Tag Archives: metal

The Doctor Will See You Now

The instrumental EP continues… and we kick off metaphorical Side B with a fun one.

As you might be able to guess from the overall sound, this is my attempt at an early Metallica instrumental – I was picturing it as a combination of “The Call of Ktulu” and “Orion” in a fraction of the time. Shortly after I put this one together, I got an idea: Since there were three spots in this tune for solos, let’s give two of them to other people! So, I got a hold of my friends Jay and Neil (the first two guitar players that popped up in my mind) and they were willing to play! Fun Fact: The solos were recorded in reverse order – my solo was tracked first, while Jay’s was done last (Jay’s a busy guy).

As always, thanks for listening! Feel free to let me know what you think. Enjoy the start of summer and I’ll see you soon with this EP’s closing track.

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I Googled My Symptoms and Now I Have a Headache

Here’s track two from the upcoming instrumental EP.

I had so much fun writing “Laryngitis” with my 8-string guitar, so why not write another 8-string instrumental? This one, to me, has much more of a djent vibe than “Laryngitis”, which I like. Also, to mix things up, I decided to play all of the melodic/solo work on keys this time around.

As always, thanks for listening! Feel free to let me know what you think. Have a good day and I’ll see you soon.

Laryngitis

A few weeks ago, I went and got sick. Shortly after I got sick, I lost my voice. Well, that’s no help… but I had an idea.

During that weekend where I had almost no voice whatsoever, I started to write instrumental music. I’ve always liked instrumentals in the first place, and I couldn’t sing at the time, so why not just play stuff? I promptly wrote two tunes that weekend – this guy here and another one coming later called “Side Effects May Include…” Needless to say, there’s an instrumental EP in the works.

As always, thanks for listening! Feel free to let me know what you think. Take care and I’ll see you soon.

The Frogurt Is Also Cursed

Admittedly, 2018 started in a lull for me. I didn’t write any new music in January or February because I simply wasn’t feeling it. March started the same way until one seemingly random day. While talking to friends online waiting for my next student at work, somebody said “The Frogurt Is Also Cursed” and I immediately thought “oh, that’s a good song title!”

Within about a week, the instruments were all recorded. Vocals had to wait until early April (darn laryngitis), which then in turn gave me another idea: Since it’s this big evil metal thing, why not release it on Friday the 13th? So, uh… here we are.

The musical premise is simple to talk about. The main riff is in seven, which if you’ve followed my music long enough you know I like to do. The main riff is also the first in my entire catalog with legit sweep-picking, one of the newest additions to my bag of tricks. In this tune, I play a note on seven of the eight strings – the poor A string only gets muffled string hits.

As always, thank you for listening! Let me know what you think and I’ll see you next time.

Distinct Hitting Motion: After All That Work…

It’s the playoffs! Ten teams qualified and four of them get… a winner-take-all game. Well then…

My preamble there tells you exactly where this comes from. Think of this as the anger of the wild card winners’ fans for all that time spent in the regular season earning them… one lousy game. To make matters worse this year, both home teams won the wild card games, meaning the second wild card winners didn’t even get a playoff home game!

Musically, this one was highly inspired by Strapping Young Lad, which explains both the drastic dynamic shift right at the beginning and all of the layers. There were an awful lot of tracks for a song so short… This song’s recording trick: The initial rhythm guitars didn’t have the articulation I wanted, so I tracked them again through a Roland Micro Cube. I kept the originals, so there are four tracks of rhythm guitar on this sucker.

As always, thank you for listening! Feel free to share and let me know what you think. Have a good day and come on back next week for something totally different!

Distinct Hitting Motion: Pennant Chase

Middle of September? Already?! Where did the time go?! Suddenly the regular season is almost over and it’s time to wrap up those playoff spots!

This song is another classic case of “new gear, new riff” – in this case, a new pedal. I went into this song thinking of making a straightforward, driving tune with a fuzz pedal. So, I got my hands on a fuzz pedal, hooked it up to my Orange amp, plugged in my seven-string, and away we went. I had originally played the main riff on a six-string, but I wanted that low B and using the seven was way easier than detuning…

For the ending, I was torn. I originally wrote a sudden ending, which was fine… but part of me wanted to fade out. After some thought, I decided to do both! I kept the sudden ending, waited around, then went back to the main riff for the fadeout. Why choose, right?

