Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Eeee! New Stolen Babies album, NAUGHT, available now. (I played some violin on their tune "Behind The Days".) Congrats, Dominique, Rani et al! ♥

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Wrap Party / Sneak Peek of “The Narrative of Victor Karloch” (Featuring Music by Meredith Yayanos)

Reposted from Coilhouse, with thanks!

For the past two years, Kevin McTurk --a world-renowned cinematic effects artist-- has been hard at work on a breathtaking personal project called The Narrative of Victor Karloch. McTurk describes it as a "Victorian ghost story puppet film".

Featuring the voices of Christopher Lloyd, Elijah Wood, and Maurice LaMarche, Karloch combines bunraku style rod puppets, shadow puppetry, and an array of traditional in-camera effects to present a tale from from the journal pages of one Victor Karloch: weatherbeaten alchemist, scholar, and ghost hunter. This film, very much a labor of love for McTurk and his crew, was made possible by grants from Heather Henson's Handmade Puppet Dreams Film Series and from The Jim Henson Foundation.

Photo provided by Kevin KcTurk.

As you can see from the above preview, it's a stunning piece of workAnd did I mention that the film's score was provided by Zoe Keating, Lustmord, and... our very own Meredith Yayanos? Yes!

This Thursday, April 19, at Meltdown Comics/NerdMelt Theater in Los Angeles, McTurk will be holding a sneak peek/wrap party reception. There will be a live marionette performance by Eli Presser (one of the film's key puppeteers) and limited edition Narrative of Victor Karloch t-shirts (designed by comics legend Mike Mignola!) available for sale.

Congrats to all involved! Attendees of the wrap party are enthusiastically encouraged to report back in comments.

Karloch illustration and design by Mike Mignola.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Heartwarming excerpt from a PBS program featuring Oliver Sacks and music therapy:

I would never call myself a holy person. Not in the traditional sense, at least. But I do know, down to my bones, that music is miraculous, and so is the human mind. This is so wonderful to watch:

Sunday, April 1, 2012

(April 1st, but I ain't foolin'!) Meredith Yayanos Contributes to Rabbit Rabbit Radio

Last February, my very dear and monstrously talented friends Carla Kihlstedt & Matthias Bossi –whose various other projects I've mentioned on Coilhouse many times– launched a fantastic new multimedia musical subscription service called Rabbit Rabbit Radio.

“Saying ‘rabbit, rabbit’ on the first of the month is a tradition here in New England,” Carla explains. “It is said to bring good luck and a sense of renewed purpose. We’ve taken it to heart and are releasing a new song on the first [day] of each month along with photos, videos, and other implicating evidences of our creative process, all on“

Last year, not long before the Sleepytime Gorilla Museum (that oh-so-legendary band that they were members of) closed its doors, Carla & Matthias moved from Oakland to Cape Cod with their baby girl Tallulah. ”Our lives have changed a lot since [she] was born and since we moved back East.” Kihlstedt and Bossi are hoping that their Rabbit Rabbit Radio project will help them to accomplish many things, warmly and comfortably, in ways that more traditionally grueling channels (constant low-budget touring is exhausting enough without kids!) could not: “It keeps us in touch with you [our audience]. It conveys each song with much more depth and dimension than a simple iTunes download would. It holds us to an ongoing commitment to our own creativity. It allows us to be creatively independent from home, which in turn allows us to be good parents. In short, everyone wins. We have finally created our very own dream job.” Fans who subscribe to Rabbit Rabbit Radio can choose to pay between $1 and $5 per month (but there’s no difference in content access; it’s just a chance to pay them a bit more for their efforts, if you can afford to).

Every month, in addition to releasing a new song and related materials, Carla & Matthias share lists of inspired and inspiring things. This month, their lists are devoted to teams of two, and they've had me contribute my own list of favorite pairs of two. Sez Carla:

Below, you’ll find four lists: CK’s top five, MB’s top five, CK & MB’s favorite musical duos past and present, and Meredith Yayanos’ list of eleven (because 1 + 1 = 2… geddit?) of her own favorite duos. An amazing violinist and thereminista (Faun Fables, Beats Antique, The Dresden Dolls, The Parlour Trick), Meredith is also a co-founding editor of Coilhouse, a (daily-updated) website and (sporadically produced) high-gloss print magazine that describes itself aptly as “A Love Letter to Alternative Culture”. Meredith houses an encyclopedic network of cultural splendors and oddities in her mind. My browser’s homepage is set to so that I don’t miss a single post. Their print magazine is one of the few magazines that I subscribe to. It is a wondrous thing of strange beauty about wondrous things of strange beauty.

(Daww. Warm fuzzies.)

I hope you'll consider subscribing to Rabbit Rabbit Radio today. So very good and nourishing.

Below, just for shits 'n' giggles, a picture of Carla and I from 2002 or so (SGM/Barbez tour), plus a behind-the-scenes shot from the SGM Helpless Corpses Enactment music video. Gah! I miss spending time with these wonderful folks... Thank goodness the internet lets us stay close and collaborative.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

LOGOTONE for Warren Ellis

Last St. Paddy's Day, a bunch of loud neighborhood drunks kept me from getting any actual usable mic recording done, so I made this thoroughly antisocial logotone for my beloved ol' chum Warren Ellis. To me, it sounds kinda like a demonically possessed Greek Orthodox choir being chucked down a missile silo with a disgruntled dialup modem. Richard Kadrey says "It sounds like an entire Glenn Branca symphony compressed into a few seconds." Ha! My friend Ben Morris thinks " sounds likes the musical sting [for a video game] leading up to a truly terrifying room or something (the music dropping out as the door is opened to whatever it is)." Hmmm. Ya know... I sure wouldn't mind developing gaming stingers. I wonder how one gets into that particular line o' work!


Eee! SO excited to be contributing to HUMANWINE's new album! Check out their Indiegogo campaign video, in which I can briefly be seen derping and waving (approx. 2min in):

These guys are the real, raw, DIY-Til-We-Die deal, and Holly has an astounding voice. I love them very fuckin' much. Help 'em out. (And potentially me, too... if they make more than the bare bones 7K minimum it's gonna take to produce the record, I might make a wee bit o' dough for contributing.)


Sunday, January 1, 2012

"Awake the Day" by Kim Boekbinder

Happy New Year!

I've been meaning to share this tune for a few weeks now:

My darlin' friend Kim Boekbinder wrote this beautiful song and passed on the basic voice/guitar track to me with a request for a violin line or two. Instead, she got seventeen violin lines. Hee heeeee!

Hearing the longing and sweetness and vulnerability and love in her song and words, I wanted to try to create a full chamber ensemble arrangement to buoy the whole thing. My parts were composed and recorded over the course of a few days in the bowels of a magical building with a mysterious soundproof room that has since come to be called The Goblin Merkin Lab.

When I passed my tracks back to Kim and the engineer, Myles Boisen, I told them my hope was that the strings could be mixed in such a way that it sounded like Kim had an ocean at her back. Gentle, tidal. I think Myles nailed it.

Although "Awake the Day" was recorded and released late last fall, I still feel like it's a great "good morning" song to ring in 2012. This is one of my favorite musical collaborations of recent years. HUGE thanks and everlastin' limerence to Kim for inviting me to take part.

You can read more about the song and its corresponding comic by Juan Santapau over at Kim's website.