and now mandolin

Mandolin has joined Irish bouzouki at the post.

There’s a lot of blue on this board now. Three tracks are at Release Candidate stage. Call Down the Thunder/Hail the Seelie Court is about to be the fourth.

I want to say bass is done on Lukey, but can’t yet. It’s recorded and timed and I think I like the EQ and effects stack, but I’m not convinced it’s finished. And I will use some automation on the levels, but that’s part of final mix, not track mix, even though it’s applied to the track.

It’s the kind of bass track that can make a song. It’s exciting. I wish it was plucked standup bass rather than electric, but it’s still good on electric. I just hope it isn’t overlooked, though, being, well, bass won’t show up much on laptop speakers.

It’s me and Primus and nobody much else for reasons, reasons which I ignore and carry on, because I am foolish and impractical.

But whether people hear it on laptops or not – it’s still good.

Yahoo! can bite my Shiny! Metal! Ass!

Yahoo! broke all the mailing lists in the world. The traditional kind, anyway. Not so much announcement-only lists, but the discussion kind.

Basically, as a result of their changes, Yahoo! people can’t send mail to mailing lists and have it delivered to other Yahoo! addresses. Or Google addresses (tho’ I read conflicting things about that and haven’t tested), or AOL addresses (definitely), and probably a couple of others. Technical details are at Computer World.

And they’re sticking to their goddamn guns. It’s been like this since April.

There’s a patch to mailman, the software which powers our mailing lists, to work around this. It also sticks the sender’s From: address into the Reply-To: field, adding it to whatever else might be there, and you can’t turn that off. So all replies to any message on discussion lists get doubled to the original sender. That’s idiotic.

I’ve written local mods to our mailman installation – thank you, open source – to stop this. And to change the From: line so that it contains a recoverable version of the sender’s email address. So if you had mail from, say:

From: Derpy Herfy <badideas@yahoo.com>

It now gets changed to:

From: Derpy Herfy [badideas at yahoo.com] via My Mailing List <mylist@mylisthost.com>

…and it doesn’t get added to the Reply-To: field, so that doesn’t get broken.

I fought like a rabid dog to stop Microsoft SMTP engines from treating email addresses like this. It was a multi-year fight. I won, in part, because it was someone had a wrong idea about what was good behaviour.

Now I’m doing what I fought against then, because it’s the only way to get the mail through.

I hate you so much right now, Yahoo! – you are BREAKING THE GODDAMN INTERNET, and you’re doing it in ways I kept Microsoft from doing.

There are not enough punchings in the world.

eta: the code changes are trivial. Take ‘em if you want ‘em. Note the source version information at top!

making things difficult

The problem with being a multi-instrumentalist is that you’re always a bit out of practice with everything. It’s pretty annoying, to be honest. But I still like the half-a-bassline I came up with last night, even if it’s all sloppy.

I’ll need to do something different for the two bridges, though. It kind of modulates the key a couple of times. Because hey, why not?

I’d like to say mandolin has joined irish bouzouki at the post, but I’m not sure about a thing, so I can’t. Not quite. I mean, on principle, I assert that overdrive is not only for GEEtars and can totally be used on mandolin. And it sounds kind of cool. But in the mix… I’m not so sure yet.

It may be interacting with the overdrive I’m using on the zouk. That, I’ve done before. (See also: Kaiju Meat. Three sets of overdrive stacked atop each other. It was awesome.) I hope not, that’d be sad. I really want this to work. I think it will, with enough nudging.

If you didn’t play the Run Like Hell preview, why the hell not? Go play it.

all irish bouzouki tracks are complete

All Irish bouzouki tracks for Bone Walker are recorded, comped, and have basic equalisation/compression/mixing settings applied.

Irish bouzouki is first to the post.

preview track: run like hell

It won’t have this name on the final album, but listening to it tonight, Run Like Hell seems to me to be a pretty good title for this preview.

Lots of guests on this one now. We welcome Alexander James Adams on percussion, Ellen Eades on hammer dulcimer, and Sunnie Larsen on fiddle. The faux-cello and faux-double-bass are, of course, faux, made by me out of an extra mic on and blasphemy done to Ellen’s dulcimer.

This track – in its entirety, anyway – is a release candidate. While it still sounds pretty good on my laptop speakers in testing, if you have a headset or a subwoofer, use it.

Oh, and me, I’m on irish bouzouki, mandolin, tubular bells, faux bass, and faux cello, the latter two with Ellen Eades.

Alexander James Adams appears courtesy Sea Fire Productions. Production at Supervillain Studios, Kenmore, Washington except for Alexander James Adams recording at PhantaSea Studios, Wisconsin.

comp sheet

Imma just leave this here.

last day of Faerie Blood eBook edition sale

Anna has had Faerie Blood, the first book in the Free Court of Seattle series for which this soundtrack album will eventually be for, on sale for 99ยข this month, and today is the last day. So go! NOW! if you want it at that special price.

As for the soundtrack delays – I’m frustrated too. And a little embarrassed.

It’s been a bunch of different reasons; my inexperience with arranging so many players caused some of the early delays. That’s on me – but it was, at least, a valuable learning experience. But everything was ready to go last autumn for a winter of work followed by a spring release date.

