Friday, April 1, 2011

Absences and Storms

The conspicuous absence of a 2DC round on late Saturday left me without a purposeful hangout for creativity that night. However, my musical week picked up as I ventured to a open jam the following evening. Among other reasons, I visited the venue in an effort to promote SolidComposer, with the reasoning that the musicians there would be intrigued by the concept of compos. That Sunday reminded me that performing music live is much more fun to me than feebly attempting to sculpt a song. In my case, there's no lingering sense of remorse or disappointment associated with potentially creating a mediocre product. There is no "product" with live playing per se; it is all about the moment, joining a groove and filling out a soundscape.

On Monday I again revisited an old composition of mine, "Bygone Times". I had originally written the song as an entry for OHC073, then re-imagined it for JHC003. A few other permutations followed before I shelved the track for nearly a year, then performed it at a local Best Buy. Listening to the different versions now provided me with an interesting perspective on the way I work on music. Particularly I noted my tendency to shift styles and genres in an effort to change things up and keep an open mind.

Tuesday's JHC was a chance to start a new creative phase in my compoing. The theme that week was "Wet", one I had deliberately chosen to be broad and open to interpretation. I took the opportunity to create an entry consisting of a recording of the ocean, filtered through various effects I toggled on and off and adjusted in real time. The response from the listening party that night was quite varied and humorous. One listener likened my track to dubstep, while another interpreted it as the first-person view of a sweater in a washing machine. My entry was accompanied by some prose I had written, based on the "Wet" theme. I later submitted this text to the Writing Competition Thread at the OverClocked ReMix forums to chip in and receive feedback.

On Wednesday I inquired about the Facebook page that Doulifée had created to help promote ORC. He eventually added me as an administrator of the page, and I worked on filling out the information therein. It is my hope that social media outlets such as Facebook will help bring about a larger turnout for this compo, as it has been a long-standing favorite of mine.

OHC on Thursday
had a slight hitch as its organizer, starla was unable to join the IRC chat due to a local power outage. With no one to reopen the submission stage after the deadline, several entrants were not able to submit their tracks to the compo page. This issue was later resolved, however. Draconiator stepped in to host the listening party, during which various takes on the "eye of the storm" theme were played. For my entry I used another field recording and applied filters to it, this time the sound of wind. Additionally I mixed in a reversed, time-stretched acappella section of the Röyksopp song "Remind Me". One listener was convinced that the vocal was a Big Daddy from the game Bioshock.

The potential bridge between the JHC and OHC themes allowed me to continue the prose I had written on Tuesday to a certain extent. My first bit of text in JHC detailed a story of a beach that had been affected by a rising tide, and the second for OHC described a monstrous tornado and how it was treated by the media. It may even be possible for me to continue this narrative for next Tuesday's JHC. I'm sure that won't sway my decision for what the theme is that week.

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