Sunday, March 30, 2008

Two SFCD albums


Download it HERE


Late nights and quiet afternoons

In two parts, download part one HERE and part two HERE

I finished these records today and so they are being posted together.

Natural is an album that I have been working on for a few weeks. My approach for this record is incredibly simple: about half acoustic songs with singing (and some form of lyric) and half old-fashioned harsh noise, made primarily with voice and tape loops.

All of the music was recorded in garageband, over the course of four sessions, two for noise two for songs. Then I brought it all into pro tools and edited it over this past weekend.

I haven't made a record quite like this before and I am eager to hear what anyone thinks of it.

1. Maybe yr favorite
2. Too many words
3. Strengths
4. Calls
5. Young voices
6. n/a

Late nights and quiet afternoons was actually recorded a few months ago, over a couple different sessions. It is a drone album. Each track is made with just my guitar plugged through a distortion pedal and a loop pedal and recorded direct into the computer. It is a long record (just under 80 minutes) but I think it could be a rewarding listen.

1. Sunday
2. Citizen Cannon
3. Snow
4. Redwine

All sounds made by Ben Collins

Saturday, March 22, 2008

MEGA - MEGA (2007)


I had forgotten about this album until Jon reminded me of it the other day. And now that I remember it I have to post it for you.

This was one of several albums I recorded in February 2007, intended for submission to the RPM challenge, that for some reason I didn't take the few seconds it would cost me to send it to them. Oh well whatever.

MEGA is a duo of Jon Lynn and myself. Many of you will know Jon Lynn from his band Unsolved Mysteries (whose album is available on I-tunes and finer Marc Jacobs stores nation wide). This album was recorded in more or less real-time one Sunday afternoon. I probably don't need to tell you that it is all improvised, but you should know ahead of time that it not like much of the other improvised music I have on this blog. I would describe MEGA as a garage-rock, no-wave, punk band.

Jon plays guitar and sings on the majority of the albums twenty tracks. I play guitar and sing on the last seven tracks and whoever is not playing guitar is playing drums. The music is certainly different depending on who is leading, with Jon doing more of the garage-rock thing involving songs with more coherent lyrics. My stuff skews more no-wave, and features more wailing and screaming.

I don't know what to say about the experience as an album, because the tracks are just in the order in which they happened, but at thirty-eight minutes, it's not an incredibly long record and since most of the songs are two minutes long I think most people will be entertained.

Please listen, please enjoy, tell yr friends, and although I am going to try and keep a shred of dignity and not beg you all to post comments, (because no one other than awesome Ian and Lars will) I will tell you that I have so much un-posted material from the different bands that I usually just follow my whims with what to post and when. But if anybody has specific stuff they want to hear (say for instance: more records featuring Jessica, or more noise stuff, or more folkish stuff) they can tell me and I will try and carry out their wishes. Otherwise I will continue to do whatever I want and hope that it pleases the unmoving stony gaze of you, o "reader/listener," if you do exist after all.

Download the MEGA album HERE

Note: the cover photo was taken by Jessica Calleiro

Monday, March 10, 2008

Cat People- Long Distance


I am sometimes slow to put things out, I'll admit it. Take for instance this Cat People record: it was recorded in the Summer of 2006. Why have I not previously made this available? I don't know. But here it is now.

This Cat People record is so old (how old is it?) It's so old that when we recorded it we hadn't yet decided to call ourselves Cat People, that decision came a few months later. But still this album features only myself and Jessica Calleiro and as the title implies we were at a long distance from each other when it was made. in fact I was in Rutland Vermont and she was in Fayetteville GA. All the songs began their lives as guitar tracks recorded by me and came to fruition after Jessica overdubbed vocals and percussion and keyboards and all sorts of interesting sounds.

Those familiar with Jessica's music as Uncle Owen Aunt Beru will recognize her style and that's a good thing. Those familiar with the noisy power-duo format that we usually do as Cat People might be surprised in these mostly not-noisy folkish songs, but hopefully all can enjoy.

The cover photo is from a short trip to New York I made during the time we were recording this album, as referenced in the track titled "English Breakfast Tea".


Black Thirteen - BlackXIII


This is a Black Thirteen album from sometime in autumn 2007. Again it features the classic lineup of Simon Sharp, Wesley Rose and myself. Simon sings and plays steel-string acoustic guitar (sometimes with a slide or an e-bow) Wesley plays the classical guitar and I play an electric bass.

The sound is similar to other Black Thirteen albums: long form, improvised folk music, but the instrumental parts seem more repetition based and less erratic than they sometimes are. In comparing it to other music I would meekly suggest that it bears some similarities to (my hero) Jim O'Rourke's album Bad Timing. I credit this sound mainly to Wesley's playing, (so don't think I am patting myself on the back too much).

This is peaceful music, not incredibly emotional, probably good for an afternoon or a late night listen.


1. The End
2. The Record
3. The Night


Post Script: I am going to go back and tag each previous post with the band name as well as the names of the people playing, so that it is easier for you to find other albums on this blog featuring musicians you have grown fond of, collect 'em all!