Mixing Is Thirsty Work

It’s just crossed over into Saturday morning, and I just got back from a short ride around Normal to listen to my first mix of our next song, “Way Back”.  Or “Mr. Peabody”.  Or some assemblage of the two… you’d have to ask Metrognome. 

It’s not ready for consumption quite yet, but it’s close.  Kinks to iron out, you know.

This is definitely power-pop, a subdivision we’ve not yet gone trolling in really, unless you count “I Wanna Be Good” (and believe me, you don’t count that), and it’s got some promise.  Matt accurately describes his musical base for the song as “Cure”-like, with those nice shimmery guitars you just don’t get from the emo kids.  And the whole package ends up, in my opinion, with a little Fountains Of Wayne-style slickness that sounds modern but evokes the good stuff from the 80’s.  Ahhhh… the 80’s.

Anyway, look out for us to be releasing this one in the next few days.

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50 Responses to “Mixing Is Thirsty Work”

  1. […] Original place by choppernewt […]

  2. Who invented this term Power Pop? I like it. Anyway, the new song is definitely guitar-based rock, but pop at the same time. I love it. It’s all our pop influences from the 80s to the 00s merged into a beautiful little song.

  3. I’m just happy that, once again, I’ve managed to trick you guys into doing a song about a cartoon character. (batphones…giant robots…talking dogs…oh my!)
    For my next lyric, I’m thinking a reference to Stretch Armstrong and masturbation! (Two of my great passions.)

  4. Hey, the new song has been posted everywhere:
    Way Back (Mr. Peabody)

    It can be listend to and downloaded for FREE at:
    http://www.reverbnation.com/lizardsfromafar

  5. Hey Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit outta my hat..
    Again?..

    The latest LFA release, “Way Back (Mr. Peabody)” had me from the 5th bar. There is enough care for detail in the guitar work alone to save it from the word “pop”. Rock solid riffs from the outset and not one but two different juicy solos drenched in timewarp.. what’s to dislike?
    If ever a movie is made featuring the eggheady dog and his pal, Sherman.. this had BETTER damn well be the closing credits song.

  6. Yeah, I’m a little obsessed with cartoons…because I was the one that envisioned and pushed for the Bullwinkle quote on Whoops.

    Thanks for the shout out, G-Dog.

  7. Thanks, Gordon. It took five bars?

    I came up with the rhythm on my acoustic guitar upon reading Pent-boy’s lyrics (I often begin with the acoustic guitar). It was, originally, a very folksy-sounding alt-rock song. Then I picked up the tele and and tried a more punk-rock power-chord version and it grabbed me immediately. I instantly knew it would be good.

    I love Chopper’s backwards solo more and more every time I listen to the song, too. It is so cool. Originally I wanted to solo over that final section, because I knew it offered the opportunity for something interesting, but I forced myself to give it to the Newt.

    Hey, we should re-do “Whoops! Democracy”

    When do we get to hear new Cuttlefish material?

  8. I like to think that when you start with a strong foundation, a house practically builds itself.

    And we CAN’T remake Whoops! Democracy…as I think that and Stars are the pinnacle of what we achieved with the old band.

  9. And we, of course, need to work in a sample of Gator saying “…guitar solo goes here obviously…” into a future song.

  10. Yeah, I plan to save that line and put it somewhere. I mean, of course. Then I’ll do a two note solo.

    The thing about Whoops is that it’s still relevant, more and more so in fact. Maybe we should just do a nice mix of the original, then.

    Stars I was always a bit disappointed with, as I think Chopper’s solo acoustic version of it was far better than the whole band’s version.

  11. I listened to Mr. P again on the train this morn and I thought I faintly heard a synth in the break. Did somebody add synth noises there, or is that just Metro’s percussion noises? Or a trick of the mixing?

    I had a whole synth line for this song, by the way, but removed it as it made the song too busy.

