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Posts Tagged ‘flute’

Residual Modes – 5.18.2011 – Never Sorry [Arrison Kirby, Katie Collins, Megan Driscoll, Rachel Jae, Dane Hill & Samuel Williams]

Click to download the tracks:

“Really Horrible Shit is Popular”
“Finite Mass”
“Us”
“Laundry”
“Via Chicago” (Wilco cover)

This session is filthy.  It plugs on, unapologetic and held together only by the semen everyone ejaculated from their instruments.  There is unfamiliar territory here, taken from the deepest depths of feeling through the darkness, up to epic highs of triumph and grandeur.

“Finite Mass” was the warm up jam this session, but I didn’t feel it was the best way to introduce the session.  “Really Horrible Shit is Popular” seemed much more in-one’s-face and abrasive.  A better way to begin sometimes…definitely this case.

Yeah.  We cover Wilco at the end.  The vocals are terrible.  I couldn’t really remember the vocal nuances for shit and barely knew the lyrics.  So if you can put up with that karaoke bullshit, you’ll find some very nice music underneath, most of the time.

Katie Collins – omnichord, keys, ukulele
Megan Driscoll –  flute
Dane Hill – drums
Rachel Jae – auxillary percussion
Arrison Kirby – guitar, keys, vocals
Samuel Williams – banjo

We Are in Love – 11.28.2010 – Never Sorry [Arrison Kirby, Katie Collins, Megan Driscoll, Rachel Jae and Dane Hill]

Click to download the tracks:

“Free Day”
“Afraid of the Ghost (Hell)”
“Monkey Parade”
“People’s People”
“Tender” (Blur cover)
“Single Politician”
“Automobile” (NWA cover)
“Blue”
“Afraid of the Ghost (Heaven)”

This session was awesome.   Recording these things live, we have to have a certain degree of it set up and sounding right for the room before we even begin.  So I will be the first to admit that the vocals came out a little bit too quiet, and beyond repair…at least in my microphone.  Elsewise, everyone had their shit together and everything felt really full and booming.  This is the kind of spread that makes a person feel very lucky to be engaging creatively with these other persons.

We tackled two new cover songs in this session.  One by Blur and one by NWA.  I’ll spare you the details and give you the standard run down:

“Free Day” – Once again, our opening warm up jam works perfectly as the session opener.  Dane is rocking the mandolin on this one, Rachel took over omni duties.  Katie had not yet arrived.  I love how deep the beats are on this one, and how beautifully all the instrumentation builds around them.

“Afraid of the Ghost” – We had not done this one in a minute, but here are two new and very different versions.  The “hell” version is slow and moody.  It sounds familiar to me.  I initially want to compare it to Pink Floyd, but I don’t think that’s it.  The “heaven” version is a little crazier and certainly more fast.  I soaked out the beginning of this version with some pretty intensive electronic slamming.  Also, I’d like to note the perfect placement of Dane’s drumming choices on both versions.

“Monkey Parade” – This one gets better the more we do it.  I added keys to this one, trading off between them and guitar.

“People’s People” – We had not messed with this song in months.  Then suddenly, it pops up again.  I think it was Megan’s idea to take a current crack at it.  I gotta say…despite the inability to discern what the vocals are saying, this is possibly those most solidly formed, while still remaining upbeat, version of this we have done.

“Tender” – Alright!  A Blur cover!  The thing I love about this is that, when I introduced this song, I don’t think anyone else had heard the original before.  This recording is about the 6th take, at which point, they still hadn’t heard it.  So basically, that’s one more reason to love the people playing on this song.  And how about those vocals?  That’s Rachel on the mains, with Megan and I harmonizing as applicable.

“Single Politician” – Of all the ways we have tried this song, this is my favorite arrangement.  Dane and I actually fleshed this version out right before our show with Katie & The Bass Drums back in August.  This is just the first somewhat solid recording we have done of it.

“Automobile” – This is a cover of an NWA interpretation of a Parliament song.  Anyone that was in middle school when Niggaz4Life came out is likely familiar with this one.  It was the novelty “country song” from that album, chalked full of Easy-E and others spouting off embarrassing, gruff sexual yearns.  I thought it was important to keep all the dirt and smut in tact, though normally I don’t talk this way.

