Tuesday, September 4, 2012


01-The Demon Awakens     5:56
02-Youth and Patriotism    57:33
03-Dancing the Dance    34:07
04-Examples Of Opposing Victory Prayers  37:19
05-Before the Dawn    14:07
06-The Last Day of Our Lives   69:34
07-Final Preparations    37:42
08-Let The Fray Begin    33:38
09-The Presentation of the Chocolate Bar  2:10
10-The Long Road to Recovery   42:42
11-Home at Last                                 12:36
Total time    5:47:27
WAR! is an acronym for We Are Right!  I did this while I was recovering from an illness, brucellosis.  I'll write more after the settlement.

Regular Divisions of the Plane

Regular Divisions of the Plane
01-Tetrahedral Planetoid                53:29
02-The Sea at the Mouth of the Ebro     53:11
03-Mobius Strip                         24:45
04-Metamorphosis                       238:35
Total time    6:10:01
This album is based on a few pieces of art by MC Escher.  I'll be writing more when I have the strength.

Searching for Intelligent Life

Searching for Intelligent Life
1-The Universe Within            60:33
2-Procyon A,B                    38:32
3-Struve 2398 A,B                29:21
4-Lalande 21185                  21:20
5-Luyten 372-58                  16:08
6-61 Cygni A,B                   48:48
7-Lacaille 9352                  57:28
8-Ross 128                       24:12
9-Groombridge 34 A,B             84:25
Total time    6:20:52
I have always enjoyed reading about astronomy, and wish I had a better grip on physics and calculus to understand it more thoroughly.  Also, I cant see a thing through a telescope.  It is a simple task to some, but I just can't focus.  I did, however point my telescope into the sky one night and say so many stars in one area that it frightened me.  How anyone coudl believe that we are alone is personally unacceptable.  Each track on this compilation is named after a star within 12.5 light years from us.  The titles follow my own twisted logic of titleing.  The star, the system, the size, the distance, the process of discovery, the possible emotion of discovery, what life would be like in a sertian system, or even what it would be like to travel to that system.  Hopefully, I have never pretended anything but the truth.  Sometimes I name pieces due to actual visions or interpretations of impressions of visions, events, or emotions.  The introductory track, "The Universe Within" is a college of outtakes from the "recording sessions" of the remaining tracks.

The following scientific information is taken from a website http://www.atlasoftheuniverse.com/ which is created by Richard Powell.  The cover photo is also by Richard Powell and is a diagram of the stars 12.5 light years from earth.  I have attempted to contact him, but have no success.

Procyon A,B - Type=F5+DA, Magnitudes=0.4+10.7, Distance=11.41 ly
A brilliant yellow-white star, and the eighth brightest star in the sky. With twice the diameter of the Sun, Procyon is also the largest star within 25 light years. Procyon is orbited by a white dwarf companion first seen optically in 1896. The orbital period is 41 years.  [Musically, this was very exciting for me, for I finally found a method which displays my love for the music of the composer, Alexander Courage (the original "Star Trek" series).]

Struve 2398 A,B - Type=M4+M5, Magnitudes=8.9+9.7, Distance=11.6 ly
A binary system of two red dwarfs named Struve 2398 from a catalogue of double stars published in 1827. This system is also known by the rather more boring name of BD+59°1915. The two stars are quite widely separated (50 AU) and orbit each other in a 450 year period. [A backward/forward spiralling piece.]

Lalande 21185 - Type=M2, Magnitude=7.5, Distance=8.31 ly
Recorded in JJ Lalande's star catalogue compiled in the 1790's, this is one of the brightest red dwarfs in the sky, but it still needs binoculars to see it. G Gatewood reported in 1996 the possible indications of a couple of Jupiter sized planets orbiting it but this remains unconfirmed. [This one sounds more like an underwater sonar than a telescopic event.]

