'Where The Story Goes' rattled around in my head for some time. One song begat another and so on. The idea was simply 'where is all this (life) going'?
I bought an antique hard drive recorder (Roland VS1680), and things took a bit too long to my liking. I'd beat it on it, take a break for a while, then come back. My wife Jenn was very supportive as I drove myself crazy. It turned out fairly decent, I think. Has a very sort of dark sound to it. Some of the songs are the most personal I've ever written, especially 'Unbroken.'
This was the first project that was completely done by myself, from production to drum programming. No, I don't prefer programmed drums, I was working with what I had...although I did like the industrial sort of edge that it gave me here and there.
My favorite track: 'Arrow To The Sun' - that one just came to me one day. Had the title forever, and the words came suddenly after a time of crisis.
Plenty of big guitar to munch on...my new favorite fuzz pedal became the Boss Mega Distortion.
'Easy' was a project that waited tooooooo long to be recorded. These songs kept me awake at night, demanding to be put on tape. Skip forward a year or three. My co-worker, Nick Hetzler was an all-around amazing guitarist and programmer.
We put the songs together, and I am very proud of how they turned out. I think Nick feels the same way. Where did we do it? Pro Tools after work, and partially at longtime friend Ed Sharpe's home studio.
Incidentally, the first song, 'Easy' started out pretty nasty. I was writing about how easily my boss at work cut people down and threw them under the bus to save himself. I decided that I didn't want to sing that song twenty years from now so I turned the words around and made it positive.
Big guitars mark this release...frenetic and crazy - and a beautiful acoustic song as well. The DOD Overdrive/Preamp got a workout on this one...
Right after '...losing steam', I had a flood of songs rushing in on me. Trying to make sense of it all, I realized that the joy of fatherhood and relationships was at the center... I recorded these songs at Ed Sharpe's house on Mercury Ave. in Nashvegas.
I sang my heart out into an SM57 and Ed turned the dials. Listening back to it, I hear a little too much 'boingy' bass in the mix, but that's the zone I was in at the time.
This project was recorded on a Boss 8 track recorder (VS880), on a table made of a front door. Ed, a long time friend and professional sound guy was patient and exuberant about helping me. Thanks, Ed. I had plenty of time and your expertise to aid me.
Three of the songs were also recorded earlier at Chris Colbert's studio, but the project did not get finished there and I redid them at Ed's. So 'Trade' and 'Upside-Down' have alternate takes.
After what was considered a commercial failure with the Velocipede '...sane' album, I put together 3 songs and recorded them at Chris Colbert's new studio in Nashville. They came out great, and I added three more, then three more, then pressed a CD. I wasn't playing 2-man band anymore...I had bass and multi-levels of guitar carrying on.
At the time, I had a desire to show people I could do more than just scream and rant under blurry guitars...now, I wonder if I should have raised my voice a little.
Either way, the album stands on its on...and it sounds like it was recorded in the 70's maybe...due to the production style and the equipment being used. Chris had some serious skills.
This album re-energized me and set the stage for a lot to come...I had some really great times in the studio.
All drums were by Jeff Bradshaw, drummer extraordinaire who was willing to try crazy stuff just for fun. We cut some great tracks. This album has proven to be a favorite of many people.
'...sane.' Wow. What do I say about this record? It was recorded and mixed in a week? It was the summation of a sludge guitar and drums, with heavy metal vocals? Maybe. Maybe not. Angst upon angst, for sure.
This album has lovers and haters. I started this band as a two-person project. Drums and guitar. I was inspired by Athens GA's Flat Duo Jets. These days, the White Stripes and the Black Keys are no big deal, but in the mid-90's, a two piece caused a lot of shrugs. Our own label blatantly let us know they had no faith in us.
So, well...here it is. The album with a wall of smacking guitar and metal vocals. The energy and drive of Mike Santrock's drumming is brilliant. Enjoy.
Recorded at Neverland Studios, Nashville.
I must also add the Velocipede was breathtakingly loud in concert. That part was always fun.
Demos and nonesuch, recorded after '...sane', with Mark Waldron on drums.
Some recorded at Hummingbird Studios by Ed Sharpe after hours, some at Mercury Ave.
Some good stuff here, some half-finished ideas, too.
I think I was tuning the guitar to dropped B at this point...with gigantic strings.
'Needle's Eye' was separate and recorded by myself with drummer Steve Ebe while learning to use the Roland recorder. John Coble played some guitar on that one.
Most of these tracks were taken off of a 20 year old DAT tape in 2015, unheard in a long time. The 'Pede stuff was meant to be a second album following '...sane', but it just didn't work out. Much thanks to Ed Sharpe for all his time and effort (once again).