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A random post about putting bands together...

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A random post about putting bands together...

Postby jammybastard » Tue May 01, 2007 1:42 pm

Ok, here's where this starts.
I saw Blonde Redhead the other night as was really, really moved by their music and their live set up.
Two guitarist, one of which also played keys at times, an amazing drummer who was as much a jazzer as a rocker, and some tracks/samples to fill out the mix. Hard, very groovy, and atmospheric.

I've never played in a band like this, though I like this kind of music. I've always been in "tradional" bands with gtr/bass/drums because dealing with the samplers/laptop/tracks thing wasn't possible when I started, and is too much of a hassle now.

Is there anyone in Madison doing this?
I realise that there's Stromkern, Samarah, and other "electronic" artists but I don't think they are "bands" per se. Caustic jammed with an act last year at the MAMAs that came the closest to what I am thinking of. Oh, and I guess "The Dorothy Heralds" might fit in that area as well.

Just curious, because now I'm interested in trying something like this as a side thing to see what it would be like.

All apologies for being rambling...but I have a cold.
:lol:
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Postby supaunknown » Tue May 01, 2007 2:17 pm

Jammy, I could totally see you developing a multimedia presentation performance thang where your band/whatever would actually supply a mostly sync'd live "soundtrack" to something happening visually. Something like that one group that plays songs to people's old film slides, or the imagery that often accompanies big-time rock stars' live performances. Take it a step further and act out musical scenes, use the whole venue as a stage. Of course the more complicated a performance becomes the harder it is to pull it off just right.
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Postby christopher_robin » Tue May 01, 2007 2:27 pm

Ka-Boom!Box uses all kinds of samples and turntables and effects and shit, and also has people Actually Playing Real Instruments
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Re: A random post about putting bands together...

Postby NullDevice » Tue May 01, 2007 3:13 pm

jammybastard wrote:Is there anyone in Madison doing this?
I realise that there's Stromkern, Samarah, and other "electronic" artists but I don't think they are "bands" per se.


Stromkern is at its core a one-man project, but Ned brings in so many collaborators on the albums and has a really, really tight live band that actually performs "as a band." Live they're drums (occasionally 2 kits), guitars, vocals, a keyboard, and some samples.

Caustic jammed with an act last year at the MAMAs that came the closest to what I am thinking of.


That band would be us, actually. It was fun but it didn't come off as well as we'd hoped. For one thing, an 8-minute electro-noise-pop jam is often entirely bewildering to the audience :). Why this didn't occur to me before the performance, I don't know.
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Re: A random post about putting bands together...

Postby Flat_Atom » Tue May 01, 2007 4:20 pm

jammybastard wrote:
Is there anyone in Madison doing this?



**Raises hand**
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Re: A random post about putting bands together...

Postby jammybastard » Tue May 01, 2007 7:37 pm

Flat_Atom wrote:
jammybastard wrote:
Is there anyone in Madison doing this?



**Raises hand**



Hmmm....not really, unless you've changed.
I'm talking about a mix of My Bloody Valentine, XTRMNTR era Primal Scream ("Swastica Eyes"), Massive Attack and Portishead. Buzzword: "atmospheric".
You guys have an American metal/grind vibe to you with shouty/growly vocals a'la early 90's Ministry which while very cool is a different aesthetic completely.

Null Device is what I was thinking about.
Actually I thought the mix with Caustic was cool, but again I like that sort of thing.
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Postby jammybastard » Tue May 01, 2007 7:43 pm

supaunknown wrote:Jammy, I could totally see you developing a multimedia presentation performance thang where your band/whatever would actually supply a mostly sync'd live "soundtrack" to something happening visually. Something like that one group that plays songs to people's old film slides, or the imagery that often accompanies big-time rock stars' live performances. Take it a step further and act out musical scenes, use the whole venue as a stage. Of course the more complicated a performance becomes the harder it is to pull it off just right.


Oh, I wish I had the time. I've did something like that years ago and when only 5 ppl showed up I gave up. I know, I'm a wuss.
It's great when people take the time to put on a "show" with video, etc...it's just a colossal pain to do on your own with zero $.
Maybe that's why guys like you and I opt for the traditional setup.

Also, the key to this is the drummer. It's tough to find someone in Madison with this varied skill set who wants to develop original music with no obvious commercial potential when they can be backing a local singer songwriter or playing at the Concourse for decent money.
Them's the breaks.