“Blue” – We did this version before Katie had arrived.  I must say, I completely adore this version for it’s minimalism.  And, damn, Rachel can belt this one out.

Katie Collins – omnichord, bass
Megan Driscoll –  flute, harmonica, vocals
Dane Hill – drums, bass, mandolin
Rachel Jae – vocals, auxillary percussion
Arrison Kirby – guitar, beats, vocals

Mostly Lowish – 9.29.2010 – Arrison Kirby, Megan Driscoll, Rachel Jae & Dane Hill

Click to download the tracks:

photo by McKenzie Michaels

“Rub and Slip”
“Bristol”
“Family Affairs”
“Squeen”
“Sweet Times”
“Afraid of the Ghost”
“Asleep in my Head”
“Fucking”
“Sucking”

This session was without our beloved Katie, but we pulled through quite minimally.

“Rub and Slip” – We introduced the keys to the set up and opened with this reggae bi-product type jam.  I played those keys low to a slowed down version of the beat Obadiah used to use for the song “Same.”  Dane handled the bass good and dubby.  I think Rachel is hitting the drums.  This song leaves as abruptly as it begins.

“Bristol” – I replaced the electric guitar with acoustic to strip down this one.  Dane on the bass.  Megan and I singing of course.  Rachel is laying back on the snare.

“Family Affairs” – We did a better minimal version of this one in an earlier session which is pretty much lost.  This one isn’t all bad, though…just a few hiccups here and there.  Same set up as on “Bristol.”

“Squeen” – Another random looper pedal moment.  I almost silenced it, but Dane told me to leave it on.  He proceeded to build it up and over.  I joined in on keys as well.

“Sweet Times” – This was Dane’s progression.  He’s playing the acoustic guitar.  I’m playing the piano.  I’m a bit choppy at times (and bendy), but the little dancehall interplay around the minute twenty mark is worth the wait.

“Afraid of the Ghost” – First recorded version of this song with keys.  I was a bit uncomfortable playing the keys while singing on this one.  Hence, my voice awkwardly dips out several times.  Overall, though, this is a fun little version.  Megan’s flute mixing with the feedback reminds me of some of Roxy Music’s more experimental moments.  The beat was actually constructed by myself and David Dalton together.  We used it in the Flashmob song, “Tanya Tucker.”

“Asleep in my Head” – This is Megan and I doing a sensitive little flute and piano jam influenced by Carlo Gesualdo.

“Fucking” – I guess this is comedy kind of?

“Sucking” – This one isn’t funny at all.

Megan Driscoll – vocals, flute, tambourine
Dane Hill – bass, guitars
Rachel Jae – axillary percussion, drums
Arrison Kirby – guitars, keys, beats, vocals

August Prep Session – 8.18.2010 – Arrison, Katie Collins, Megan Driscoll, Rachel Jae & Dane Hill

Click to download the tracks:

“Anemone” (Brian Jonestown Massacre)
“New Beginnings”
“Clap Hands Jam” (improv on Beck)
“Untitled as Yet (Down)
“Really Horrible Shit is Popular”
“Single Politician”
“Family Affairs”
“Untitled as Yet (Up)”
“Hymn”

This session was primarily practice for the Pilot Light show with Katie and the Bass Drums coming up on August 25th, as some – if not all – of the players in this session will be joining me that day.  This is also the first session recorded in which Rachel Jae and Dane Hill were present.   It was interwoven with a lot of surprise sounds coming to the forefront. Ideas too.   Some of those surprise sounds and ideas are as follows:

“Anemone” – As noted above, this is a cover of the Brian Jonestown Massacre song. The first or second time we got together under musical pretense, Katie gave me a mix CD with the original version as the starting track. I immediately loved it. It’s not too complicated of a song. So Katie, Megan and I picked it up really quick and then laid it down after Dane and Rachel had left for the night. The first take wasn’t too bad. This was the second and it’s slightly better.

