From: Slave Unit To: Aki Sasaki Subject: Your Go mix @ the DNA tonight!!! Date: August 6, 2009 Aki wrote:People seemed to dig it.
Transcript from the completely distorted clip Mike recorded on his iPod:
Mike: My iPod's recording right now. This is at the DNA right now, dude. At the show. They're playing your shit. Billy?: Fuckin' a. Go Aki! Mike: All right dude, I don't want to stand here looking like an idiot.
Speaking of, I wrote, recorded, and mixed down that entire remix in Reason 4... after chopping up the vocals in ReCycle. I have a shit ton of gear that's not being used right now. I'm going to give it some time to see, but I foresee some gear churn in the not too distant future. 'Cause there are new toys I want to play with.
Aki: Have you seen the APC 40? I haven't tried it, but that thing might let me play all the loops myself while I'm soloing. Aaron: (laughing) You really don't want to deal with anyone else, do you? Aki: ... No. No, I really don't.
 Still really proud of being part of this cd, especially this remix. This is a rare and precious thing.
Here is my drunken Certificate of Participation review, in tweets.
Yup, you read (or skimmed over) corrrectly; Mike only printed 200 of these puppies. Act now!
 oh... those timestamps are in Tehran's timezone. Oops.
[i: technical difficulties]
OH! So, Jason of We Got This Far told me he was having technical difficulties at the 16 volt show at the dnalounge, and he later found out that he was plugged into a lighting outlet. That they turn on and off. To control the lights.
This could possibly, maybe, potentially explain the technical difficulties I had at the second blacksnakemoan DNA show. Gah.
No, I mean it. Gah!
[ii: consumer whore, bass]
The graphite neck is what I'm most drawn to. (And the LEDs. Ooh, shiny!) I've got a couple dead spots on my neck that wouldn't be as big an issue if they weren't both D, including the low D that I use so much.
Then I put the green neon tape back on my BTB and strung it with Power Slinkys... between the thick strings, 35" scale, and my 50¢ piece picks it sounds and feels good. And the dead spots aren't as noticeable when things are cranking.
A fix for less than $30, as opposed to over $4k? Sounds like Slave Unit to me =)
[iii: certificate of participation]
Speaking of Slave Unit, the remix cd Certificate of Participation is out now! It'll be available on CDBaby and iTunes shortly, but until then contact your local Slave Unit member.
It's comprised entirely of remixes from The Battle for Last Place, featuring remixes by Bloodwire, SMP and Cyanotic. And me! I did the Go and Etched remixes. Sorry in advance.
I'm not sure if the below is the final cover, but I'm posting it anyway.
... There. Three posts in one. Maybe I'm warmed up enough to do a work-related one.
Shawn's remix kicked my ass.
I finished version 24 of Go this past weekend and submitted it; then Chris asked for my Etched remix as well. When I sent that I noticed the timestamp on it was from March, 2008. Oops. This is how projects take forever to finish.
We're throwing cover ideas around over email... it'll probably be something simple.
Mike's only planning on pressing a couple hundred physical copies. We'll see how that goes.
Last night I laid down basslines while polishing off half a bottle of pinot noir. This is maybe the fifth or eighth time I've sat down and tried to start these remixes, and it's the furthest I've gotten. I had to
cheat a little approach it in a new way.
First I looped Mike's vocals in Live and browsed my mp3 collection... finding songs I pictured the remix sounding like, listening to how the vocals lay over the tracks, time stretching when needed. Once I found an appropriate song to guide the overall feel of the remix, I copied it into Live, then improvised complementary lines over it. Once I lay down enough tracks, I'll remove the mp3 and let the remix stand on its own.
Cheating? Sure. But with time stretching and the original songs' structures firmly embedded in my mind, I was having a near impossible time of hearing an idea that would work... and when I did, I lost it before I could successfully recapture it on tape.
Go is on the faster side, with bitter breakup lyrics (courtesy of Battery's NV). I slowed it down and reached straight for a song I've been wanting to
copy mimic for a while now that I thought might fit perfectly... and it does. I wasn't able to write a bassline as dangerous-yet-sensuous as the original, slow strip club music for the riveting drop-dead gorgeous feature dancer that no one can tear their eyes away from. Instead I went with something a bit more dancy and will try to recapture part of that sensuousness with a slightly edgy pad, the drums, and other rhythmic elements.
Add a little piano and a ton of guitar wanking and voila. A ton of editing and nitpicking later I'll be done.
Etched was by far the trickier of the two. At 87.5bpm it's in that tempo range where double- or half-timing the tempo results in either the music or vocals sounding too fast or too slow within the acceptable limits of time stretching.
I tried eight or so songs with it, stretching both the mp3 and vocals to try to reach some modicum of rhythmic compatibility. In the end I found it, in a newer song that's just fast enough to be an energetic dance hit. The current vocals don't quite line up, so I'll have to slice it up by phrase if not by word or even syllable.
The mp3 is a very sparse dance track. Not sure if I'll be able to stick to those guidelines or if I'll end up filling in the empty spaces.
All in all I'm glad to be working again. And this particular process is allowing me to intimately study and break down the composition of two [more] tracks that I'm a big fan of. Here's hoping I can finish one or both of these.
I spent the past few days outlining the structure of the Curtains remix. Still not done.
It's a good sign when the unfinished scratch rhythm tracks make me want to lay down solos for days. And bounce around the house despite the heat.
That's the problem. I want to get this one perfect, and I'm going to want to extend it to 10 minutes or so. Hopefully I'll come to my senses at some point and cut the church organ solo and some of the piano bits. Or maybe I'll just release two versions: the radio friendly mix and the overly gratuitous extended mix.
Still, at this pace I doubt I'll finish before the end of the month. But I'm looking forward to it.
Also. The Melodyne plugin? Slow going and a bit tedious and frustrating. And I think I'll be [over][ab]using it on just about everything until I decide I've hit the proverbial wall.