    I also listened to Dead Linus again because of Newt’s recent comments. Yeah, there’s no way to rerecord that song. The energy of the singing alone would be impossible to recapture, and Chop’s guitar solo is so cool. It is too bad we can’t do a remix, however, to beef up the sound.

  12. choppernewt Says:

    I noticed that also, it is something Metro did in the drum track – it seems to be in the bridge only. I thought it was something overdriven, so when I got back to my computer I isolated different tracks to find it, and it’s part of the drum track, and I’m assuming it is intentional.

  13. Intentional.
    While I am happy with the song, I am now in complete understanding that you would both prefer that I refrain from creative drum parts in the future.
    All future files will contain only trap-set instruments played “live”.
    Sorry.

  14. choppernewt Says:

    Metro

    Please see my email response.

  15. Allow me to retract:
    My previous post was meant as sarcasm. Like Chopper when he tells me to “suck it”…my post above was intended as sarcasm. In the future I will be creating my drums much the same way that Chopper creates the vocals for the songs…the way that I hear it.
    Only if Chopper and Gecko completely HATE something I record and ask me to redo (as I did several times with KFL) will I stop trying to express myself creatively with my drums.

    PS-And if you guys hated the effects in the track I submitted, you would’ve REALLY hated the stuff that didn’t make the cut. I detoured into DR. DEMENTO-esque sound effects for about an hour before reverting.

    Sorry for any confusion. Oh, and suck it.

  16. I don’t mind creativity, just so long as it doesn’t suck–and I’m not saying the ones in Mr.P suck. Oh, and put them on a second track, so they can be isolated and possibly easily removed if they do, in fact, suck. I liked the idea of the little “tones,” but decided against creating some synth bell tones–again to avoid the song getting too busy. At any rate, Neal Peart, for one, adds some interesting percussion into his rock songs, but it’s a trickly thing to accomplish effectively, I think.

    You could also try some more complicated beats. Maybe?

    I suppose it gets boring being a drummer, now that I think about it, particularly in a rock band–it’s really just the same beats over and over. Only the tempo changes.

  17. Great. FIRST you guys complain that I am sending files as individual tracks and NOW you’re asking me to send files as individual tracks.

    I am now in complete understanding that you are both a couple of women and will never be happy with anything that you get. All future drum tracks will be provided as: individual tracks, drum tracks & percussion tracks, all in one tracks and finally, a track of me farting over and over into my Blue Snowball USB microphone because Chopper thinks that is all that it is good for.

  18. Please note that the previous post is also sarcasm.

    …or is it?

  19. choppernewt Says:

    You need to be quiet, get those shoes off and get cracking on my dinner.

  20. To answer Geckos previous question seriously, I personally do not get bored with playing “the same beats” over and over. Then again, I do not play as much as a pro drummer. Maybe if I did.

    In the end, I’ve always thought drums work best as a foundation for a song. My favorite drum parts…even from Neil…have always been the simple ones that serve the groove first and drums second.

    If drums truly worked as a “lead” instrument, I think popular music would be much different today. I don’t mind drum “accents”…little bits that add a zing…but I often feel that complicated beats distract from the song.

    The one exception is progressive rock. Then it is often EXPECTED…but I also don’t think always necessary.

  21. I’m sure we should all be spending more time during the day doing what we get paid for than ruminating on rock music. But, what the hell! And anyway, I’m now eating my lunch.

    In all seriousness (sort of), I’d say do the basic drums in one file, and the accents in another. Ideally, I suppose, you’d have each drum on a separate track, recording simultaneously, but this “record one drum at a time” schtick you had going did not produce very dynamic drumming, in my opinion.

  22. We’ll see what I can do IF/WHEN I get new drums.

  23. IF/WHEN. Yeah. I’d like to buy an condenser mic, and maybe an American tele neck for my guitar. Both are a big big IF. Not even a WHEN at this point. Might as well talk about when I’m king of the world.

  24. choppernewt Says:

    I’d like a new guitar, an American Strat maybe or something like that, but it’s awfully hard to justify since the ones I have are basically sufficient for what we’re doing, and I can’t even complain about the appearance since we don’t play out. It would totally be a mid-life crisis purchase, and I have to save that for another couple years.

