Friday, December 19, 2008

No, the little door comes down, then you put the tape in.

HAHAHAHAHAHA! Tascam 202MKIII at Value World in Garland for $24.24 - this is my best thrift store find since Meg picked up that Martin last year. This was a $400 dollar deck new, and this little beauty works perfectly. It was dirty and that's all. And by dirty, I mean it physically had dirt all over it. Weird. As I was walking away to check to see if the deck worked I spied a... wait for it... original 1/2 rackspace Alesis Midiverb for $1.91! Not the crappy midiverb II, but the first generation lawsuit model. Looks like they go for about $60 on ebay, so I'll probably sell it after I play around with it for a while.

^^UPDATE^^ Uh, so it seems that all 80's Alesis products use a 9 volt AC current? Weird. I have no intention of buying that crazy adapter, so I suppose the MIDIverb wasn't as sweet as I thought. Oh well.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


Test Tone Tape

I am such an idiot. I've spent years working with tape recording... 4 tracks, reel to reel, multiple levels of mixdown between decks. For some stupid reason I've never used a calibrating test tone to stripe the beginning of tapes. I've read about it before, but just always blown it off. This came back to bite me in the ass recently when I dumped some tracks back to the 4track and accidentally had the pitch just slightly off. Re-tuning the track was the biggest hassle I've dealt with in months. As a result, I'm now running a 440hz and 333.33hz tone at the start of every tape. Later, regardless of what equipment the tape is played back on, the deck can be tuned to make it run at it's original speed and pitch. Why didn't I think of this before? Because I'm a moron that's why. Honestly, I would suggest doing this even with digital recordings. It can't hurt.

As a side note about analog vs. digital: I still have 4track tapes from 1995 whereas I've lost whole records due to digital audio workstations crashing. Think about it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My Minidisc Brings All the Boys to the Yard...

Well, I finally figured out what to do with my $2.00 minidisc deck. I now use it as a lossless, transparent intermixing stage! "But, Mason," you say, "What the fuck does that mean?". Well, dear boy, I'll tell you. When you're 4-tracking, sometimes you actually need more tracks. One option is mixing down what's been done to cassette (what I've done in the past) before running it back into the four track. This leads to over-compression, loss of highs and lows, pitch problems and the over-dubs sounding more clear and upfront than the original four backing tracks. That sucks. The other option (this is where the MD deck comes in) is mixing down to a lossless digital medium to run back into the 4-track. HAHA! Yeah, I know, I'm pretty happy about it too. Is this cheating? Maybe, but who fucking cares. I really need a standalone audio CD burner with a really good A/D converter for the digital dump from the cassette master.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I finally fixed our myspace.

For three years our myspace has been frozen. Now, I hate myspace, but our old drummer set one up. I didn't know the username or password to login to it, so it just sat. Today I got a spam email from myspace, and via that, figured out the login, got the password and changed it around. Friend us if you want, I don't really care, I'll probably never look at it again. Just thought you might want to know.

Also, the next record is about half done. And don't forget to vote for Barack Obama.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Hello, I made a new covers album.

sorry John Prine, the picture of you wouldn't fit.

So I'm sort of into this covers thing lately while we're working on the next album. (Songs are written for new record, drums and guitars are recorded, you'll probably hear it some time). Anyway, it's called "Songs You Loved in High School", so here are fourteen songs by seven artists that I like. It's pretty lo-fi (which is on purpose), tell me what you think in the comments section.

The Cure-Boys Don't Cry
Neil Young-After the Goldrush
The Velvet Underground-Candy Says
Morrissey-Every Day is Like Sunday
REM-Losing My Religion
John Prine-Sam Stone
The Velvet Underground-New Age
The Cure-Friday I'm in Love
Warren Zevon-Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner
John Prine-Speed of the Sound of Lonliness
Warren Zevon-Splendid Isolation
REM-Man on the Moon
Neil Young-Tell Me Why
Morrissey-Last of the Famous International Playboys

Monday, March 24, 2008

We recorded drums for our new album

I went to Oklahoma in mid-March and recorded drums and guitar for 11 songs for our As-Yet-Untitled-2009-Album. I forgot to post it when it happened, so sorry for that.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Sharp Dressed Fan: A 4-Track Tribute to ZZ Top

Sharp Dressed Fan: A 4-Track Tribute to ZZ Top

OK, it's done. I present to you our new EP "Sharp Dressed Fan: A 4-Track Tribute to ZZ Top" performed by The Big Black Bearded Caller. Here are the links to the 256kbps MP3 files. Let me know if you want the FLACs or if you want to give me $2 I'll mail you a cassette tape.

01-Gimmie All Your Loving
03-Cheap Sunglasses
04-Sleeping Bag
06-Sharp Dressed Man

(you need to right click and save to listen)

I think it's pretty obvious that I really dislike ZZ Top's music. I purposely chose not to listen to any of these songs before I recorded them. Consequently, you get a six new Moon Mission Death Squad songs that just happen to have ZZ Top lyrics. I'm pleased with it.

It's all analog up to the digital conversion. Analog synths, effects and drum machines (and guitars, obviously); analog mixer to the 4-track cassette; analog mixdown to the cassette master. No digital effects, compression, or mastering. Just ripped from cassette to FLAC to 256kbps MP3. I'm really pretty happy with the way it came out. Let me know what you think.

And yeah, so I cross posted this to my personal blog... so what?

The Moon Mission Death Squad hates ZZ Top