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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:51 pm 
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Thanks Cary. Always gratified that you listen.

Still going through stuff, cutting tracks, focusing on what's best. Getting there.

Have you tried Audacity? I've been using it since the Win 10 update and while it's not nearly as good as Audition, it works in a pinch. Has recorded fine on an older laptop, too.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:54 pm 
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I can vouch for Audacity. I've used that to edit mp3s and do some very light multitracking, and it's not at all hard to use.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:05 pm 
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Audacity works great for me as an audio editing tool, but when I used it to record vinyl onto my computer, it sometimes added artifacts. I got a new program for the vinyl download that works great, but still use audacity for any editing. And as Chris will tell you, if I can figure it out, it's easy to use.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2017 10:28 pm 
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Audacity is a cinch to use, yeah, though I'm really not enamored with the strength of its feature set, and high-precision edits are a chore compared to Audition. I recommend it mostly because of Cary's latency issues. I had to jump through hoops to solve that on my current desktop with Audition -- I was unable to multitrack record because of it -- but finally solved that with a new sound card. Audacity, no such problems. Plus, it's free.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 1:24 am 
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The only time I ever recommend Apple products, is when a musician asks me how to record audio without dealing with latency issues. iPads, especially, are perfect for multi-track music recording. They just work, and are relatively inexpensive. Plenty of adapters available to connect guitars/mics. The device - essentially - replicates the 80s/90s Tascam Portastudio experience (the go-to for home musicians during that era).

Or, buy an actual used Portastudio on eBay. Vinyl made a comeback, so I'm sure tape hiss isn't far behind.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 7:28 am 
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I still have my TASCAM Porta-7. I'm about to start demoing a bunch of traditional songs and have thought about using it again, just for shits and giggles.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 10:24 am 
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Shoe wrote:
I still have my TASCAM Porta-7. I'm about to start demoing a bunch of traditional songs and have thought about using it again, just for shits and giggles.


I still have mine also. It hasn't been used in over a decade. Not sure if it would even still work but at the same time, I was spoiled using programs like Cakewalk back in the day. I may have to check out Audacity.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:46 pm 
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I didn't switch to digital until about 10 years ago. I used CoolEdit Pro to do noise reduction and minor edits (such as splitting up a multi-part songs into separate tracks), but kept recording on 4-track until almost exactly 10 years ago. I really liked it. Still do.

But digital is WAAAAY more flexible, so I doubt I'd ever go back.

Plus, easier to archive your stuff. I have shoeboxes filled with 4-track tapes, and who's to say if they're even still any good?



re: the thread topic, I'm pretty settled on the material for the next m2 (which is NOT the "outtakes" collection). It all comes from the same brief period and has what I was looking for: a little air. I had gotten into a rut where a lot of what I was recording was really dense and claustrophobic. Here, I'm looking for material that breathes a little more.

Soon.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:58 am 
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Decided to make some hard cuts and just chop the shit out of Leftovers and Laments, the outtakes collection. Going to get it down to two discs, and not lengthy hour+ discs, either. I want all the material to be worthwhile. I can still drop all the outtakes into Vols. 1, 2, etc. for my own listening. Lotsssss of material I'm leaving out, but that's for the best. I want this to be a good listening experience.

Settled on the next formal m2 collection as well. It'll be called Coming Up For Air. Has some material I really like, all recorded during a fairly brief stretch.

There's one track called "Taylor Swift Used to Sponge Me" that closes it out. I'd laugh when I saw the title -- the titles are usually made up on the spot based on whatever is going through my head at the time -- but couldn't remember why I named it that.

Finally realized last night when going over some other material, multitracks from some recording I abandoned: it follows a chord progression taken from a Taylor Swift song. Hah! You'd never know it when you hear it, but there is it.

Just have to get in, do some minor edits and mastering, and create a cover. I'd like to do it while it's still 2017, but we'll see.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 5:44 pm 
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Spent the early evening mastering the next m2. At the last minute, I cut a 9-minute track that just didn't feel right for it.

It goes that way sometimes.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:37 am 
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I'm opening the year with a new album, a new m2 record, my "guitar soundscapes" project. It's easily my favorite since 2012's "Falling Back Into It." More sparse than usual, more spacious, and better reflective of the mood I'm trying to establish when compared to some previous records, which could be somewhat claustrophobic. I think you'll find that all 20 minutes of "Unborn Child," for example, have a lot of air and space.

All song titles are links to download directly. You can also stream it directly here: http://ericsanjuan.com/my-first-new-mus ... air-by-m2/

Put it on, meditate, zone out, get lost, or wonder what the hell is wrong with your speakers. Whatever works for you:

Coming Up For Air (2018)

Attachment:
comingupforair.jpg
comingupforair.jpg [ 60.7 KiB | Viewed 182 times ]


1) Doc Brown's Car Brought Down The Towers (7:43)

2) Unborn Child (19:37)

3) Giving Up The Test (4:01)

4) Around Every Corner There Is A Lie (4:17)

5) Taylor Swift Used To Sponge Me (9:37)



Recorded in 2015. Prepared in 2017. Released in 2018. Cover photo by our very own Cary C. Thanks, Cary!

