A Week of Beans

Hello from Planet Music Bean.

The music beans made their debut live performance last night and it seemed to go quite well. I may do it again, perhaps even indulge in a bit of Ustream! Below is a picture of me introducing them to the big, wide world.

A closer look at this week’s music beans:

Paternoster
This one is an instrumental track from the datapuddle album, MonkeySkyMonkey, which is still available pay-what-you-like at the moment. The song was originally written around an acoustic guitar loop and the underlying electronic beats and we augmented those in the studio with live bass and drums. Both acoustic guitars are played with one of those little three string capos up at the seventh fret, if you’re keen on that kind of info. The sounds that come in near the end are of Mr Puddle giving it some on a toy megaphone. Visuals, by Mr Earbrass, were originally used as part of our live presentation of the track.

Bubblewrapped
Another preprocessed bean, this time from an early collection of lextrical tracks, Whatever Happened to Boredom. A bit scary this one – the incessant, percussive attack was created using Nanoloop 2.1 and augmented by a few bass guitar tracks and a guitar line. The artwork is the cover art to the album – the result of meddling in Photoshop.

All-Seeing-Eye Hi-Fi
I’ve been making making contact with a bunch of webcomics people recently and this is the first visual contribution from Nathan James Page. I imagine that an All-Seeing-Eye Hi-Fi would sound something like that, but there are no guarantees. I created the track using Synplant and bashing on midi pads. I look forward to doing more stuff with Nathan.

Spool
This music bean worked the other way around. I sent Zora the track to listen to and gave her free reign to interpret it. In fact, we worked in a similar way on Fairy Chains, Dance of the Broken Robots and Power Supplied, with me supplying the music and/or lyrics to Zora to work with. Check out all of her music bean work, it’s really great! The tune is from my forthcoming album Heavy Lextricity. It has been finished for ages now, but there has been a problem with the master for the final, 12 minute long, track that caused delays. It will be available very, very soon! Anyway, the music was originally built up around a loop that I put together on a loop pedal, but it is one of those pieces that has undergone so many changes and mixes, with various instrumentation and rhythm tracks being added and removed, that the original loop is still there, but only comes in and out later in the track. It has been suggested that this piece sounds like the fairies in the track Fairy Chains escaping from their shackles. In my musically addled mind, I think I was trying to channel a warped vision of a Susumu Yokota track, but I doubt that makes much sense to anyone but me.

Hot Dog

A lot of fun this one. As I was saying, I have been making contact with webcomics humans through the power of Twitter and I was sent this piece for sonic interpretation by Adam Smithee from The Apple of Discord. I started off with some Spanish guitar and then moved the piece through a mangle of synth sounds, spitting the guitar back out at the end. Maybe it should’ve moved more quickly and been a bit shorter? Given more time, I imagine that I would’ve given it more fine tuning, but that isn’t really the meaning of the beans. I’m very excited to make more music beans with Adam and all the other fine comics folk that I have been speaking to. If you haven’t already, then please send me stuff.

Seeya tomorrow for the start of another week of music beans.

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