FEBRUARY 2005 [past tense, necessary vampiric detail]
We have a lot of equipment, which is getting in the way. We've set aside February for demos, writing and preproduction, but it?s looking like much will be sacrificed in the name of inventory, plans and logistics.
Ben?s solo demos are very good, and in one case, will be hard to beat. We've been studying them for months, trading e-mails and ideas for different bits. The quiet voice (probably Eno) warns of "demoitis", wherein the demos become more important than the record itself, simply because they're real and finished and familiar.
I'm tracking this record with RADAR, the proprietary hardware / software recorder made by iZ Technology near Vancouver. I've had it for about a year now, and it's been very good to me. The Adrenaline Plus upgrade, which I've just had installed, is exciting to me because it allows for global vari-speed of up to 50%, much like my MX-80. I've gotten to love recording guitars a fourth or fifth fast, and bringing them back down to pitch. It's a trick I've borrowed / thieved from Scott Solter, something he did on a track I played on John Vanderslice's last record. Enviable and terrifying, Scott?s abilities. Anyway, I've been missing the vari-speed broad strokes in RADAR, but it's been taken care of.
It's funny that the things I?' missing about tape aren't at all related to sonic qualities, but rather, some of the very things we all bitched about until they disappeared. Rewind time is at the top of my list. That twenty-odd seconds between takes does something to a performer. Sometimes it's clarity and a deep breath and sometimes it instills a deep panic. Both can be nice. Panic is beautiful when it's real. I swear, though, the evil part of me is very small. I've been waiting an extra ten seconds or so before I hit the record button between takes, because it's important to breathe.
Sometimes I miss smoking, too, for a similar reason; it's hard to stop a session for nine minutes of every hour without a specific reason. People like reasons.