As always, thank you for listening! Feel free to share and let me know what you think. Enjoy your day and come on back in two weeks for something completely different from anything else in this project!

Distinct Hitting Motion: The Challenge

You know what number always comes to mind when I think of baseball? SEVEN. Not nine, not three, but SEVEN. Because, you know… OK, not really. But I wanted to write in seven, so I did anyway.

The first riff came about literally trying that specific guitar in a music store. I picked that guitar up, plugged it in, and started playing that riff almost immediately. I’ve been wanting to use more complex chords in my writing and this was the perfect opportunity. Funnily enough, the song wound up being structured kind of like a march or a rag (double-binary form – ABABCDCD) and I didn’t even realize it until long after I had tracked it.

Lyrically, I was struggling for this one – in fact, this tune almost didn’t make the cut for this project because of that. But right as I was about to shelve it, an idea was hatched. Manager’s mad about a call and challenges it! And, of course, doesn’t like that the call stands and gets himself ejected. I tried a new style of harsh vocals since the low growls didn’t seem to make sense for this one.

As always, thank you for listening! Feel free to share and let me know what you think. Enjoy your day and come on back in two weeks for fun with a fuzz pedal!

Distinct Hitting Motion: Or Do You Want to See Me Sock a Few Dingers?

If you know your Simpsons trivia, you knew this tune was coming at some point.

This one took a lot of work. I had over an hour and a half of footage to sort through for this video. There were at least a few bad takes on every instrument… especially that piano part in the middle. Those drastic key shifts made that part tough. Not sure why I keep doing that to myself…

Knowing how the line was delivered, the tune had to start exactly like this – mid-tempo, major key, generally sounding happy and fun. Then, remembering the Terrifying Truth, ending with the sinister riff that opened and closed that song… transposed down again. Because let’s be honest – I’m using the 8-string and that open 8th string with full distortion is just way too fun to leave out.

As always, thank you for listening! Feel free to share and let me know what you think. Have a good week and come on back in two weeks for a little more prog rock fun!

Distinct Hitting Motion: Break Time

We’re halfway through already? Dang… let’s take a breather and enjoy the all-star festivities.

Oh, right. A song about taking a break probably shouldn’t be that fast, should it? Oops…

I had been thinking a lot about fast and loud music lately, from Slayer to Sick of It All, and that’s how this tune came about. Loud, fast, sloppy, and brash as all hell. For all the times I’ve used harsh vocals in the past, this is strangely enough the first song in this project where I don’t actually sing. I don’t fully know where September and October will take me, but there’s a good chance this might be the only song in this project with only yelling/harsh vocals. So why this time? Simply because the tune’s punk/hardcore/metal vibe called for it.

As always, thank you for listening! Feel free to share and let me know what you think. Have a good week and come on back in two weeks for a new song in a completely different style!

Distinct Hitting Motion: Do You Want to Know the Terrifying Truth?

It was about time for a track like this, wasn’t it? I thought so, too. As soon as I knew I wanted to use a Simpsons reference (the song for the second half of it is actually mostly written and coming later this year), this one started to form a little in my head. Because it came first, the title really helped shape the song itself. Vocals? Lyrics? Who needs ’em?!

Even though I could’ve gotten away without it, I used the 8-string anyway. This is largely as a setup for the second half… and also because I reached for it long before the “7-string in drop-A” lightbulb went off.

Thanks to the title, I knew I wanted changing time signatures and plenty of dissonance. This tune, with the exception of one section, goes back and forth between 3/4 and 5/4 time. As for dissonance, the easiest way to achieve that was to have the guitars one fret off on the high notes in the 5/4 riff. I then had the bass decide who’s “on” and who’s “off” through its own line.

As always, thank you for listening! Feel free to share and let me know what you think. Enjoy your day and I’ll see you in two weeks with a new song!