Friday and Saturday. I continued working on the text for the suite’s introduction and the tracks’ descriptions, while preparing alternative mixes. Most things sounded ideal on the studio monitors and over the cans, but otherwise muddy or insufficiently ‘present’ on my more than decent desktop sound system. Part of the craft of mixing is to create a sonic profile that works well on most any active speaker set up (from the ultra expensive and sophisticated to the cheap and cheerful), but without compromise:
Over the past few days, I’ve written several letter to myself. This may appear to be a pastime bordering on insanity. Some of my friends write letters to others that they’ve no intention of sending. In so doing, they can speak their mind, but without fear of a backlash. The practice helps to defuse a potentially divisive exchange of words. Having ‘gotten it off their chests’, they discover that those things no longer need to be said. I write in order to either gain a perspective upon, or else exorcise, a troubling matter. Doing so is a mode of auto-therapy, wherein I can be entirely open and honest with myself, and not have to consider another person’s response, causing offence, being misunderstood, or censure. There’re times when it’s wise to keep one’s own counsel.
I managed to procure a 1970s cassette-tape editing block. It’s exactly the same as the one I used as an earnest 16-year old sound ‘junky’:
By the close of Saturday afternoon, the tracks and their descriptors had been uploaded to the album on my Sound website. A typescript of the lyrics, and album and track covers, still need to be prepared before publication.
Sunday. A morning in A&E. My suture had grown increasingly painful, and my hand and wrist, swollen. I required a professional opinion from the orthopaedic department. Apparently, my experience was not uncommon. (Nerve settlement, the doctor said.) The good news is that the suture is, at last, healing well:
Today. Sometimes I wake and know that I’m just a man. The waters fall, again. 9.00 am: The start of several hours of appointment setting and email catch up. And, then, dealing with the incoming mail that had arrived in response. 11.30 am: There was time to look at the possibilities for individual covers for the tracks comprising I. Nothing. Lack. 12.30 pm: Off to School to prepare for the 1.10 pm Art in Wales lecture on ‘Art and Industry’. This would be my first outing since the operation. It was good to be back in the saddle again.
2.00 pm: A tuna sandwich and cup of PG at my elbow, I took a working lunch uploading files and responding to emails. 2.30 pm: I got back to I. Nothing. Lack. and generated a number of digital images that were relevant to the concept and process of the audio content in each case. Thus, for example, audio glitching found a corresponding analogy in photographic glitching:
7.00 pm: I completed the album and track artworks and reviewed, once more, the volume of the tracks relative to one another, and to the optimum volume of the streamable software. I was still uncomfortable about the background sample to the second track. The volume of all the tracks was far too high, although matched throughout the suite. At least, now, I understand what’s the desirable level. Progress is always slowest as one reaches the end of an endeavour.
* For Amy Seed