Pills Are So Pretty

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Click here to hear the song Sleeping

I have this friend Bryn, met him online. Depending on his mood, he can be found under many different monikers (Particle Dots and Biba Nova to name a couple). Originally from England, he now lives in the American desert. Don’t know how he puts up with the heat, he is such the Engish gentleman.

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Bryn is a master at recording with Logic, they guy has been using it since it was a PC app. I am consistently blown away by the tracks that he does. It’s not only technical expertise either: his music is very smart yet emotional, like a waking state with a beat. He’ll use synths, found sounds and extensive automation to craft  these really incredible songs. I don’t even want to compare him to anyone, but I will say that his love of Eno is but one element of his sound. Even though Bryn pretty much exclusively works in the electronic realm (genre-wise) and I come from more of an indie rock background, we have found a lot of common ground. We both love experimentation, happenstance and sound for sounds sake. we have done a few collaborations, and this song “Sleeping” is one of my favorites.

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Bryn put the original tracks  that he had put together online and was kind enough to let me have a go at them. He sent me some synth tracks, a bass track, a piano part and a loop he made from an acoustic guitar; played from start to finish, it was about 40 seconds long. The tracks reminded both of us of Bowie (because of the piano part), but with a sleepy digital feel.  The intent (at least on my end) was to recall a narcotic induced daydream; a sort of lullaby that just floats there until you stop hearing it.

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I loaded the individual tracks into Garageband (didn’t have Logic yet) and re-arranged everything so that I could build a vocal part and an arrangement. I added vocals, a slide guitar part (total Gilmour rip-off), and some electronic percussion. By the time I was through, the song was about 4 and 1/2 minutes long.

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Haven’t listened to this in awhile, but now upon hearing it again I think I may dump the files into Logic and take another swing at it. I think the end could have been more interesting (rather than a fade out), there are some pops on the vocal track, and it could maybe use some EQ and a little razzle dazzle. I was going to give it to Bryn to mix, but life came up and both of us were busy. So I did a mix that pales in comparison to what he would have done (but that’s how I learn). The end result is kind of like Air covering a one hit wonder from the Carnaby Street psych scene in 1968.

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I’m not sure what exactly Bryn used to record, he can be very mysterious; as an example I am unable to put up a link to his music as he has apparently taken it all down. He’ll post like 212 songs, and then pull them all. 2 weeks later he has recorded a whole bunch more. If I can find a link, I will post it as he really needs to be heard.

I used an MXL USB mic, an M-audio 49 e keyboard for about 46 seconds at the end, my trusty fender tele, a metal slide and the line 6 toneport.

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One response

  1. Michael

    Thank you very much for this unexpected write up

    You left me speechless

    Bryn

    09/30/2009 at 22:48

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