July 28, 2009

New Album Recording Journal – page 5

Posted in Recording Journal at 2:27 pm by Matt

Finally changed my strings. The new ones are very bright, a quality which is sometimes desirable and sometimes detestable when recording sludgy post-metal. I’ll have to wear them down a bit before laying down any serious tracks. However, energized by the return to playability of my beautiful guitar, I wrote a new riff for the album – very different from anything else written so far. It’ll become the intro/beginning of “The Crumbling Dam”.

Let’s take a look at where things stand right now in the songwriting process (all percentages approximate):

1. “Outside the City Gates” – 50% written musically. / 2. “Sector 7” – 80% written musically, 10% lyrically. / 3. “Tower of Need” – 95% musically, 40% lyrically. / 4. “Fluorescent Twilight” – 25% musically, 10% lyrically. / 5. “Ambling Cadavers” – 80% musically, 0% lyrically. / 6. “Where Gardens Never Grow” – 80% musically. / 7. (not yet titled) – 60% musically, 10% lyrically / 8. “The Crumbling Dam” – 50% musically, 10% lyrically. / 9. “Avalanche” – 50% musically. / 10. “Baltimore” – 10% musically, 0% lyrically.

As you can see, “Tower of Need” is the closest to being “done” in terms of the writing phase. As I mentioned before, you’ll probably see a rough demo version of this song in the near future.

July 27, 2009

New Album Recording Journal – page 4

Posted in Recording Journal at 7:08 pm by Matt

The juices are flowing.

I wrote the first snippets of lyrics, a little bit for “Tower of Need” (which is my current favorite song from the album – demo version might leak in the near future…) and a little bit for “Fluorescent Twilight” (which is ending up in a really different place than I expected it…).

Still need to change my strings. I may have the new title picked out; no final decision yet.

I’m also distracted by a different project, and I’m not sure which one I’ll work on first. Rest assured, whatever I do, this album will be released on September 12th. I am a hopelessly meticulous (read: OCD) musician.

July 17, 2009

New Album Recording Journal – page 3

Posted in Recording Journal at 2:27 pm by Matt

Studio confirmed. I have an apartment! All my stuff, including musical stuff, is getting moved in on Saturday. I’m a little worried about some of the recording process, because there’s quite a bit of sound leakage in this place. I really hope I don’t bother the other tenants unbearably much, and that they don’t call the cops reporting screaming every time we start recording vocals. There’s still a long-shot possibly that this album might have *gasp* REAL drums instead of v-drums, but I’m not sure how strongly I’ll pursue that. It takes a lot more microphones and a lot more skill than I possess to make real drums sound decent on record.

Also, I need to change the strings on Janine, my 7-string guitar (which I just remembered a few days ago had a name). One of the strings is broken, which I think was the first time a string ever got broken on that instrument. It made it a long time…I wonder what gauge of strings I should use. Something mediumish…not too thin for recording doom, but not so thick as to be muddy and indistinguishable.

I may attempt to record this album in a more conventional way, that is, one instrument at a time rather than one song at a time. For “Kingdoms”, one song was recorded and then mixed, then another song was recorded and mixed, and so on. This resulted in heterogeneity of sound quality (compare “The Lilies Underfoot”, the second song recorded, with the rest of the album) as well as technique (“Rebel”, the first song recorded, has no lower-pitched screams because Jason hadn’t discovered them yet). For “Dance With Divinity”, the same was true except only the instruments were recorded and mixed track-by-track (or piece-by-piece, since DWD was really just one song), then the vocals were ALL added in one glorious throat-destroying weekend. So that’s closer to what I want to do with this. I really want to record all the songs without mixing each one, and then leave the mixing and production until after the instruments (and maybe vocals) are recorded. But I don’t know if my computer can handle that. I need a compactflash card with like a terabyte of memory. Honestly, if they’re not that expensive, I might just buy a few large ones in order to be able to do what I just described but without using the computer. MAN that would make things easier.

*checks bestbuy.com* wait, they ARE expensive. Hmm. How big is mine? I feel like my current card is only like 512mb…I could buy a 4gb or 8gb one and be a lot better off…