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Posts Tagged ‘improvisation’

Taurean Beat – 1.8.2012 – Never Sorry [Arrison Kirby, R.J. Hill, Dane Hill & Carissa Stolting]

Right click and “Save As” to download the tracks:

“Afraid of the Ghost”
“House of Satan”
“Blue”
“Contemplating the Harvest”
“Starve It Out and Never Go Hungry”
“She” (Green Day cover)
“Satan Reprise”
“Dislodged Mystery Trinket”

A new year had just begun, so it was time to get back on the Never Sorry train.  We wanted to return to live drums for our next phase.  On this day, the lovely Taurus, Carissa Stolting (Jackboots) stopped by to fill that role.

We’ve been eager to move forward with new material,  but decided to stick with mostly older songs since there was someone new in our midst and we had been rusty, ourselves.  (The holidays do that to you.)  In these cases, we sometimes let Carissa start with the beat and the other three of us would play the song around her.

There’s an impromptu Green Day cover, of all things, as well as some extensive but interesting improvisational jams.  One of these, “Satan Reprise,” is an instrumental re-imagining of “House of Satan.”  Much more upbeat, with traces of joy.

Arrison Kirby – vocals, guitar, keys
RJ. Hill –  vocals, omnichord, auxiliary percussion
Dane Hill – bass, vocals
Carissa Stolting – drums

Things That Escape Gravity [part 2] – 12.29.2011 – Nathan Brown, Aaron Shugart-Brown, Arrison Kirby, Matt Zingg & Jeremy Law

Click to download the tracks:

“Show You a Way”
“Back When You Had Your Thing”
“Cobra Slomo Backflip”
“Night Boat”
“Earth Angel”
“Broadcast”

This is the second half of our holiday session.  Matt Zingg and Jeremy Law join us here.  Chip Pennington was also present, but he stayed quiet.  The music is a little more unhinged now, as the libations were flowing through us good and steady by this point of the evening.

I stepped away from the drums to run beats and electronics instead.  Matt ended up taking over the drums later.

Nathan Brown – keys, electronics
Aaron Shugart-Brown – guitar
Arrison Kirby – beats, keys
Matt Zingg – bass, drums
Jeremy Law – words

 

Things That Escape Gravity [part 1] – 12.29.2011 – Nathan Brown, Aaron Shugart-Brown & Arrison Kirby

Click to download the tracks:

“Commercial for a Sports Drink”
“Not a Good Place to Sleep”
“Lullaboo”
“Hustler”
“Magic Universe”
“Night Flight”

It was past Christmas, but not quite new years when we recorded this.  The darkest days amid the lazy ones provided a good ethereal vibe to this session.

As noted in the title, this is only the first part of a two session night.  We were joined by other friends later.

Nathan Brown – keys, electronics
Aaron Shugart-Brown – guitar
Arrison Kirby – drums

“The B” by Obadiah

Click to download the track.

“The B” – Obadiah

To prepare for this show with How I Became the Bomb, Obadiah recorded four sessions over a course of three nights. This song was one that arose from between the cracks of our set in progress. It was born of improvisation, as a response to the song that proceeded it.

This is pretty silly stuff for to be the first “official” Obadiah song released in years.  If you come check us out at the Pilot Light, you’ll see it’s barely even a scratch on the surface for the current barrage of Obadiah soundscapes.

Kenny Gilbert – guitar, bass
Josh Russell –  drums
Nathan Brown – keys, electronics
Aaron Shugart-Brown – guitar, vocals
Arrison Kirby – keys, electronics, beats

Improvisations on Lennon and Cyrus – 10.20.2010 – Arrison Kirby, Katie Collins, Dane Hill & Megan Driscoll

Click to download the tracks:

photo by Annie Leibowitz

“Opening Bell”
“Give Peace a Chance (Seriously)”
“No Destination”
“Jumble Bumps”
“La Tee Dah (Give Peace a Chance)”
“Locked Doors in Mexico”
“Failed Fire”
“Afraid of the Ghost”
“Give Peace a Chance (Or Something)”
“Achey Breaky Heart”
“A Double K C”

This is, so far, has perhaps been my favorite session.  It’s loose and dirty, but flows quite merrily.  Definitely fun to play and, hopefully, listen to.  The use of the keys with the larger sound is new to this arrangement of players.  Instrument swapping also continues.  And everybody’s favorite…cover songs!  [kind of]

“Opening Bell” – One of our traditional, improvisational, come-from-nothing, random openers.  It begins with the beat and ends with Dane’s live drumming.  The latter is the better.  Pretty happy shit.

