Mixing Valiance and Cory’s LP


Spent the day at Drew’s mixing two projects on the Soundtracs board. A long day, but worth it. I’m happier with Valiance today than ever before. Cory’s mix already sounded good to me, and the console gives it a whole new level.

Look for them both out soon!

It Lives!!

My BuildYourOwnClone.com Confidence Boost kit came together in a snap, no problem.  It lives, it breathes, it boosts!


Next up, a Large Beaver (which will replace my EHX Bass Big Muff Pi) built to Triangle-era specs. Might be a couple weeks before I get to that, but I’m pretty psyched about it.

Kansas City House Show, Saturday August 29

House Shwarming 1

7 PM, Jill & Tim’s house (RSVP to jill (dot) puffer (at) gmail (dot) com for the address if you need that)


Benny Bassett (Chicago)

Tim (in his very basement!)


BYOB.  $10 suggested donation at the door to help Ben get back home.  Snacks.  Here’s what Jill said:

Hey, everyone! Tim and I finally have a day off together on August 29th, and we want to host a party for you!

It’s a House Warming.
It’s a House Show.

It’s the House Shwarming.

House will be open at 7, and we have a short line-up of musicians and some art and merch available for purchase!

It’s our house, so the event is private, but you are welcome to invite friends.

See you!

Acid Machine Beta

Quick today, in between Valiance vocal takes, check out this fun web-based synth, Acid Machine Beta.  Click here for a pattern I made; just press “Play” near the top of the screen to hear it.

acidmachinebetaAcid Machine Beta combines two pattern-sequenced oscillators with a drum machine and an optional song sequencer, and it runs in your browser.  It’s fun to experiment with, just to get a basic sense of what some of the main elements of synthesis are and what they can do.

Click “New” when you’re ready to make your own pattern (or just mess with mine), make use of the “Randomize” button, and goof around.  You can get a permalink to your pattern with the “Save” button, or even record a .WAV file of your pattern (I haven’t tested this myself).  Maybe I’ll use it to make an actual song for the Synth Project That Was Not Expected at some point.

Put links to your patterns in the comments!

Dark Satellites Friday in Lawrence + More Shows Announced

2015 July 10, Friday – Dark Satellites at Gaslight Gardens, Lawrence KS, with Hyperbor, Belt Notch, Hot and Ugly. $?, ??? ages, ? PM.

2015 July 18, Saturday – Mars Lights at The Brick, Kansas City MO, with Kill Vargas (Wichita), Hyperbor (Lawrence). $? (maybe $7?), ??? ages, probably 9 PM doors / 10 PM show, FB event.

2015 July 30, Thursday – Dark Satellites at the Replay Lounge, Lawrence KS, with Braingea. $?, ??? ages, ? PM.

2015 August 2, Sunday – Dark Satellites at Holy Cow, Kansas City MO. Probably free, probably all ages, afternoon show, details TBD!

Valiance is Under Way


As of yesterday morning, I’m recording Valiance guitars.  Hoping to do at least 6 tracks this long weekend.

The rig is the EV RE320 close, aimed right at the top frets from slightly above, maybe six inches off.  The Rode NT-1 is above and to my right in kind of a shoulder position; my goal with the setup is to match the sound I hear myself when I play, and it’s doing a pretty good job.

Wish me luck.  It’s pretty realistic to estimate two weekends for guitars and two for vocals, though I don’t know that I’ll get the next four weekends straight for recording.  A four- or five-hour half-day can usually net me three finished tracks.

Such Projects, Very Musical, Wow


The blog’s been full of show announcements (11 so far in the first half of 2015, with two more booked!) but I’ve been doing other things as well:

  • Finishing the melodies and lyrics to Valiance, the next Sally Ride record.  I aim to start recording guitars next weekend and still get it out before the end of the year
  • Sorting some of the remaining 55+ “shaker demos” into a new howie&scott record (!!) and Fight Songs, the SR album after Valiance.  Fight Songs was originally intended as an EP, but I have more than enough material for a full-length. Early acoustic versions of “Cooky” and “Lost” are available on Furious Instance
  • Making new music with a new tool, Poly, a polyrhythmic sampler for iPad/iPhone.  A big chunk of making this useful has been learning to make my own samples
  • Completing a review of all of my unfinished songwriting notes (15 years’ worth), looking for lost gems.  This was a multi-day project, and I pulled 10-12 things out to demo and get into the pipeline.  Getting through this was good not only to find some cool material I’d forgotten about, but to not have to wonder any more if there were good songs hiding in the file.  For reference, there are probably 200 song ideas, riffs, chord progressions, and other bits I’m setting aside, probably not to look at again.  Three hundred or more if you count scraps of lyrics.  (I’ll keep them but, having been though once, there’s probably nothing to glean from another review.)

    Don't hold me to any of this; just wanted to show that one of these ideas has been in the file since 2005!
    Don’t hold me to any of this; just wanted to show that one of these ideas has been in the file since 2005!
  • Building a workbench and starting to learn to solder.  I have a long list of soldering projects starting with a BYOC Large Beaver (intended to eventually replace my Bass Big Muff Pi), fixing my turntable, re-wiring the vintage Sunn 2×12 I scooped a few months ago for 16 ohm impedance (my AD30’s primary output) and, eventually, semi-original pedal designs starting with a no-volume-loss feedback looper for Cory’s delay.

    It's collapsable; the bottom brace and leg sets come off so it can be stored in a closet
    It’s collapsable; the bottom brace and leg sets come off so it can be stored in a closet
  • Re-working my pedal board, courtesy of a Boss LS-2 off of craigslist.  I’m using it in A+B / Bypass mode to essentially add a clean blend to some of my more outrageous fuzzes, but without a drop in clean volume (both loops set at unity gain).  Really great into a semi-dirty amp.

    In transition; the Apocalypse and partly broken Arion SMM-1 are in a loop of the LS-2's (that Arion is a re-house project)
    In transition; the Apocalypse and partly broken Arion SMM-1 are in a loop of the LS-2’s (that Arion is a re-house project)

Moving to Lawrence seems to have sparked some fresh creative energy through some combination of the (usually easy) commute, the local vibe, the sense of retreat each day and weekend, and our physical space.