'TODAY' CD

The Recording Method (Andrew)

 

I am really the least technically competent of the three of us, but short version is that we started out working in a midi based package called Logic Audio, but after about a year changed over to Cubase and we've stayed with that. Most of the material has been originated by one of us working alone in cubase, assembling the basic track, then circulating it to the other members on cds for overdubs, mixing, whatever. In reality, while we each have contributed basic tracks, Al and particularly Ash have done much more of the production and mixing than I have. Also, Plug Me In is actually a live track, in so far as Ash and I were playing live together over a programmed drum track, and then we edited and overdubbed from there.

Formal track listing with credits

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Today - The Metronomes

Track by Track

Andrew
Ash
Al

Today

 

This is one of Ash's I think. He did the base track and the vocal, and Al added some other stuff (ask him). I put in the rinky tink piano, and the kind of lead guitar riff that comes in the second verse.

A strong piece of work

 

When The Disk Goes Down

 

One of Al's, one of the earlier tracks, but definitely one of the catchier tunes. Wryly comic in the best metronomes tradition

 

Jetpack

 

Mine, I'm afraid. A big introspective number the band track is quite old, I did it in Logic Audio and Ash and Al converted it over to Cubase and fixed it up. Took me quite a few goes to get the vocal, but I ended up with a few good lines here and there. Al's production on the vocals helps.

 

Operating System

 

One of Al's. Incomprehensibly abstract. Most impressive

 

Happy Daze

 

One of Ash's originally, but we've all had a hand in this one. I like it. I particularly like my bass parts on this.

 

Powerpack

 

Again, a simple but very effective bass line.

 

Plug Me In

 

Well this track really revolves around the driving yet sensitive bass line. However, Al's little guitar riffs are engaging, and Ash's distorted yowlings are of course fundamental. I'm quite proud of the interaction of the piano and bass towards the end of the track.

 

11 Guitar

 

This started out as an attempt to simulate a heavy, fast guitar type sound with midi instruments. Hence, 11 Guitar. Note also bass part this has been transposed down several octaves to ensure its drivingness and sensitivity.

 

Jpeg

 

Al's romantic ballad. Quite stylish

 

Waiting

 

This is probably the most complex track on the album Al's cris de coeur. It's also funny in a really restrained way. A wonderful vocal by Lyn. And nice bass parts.

 

March of Ideas

 

Another imponderable instrumental from Al. You wonder where he gets these ideas from.

 

The Future is Boring

 

More Ballard inspired despair this time honing in on the Fermi paradox i.e. if there are so many earthlike planets in the galaxy (as there seems likely to be on a reasonable set of assumptions) then where are all the aliens? Why haven't they visited us? Meant to be a technoblues sort of feel. Simple, traditional yet effective bass part.

 

Time is the Enemy

 

This started out as an instrumental idea of mine, but it kind of got put aside, until Ash salvaged it with some inspired instrumental additions and a fine vocal, and of course, the clocks.

 

Freedom Disentangled

 

This is a quintessentially metronomes track. Ash put down a basic band track, Al and I added to it, and then we each did separate vocal tracks (we each had our usual freedom to contribute whatever, accept or reject etc), which Ash assembled into the final mix.

Today

 

WAKE UP , BOOT UP ,

 

so much information available, perhaps the computer 'user' has inherited/purchased the right of not having to think for oneself . Users / owners/ controllers of software that should be able to take care of that 'decision making' or 'creativity' stuff.

 

software companies compete to 'silver-plate serve' the 'user' with packages that, in many cases, far excede that 'user's' ability to comprehend, let alone develop the skills required to utilize the particular package. Yet the 'liscensed user' remains supreme! For example the 'user' angered that money had been wasted purchasing a sample cd - '20,000 immaculately recorded jazz drum feels'

 

'I don't really like ANY of them! Nothing seems to fit with ANY of my 303 loops!"

 

Likewise, I imagine the existence of something like ' yourownidea.com - thousands of copyright free ideas that you can call your own!

 

Scan the System - For an Idea - Scan the System - 'til everythings clear

 

but then .

. One thousand results! Which one shall I choose?

One thousand results! Giving me the cyber blues!

 

 

When the Disk Goes Down

a rockin' little reminder - 'Hope you backed up'

and that totally unexpected 'C Part'!

 

Jet Pack

A tune from Andrew, lyrically consistent with 'The Future is Boring'.

spent many hours working on the mixdown of this one - probably know it better than Andrew!