“Clap Hands Jam” – This is just one of those goofy little segues that sometimes rise up when live recording. Dane and the girls had a good little percussion section going. I tried to enter with Beck’s “Clap Hands” but could not remember the order of the notes right off. So I bounced around between them, hence being but a “jam.” I did actually find the correct order, but only momentarily before we decided to send itg to its grave.

“Untitled as Yet” – Two versions here. The “down” version was actually recorded immediately following the “up” version. I reordered them and spaced them out in the track listing for the sake of flow. The down version incorporates no electronic beats, only minimalist percussion from Dane and Rachel – plus a little off kilter theremin from me. Also, notice that both versions contain “lyrics” now. We needed some way to signal when we wanted to do the key drop. Looking at each other and nodding is fine, but not always so interesting or reliable. Rachel suggested we all say “Make a wish” right before the drop. We all were in agreement, but then we did not know how to signal the wish, itself. We worked that one out too.

“Single Politician” – Dane is playing a full kit on this one and it sounds grand. We went through a few different alterations to get to this version. Mostly based around the drums, as Dane had two different modes for this song, both of which worked well. With two drum modes and two sections of the song so far, we decided to try a different mode for each section, but run them together. I think this is the best version of this song yet.

“Hymn” – If you are offended by this song, then you might want to consider downgrading your church. Perhaps to a model without an ATM machine.

Katie Collins – omnichord, ukulele, words
Megan Driscoll – flute, omnichord, vocals
Rachel Jae – shakers, wood blocks, words
Dane Hill – drum kit, hand percussion, wood blocks, words
Arrison Kirby – guitar, beats, vocals

Single Inception – 8.4.2010 – Arrison, Katie Collins & Megan Driscoll

Click to download the tracks:

“Family Affairs”
“Single Politician (one take)”
“Single Politician (another take)”
“Untitled as Yet”

I’ve been working on this project, playing music with Katie Collins and Megan Driscoll.  I’m glad to announce that Rachel Jae and Dane Hill are also involved and likely someone else soon, as well.  However, our weekly assembly  from August 3rd knocked us momentarily back to just we three for the night, as Dane and Rachel were out of town, filming a movie.  We worked on only a handful of things, including the performance of a new song, completed only the night before.  Keep in mind that these recordings are rough. Levels are not perfect. You can read descriptions of the surviving takes below.

“Family Affairs” – This is one I have been playing live for a while now. I’ve never been that great at nailing the chorus, vocally, and I did a piss poor job here. Plus my mic volume was too high and I was trying something different on the guitar than what I usually did at that part in the song. Each distracting. If you can suffer that, it’s all worth it for the gritty breakdown at the end.

“Single Politician” – This is a song I started several months ago and finished the night before this session. The girls picked it up really fast and the beat was just a straight and constant punch stolen from something else. Nothing fancy. Just a fun song. I posted these two different versions (of about eight) because they each have opposite strengths and weaknesses. On the first one, the vocals are better, but the lyrics have some mistakes and the omnichord and flute are not as present as they should be. On the second one, the vocals are a tad too loud and not always so tonal, but lyrically correct. The omnichord and flute are crisper. Take your pick.

“Untitled as Yet” – Another take of our new collaborative classic. This version is a bit grittier and clunky at times.

Recorded on August 4th, 2010

Katie Collins – omnichord, ukulele
Megan Driscoll – flute, omnichord, vocals
Arrison Kirby – guitar, beats, vocals

“Untitled as Yet” – Arrison Kirby, Katie Collins & Megan Driscoll

Click to download the track.

“Untitled as Yet”

So recently I have been working on a new project that’s mostly still under wraps.  The scope of the thing is yet to be seen, but so far the music is being sculpted by myself, Megan Driscoll and Katie Collins.  We began with some stuff I had written, got it downish and reconstructed here and there.  Last Wednesday, however, we ended up with this track, which was a completely collaborative process.

We’re not entirely certain what to do with it yet and it’s definitely rough around the edges, but it’s really come together well to this point.   You do have to forgive the levels on the thing.  It was recorded very simply, which did not leave me a lot of room to work with when it came to mixing and mastering.

Recorded on July 21st, 2010.

Katie Collins – omnichord
Megan Driscoll – flute
Arrison Kirby – beats & guitar