Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Baby (Elephant) Steps

It's been a ridiculously long time since this we've given any type of update, so I thought I'd check in and give an accounting of how we've spent the last 9 months.

As we had previously mentioned, all non-album related band activities came to a halt while we finished up Palace Amusements. I'm sorry to say that this meant passing on some wonderful show offers and that always sucks. We made two exceptions for our January 2011 shows with The Seldon Plan as part of their farewell (or hopefully just "see you later") tour. It's weird looking back at the first half of the calendar for 2011 and seeing only two dates. It's our least productive year by far (performance wise, anyway). But the good news is that all of that self-imposed solitude actually worked. We've finished the overdubs and we're halfway through the vocal tracking and a third of the way through mixing. The mixing is being handled by Frank Marchand who has worked on the last few Bob Mould records as well as The Seldon Plan's The Collective Now. The artwork for Palace Amusements is being handled by our good friend, Mr. Chris Gash. Unfortunately, my idea to feature a baby elephant on the cover (partially as a reference to their gestational period and partially as a reference to this album cover) was overruled. We're very excited to have Chris and Frank (and their amazing talents) on our record. On our end of the record needs to wrap by the end of July and it will wrap on time. I say that with certainty because a) we have no other option and b) we are all ready for this thing to come out. Very ready.

We're looking at an early November release date on The Beechfields record label which means that when all is said and done, Palace Amusements will have taken us a ghastly two years to finish. I could write volumes as to why this happened and what we would have done differently, but I won't bore you with these things. There isn't one right or wrong way to make a record, but we definitely discovered one of the wrong ways. In contrast, we knocked out Sudden Fiction in two weekends, but that isn't exactly the right way to go about it either. In the end, most of this comes down to money or a lack of it. All we really want to do is make records and if that means tracking in the spare bedroom and using your son's Lightning McQueen sleeping bag as a vocal booth, then so be it.

Now that we are on the back nine, we are resuming our normal band activities. We had all four members together in a rehearsal room last Tuesday for the first time in six months, which felt kind of like the first day of school. With Chinese food. We're also booking shows again starting with two dates with those fine chaps The Anderson Council (7/29 at Crossroads and 8/26 at Asbury Lanes) and we've got some things in the works for September and beyond but I'm probably getting (way) ahead of myself again.

So that's the update for now, but we'll be around a lot more often.

And I'm back to the makeshift sleeping bag vocal booth.

- Jerry

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