11|30|07   What’s in store for the next 6-8 weeks

I’m about to head off to the States for a five week holiday (Chicago – New York – Chicago). Consequently, things will be a bit quiet in terms of the band until the four of us reconvene in January. However, despite not being able to play shows et cetera, I’ll actually be incredibly busy working on the following:

First and foremost I will be adding a lot of interesting and unique content to this website. For one, I will be implementing Bruce Warila’s concept of songpages. However, his idea of what songpages should contain strikes me as rather bland; our way of doing it won’t be. Whereas Warila suggests including standard items, such as who wrote and recorded a song, the lyrics, licensing blurbs and a courtesy song stream in his songpages, I can’t help but think he’s got a solid idea, lacking, ultimately, in enough substantive content to get music enthusiasts seriously interested in the idea.

So, the songpages I’m working on will include all of the above, but will also make available media such as videos, live performance mp3s, live and rehearsal videos, prior demo recordings of the song, remixes et cetera. But that’s not even the half of it:

The thing I’m most excited about, is creating hand-drawn scores of every song that you will be able to download as PDFs. These scores will sometimes be a collection of guitar tabs, or traditionally notated scores, or graphical scores explaining what sounds occur when and where. They will all be entirely unique, and if I like how they turn out, I might even get them bound affordably and make a super limited edition (maybe 10) available for sale through the website.

In addition, every songpage will feature an 8-15 minute “making-of” podcast, including anecdotes, a few secret blunders, as well as segments on song production, instrumentation and song-writing.

Finally, some songpages will even go a step further and include downloadable remix packages, containing all the individual instrument and vocal tracks, as well as drum-loops and samples – all as 16 bit wave files. So, if you’re interested in remixing our stuff (and possibly having us include your efforts on our site, or even releasing them as part of upcoming singles or EPs) you will be able to download these remix packs as zip files, import them into your sequencer of choice, and have a go at doing your own thing!

So, far from taking a break from The Enright House, I’m simply going to be doing a lot behind-the-scenes activity, which, hopefully, will eventually culminate in one the most involved, content rich, and – fingers crossed – exciting band websites on the web! Five weeks, of course, might well not be enough time to get it all done, but you know what? I’m totally looking forward to trying! :)

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11|18|07   Podcast 1

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To download the podcast rather than stream it, just right-click this link and save.

I’ve been meaning to create podcasts about songs and their production for quite some time now, but just haven’t been able to find the time to make any inroads into those plans… that is, until today.

I’m still trying to figure out how best to go about these, as I fully intend to complete one short podcast about each of the songs on A Maze and Amazement. This first attempt is a roughly 9 minute podcast and is all about “We Might As Well Have Stayed Young”. Hope you enjoy it, and be sure to keep an eye out for more of these in the future.

Finally, you can download the full song as a 320 bit MP3 file

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11|11|07   Guardian newspaper’s song of the day!

What!? No way! The Guardian newspaper (!!!) has just featured our song Darkwave = MC Squared on their music and entertainment blog as the song of the day! That’s insane!

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11|11|07   First impressions of Southern Amp

First of all, a big thank you to all of you who came out to see us yesterday! Like I mentioned on stage, we were really happy to see so many people gathered around the local stage, when, of course, all of you could just as easily have chosen to spend your time watching far more well-known acts on the main stage.

So how did it go? Well, usually I have pretty mixed feelings about a gig on the day-after, but this morning, I have to admit, I find myself in a total state of post-ecstatic equilibrium. I think we all drew enormous amounts of confidence and joy from all the heartfelt audience support during songs, and I, too, just felt really connected to the lyrics and the music. In short, yesterday was awesome, and for that all four of us are just plain grateful and happy.

Our Southern Amp setlist:

  • Scattering The Sun Like Gunshot
  • On The Banks Of The Rhein
  • Solitaire
  • Darkwave = MC Squared
  • We Might As Well Have Stayed Young
  • Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

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11|09|07   Southern Amp sneak preview

Drove down to the AMI stadium today to pick up artist and vehicle passes for Southern Amp. It’s actually a rather interesting vibe there. The stadium was absolutely flooded with sunlight, whilst the corridors and suites overlooking the grounds were calm, empty and air-conditioned to perfection. On my way out, I ducked into one of the vacant suites to snap a few shots of ground zero:

I couldn’t help but notice the fact that I only saw two stages, not three. Turns out I was on a fools errand, as the third stage was actually located right behind the stadium, and not inside it, as I had assumed:

This actually strikes me as an excellent solution, as it means that our more intimate set won’t be drowned out by the massive P.A. of the main stage. Furthermore, I am so relieved that they decided to place the CHART stage inside a tent, rather than just setting up a small stage in the middle of nowhere. The advantage, aside from being weather-proof, is that a tent helps create a much more intimate environment, which should be of great asset considering our sound and performance style.

