Music, musings and more from the mind of Ben Averch.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Thoughts on Work in Progress...

I'm hard at work on my 3rd solo record, which I've been calling 'Work in Progress' for a while as a kind of non-name name. Now I'm thinking of calling it 'The Brightness' (hence the above photo), which is the name of what I think will be the opening track.

"Brightness is an attribute of visual perception in which a source appears to be radiating or reflecting light. In other words, brightness is the perception elicited by the luminance of a visual target. This is a subjective attribute/property of an object being observed."

Kind of fun to think about the subjectivity of perception and how we create our own world by assembling all the different clues that our senses give us.

So far, I've got 7 real songs in different states of doneness:

The Brightness
In the Valley
The World Fictive
One and the Same
Valley of Your Heart
Don't Keep on Waiting
The Hook

And, I've got a few ideas for new things germinating. I found an older cd in my car today that had some of the early early stuff that ended up as 'Start at the Beginning', and there were a couple songs, "Falling Away" and "A Series of Pictures" that I hadn't heard for a long time. They sounded pretty good to me, and I started to wonder if they would fit in with this new record -- using songs that are already done certainly is faster than making new ones! Although, one could argue that going through the leftovers of the back catalog is cheating for making a 'new' album.

What I think I've learned from 'Start at the Beginning' is that 15 songs, 62 minutes is probably tooooo long. So for this one, I will shoot for no more than 12 tunes -- these tracks are mostly coming in around 4 minutes or so, so I could be looking at a fairly concise 44-48 minute record.

There are a few dimensions that I look at as I'm working up these records, the emotional vibe, energy and tonality of the songs, the lyrics and the vocal approach. While it's early yet, I'd say this is looking to be fairly diverse in terms of emotional vibe from song to song -- 'The Brightness' is rocking and observational, 'The Hook' which, although I love it, is pretty much as big a downer song as I've done, and 'Valley of your Heart', which is maybe more hopeful and kind of forthcoming.

Musically, I've got some drum-loop based songs, some 'rock group' sounding songs, all of which feature guitar very prominently. So I don't think I've headed off too far from what I've done with 'Start', but I think it goes for more extremes -- the rocking songs rock harder, and the depressing songs are even more depressing!

Even at this stage, I can feel that there's a kind of progression happening which is really satisfying. This record seems to have more 'rock power', and it fairly cries out for more anthemic power rockers to be written for it, to reinforce this particular quality. So, hopefully I'll be able to answer the call of the wild on this one.

Certainly, my new Tonic amplifier helps hugely with adding the rock power! 'The Hook', which features the Tonic exclusively, sounds really great and I'm excited to have this much rich, saturated crunch in my sonic arsenal. So get ready for more rocking tunes to come soon.

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