Thursday, 11 August 2005

letter to Nick from Durango, CO about his CD of music that he gave me.

Dear Nick,

Here are a few thoughts on the Transistor Radio Sound CD you gave me in Durango some months ago. I thought it was a bizarre coincidence that I had actually just bought you CD in the local record store, before you stopped us and upgraded the disc to a more modern version on the spot! Such are the joys of traveling - you never know what weird occurrence is going to happen next. Ok, here are the songs that really stood out for me:

the lights.

This is possibly my favourite track. The combination of the vocal harmonies with the keyboard part that kicks in after 1:07 is just beautiful. I like its brevity too: it gives the track real punch.

ride my bike.

Considering I first met you after you rode up to Jo and me on your bicycle, it makes sense that you have a bike-related song... I like the line "when you're sick of not feeling your face when it snows". What keyboard do you use by the way? You're getting some lovely Beat Happening-esque sounds off it. Having visited Durango, this song makes a lot of sense: a trek through a sleepy mountain town in search of stimulating conversation.

la la.

While I was in Virginia I picked up the latest Tom Waits album, 'Real Gone', and the distorted vocal percussion sound in this song really reminds me of things of stuff on that record. The combination of the grunting with smooth echo-ey singing is magic.

don't wake.

Who's the girl you sing with? She has a lovely voice, it fits well with yours. The thing that really jumped out at me about this track was the single keyboard note that comes in over the guitar just before the end, along with what sounds to me like a shaker. Makes me think of staggering back late at night from a drinking session in Silverton or some other mountain ghost town.

odd fellow.

This is a lot of fun to listen to: all the falling-apart percussion and coughing forms the perfect backing track for the vocals and keyboard. It shouldn't really work, but somehow it does. I'm sure this one was fun to play live.

volcano, volcano.

This is my other favourite track off the disc. I like the beats, and how they're really present in the mix, and the guitar swoons along in the background. It's very dreamlike, your guitar sounds like chimes, inside a cave... on sedatives - if that makes any sense.

Overall I think it's a very tidy compilation of work. Have you any forthcoming plans to record more or tour? When we met you I think you were planning to move out from Durango, so I hope wherever you are you're still continuing to make music.

Once I have my independent label set up in Newcastle, England (home of such ultra-trendy guitar bands like The Futureheads, Maximo Park and yourcodenameis:milo), I'll certainly get in touch and see whether it would be possible to put something out over here. Even if it was a cassette-only release, it'd be very cool to give it a shot. Then you could claim to be an internationally distributed artist! With the knowledge that Slamdek and K Records made it happen, then I don't see why not.

If you’re interested in the music I’ve been making since my return from the States, then email me your current mailing address and I’ll post you a CD. There’s been some noise-core, some acoustic crooning and the obligatory synth-heavy experiments that have been coursing through the eight track.

Until then, keep in touch and keep playing.