And – and my eye exploded. Not quite literally, but close. That’s totally not my fault. Three rounds of eye surgery kept me mostly immobile for four months, and there’s going to be a fourth round – but not until after this album comes out.

Then spring! And lots of serious progress! And I’m thinking end of June or end of July for sure! And now it’s the end of of July… and I’ve just spent six weeks on day job stuff, working on restoring a 1924 apartment (with the 1958 kitchen I posted about earlier) 10 hours a day seven days a week that entire time. But … you gotta pay bills, you know?

Sorry if that shatters any illusions.

Believe it or not, we’ve made album progress over the last six weeks. Some of it is really important. John Barbour is the slow, quiet, calm moment in the centre of what is a high-energy upbeat storm of an album. It’s stripped down, it’s really bare, it has subtext of amusingly inappropriate behaviour, it’s six minutes long(!), and it needs to be there. Musically, it gives the album a chance to breathe. Thematically, it’s the lead-in to Song for a Free Court/Anarchy Now.

It’s the opposite of what I usually do, and despite that, it’s gonna be really good. I’m just waiting for the third vocalist to get his material in. (He’s not late – I got him the tracks to record into late last week.)

But it’s not coming out today.

The intent is to dive in now, throughout August, and Get Done. I’ve got Day Jobbe Fun coming up in September, so wow, do I not want to slip into that. Fortunately, there’s no reason we can’t finish this project, and finish it right, this month.

But that’s been true before. Multiple times – each one of those eye surgeries was supposedly the “last one” and I was ready to dive in when the next one happened. So I’m not announcing a new release date, as much as I want to.

I swear to you, this is not Chinese Democracy. It’s not going to take 13 more years. I just need a month with decent working conditions and no explosions. I realise, as a supervillain, that this is a lot to ask. But I’m asking.

normally not where I would post this

But yeah, I’m gonna, because it’s been weeks of work and it’s done.

See, this kitchen used to be a total pit. I mean seriously.

That’s not quite point zero, that’s right after starting work, but all that meant is the appliances are out and there’s some junk on the counter, and the chemical stripper has started on the one set of cabinets.

I’ve been talking about this as I went at it on Livejournal and Tumblr, so if you want intermediate pictures go look there. I’m picking up with the last of the lighting – the same kind of tape I used in my recording studio.

I decided to build some over-the-counter lighting with angled supports, to protect the lighting tape and angle it more forward.

I had a row of those and a side-ramp angling more lighting even further forward over in one particularly dark corner.

Once assembled, this end looked kind of like a Kubrick set:


Watch Out for Monoliths

And the other end looks like a Starfleet maintenance access tunnel:


Reverse the Polarity of the Neutron Flow

But from a normal position in the room – well, mostly normal – it all combines to look a lot like this:


The fact that this former pit can have a legit glamour shot makes me very happy


Reflections in Aluminium


The Lower Cabinet

I was worried about the horizontal bar at first, connecting the two cabinets, but I’m so happy with how it worked out. Creating new trim for the right-side cabinets to match the glass-door cabinet trim seemed pretty obvious, but I wondered if the bar with no cabinet – intended for a light tape, as above – might seem a little precious. But I think it worked out.

This rig controls the whole light set, both below and above lights:

The plug is a hair-dryer style protection cutoff, leading to a 12V DC power supply, leading to an LED controller with remote pickup. The colour is 12-bit – eight levels of red, green, and blue, in any combination; I played with it until I got a warmish white that I liked.

It wouldn’t be one of my photobomb posts without, of course, panoramas! They’re tiny here, of course, so There are larger versions on Flickr, as always. The first is from the doorway, the second is from where the stove will go when it arrives on Monday.

For the first time in six weeks, I don’t have anything to do in this building tomorrow. So totally about goddamn time.

But that said, I’m really happy with how it came out. My plan had been to remove this kitchen, eventually, but, well, now… I guess it can stay. The tipoff had been the glass doors and the 1958 blue formica, which I gambled I could clean up and restore. Everything else in the room is designed around them. I think it worked.

eta: Now with appliances!

More pics here and here and here, if you’re really into restoration and cabinetry. I tend to post that stuff on Livejournal.

almost done and then

Almost done with the restoration work, and then a trainwreck happened. I put details over on my LJ, since I don’t really think vintage kitchen restoration is really band material. Anyway, there’s a lot of money, some more work, and I cut my left hand in a pretty ouchy way, but I’ll be okay.

But goddamn I’m angry about some of that.

This week tho’ – it’s mostly more money on other stuff than more work, so in a day or two I should be playing again and I can get those Lukey zouk re-records done. Anna is deep into the Rebels of Adalonia third book right now, so can’t do readings this week after all.

Things just take. so. many. little. times. away. from. each. other. Crazymaking.

Oh, we also just gained a bonus track. It’s actually already ready, as are many things. We’re 95% done – that just leaves the last 95% to go…

and thus the powerpuff girls…

…were delayed at Dallas/Ft. Worth but eventually arrived in Seattle, apparently. I was in the airport, and saw this, and sure, you tell me this isn’t their luggage. I dare you.

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