 

Operating System

a curious 'folk tune' from Al woven over a fractal tapestry of 'system sounds'.

 

Happy Daze

has been lurking around since the early eighties

originally a brazen synth/stomp, 1984 meets the fifties sort of thing - hence the title

reconfiguired by Al to a more relaxed, easy listening atmosphere

Andrew played the bass(es) and came up with the 'denouement'.

 

Powerpack

a funky celebration of portable technology / communication from Al. Musically speaking, I tried to link two seemingly unrelated motifs with a commonly condusive synth line.

 

Plug Me In

Andrew and I jammed this one out - some random and some spontaneous elements at play here. We sent it to Al - and he added various embellishments without any prior communication with Andrew and myself.

11Guitar

Andrew's composition, had a lot of fun working on the virtual guitar for this one

 

Jpeg

Modern day melodrama, anyone?

 

Waiting

still waiting!

 

March of Ideas

the first tune of Al's that I had heard for quite some time - mental images from 'Fantasia' at first listen.

 

The Future is Boring

Andrew's tune, originally presented as a blues - I tried to maintain the 'blues cellar' atmosphere - but, combined with modern synth textures suggestive of 'alien guys', or 'little green men', as they were referred to in the UFO fuelled fifties. All these 'alien textures' were derived from a standard blues organ voicing fed into various virtual synths.

 

Time is the Enemy

indeed! 'Different clocks, that's where its at' , someone once told me.

 

Freedom Disentangled

Al presented this song like one of those 3 layer surprise drawings - you know somebody draws the head, folds it at the neck, and then somebody else draws the arms and torso, folds it at the knees etc - hours of fun!

 

So that idea shaped the initial arrangement. And, then, lyrically.

 

3 dissociated perceptions of the word 'free' - unexpected results with a distantly uplifting ending

Today

 

Ash writes great stuff. Loping bass synth riff. Artfully conceived. There is a wonderful musical intelligence at work here. Guitar licks were begging to be added. I actually played them on a real guitar!

 

When The Disk Goes Down

 

I personally approached this CD with the express intention of venting some of my frustrations with technology. Bit like a car - great when it's going, feel like punching it when it falls over, which these days is all too frequently.

I hope you backed up...

 

Jetpack

 

Love this... Andrew has really found his vocal feet on this CD. He and Ash created the musical layers. I played with the vocals, using a combination of voice software - RBC Voice tweaker and one of my all-time faves, CloneEnsemble.

 

Operating System

 

Concept was to create a background layer using randomly selected operating system sounds. I threw down an ad lib melody over the top which kinda stuck. No chords, just a melody.

 

Happy Daze

 

All I could think of when I heard this track was sweet syrupy sounds...Ash was dubious but for whatever reason went with it. I consider the B4 Hammond one of my more valuable contributions to the CD.

 

Powerpack

 

Near as we get to a dance track. Technology as a status symbol... boys toys... the culture of shiny new technology objects. Percussion voices created by copying the MIDI data from the funky riff and seeing what random drum sounds were triggered.

 

Plug Me In

 

Andrew and Ash created the basic track. Love Andrew's bass. Controlled distortion on synth is pure Ash. Threw a lot of ideas at this one...fortunately the couple I really liked stuck.

 

11 Guitar

 

Nagging guitar riff, strange counterpoint voices. Ash and Andrew did most of the work.

 

Jpeg

 

My attempt to write a 'love-gone-wrong' ballad around jpegs and answering machines.

 

Waiting

 

Went through more convolutions/evolutions than the other songs... world-weary torch singer angsting about the web being so f***ing slow!

 

March of Ideas

 

It took me about 3 weeks to get a sound out of my first music software package, Logic Audio. I swore I would use the first thing I recorded as the basis for a song, to wit, the pizzicato cello in March Of Ideas.

 

The Future is Boring

 

Thumping drums - good contrast to other tracks. Played an early mix to someone who immediately removed it from their CD player saying she didn't want her teenage daughter to hear anything so negative about the future. See Andrew's comment for the real intent of the song.

 

Time is the Enemy

Another example of Ash adding clever stuff, this time a layered vocal construct. And the clocks.

 

Freedom Disentangled

 

Originally a vehicle for a virtual shopping list of bitches about technology... Ash and Andrew's vocal ideas turned it into something much more interesting and, I suspect, enduring. Does anyone remember guitar hero Robin Trower? The guitar-like part in the middle is a homage of sorts.

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