Sunday, January 04, 2009

Studio time

The day of reckoning hath come. Greetings to you all from the studio on the third day of our first block of tracking at Woolly Mammoth studio in Waltham, Mass.

And as this is the first post of 2009, why not start it off with the words of our own Mike McCullagh, in resolution form? He was asked by the Globe about these resolutions in the same manner you may recall that Matt gave his thanks during the Thanksgiving season.
The real tradition of New Year's resolutions is that most everybody makes 'em, and almost nobody keeps 'em. So it's moderately courageous that folks from the Boston music community - bands, booking agents, label poobahs - agreed to tell or e-mail us their 2009 resolutions. Pointed and poignant, funny and focused, they're essentially published promises. Now that's pressure.

"I personally have never once kept a new year's resolution for more than a few days, but I go on making them. I suppose I always think I will surprise myself with a previously unused willpower. For tradition's sake, I resolve, in the coming year, to do everything in my power to become just successful enough in music - whether by improving my guitar playing abilities or becoming much more handsome - to quit my day job. Failing that, I will commit myself to becoming a very proficient Internet poker player. In all cases, I resolve to resign permanently from the service industry. I should also stop smoking, but let's not get ahead of ourselves." - MIKE McCULLAGH, singer-guitarist, Cassavettes

Now, let's get down to the nitty-gritty. As you'll recall, we tracked three songs -- "Madeline," "Lights On," and "Golden Fleece" -- on Pearl Harbor Day here at Woolly. We are about to listen in a few moments to whether those recordings have stayed tried and true. Starting on Friday, we tracked 11 other songs: Cedar, Seek Cover, Don't Get Me Wrong, Someday Darling, There's a Reason, Shotgun Wedding, Six Hours, Valley of Gold, Ordinary Girls, Nothing From You, and Like Secrets Beneath. The last of which, "Nothing From You" (name subject to change), we just finished this morning, along with some touches to "Shotgun Wedding." Now we begin the semi-arduous listening process of determining whether the basic tracks we've cut so far will still seem fresh at the end of the rainbow.

Matt has been an absolute warrior so far. In the early stages of recording, it's all about the drums and making sure they really stay solidly on the tempo. Matt has been put through the fire and pushed around countless times already, and yet he's still smiling. Not always, but for the most part. He hasn't lost his head at anyone but himself when he's frustrated, and usually, a little frustration works out to an incredible take. Dave and Todd also are quite good at being gentle, but firm in their criticism.

Now, as we listen back to these tunes, we'll need to determine whether time dictates for us to record a few maybes: songs that aren't in our regular setlist, but we could try and if the right take comes out, it could sneak on the record. Not sure if that's going to happen, but we'll be here through tomorrow, so we'll see what happens.

Creamer is here bothering everyone (Creamer, that's a joke, in case you read this), so I should probably get back. But so far, so good on LP2 from Cassavettes. I'll update soon.

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