Our EP is now available through our music store at http://overtheeffect.bandcamp.com/! Go listen for free, and you can own it in any digital audio format you like. 16 bit 320kbps MP3, 24bit FLAC, and Apple Lossless are all options.
This EP is just an introduction to our band. We are already starting to work on our full length release which should be available in September. We hope you love it, we have put some hard work into it.
Our goal with Over The Effect was to simply make honest music that we like playing. The band has a good mix of influences, but stylistically we are a blend of 90’s alternative rock with some very distinct touches of 60’s and 70’s psychedelic and progressive rock. Rock music may seem like a beat game to some, but that’s exactly why we feel like we have to do this. We think we can still do something unique. Maybe not earth shaking or multi-million selling records, but we think we can make good original rock music that isn’t about strippers or catchy bumper sticker lyrics.
The band came together in May and we have been quickly writing and recording. All three of us write music and contribute ideas equally. Ashley is an accomplished songwriter. He has a huge stash of songs he’s written over the years. I have a pretty healthy catalog of instrumental songs I have written over the past few years. Nate is also way more than just a kick ass drummer, he wrote the main musical ideas behind two of the songs on the EP.
I have always thought that song meanings were dynamic…. in that it’s kinda up to the listener as to how they want to interpret it. But I’ll kinda throw out a few thought processes.
“Little John” is a song Ashley wrote about an adopted boy in his family. It’s highly personal to him, and I couldn’t even do justice trying to tell the story. This is the man himself with his original version of the song. http://youtu.be/257u2-VveO4
“Lyssophobia” literally means “the fear of going insane”. This was a song of his that his old band Leidenfrost did, but we tweaked it a little, extending the bridge a bit. But we also play it just a touch faster than Leidenfrost did.
“On The Hillsides” was an idea that Nate brought to the band. It’s actually a piece that he originally wrote on The Chapman Stick. We really liked it, so we put drums, bass, and guitar over the Stick part, and decided to just keep it as an instrumental. The “live” version is a bit different (as Nate is playing drums and not stick!) but is also a bit extended. “On The Hillsides” to me is like watching someone paint a picture.
“Reflection” is a song that we all wrote together in the studio. It came out of some structured jamming and then a day or two later Ashley had lyrics. We whacked and polished on the arrangement until we had something that we knew was really cooking. It’s about introspection.
“Hourglass” came out of my stack of instrumentals. It was originally called “Black Skies” and was on my personal soundcloud page for a few months. We took it and changed the bridge, Ashley added some major guitar embellishments and we banged out the instrumental version of the song. Ashley says to me “OK, what do you want your song to be about?” I thought for a moment and said “Time. Patience.” And he came back two days later with some really good stuff. And I love it. Personally, my next tattoo will be an half full sand clock with the words “Time never waits for me”.
“Comfort and Lies” is one where we didn’t release a demo version to soundcloud. So this is a “previously unreleased” track (as they used to say). This is a song that started from a idea that Nate had been working on, and we just started jamming on the ideas from it. A couple of hours later, we had something that sounded like a good start for a song. It’s about how the media (particularly news outlets) don’t so much inform people but rather just stirs up one side against the other.
We recorded all the base (not bass) parts of the songs as a band, and then we added vocals and whatever other things we thought that song needed. I added keys to a few tracks (“Hourglass”, “Lyssophobia”, and “On The Hillside”) and the other songs have a second guitar part, played by Ashley on “Little John” and “Reflection” and I did second guitar on “Lyssophobia” and “Comfort and Lies”.
Mixing this wasn’t too bad, as we had been continuously refining the mixes of the songs after we had posted them to soundcloud. We did the mastering for the EP yesterday and consciously wanted to keep it a dynamic record – we didn’t want to squash the life out of it just so it would be loud. (I’m of the engineering opinion that if you play it right, record it right, and don’t go bananas trying to make a “kitchen sink” type song, it’s not hard to get a good mix. Get a good mix, mastering is easy…. as long as you don’t try to make it the loudest record ever made.)
2007 Fender Stratocaster HSS electric
unknown year Washburn D10CE acoustic
late 90’s Hamer SP-1 (modified with dual Lace Sensor humbuckers)
Peavy ValveKing 100w tube head & 4×12″ cabinet
Boss ME-50 MultiFX processor
once in ProTools, only slight reverb was added to the guitar.
2004 Fender Precision Standard
Acoustic BA200 Head (direct out to interface, and from a parallel DI box to 2 tracks)
once in ProTools, I added chorus, compression, and a touch of distortion.
Roland TD-3 controller kit, slaved to XLN Audio Addictive Drums using a custom kit set, recorded directly to audio (as opposed to MIDI, so the recording was “committed” when we hit stop.)
All recorded using ProTools 9 on Windows 7
Guitars and vocals were recorded with an MXL990 condenser mic.
My backup vocals were recorded with a ShureSM58.
Vocals were recorded using UAD powered plugins to simulate a vocal front end chain. Slight EQ and compression were used during tracking of the vocals.
The interface we used is a Focusrite Saffire 40. Everything was recorded at 24bit 44.1k.
For synth sounds on “Lyssophobia”, “On The Hillside” and “Hourglass”, I used the synth plugin Hybrid and my M-Audio Axiom key controller.
Everything was tracked with an SSL buss compressor for “glue”. There is no limiting on the song mixes themselves.
The album was mastered using UAD powered plugins, only for a bit of boost, fine polish, and again, “glue”. This record is loud as hell by 1992 standards, but is not quite as loud as say the last Metallica album. For info on dynamic range in modern music, check out Turn Me Up.
Lastly, I would thank everyone that has helped make this a reality. I’d like to thank Ashley and Nate for being the coolest musicians I have ever worked with. I would like to thank my wonderful wife Melissa for being so supportive, and for being our biggest fan. I’d like to thank Blake and Leslie (Nate’s folks) for being so supportive of our project. I’d like to thank Alex and Carolina, Josh and Alex from Paths Left Undone, and also their manager Lynn for all the help and support they have offered us. I want to thank everyone that has read this post, liked our page, listened to our music, or will do so in the future.
We have a show next Wednesday, August 1st opening Paths Left Undone at 529 in Atlanta. If you can, come check us out. Admission is free, show starts at 8pm.