Luyten 789-6 A,B,C - Type=M5+M5+M7, Magnitudes=13.3+13.3+14.0, Distance=11.1 ly
There seems to be three red dwarfs in this system. The main pair orbiting each other in a 2 year period, and a dim third star orbiting the first at a very close range. [More Alexander Courage influence, with a bit of Stanislov Lem thrown in.]

61 Cygni A,B - Type=K5+K7, Magnitudes=5.2+6.1, Distance=11.41 ly
This binary system of two orange dwarf stars is famous for being the first star ever to have its distance measured by F Bessel in 1838. Both stars are very similar but are widely separated (86 AU) requiring about 700 years to orbit each other. [A quiet, dancing snowflakes, sort of piece.]

Lacaille 9352 - Type=M2, Magnitude=7.4, Distance=10.73 ly
A fairly bright red dwarf which can easily be seen with binoculars, it was first recorded in Nicolas de Lacaille's catalogue of southern hemisphere stars compiled around 1752. [The previous but at half speed.]

Ross 128 - Type=M4, Magnitude=11.1, Distance=10.89 ly
A dim red dwarf, also known as FI Vir - its variable star designation. [A variation on the theme used for "Lalande 21185".]

Groombridge 34 A,B - Type=M2+M6, Magnitudes=8.1+11.1, Distance=11.64 ly
Another pair of red dwarfs, this system is usually called Groombridge 34 from an 1838 catalogue of northern stars or sometimes BD+43°44. Both stars are variable in brightness and have the variable star names of GX And and GQ And. Both stars lie far apart from each other (150 AU) and orbit each other in a 2500 year period. [Another variation, this time utilizing a ring modulator.]

Water Deities

Water Deities
01-Triton       2:35
02-Sao         36:27
03-Psamathe    60:19
04-Halimede     4:00
05-Nereid      24:57
06-Galatea     54:18
07-Naiad       30:03
08-Larissa     42:35
09-Thalassa     4:00
10-Neso        55:57
11-Despina      4:00
12-Laomedeia   21:34
13-Proteus     38:57
Total time    6:19:46 
An astronomical theme.  The titles of the album are all named after the 13 known moons of Neptune, which are all named after mythological water deities.  The first is Triton.  This is the largest moon and the first moon discovered.  The reason for making it the shortest track is that Triton was discovered 17 days after the discovery of Neptune itself.  The idea is that even though the first and largest, the significance of the discovery may not have been considered as important at the time as the disovery of Neptune.  Halimede, Thalassa and Despina are short drum programming tracks, the other tracks are all played on electric guitar.

Basically, this disc is comprised of works that describe the emotion that accompanies "discovery", as well as trying to describe the moon and the water deities that the moon is named after.  I read a week ago that earth is the only world not named after a God.

A Round Trip

A Round Trip
01-A Round Trip, version 1                   73:23
02-The Party Car                             29:00
03-This will get us an R-rating for sure     25:32
04-Animatronic Conductors                    21:56
05-Closely Watched                          126:00
06-Suspense, like picking the right color    31:51
07-A Round Trip, version 2                   59:46
Total time     6:07:28
"A Round Trip" explores the irritations of commuting.  Each one of, excluding the lucky few that work at home, has to commute for work.  Living where I do, the commute consists of a solo drive.  Many people have to deal with public transportation.  I can't honestly say which would be worse, I can only say that the drawback in the solo drive is no interaction with any other individuals.  Saying this, I would probably be correct in assuming that those on trains and buses would trade that daily interaction with a ride through the country on a motorcycle in a heartbeat.  When I'm up to it, when the situation permits, that is my solo drive.  I am not complaining, just painting the mental picture.
The title track was completed and mixed and remixed and remixed as ususal.  Only, in this instance, I couldn't decide which one to use, which one was "worse".  So I used them both as bookends for the album.  The difference are slight and subtle, but exist within the same recording's mixdown.  "Closely Watched" is inspired by the Chezchoslovakian film "Closely Watched Trains", which I found and watched while working on the project.
These three pieces are performed on electric guitar.  "Animatronic Conductors" and "Suspense, like picking the right color" were sequencer realizations, "The Party Car" is a sequencer/percussion programming piece, and "This will get us an R-rating for sure" is a combo of percussion programming and that mechanical device I used for "Wheel of Fortune" on "Transmissions From The Machine Planet".  "Animatronic Conductors" and "Suspense, like picking the right color" are inspired by two of my favorite film makers, "Conductors" being Felini, "Suspense" being Hitchcock.  ( I don't consider myself to be a film critic/historian/authority of any measure, but after watching Michealangelo Antonio's "Blow Up" I commented that I felt that the use of color in the film was amazing.  I later read in an Hitchcock biography that his comment on "Blow Up" was that the Italian's were years beyond anyone else in the use of color.  A truely good feeling!)  I can also say that "Conductors show a Larry Fast influence, while "Suspense" shows a Brian Eno influence. "The Party Car" is an interpretation of a train ride I took from Venice to Rome.  The Italian railroad was on strike (of course), the train was packed, and in the car with my wife and I were four female students from Southern Mississippi University and the reggae band Burning Spear.  Their tour manager was hillarious.  "This will get us an R-rating for sure" tops off the movie influence of the album, using various sounds and beats to create a somewhat erotic experience.

The Pixie's Lair

The Pixie's Lair
01-A Long Corridor      58:15
02-Origins Of Power      64:43
03-Peluda's Ballet      77:33
04-Kissed, Like in a Fariy Tale     44:53
05-The Pixie's Lair      101:54
Total time     5:47:19

The idea behind "The Pixies Lair" is entrapment.  Pixies are looked upon as tiny supernatural beings, full of mischeif.  To be pixilated is to be led astray by pixies, elated, titillated, whimsical.  From my viewpoint, pixies have to eat too.  On the brightside, a pixie can be charecterized as Tinker Bell, who was personified from the likeness of Marilyn Monroe.   On the darkside, a pixie can be an evil, razor-toothed, sharp clawed, flying being that has powers beyond our comprehension.  SO, in my little musical story, I have the pixie.  Extremely beautiful and equaly dangerous.  To be trapped in the lair of the pixie can be exhilarating as well as fatal, and only the pixie which has entrapped you will determine your outcome.
"The Long Corridor" is a tale of being led to one's own imprisonment.  Happily accepting the beauty that surrounds you, to end up in a stiuation one can best define as questionable.  "Origins of Power" is a quiet, meditative piece, which becomes split by many different options.  "Pedula's Ballet" is a demonic balet, named after the deamon.  It's amazing how many names come to me and then disappear.  The same thing happened with Zephania.) An obviously evil dance, intended to bring out the darkside of the story of the lair.  But once again, the interpretation of the outcome relies on the listener.  "Kissed, Like in a Fariy Tale" The Frog Prince or Sleeping Beauty?  Possibly the kiss of death.  The ending has a "been captured and this is it" feeling.  The title track, "The Pixie's Lair", is the longest in the collection.  It's theme is based on accepting one's fate.  The idea is that even when captured, one should make the best of one's situation.  The track ends with a guitar solo, which, even though all the music on all the albums has been performed on electric guitar, there aren't many traditional guitar solos.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Lenore's Pet Raven Edgar

"Lenore's Pet Raven Edgar" is a 6 hour piece.  The reasoning behind doing it was just to see if it could be done, a six hour piece of music completed within a week.  Each recorded in the evening, much of it done while drinking Jameson Whiskey, but not enough to get drunk.  I have stated before that I don't always inted to make a long piece of music, I merely allow it to happen.  Other times I do make a piece of music that the intention is there.  All of the extremely long pieces have a time duration goal in mind.  I put myself under these "tasks" and "deadlines" for the sake of accomplishing the goal itself.  After doing the piece, I had no idea of a title.  The working title was something infering to an elf that lives under a tree in my back yard that tells peoples secrets.  While listening the piece, my wife said it reminded her of Edgar Allen Poe.  I thought that to be a great reference, especially with the Jameson influence.  Thus, the title "Lenore's Pet Raven Edgar" emmerged.

All the Time in the World

All the Time in the World
01-The Alarm Clock's Set For "Om"   33:35
02-The Hundred Dollar Breakfast    73:32
03-Axioms of Extensionality    36:05
04-Bombay Saphire Stardust Memories   88:00
05-Totally Oblivious     75:10
06-A Sad Conclusion Called Reality    47:18
Total time     5:53:43

"The Alarm Clock's Set For 'Om'" is a drone which is played on/ looped from a 12-string acoustic guitar.  "The Hundred Dollar Breakfast" Only in America.  If you have been there, you know what I am refering too.  The ultimate in extravagance.  "Axioms of Extensionality"  I've become so consumed in the concept of infinity that I believe it to be completely false.  A poem I wrote called "Infinity" is included at the end of this album explination.   "Bombay Saphire Stardust Memories"  Ok, I'll admit it.  I was home alone, the wife out of town, I was drinking gin and tonic and watching Woody Allen's "Stardust Memories".  I don't believe it actually, or exactly fits, but definately inspired by.  (I've tried to get the connection watching "The Wizard of Oz" while listening to Pink FLoyd's "The Dark Side of the Moon".  I didn't get it.  But if when I watched "Skatetown USA" while listening to David Bowie's "Ziggy Stardus and the Spiders From Mars", it definately fit.)  "Totally Oblivious" is an extension of "Axioms of Extensionality."  More on the suject of infinity.  "A Sad Conclusion Called Reality" is a piognant end to the album, the acceptance that if life begins, it ends.  Face it.  Get over it.

Transmissions From The Machine Planet

Transmissions From The Machine Planet
01-Morning Prayers      62:07
02-Captive Sky       48:37
03-Detention Center      28:32
04-Cymbolic Jestures      59:52
05-Circling Clouds      66:52
06-No Cause for Alarm      8:19
07-Wheel of Fortune      18:33
08-Sleep No More      52:19
09-They Rock All Night at the Ballrooms of Mars   14:00
Total time     5:59:14

It's too bad that I already used the title "Songs of Praise and Torture".  I consider this to be act two.  The overt cynisism lies in the notion that we are the machine planet.  We have become the emotionless world that tortures it's captives.  The land that never sleeps, in which every inch is spoken for.  The society that makes a profit off of everything, including prisons, children, the sick, the disaster stricken.  It's not new.  In fact, it is so imbedded in our culture that we are numb to it's control.  The monster who will not obey, so to speak.

"Morning Prayers"  Imagine you are a small child, living in a place where before you go to school, you wake up with your father, bow towards Mecca, and say you morning prayers.  You don't know about things like politics, wars, invasions, dictators.  You play and go to school.  One morning you awaken to your city being attacked.  Total chaos is everywhere.  Buildings are falling from bombs falling from the sky.  People are yelling "The Americans are attacking!"  Your life will never be the same again.  This piece is dedicated to the most innocent victims, the children of Iraq.  "Captive Sky" uses electric guitar, sequencer and percussion software. The thought that even the sky itself is a prison.  "Detention Center" Again, sequencer and percussion software.  The life of the prisoner.  Solitaire.  "Cymbolic Jestures" Percussion software programming which is predominately cymbols and bells, with some electric guitar thrown in.  I was going for an asian theatrical dance piece.  "Circling Clouds"  Electric guitar and sequencer.  The sound of a storm approaching.  "No Cause for Alarm"  Oenyaw at the disco.  A short sequencer track.  "Wheel of Fortune" or "Spin the Wheel!"  In some places, it's the grand prize that awaits, in the world of tarot, it is not always a good sign. This particular wheel goes on and on like a torture device.  This piece was actually made with a mechanical rotating device.  "Sleep No More"  RIP.  What if there is no peace?  What if we no longer sleep?  You want eternal life, but under your terms.  The number of people throughout history on every culture that make a living telling others what they must do to achieve paradise after death is stiffeling.  They know what God is thinking, but they can't balance their checkbooks.  Eternal life would drive us to insanity within the first month.  "They Rock All Night at the Ballrooms of Mars" contains visions of an alien band with a highly emotionally charged singer.  Playing in a club on a desert planet, filled with smugglers, mercinaries, outlaws and the locals.  "The Ballrooms of Mars" is a T.Rex song, so one could consider this a hommage to one of my favorite guitarists.  This is also influenced by the alien bar scene in Star Wars.

Life Stills

Life Stills
01-A Picture of a Vase (with a crack in it)                    59:31
02-Drifting on a Methane Ocean                                 55:49
03-Leaves Reflecting On Ripples, Leaves Floating On Ripples    74:46
04-A Meadow of Allergens                                       59:31
05-Rear View Mirror                                            62:23
Total time     5:12:02

This is the second album of "sound deco", works that are intended to enhace a room as decoration, part of the interior design.   Please refer to "Fundamentals of Sound Deco" for an explination.  "A Picture of a Vase (with a crack in it)" is as titled, a picture of a vase.  There is a line in the Patti Smith song "Poppies" which states something like "she was lying still like a picture of a vase."  The crack in it is a pop of static electricity that I could not edit.  Mind you, I can edit out "anything", but this crack just wouldn't leave.  I'm actually not sure if it still there, because it only appears when listening on certian systems.  So if you are "looking" at the vase from a different persective, you will never hear it. "Drifting on a Methane Ocean" is a picture of one floating on a small boat, on an ocean made up of a methane, which becomes liquid at -182.5 c.   With "Leaves Reflecting On Ripples, Leaves Floating On Ripples", imagine looking at a water surface reflecting the leaves from a tree, as well as leaves floating on the surface.  "A Meadow of Allergens" is a track for everyone who suffers from allergies (I happen to be allergic to grass).  A very sleepy piece.  "Rear View Mirror".  Looking forward and looking back at the same time, in the same frame.

The Temple Remains

The Temple Remains
01-Amon       13:45
02-Bes         3:04
03-Hapi        7:24
04-Khnum       3:27  
05-Imhotep    12:26  
06-Thoth       7:42
07-Tefnut      4:07
08-Nut        10:12
09-Serapis    19:06
10-Sebek       8:17
11-Sekhmet    16:41
12-Renenet    20:37
13-Hathor     34:40
14-Osiris     29:51
15-Buto       22:51
16-Geb        10:36
17-Min         3:03
18-Ptah        2:19
19-Shu        32:15
20-Meshknet   13:58
21-Khons      19:16
22-Shai       32:40
23-Anubis     12:24
Total time     6:04:41

The title "The Temple Remains" can be read in two ways.  First, there is an archaeological view that the Gods may be dead, but the temple remains.  The second is that the remains of the temple are the myths of the Gods.  The cover is a photograph of the Washington Monument, a monument which resembles the oblisques of ancient Egypt.  All of the titles are names of Egyptian deities.  The idea for this project developed after a visitation to the New York Metropolitan Museam of Art.  The bottom floor of The Met has an exhibit of Egytpian relics, one item being the entrace of a temple.  There is a photograph of the structure when excavated shows the battered, grafitti ridden stones amongst rubble.  The idea hit me that, even though no one on the planet actively worships these Gods any more, one cannot deny that at one time these Gods were real to the people and were a part of the society.  To believe that the Gods that are presently worshiped are real and that the Gods of the past no one remembers are false is total arrogance.  The Gods of the future will be comprised of Elvis, Marylin, and the beliefe in The Jedi.
All tracks are performed on electric guitar, except "Bes", "Tefnut", "Sebek", and "Shu which were performed on a pedal steel guitar and "Meshknet" which was performed on an electric fretless bass.  As far as the track "Hapi", the interesting thing about this piece is that no matter how many times I have tried to edit the word, the title always comes out as HApi, not Hapi.