guitar). But my suggestions were merely fine tuning...we already have a great plan. I think the best parallel is the storyboarding for an action sequence. Now we tweak.

The next stage is to figure out how we're actually going to record...but I'm going to the producer's housewarming party this weekend, and I assume agenda-planning is on the agenda.

No comments: