Last night the wife (or Brooke, as Undead Molly calls her) and I attended a local DC house party with Mike Mills of R.E.M. (awful nice guy). It was a benefit for Al "Carnival Time" Johnson, a longtime New Orleans resident and fantastic rhythm & blues musician. The shindig was put together by my crew, the Future of Music Coalition, and Sweet Home New Orleans — a wonderful organization that works to retain and bring back the Big Easy’s cultural ambassadors.
Read about out it in the Washington Post.
We had a grand time hearing Mike and Al perform in an intimate setting. Drank a good bit; schmoozed some. I had to play roadie for Mike, driving out to Action Music in Virgina to pick up some sweet gear for the show. The owner of the store, Matt, was incredibly accommodating, but he nevertheless made it very clear that I was borrowing seven grand worth of gear. (We’re talking some seriously cherry instruments — this shop is one of the last truly boutique music stores in existence.) I still have to bring back the goods.
This morning, I wrote my third review of post-metal/doom duo Nadja. I think it came together well. It should run in Dusted this week. I have yet another Nadja notice to pen for an upcoming issue of Signal to Noise. That band has had a productive year.
I’m nearly finished with my new record, Northern Lights, which, as I previously mentioned, is loosely based on Phillip Pullman‘s His Dark Materials trilogy. I don’t know how I feel about the soon-to-be released Golden Compass movie (and the attending "controversy"), but I’m sure I’ll have plenty to say about it later.
The track I just wrapped, "Blizzard Beast," is the most overtly metal thing I’ve done since the ’90s. Well, excepting one short-lived but nevertheless cool collaboration from a handful of years ago. The vocals are in the black/death vein; I was surprised I could still pull that shit off. This batch of songs is incredibly varied — there’s woodsy prog, ethereal pop, Queen-style pomp-rock, acoustic ditties and now, balls-out metal. At my reckoning, I have maybe two more songs to compose before I master the sucker. My guess is I’ll give it away here, but I may explore other avenues of distribution. Look for a sneak peek this week. Hey, that was a sweet rhyme — perhaps I’ll round out the record with a hip-hop cut.
PS: Be sure to visit Sentient Developments for George Dvorsky‘s and my continued discussion re: Transhumanism and Buddhism. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: that Dvorsky is one sharp Canadian.