  25. I think Gina was counting my motorcycle as my midlife crisis…but that was a little early for mid-life.
    I will be getting the new drums…assuming that you guys are wanting to continue recording for the foreseeable future…I just want to pay off my credits cards before dropping a couple more grand on them.
    If all goes according to plan…that should be sometime in December.

  26. Ya know…I think there is a sort of way to use the Reverbnation player on the front page…sorta.
    Reverbnation has these things called tunepaks. It’s basically the a URL that will launch the player in a new window/tab.
    We could post that link and set it for autoplay…

    Anyway, now that we are starting to get some attention, I was thinking maybe re-thinking the blog might be in order.
    It looks like most people get to the front page and then go nowhere.
    The front page has become really cluttered and confusing – IMO.

    1) We should make it so that the front page is the POSTS page
    -OR-
    2) We should ask our friendly neighborhood web designer Gator if he could review/make suggestions/update the blog as he can

    What thinks the two of you?

  27. I made a front page to avoid having the posts the first thing people see. Most people don’t want or need to read our stupid posts; they just need to find us, then get the links to hear the music. If they like it, they’ll come back and find our posts.

    As for cluttered, that I agree with, and I can redesign the front page. Or you can get Gator to do it if you want. But he’s always so busy; with what, I don’t know. He’s got no kids, after all. I’ll unclutter the front page.

    As for the tunepacks, I thought of that, then realized there’s no point: it’s a link, and I don’t think you can have a link auto-click. Might as well have the nice RN banner that directs people to that site, which is what we have. Ideally, we’d set up our own website where we can do anything we want, but this isn’t an ideal world, as Plato noted.

    As for guitars: An American strat would be darned nice, if you have $1000 to shell out. I signed up for a drawing to win an American tele on Stereogum.com, and I would be insanely happy to win, but I never win anything. My guitar gets the job done, I’m just a snob about the neck, and it does have a few problems that I don’t think would be present in a nice American made tele neck. But those probably cost about $300 and up, unless I can get a deal for a used one on ebay. Still, cheaper than buying a new American made tele.

  28. I put a new “headshot” pic of us on the band pictures page that I threw together quickly in lieu of anything better. I find it amusing: I took the old KTH inside cover, added newer pictures, and colored it up. Looks kind of pop-grunge. Perfect LFA.

  29. That thing is both cool and oddly creepy…mostly oddly creepy.

  30. That’s because your picture is in it. Duh.

  31. That reminds me, I forgot to change your moniker to Sir Pent. Now done.

  32. I have submitted the LFA to 4 or 5 more podcasts. We’ll see what happens.

  33. Good work. I’ve been watching Raconteurs videos to get inspiration for the music to Poster Child. Man, I want to be in the Raconteurs. I also want Jack White’s Rickenbacker guitar in the video for Salute Your Solution. In fact, I think I want to be Jack White.

  34. choppernewt Says:

    Jack White is just plain goddamn teh shit. Big ups to you for recognizing.

  35. Have you heard him and Alicia Keys on the new Bond song. Even that’s pretty good.

  36. Haven’t heard it, but it’s not fair that a white guy from Detroit can be so cool. Although agreeing to do a Bond song does beg the quality of his judgment. I’m sure he just wanted the dough. And who could blame him?

  37. Maybe he just wanted to “hit it” with Alicia Keys and thought that this would be an easy way to meet her?

  38. choppernewt Says:

    Not to argue, but Bond songs are occasionally fantastic. I really like the one the Chris Cornell did for the last one. Some are awful, but I don’t think it’s a low-percentage play for an artist to give it a shot, especially if it’s an artist like White with a track record of pretty much making everything he touches turn out good.

    I’ve decided to create an LFA level for Little Big Planet when that comes out. I’ll be soliciting ideas later this month on what that should entail.

