Coming soon from Room 34: Rubbish Bin Salvage

Room 34: Rubbish Bin SalvageAs I’m looking forward to some exciting new music projects (including some multimedia and live performance possibilities), I’m also looking backwards — to a growing pile of abandoned musical ideas, some of which are nearly complete, some of which are just the roughest of rough sketches, but all of which I put some time into at one point or another, but never finished… and probably never will.

I’ve decided to bare my soul and put these unvarnished (well, mostly) musical efforts out into the world, to see what comes of it. I’ve identified 22 tracks, 65 minutes of music, or at least music-like sounds, and am in the process of assembling them, warts and all (or sometimes just warts), to be released as a free download here. That’s free as in beer and as in speech. I’ll be releasing these tracks with a Creative Commons license to encourage anyone who might find even the slightest shred of a worthwhile musical idea in these tracks to take them and run with them.

I’m calling the album, such as it is, Rubbish Bin Salvage: Rough Mixes, Outtakes & Other Detritus. I even spent nearly five minutes designing cover art for it using a nifty and appropriate stock photo I found.

All that’s left to do is zip up the MP3s and post the file for your downloading pleasure. But since I am also inclined to write copious liner notes no one will ever read, that part will have to wait until at least tomorrow. So for now, enjoy the cover art.

Burnt Snow: a new EP available at Sidedown Audio

Room 34: Burnt SnowI am very pleased to announce today’s release of Burnt Snow, my latest EP, as part of the Sidedown Audio Bite Size EP series.

Sidedown Audio is a Chicago-based boutique record label that is the brainchild of the inimitable Joshua Wentz. I’ve gotten to know Josh since we “met” during the 2008 RPM Challenge, and I’m continually impressed with his talent, creativity and ambition.

The Sidedown Audio Bite Size EP series is a monthly set of 3-track EPs by independent musicians, with cover art by Josh, available for a limited time as $2 digital downloads. He’s got some great musicians contributing to the project and I’m pleased to be among them!

Burnt Snow was recorded in April and May 2009. The first track, “Imperfect Storm,” is a symphonic prog-style, 7-minute epic with sweeping guitar melodies and plenty of Mellotron. “It Isn’t What It Is” is a lighthearted funky jam with traces of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and some crazy synths. “At the End of the Day (Is the Night)” is a piece of Summers and Fripp-inspired minimalist electronica, with interlocking guitar lines and intriguing synth washes.

The EP is available exclusively from Sidedown Audio now through September. For two dollars you get all three tracks, a 3-page PDF booklet, and a few surprises. Check it out!

Introducing the Bee LP

My latest full-length album project is going to be entitled simply Room 34 but, honoring some of my favorite bands that have released self-titled (or untitled) albums, such as The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Peter Gabriel and Weezer (and probably others I’m just not thinking of at this second), it has an unofficial title, based on the cover: The Bee LP.

For the first time since I began recording music in 1990, I’ll be putting out a release with cover art not designed by me. The cover art was drawn by my five-year-old son, Fletcher. It also serves as inspiration for the music on the album… or at least for the titles of the songs, each of which will be bee-themed.

Learn more at the album’s official page!