I’m looking forward to this now! We’re on from 11.45 to 12.20 am, and although most ticket holders probably won’t be arriving until far later in the afternoon, we’ll be playing our heart and soul out for those 35 minutes. As the Germans say: “Morgenstund hat Gold im Mund” (“Morninghour has Gold in it’s mouth”).

The moral of the story? We’re excited about Southern Amp and German proverbs are the stuff of lunacy.

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11|09|07   Einstein and the story of who won the comp

I never enter any giveaways, I don’t play lotto, and every time I bet one or two dollars at a horse race, I lose. These things just cannot be won. Ever read the fine print on the coke bottle competitions? If Einstein had tried to enter these things in his day, the world would still be stuck on “e equals”.

In short, I just don’t believe in chasing prizes. The odds are always too poor to justify spending time, money or thought on.

Well, unless, that is, you entered our Southern Amp give away and happen to be either Earmonn Marra or Marcus Puentener. Earmonn and Marcus, namely, entered a contest that they actually ended up standing a 100% chance of winning. Huh? Yes. Two tickets, two emails, two uncontested winners.

So… congratulations to both of you! :)

My next step? I’m making sure this lesson isn’t wasted on me. Next week I’m going to join the adult world and have some business cards made just so I can finally enter into the monthly burrito draws down at my local Mexican joint.

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11|06|07   Southern Amp ticket give-away

So, as most of you will probably know by now, we’re scheduled to perform at Southern Amp this coming weekend. I’m wildly grateful to the guys at CHART and RDU for inviting us onto their stage, but I have to admit that as much as I am wildly looking forward to it, I am also rather anxious about it all. Why? I constantly have this horrid picture in my mind that I once saw at Germany’s Bizarre Festival in 2001.

In 2001 there were three stages, or more accurately, one main stage and two largish tents, one with upcoming alternative acts, one for dance and electronic music. In addition to these very enjoyable and respectable epicenters of live performances, there was a fourth stage, and the scenes I witnessed at this fourth stage are the cause of my anxieties.

You’ve probably all been to festivals like these or seen them on TV… 50.000-100.000 people, with tents, garbage and unsanitary toilets sprawled out like an apocalyptic refugee camp. Don’t get me wrong, it’s all great fun and all, but at some point over the 3 to 4 days you mentally tire, and all you want to do is chill out for a bit. So naturally one tends to spend at least one half of a day perusing the obligatory stalls filled to the brim with band t-shirts, bongs and batik wall hangings.

So anyhow, I wandered around and lo and behold I stumbled across a fourth stage! Wow, I thought, who plays here? There was no mention of a fourth stage in my program, no indication on the map, no… oh wait, yes there was! There in the far corner of my brochure… an (*) asterix symbol with a grand total explanation of: “local talent stage”.

The area around the stage was deserted. The PA was a tiny system reminiscent of country bands playing at the local farmer’s markets. No one watched, and, what’s more, despite being half a mile from the main stage, they were hardly audible over the wind-swept echos of the out-of-tune Offspring singer. I shuddered, walked on, and actually forgot all about this episode until a week or two ago when I started to ponder the rather more imminent Southern Amp and how this day might unfold for us.

As I see it, there are two fundamental ways our local stage might play out: 1) the local stage could be the equivalent of the Bizarre Festival’s tents (small, but with great vibes happening), or 2) like the comically absurd fourth “local talent” stage: abandoned, desolate – an embarrassing afterthought.

Fingers crossed! right? :) Thus far, it certainly looks like it should be great fun. The event, as a whole, seems like it has been very well organized, and there are definitely some exciting acts performing, so my worries are clearly not grounded in anything other than general performance anxiety and a sorry booking for some sorry German act in the summer of 2001. Hopefully, after Saturday, that memory will once again disappear into the mist.

Anyhow, if you’ve managed to read this far, you might yet be in for a treat. If, and only if, you live in Christchurch, email me during the next 48 hours at info(at)theenrighthouse(dot)com with “SA ticket give away” in the email subject and a contact name and phone number in the body, and on Thursday night, I will take all emails I receive and draw one winner (I don’t know how yet, but I’ll be sure to document it with photos in the interest of transparency! Ha). Once the fraud is committed, err, I mean the fair and balanced process completed, I’ll send the winner an email with my cell phone number, and txt/call you on Friday morning with info on where you can pick up two free tickets for Saturday’s Southern Amp!

Good luck.

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11|01|07   I never thought I’d see this

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