Saturday, November 16, 2013

Finally closing this chapter

Finally managed to squeeze in the next "odd song that doesn't really fit anywhere", it's called "Closing Another Chapter" and is a one that I just needed to get out of my system. A pretty dark little thing, but it's solely a reflection of what went through in my life at the time when I wrote it some years ago. It relates the seasons, the different parts or stages of life as chapters in a book (that would be life itself) and the fact that you sometimes stop for a while and wonder what will happen in the next chapter of your book, will things get better or worse and sometimes even if there even one at all, if this is it? I've written the lyrics and music, and produced, recorded and mixed it, and for the first time in a very long time I'm performing everything on it myself, all the instruments and the vocals. It's very clean, simple and straight forward, probably the most so arrangement and production-wise I've ever done. I had to work pretty hard to keep it all back, to keep it as clean and pure as I possibly could, it sure wasn't easy (I mean there's not a single guitar fill there!) and I can assure you that the naked and disclosure mix with almost complete focus on my vocals didn't exactly make the quite personal openness of it feel any more comfortable, very much the contrary - The most uncomfortable song I've ever done for sure, but such a challenge which made me absolutely wanting to do it and I'm pretty content with the outcome. Hope you'll enjoy it...

So I've got my ass down, or rather managed to force in some time into my pretty tight schedule, and started hammering down some studio hours. I've finally picked up the work on what will be my first solo album, hopefully I'll get the chance to ride it out all the way this round, I'd really need to get that one out of me, also finishing up some of the stuff that doesn't really fit anywhere, some pretty exiting things going on there (if strange and something totally different it exiting that is).

Lasse and I have now finished writing the vocal melodies, the guitars and the main arrangements of 15 new Lizard Eye songs and we've managed to do the hard decision of picking six of them out to continue working with. Up next is to write them some lyrics and the plan is to release these six songs one or two at the time, but we'll see. The coolest thing is that all these six songs are smoking brand new, it's stuff he and I have come up with in our studio jam sessions the last months so it couldn't get any fresher and I don't probably need to tell you that it's all Lizard Eye hi-quality material in the true spirit of 1970-1980's heavy metal in genuine Lizard Eye vein. 

The Inagone recording is, once again, put on hold due to family reasons, happy ones, so we'll jump right on and finish it when all involved are ready to roll again.

For various reasons there hasn't been any rehearsal and jamming lately and I really, really need to have that! Hopefully the close future will hold some sessions at the bunker with my rhythm bros, both Vesa and Drake (solo stuff, Inagone etc.) as well as Pata and Fred (S8D), missing that A LOT.

Over and out. See ya.
/ PM

Saturday, November 09, 2013

Such a shame - A reflection

The other day me and my bro (and drummer) Mr Kallio went to a concert we both had been waiting for exited like little girls the day before christmas - the reborn Queensryche (the one with the band and Todd LaTorre, who by the the way did an excellent job (and not an easy one at all) replacing Geoff Tate on vocals - I love Geoff Tate, but sorry, that is Queensryche). Our anticipation was beyond high since they've always delivered 100% live on stage no matter in what metamorphosis the band might have been in at the time. This time was no exception, it was totally amazing, adding the newfound energy and hunger to the standard Queensryche hi-quality deliverance of their truly awesome repertoire. Sounded great and the setlist was beyond belief, I mean opening with "Queen of the reich", what an explosion! Also never seen a band perform progressive music with such kick-ass attitude all in perfect harmony. Met various people at the venue and everyone was totally ran-over and overwhelmed by the great performance, as was I obviously.

...but, here's the thing - the place was half-full. I mean, what the f**k?! It truly was one of the best concerts I've been to, such high standard, such perfection and high quality all the way through in all aspects, kick-ass entertainment not boring a single second, but nevertheless this poor attendance -  so unfair, such a shame really. This was the case when we saw Lynch Mob in Västerås some years ago as well - a stunning band, every member truly amazing top of the art performers and musicians in perfect symbiosis delivering above comprehension, great sound, great material, looking great and a pretty rare event (I mean Lynch Mob with Brian Tichy on drums in Sweden, come on!) - simply the best of the best, this goes for both of these shows, the venues not at all over-dimensioned if you ask me, but still: half-full - don't know where the problem is, probably on many levels, but something's really wrong here and it's really sad for the art's survival. For one these uncommercial bands and artist, that has stayed true to their art and what they do and not sold out, doesn't get a dime out of record-sales, if there even are any nowadays, so they more or less have to live on touring. The musicians I talk about shouldn't have to work and suffer their asses off for nothing through total disrespect (also they've already done that when they started out), they're the best that there is, they deserve and have earned the respect - and that now while they live and not when they're gone. To me the music-business today seems to have become an evil circle. Is it a downward spiral to the end of the true artist, even the masters? Is this the beginning of the extinction of this art-form?!

Anyway, besides everything else that was totally awesome with that Queensryche show, I was truly impressed by Michael Wiltons guitar sound, it was right up my alley and might be the best live (guitar) sound I've ever heard. Feels good since in my opinion most guitar sounds I hear live nowadays sucks, to me there's way too much gain, distortion and hi-eq (and lo, for that matter - let the bass be the bass) going on everywhere.

Anyway it's awesome to finally witness a great metal/hardrock live concert, to be impressed and satisfied for once, it sure was a while ago in these, what I see, dry days of the hard rock and heavy metal live scene.

Well, now I'm off to make a blitzkrieg attack at my calendar to force in some jam-sessions and studio time! - Really need to get some shit out of my system!

Talk to you soon with some Saari music news.

/ PM