Note to self: check out kaboom-box.
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Re: A random post about putting bands together...

Postby hrududu » Wed May 02, 2007 11:35 am

jammybastard wrote:Is there anyone in Madison doing this?
I realise that there's Stromkern, Samarah, and other "electronic" artists but I don't think they are "bands" per se. Caustic jammed with an act last year at the MAMAs that came the closest to what I am thinking of. Oh, and I guess "The Dorothy Heralds" might fit in that area as well.

Just curious, because now I'm interested in trying something like this as a side thing to see what it would be like.

All apologies for being rambling...but I have a cold.
:lol:


All I gotta say is that it takes a whole lotta work, time, and patience. TDH has been through many changes over the past 5 1/2 years both personal and musical. The one thing that I have learned is that being "electronica" is more of a state of mind rather than all the little toys. Anyone can take a sampler a throw together a stock Acid beat or the now tired "Amen" break, then throw some ambient synth ala "Virtual Analog synths, a cup of water, and a teaspoon of salt and call it electronica.

When I saw Massive Attack this past fall, I was really blown away. The performed material from Blue Lines to 100th Window with a live band. Yes they did have some sequenced parts, but for the most part the 2 drummers, keyboardist, bassists, and guitarist were able to translate the material accurately if not with a bit of an edge to it. Anyway, this blew my whole concept of what electronica is/was and how it is performed. Heck check out some live Bjork on YouTube, some nice performance ideas both organic and electronic.

So I guess what I am trying to say is that electronica is in the mind/concept and not necessarily the technology that it is associated with. Even your current band could do it.

Gary

btw.

Now who is babbling
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Re: A random post about putting bands together...

Postby jammybastard » Wed May 02, 2007 2:05 pm

hrududu wrote: Even your current band could do it.

Gary



Hey Gary.
My current band "could" do it, but it won't happen because of a variety of issues. We've finally locked down a sound and approach that works and there's no point in messing with it.
That's why I'd rather explore something like this as a different project.
BTW - I saw Massive Attack as well, in Austin, and they were very, very good.
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Postby Stepbrother » Wed May 02, 2007 5:51 pm

most important is a drummer who can play to a loop. not just a click, a LOOP, that has feeling, and a pattern, and a feel to it. this may be the hardest part of assembling a band that plays to sequenced material.

beyond that, it was fun just throwing samples and scratches over a metal band back when i did that, being the only guy who 'doesn't play a real instrument' although some people really didn't like that i was asked to join a somewhat established band and it definitely changed their sound, if not too dramatically yet stylistically.

now the keyboard parts i write are waaaaaay out there compared to whatever effect i had on the music before. less gear to haul around too, and i do enough of that in the first place that it's nice to just plop my ass in front of a synthesizer.
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Postby Alex D » Wed May 02, 2007 7:41 pm

My girlfriend and I (aka Sonmi) do this. She's on keys/vocals/percussion/recorder/guitar, I'm on guitar/drums, and we play over samples. We've been compared to Blonde Redhead at least once before, although admittedly I haven't heard much of their music.
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Re: A random post about putting bands together...

Postby Flat_Atom » Thu May 03, 2007 12:21 am

jammybastard wrote:
Flat_Atom wrote:
jammybastard wrote:
Is there anyone in Madison doing this?



**Raises hand**



Hmmm....not really, unless you've changed.


Acutally totally. We run sequences and other various tricks n noises using a laptop on almost every song we play right now. Trust me, I know what my band uses and it fits the criteria you have posted. We may play harder/edgier material over it but going by the original post, we most definately fit that category of local bands.
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Postby The New Loud » Wed May 09, 2007 4:34 pm

The New Loud is starting to do this type thing. We're from Milwaukee though. We started mainly because we couldn't find a bass player who wanted to tour. As soon as you get past the logistics of working with a click it opens up some interesting doors.

We're not doing a full blown laptop thing yet, but we're open to the idea. In my opinion there's a fine line to adding loops/sounds/instruments and Karaoke.

We played with a band from Seattle - Trentalange - that was very much Portishead, Massive Attack. She used to be in a band called Crooked Fingers. Check her out here:
http://www.myspace.com/trentalange
http://www.trentalangemusic.com/

When she came to Milwaukee it was her and a live drummer. She played keys, bass and sang and had the rest programmed. She also had film loops in the background that were sync'd to the music.

Pretty cool. She was using a MAC and Ableton LIVE to run everything.

Shane
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