A lot more music to come this year.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 11:11 am 
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I have company occupying my office at the house until tomorrow. I'll be able to get in there and download this after they leave. Really looking forward to it.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2018 8:50 am 
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Sat down for my first purposeful recording session in a long while a few weeks ago. Recorded for four or five hours straight, just a mic in a room (an attic, actually) a few feet in front of my amp.

Really cold up there. My fingers were numb.

Laid down ten tracks of material, lots of layered guitar work weaving in and out of one another rather than the dense sound assault I've done in recent years. Tried a new approach to playing and just attempted various iterations on it. The interplay of the guitars excited me.

Had about an hour and a half of material when it was wrapped up.

Got super focused on working that material over the other day and started mixing. Then chopping. Then cutting out songs. Then mixing some more. Brought it down to about 45 minutes.

And I think it's close to done. Have to do some more tweaking. Looking at the spectrogram, the audio has a big hole in the highs, so I want to fill that in a bit so it sounds fuller and more "complete."

Otherwise, I'm really fucking happy with this.

I had been working on the next m2 project already, and it was (and is) going to be an abrasive downer, probably double album length. The title is a clue as to the mood: Dead Country. It's probably going to be difficult to listen to at times. And I fucking love the cover.

But this one will come first.

It's a suitable follow-up to the last, was recorded on pure inspiration, and is about as un-messed-with as m2 has been since my first few. Every sound is right out of the amplifier. No further trickery or effects.

There are even a few moments when the illusion is broken and you can hear that it's just me in a room -- I accidentally bump the mic, that sort of thing -- but I decided to leave them in (though if I said I left them in purely for the sake of having an "honest" recording I'd be a liar. Fact is, editing them out would be REALLY hard, if not impossible, due to the nature of the music. I could chop them out and stitch the remaining pieces together, but you'd lose some of the ebb and flow of the pieces as they evolve from one sound to the next, which is a big part of this music).

Pretty excited about this.

Will drop this one Feb. 1, when I check in on social media again after a break. Seeing as it's a follow-up to Coming Up For Air, this is called First Breath After, and my headspace while recording it was very much about plunging back into creativity for its own sake and just getting lost in making sounds again.

As for Dead Country, I'm going to keep recording material for a while and maybe do a symbolic drop on July 4. The cover is too awesome for me not to get this right (though in this case, "right" doesn't necessarily mean "soothing" or "easy to listen to.")

Oh, and I'm finally bringing m2 to Bandcamp. So that's fun.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:36 pm 
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Just saw this! Very cool, Shoe. I finally downloaded Coming Up For Air tonight. I'll give it a listen over the weekend. Sunday, I'm going to be writing for a solid four hour block (the family will be out of the house) so I'll probably put it on then.

Really looking forward to it!

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:23 am 
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Hope you dig it.

And if this one doesn't work for you, there is a lot more to come this year. :thumbs:

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2018 6:29 pm 
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For shits and giggles, I made a video:


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2018 8:07 pm 
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I vow to listen to this at work some time this week.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2018 8:57 pm 
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Shoe wrote:
For shits and giggles, I made a video:

I enjoyed that...

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 15, 2018 9:58 pm 
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You can't go wrong with Apollo rockets. Ended up being a good fit with the music, too.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 9:00 am 
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I listened to the first three tracks on the way home from work last night. I really dug them. I see what you mean about it being more open and I think it's a great direction honestly. Where some of the harsher stuff you've done has appealed to me for the way it helps me focus, these tracks had a different effect. It was almost hypnotic and really made me relax.

Looking forward to spending more time with it later this week.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 11:52 am 
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Glad you dug it.

Yeah, the dense stuff has a kind of white noise effect on me as well, where it just blots everything out and you get focused on whatever you're doing. I do love doing that, especially when I can zero in on a sound I like and exploit it, though I'm right now interested in exploring some different permutations of this kind of music and discovering that there is a lot of power in letting it breath a bit.

That said, the video above is fairly dense and droning. (It's why I chopped the track down from a little under 9 minutes to a little over 5. The cacophony of feedback didn't fit the album, but the album NEEDED a dense track in the middle to balance the two halves.)

The thing I'm dropping next, I don't know how successful an experiment it was, but I took a lot of inspiration from Miles Davis and modal jazz for it. You can't hear any jazz in it, of course -- I am not that skilled! -- but I just kind of snatched some ideas for how he improvised and used that as the basis for what I was doing. Just kind of improving with myself around a loose tone structure. It's not as open as this, there's a lot happening, but it's also not a wall of sound like most m2 is.

So we'll see.

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