Tag Archives: rock

Side Effects May Include…

Today, the Laryngitis EP concludes.

This song being here is proof that sometimes chronological isn’t the best order for music. This closing track was written before each of the previous three AND was recorded on the same day as “Laryngitis” (I had the day off from work that day). The impetus for this one came simply from looking at my lap steel and deciding to use it again. Then, to take the tune to the next level, I took my Gibson and put it in Open-D tuning to match the lap steel. The final piece that really put this one over the top is the solo in the whole-tone section – I received an Otamatone this past Christmas and it finally made its recording debut here.

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

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NEW ALBUM! Distinct Kicking Motion – Greatest Hits

Surprise! Today, I’m releasing a new album! Here’s a video about it AND a link to the Bandcamp page.

This is Distinct Kicking Motion’s first non-concept album, 14 tracks long and spanning a decade of my songwriting catalog. The oldest song on this album dates all the way back to 2006 and the newest was written in 2016. I’ve been sitting on this album for a while, debating wether or not to make physical copies, but I decided to release it online anyway. It’ll be wherever else you like to stream and download your music in the coming days (links to those will be in the video’s description). Thanks for reading and listening and I hope you enjoy! See you next week with the final song from the Laryngitis EP.

The Waiting Room

The instrumental EP continues!

I knew I wanted to mix it up with something mellow about halfway through the EP. This one really came about after thinking about my favorite Dredg album and all of its little incidental tracks, all of which are less than two minutes. So… why not keep that mellow thing about halfway through nice and short? After I put that chord progression together, the title practically suggested itself. Were I ever able to afford pressing this EP on vinyl, this would definitely be the last track on Side A.

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.

Edmas 2017: Christmas In 8 Minutes (And 9 Seconds)

santaball.png At long last, the wait is over. Time for this year’s Christmas EP! I was more prepared than usual this time around – This year’s songs were actually picked last year. Since I enjoyed the themed batch then, I decided to do it again this year (and next year, too – you’ll find out then). This year’s theme: Presents. Three of the four songs have “I Want” in the title and the fourth is the old chestnut that I somehow hadn’t touched until this, the tenth(!) batch. All the hallmarks are here, just waiting for you to find them. Enjoy!

I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas

All I Want for Christmas Is You

All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth

The 12 Days of Christmas

Recorded and mixed at The ‘Berger Joint, Rochester, NY, November 2017. Additional vocals/yelling in “All I Want for Christmas Is You” and “The 12 Days of Christmas”: Ed, Rob Klingenberger, Sarah Klingenberger, Adam Donnelly, and Brandon Fess.

Distinct Hitting Motion: Ever Onward

After seven months, Distinct Hitting Motion finally reaches its end.

From the onset, this tune was going to be the longest one in the project. For one, it seems to make sense that the closing track is the longest… especially with how long most of the postseason games took. For another thing, I fully admit I was thinking a lot about the band Coheed and Cambria, particularly their song “The Light and the Glass” which clocks in at over eight minutes. Of course, I can’t sing nearly as high as Claudio Sanchez, but…

The lyrics were written in one night, the music was definitely not. The first half of the closing riff and the opening bit both came to me while I was at work – the benefits of teaching private lessons for a living! Musically, the biggest challenge was bridging the gap between those two parts. Lyrically, the biggest challenge was just getting started – that “struggle to find the words to say” line was both a snapshot of me at that moment and the catalyst I needed to get the ball rolling. Go figure, huh?

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

Distinct Hitting Motion: Final Four

We’ve made it to the semifinals. Time for something completely different!

I knew in this spot I wanted to do something poppy, especially after how the last song ended. Couple that with the fact that everything so far was played straight with no real shuffle/swing feel and this one nearly wrote itself. To really compliment this, I decided to gleefully ignore the music theory rules of diatonic harmony and go nuts with chords that “don’t belong” in the key of G. Lastly, I realized that the bridge was an excellent time to call back to the first song, complete with solo.

Lyrically, this one’s completely straightforward. They’re among the final four teams! Hooray! Too bad they’re losing…

This song’s recording trick (besides all of the vocals, most of which are intentionally buried in the mix):  The guitar solo on this recording was the first take… but I felt it didn’t have enough dirt. So, solo’d the track, ran a cable out from my interface, and recorded the solo going through my Orange amp. It didn’t add a lot of dirt, but it was enough to separate it in the mix. Also, for you guitar freaks: The left guitar is the Gibson, the right guitar (and the solo) is the Telecaster. Both rhythm guitars had the pickup switch in the middle position. See if you can hear the difference!

As always, thank you for listening! Feel free to share and let me know what you think. Take care and come on back in two weeks for this project’s finale!

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: Rain Delay

Dang. Just like that the regular season is over.

I decided quite a while ago – I think even as far back as August – that the best way to end the regular season would be with an acoustic instrumental. Good way to break things up after all the distortion, right? I’ve always enjoyed the acoustic songs in the middle of metal albums, so I figured why not. Also continuing a seeming tradition, I also used an alternate tuning – Open-D, to accommodate the lap steel guitar I used as the melody instrument. I also tracked some organ, but didn’t use the video footage of that.

As for the title… it seemed appropriate after being caught in two rain delays this season – one in Batavia and one in Rochester (the Rochester game wound up being suspended). The noise buried in the background is indeed rain, recorded from an open window in my studio space.

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 that starts quiet… but doesn’t stay that way!

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!