Wednesday, November 21, 2007

A call to arms! (And a plea for attention.)

Gotta Start With the Basics:
Hi there. My name is Chris. I made this blog on behalf of myself and my bandmates. They did not ask me to. I didn't even ask myself to. In fact, this blog is pretty much entirely uncalled for. I just made it because I felt like it. Why did I feel like it? I wanted there to be a cute little niche, a pull-off if you will, on the side of the information superhighway for my bandmates and I to write about both the music we love and the music we are creating.

Music? Writing? Creating? Um, Just Who the Hell Do We Think We Are?:
We think we're an indie-rock band. Whether or not we actually are is not a piece of information we particularly want imparted to us. When we're not writing music, which is most of the time because we're new at this and would likely become sucidial if we tried to convince ourselves at this juncture that this would be a great new day job, we are a bunch of unapologetic music geeks. This is a quality I fervently hope will be expressed in every post of this blog. We listen to lots of music, we love music, we obsess over music. This is why we also want to create some. We know it's a long, long journey from where we are into the upper echelon of musical awesomeness that we so lovingly turn our heads to, but damned if we're not going to try little by little to scramble our way up there.

Okay, So What Are We Working On?:
I can only speak for myself here. See, this is a difficult question to answer. The Touch Artists are not a band in the typical sense -- the sense that we can all meet up on Saturdays and jam out in someone's garage. Rather, we're analogous to that beloved Ben Gibbard/Jimmy Tamborello collaboration The Postal Service (none of which is as good as their "(This Is) The Dream of Evan and Chan" recorded in 2001 under the Dntel moniker, but I digress). The three of us have only met up in person once. I live in Albuquerque, NM. Lea lives in Lexington Park, MD. Amber lives in Los Angeles, CA. This naturally makes it more difficult to get together and rock out. We're poor. We can't afford that kind of plane fare. (Though, of course, if you wish to be a mysterious benefactor, the band would be happy to create a PayPal account.) We will not let this stand in our way, though. The miracle of the internet makes music recording and sharing easier than it has ever been, and even the simplest software goes a long way in the creation process.

Okay, So What Am I Working On?:
I'm a college student. A beginning one, even. A freshman. A rookie. Naturally, this takes most -- if not all -- of my time. To complicate matters, I am also employed part-time at a used bookstore (which is excellent and actually pays me money and stuff). This doesn't leave me with very much time to write music.

However! The Touch Artists' recent union has inspired me, and I have spent more time than usual sitting with my guitar and trying to finger out interesting sounds. I have come up with (and actually written down!) a couple interesting riffs and melodies. I hope to apply these to an actual song sometime soon. It is my early New Year's Resolution to compose a full song or two by the time my Christmas winter break is over and I return to school in mid-January.

What I'm saying is, I am making progress. It's slow, but it is progress. We all know about the tortoise and the hare. It's better to work slowly and turn out some quality stuff than to rush like hell through all of it and put out crap every damn year. (Yes, Fiery Furnaces, I'm looking at you. Seriously. Blueberry Boat and EP were awesome, but then you just lost it. What gives?)

What Are My Bandmates Working On?:
I'm not sure. It would help if I talked to them.

I'll give them the information for this blog and force them to post stuff. It will happen. And I might even talk to them, too.

Other People's Music:
Awesome "Classic" Album I Had Never Heard Before But Bought a Week Ago: Boards of Canada's Music Has the Right to Children. It's just one that I had never gotten around to, despite having heard glowing things about it for years. In general, ambient techno isn't my favorite form of electronica (it's very mellow, which can be great for certain moods, but in general I prefer something with a little more bite and pulse), but this is probably one of the best examples of it I have heard. It's certainly more beat-heavy and higher-BPM than Aphex Twin's classic Selected Ambient Works albums (the baseline from which I measure this type of music), not to mention spooky, atmospheric, and highly effective. I'll have to give it a few more listens before I can pass definitive judgment on it, but it's really a delightful recording.

I Wanted This CD, But No Stores In My Area Had It: LCD Soundsystem's 45:33. I'm not sure what's up with this. I had no problem finding both his debut and Sound of Silver 'round these parts. Oh well. I'll order it.

Geez, Is This Blog Post Over Yet?!:
Yes. Happy Thanksgiving, all!


Street Corner Performance: 11/11/07.

Street Corner Performance: 11/11/07.
We are made of awesome. And carbon.