Jan 26, 2017

Bass In Your Face:

Loincloth have made another step toward the completion of their next collection of future classics in the world of "music worth paying attention to" after my trip last weekend up to Tannon's makeshift home studio.  We recorded the last of our bass ideas in his living room by using the black magic of modern technology, along with the sacrificial offering of a few lesser mammals.  Fear not, no computers were harmed during the production of our latest album.  We are not monsters.  We understand the value of home computers versus the life of an otherwise useless animal.  We also recognize that computers have fragile egos that require massaging from time to time in order to minimize those frustrating moments during which everything you thought you understood about recording software flies out the window as your screen locks up, teasing you with the fear of losing what you just spent hours working on.  Yes, blood sacrifices are necessary.  One mustn't upset the techno-gods.

Okay, I have to level with you.  We actually did not sacrifice any animals for the album, though we may have to later.  There are computer gods to appease, and gods of metal.  It's a constant battle between lame and evil.  In the long run I do believe that evil will win, but in the short term we must accept the lame and trust in the digital powers that be.  While modern technology makes many things convenient ( only when they work! ) I miss the days when things were actual instead of virtual.  As I have said before, Loincloth would not be able to record this album were it not for computers and for that reason alone, I am thankful for them.  The fact that they make it possible to lose virtually everything that is important to us in an instant, or that anyone who is motivated and inspired to wreak havoc can access all our valuable information is kind of a bummer.  Easy come, easy go.

Thomas and I have a date with the Dark Lord of Evil at Pershing Hill Sound this coming Monday to create the blistering bass blasphemy that will punish us all once our album comes out.  We recorded both bass and guitars with clean, unaffected signals so that we could try several different sounds later when the time comes. Doing it that way makes possible to run the clean signal through an actual amp and cabinets in a room with microphones, or through an amp simulator as many times as necessary to find the sound that works.  Since the performance is already captured we can focus on sound design without the pressure of multiple takes. All of that pressure seems a world away even though it wasn't so long ago I was frantically trying to learn my drum parts during breaks between takes in the studio.  I do prefer the natural acoustics of a human playing a drum set to the simulated "perfection" of samples and programs.  Metal has evolved in that direction and as a result most every album offers the same feel from the drums.  I'll take my inconsistencies and quirks over a lifeless drum robot, thank you.  

It can be said that Loincloth is an oddball in that way.  Our music is very precise.  It has to be or it wouldn't work.  But you can tell that "actual people" play the instruments.  We don't relinquish the human element in a quest for unnatural precision.  It's a sign of the times we grew up in, before people so willfully accepted that computers could do anything and everything better than carbon based life forms.  There are way too many headlines about robot workers and robot lovers for me.  I found it unnerving enough when I first saw a friend telling Siri to remind him to buy dog food.  I thought to myself, "That is a guy who will never remember anything on his own again".  What's next?  "Siri, play my drum parts in the studio for me."  I can't imagine what will become of us when robots fulfill our need to stay occupied by doing our work for us.  Any Philip K. Dick fans out there will understand where this can lead.

It is possible that the Loincloth album and the Confessor album will be humanity's last stand against a rising tide of robot and cyborg overlords. They have already begun the process of being granted "electronic personhood" status by the EU.  Apparently in Brussels no one has ever seen a horror movie or a post-apocalyptic sci-fi film.  This is how many of them begin. For a palate cleanser I am adding a picture of the glorious beast we know as Black Bean. He is the kitty cat that we did not have to sacrifice in order to appease the computer gods. It was a close call for Mr. Bean last weekend.  Hopefully his blood will not be necessary for the completion of this album.  He is awfully cute, after all.  For now let us all guard our pets, stop conflating animatronics and actual life, and celebrate good, old fashioned music and all that goes into it.  Mr. Bean will be pleased.


  1. mr bean is super handsome tho. take all the time you guys need on this, we know that truly great things come to those who wait and we also know that you guys are not capable of disappointing us. definitely share your feelings on things being too automated as well, if i dont bust a sweat on the drums i know im not doing my job right. keep slayin it.

  2. Thanks, Mr. Phase! Hell, I bust a sweat just looking at my drums. Looking forward to getting this music out to all those who love music, and especially to fellow drummers who bust their butt for their craft! Thanks for stopping by...