  39. I don’t know what Little Big Planet is.

  40. I just looked it up on wikipedia, but I’m still not sure what the point of it is since I don’t do any of these games.

    Heading off to CT for the rest of the week, so probably no recording on my part, or any guitar playing at all. Bummer.

  41. choppernewt Says:

    I have to admit that I’m still a bit hazy on the complete picture myself, but based on the press I’ve been listening to, it’s a sort of old-school side scolling game, except with amazing visuals, and the hook is not the game you purchase necessarily, but the fact that you can take the assets of the game, and in fact add your own pictures, music, etc, and build pretty much any damn kind of level or contraption you want. Which would be a fun sort of toy in itself. But then, you can also put up whatever you create on the server to be shared by anyone else with the game. It’s been in beta for a while, and so a lot of people have been doing just that. Take a look at youtube for a better idea of the kind of hoops people are making this thing jump through.

    I think the nun would need to make an appearance.

  42. Lizards From Afar in a video game? Don’t you think that draws into question our artistic integrity?

  43. choppernewt Says:

    Yes, quite. You have a problem with that?

  44. Yes. I have my dignity to think of. My morals. My standards.
    Not to mention my fans…they look to me. How can I let them down?

  45. You already let them down, Metro.

    I just find it annoying that there will be some fantasy video game “level” for LFA out there that I will probably never see because I don’t have a Playstation, and I’m not likely to get one, either. I’ll have to come visit Chopper so he can give me a tour of it. Will there be a sackboy Gecko?

    Speaking of “levels,” I think there should be a LFA roleplaying game, and maybe a comic book series where we solve mysteries and save the planet from destruction in between gigs. Every issue will end with us rocking on stage in a new city. Gecko will turn to Chopper and say, “It’s a good thing we stopped Dr. Evil before he could turn loose his mutant lizard-eating insect horde on the world. Now, hit it! 1 2 3 4!”

    Damn, I wish I had my guitar to record some music: I have some very cool music brewing for Poster Child now. I developed it late last eve, but never got to the recording stage (as I result I only had four hours of sleep and am now dead on my feet). I’m still stuck on a few parts, but it’s going to rock harder than anything else we’ve ever done. Think Jack White joins ACDC. In fact, I’m tempted to sing it as if I were the the love child of Jack and Bon Scott. Since I can’t do that, you’ll have to fill the bill, Chopski….

  46. IF I were still able to draw, I would do a weekly comic strip for the blog satirizing whatever kind of stupid argument we had gotten into THAT week. I’d Develop character designs for each of us…and there would be this imaginary Lizard called Gila that we all talked about but you never see or hear from.

    This could be in addition to the new feature Chopper and I have discussed:
    Steely Dan Fake Facts
    Chevy Chase was the original drummer for Steely Dan…but quit because he felt that Donald Fagen was too funny and he wanted to be the funny one in the band.

  47. choppernewt Says:

    Steely Dan Fake Facts for the fucking win.

    Any notion of anything resembling reluctance to sell out goes against the nature and purpose of the band charter as made up by me and Gila. If it smells like a sellout, we’re on it.

    In fact, to NOT take an opportunity to whore ourselves would in fact be against the basic core of LFA. As such, if we don’t sell out… well, we’ll have sold out.

  48. Don’t try to trick ME with your circular logic! I’ll sell out and there’s nothing YOU can do to stop me!!

  49. People are always looking at me wondering why I’m bursting out laughing while looking at a computer. I tell them it’s the goddamn LFA blog. Makes me laugh beer through my nose.

    Not selling out is selling out…. We have to sell out NOT to sell out. This means we should do more pop songs, doesn’t it? I’ll get on it.

    We also have to do a show in which we all dress up as giant lizards, you know, like KISS. And we need a giant blow up Gila Monster, like Eddie from Iron Maiden.

    And we need LFA action figures, too.

  50. Are you trying to tell me that was all a trick by Chopper to make me think that selling out is cool?

    My action figure will need to have a…well, let’s CALL it a “Kung Fu Grip”.

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