“Give Peace a Chance” (John Lennon cover) – Oh yes.  Three different versions.  Everybody knows the chorus, for sure,  but everybody’s talking bout…what?  So I just made up new verses.  It’s the giving peace a chance part that matters, after all.

“No Destination” – Dane on guitar.  Katie using the omni to add a really nice, easy going vibe – especially at the beginning.  I’m drumming.  I felt pretty on top of my shit with drums that night, too.

“Jumble Bumps” – This is probably my favorite song from the session.  I believe that I made very good choices with the keys and the guitar solo.  The only problem is that I did not necessarily do this at the same time.  There is one very particular aspect of this one that is like nails on a chalkboard to me…but it runs alongside the really really good aspects.  I’m not going to point out anything beyond that.  Hopefully your ears will hear it differently than mine.

“Locked Doors in Mexico” – This one is just Dane and I.  He on guitar.  Me on drums.  That dude is a great communicator, musically.  I love the last third, in particular, where we drop it low and bring it back.

“Failed Fire” – This is just Dane and I again.  It’s kinda like one of those “musical comedy” deals that tend to manifest themselves sometimes.

“Afraid of the Ghost” – I don’t know why I want to do this song so much.  I guess because it’s so simple to work within.  I still want something more ideal for the 1st half or so.  Tried it with some low organ sounds on this one.  I dunno…it’s okay.

“Achey Breaky Heart” (Billy Ray Cyrus cover) – Hence the Cyrus part of the session name.  Once again, this is another one of those songs where you totally know the chorus, but only get the general idea of the verses.  In this case, however, that circumstance may vary from person to person.  I know it’s kind of scary, but some people out there probably do know this song word for word, beginning to end.  We are simply not those people.

“A Double K C” – Me on drums.  Katie on the keys.  A little bit of night magic.

Katie Collins – omnichord, keys
Dane Hill – guitar, drums
Arrison Kirby – guitar, keys, drums
Megan Driscoll – tambourine

Pianospout – 4.2010 – Arrison Kirby

“The Goal”
“Kill Party”
“First Time on the Moon”
“Major Miner”
“Shhhhh”
“Brine Shrimp Defecating on Your Trousers”
“There”
“Supersonic Tony”
“Cover Your Face”
“Boy vs. Wife”
“Seventeen Michaels”

I want to make two things perfectly clear to you before you listen to this.

1) The piano is not in tune. If you know how to tune a piano and are willing to do so for free, then please contact me.

2) I am out of tune. But this is why…

This session was created on a whim. I felt a free flowing creative energy around me, so I set up microphones around the piano. Then I randomly made everything up. All that you here, both musically and lyrically, is completely from the moment. Noting that came out of my mouth or hands had been composed prior to the session itself. This is total improv.

So the singing sucks at times. The piano is mostly always tolerable though…and the singing did improve as the session barreled on. I must say, though, that if these “songs” were to become worked into a polished album, I think it could be decent. I don’t really have much complaint about the lyrics or chord progressions, themselves.

It is for this reason that I contemplated this session a lot before posting it here. First I intended to mix, master and post. Then I didn’t want to share it at all. Then I wanted to run it though an autotuner. Then I wanted to just recreate the whole thing, altogether (and still wouldn’t rule this out). Then I went back to just wanting to mix, master and post. Then I just decided to post it as is…grit in tact.

It did have some light mastering done to it…but that’s about it.

As for the content, there are a good handful of swears in this session. Nothing sexually over the top. Just good ol’ American cursing. It’s also rather personal since it’s all completely improvisational. You sing what you think you know…you know? Though listening back, I’m not entirely sure where all this shit comes from.

This also kicks off a new section here: Sessions.

More to come, I hope indeed. Email me if you’d like to be a part of one.