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Showing posts from September, 2007


Thanks for today's instant lyrics to Darrin's Scrambled Lyric Eggs program.

Maybe it's all just a phase
safe in comforted knowledge
april snow
meatwood flack

When there will be
The gentle demise
the elements conspire
The soft embrace of destruction

You said there was no way
Saw you stumble
Wisdom awaits
The velvet decline

Feel nothing
Without faith

Another time
IRR3 lyric stabs
Orchids of fear

Filling the void
Working by hand
Cauldron of emptiness
Kneel before me

4. Hope
Screaming alone
Identical twins
It all comes down

without fire
Someone else's land
Who is your lord
Open up into

Taste the shallow abyss
In half an hour

Loss of hope
Suffering inside
Accept what is given
To embrace the absence


for what could've been
don't worry
you just broke my spine

you're not sorry...asshole
metronomic shadow
you know it's on its way

the siren screams
i'm only programmed to fuck
where you've been

the forbidden…


Hazy "Sunset" MP3 "Water" MP3

Almost unbearably dismal songs, recorded almost unbearably dismally. What can I tell you, I'm the king of dismalia..

Fall, the second Hazy album, was recorded in one afternoon, February 20, 2005. I used one mic and recorded into Cool Edit 96 on the laptop. The mic picked up all of the laptop's squealing and processor noise. All the songs are acoustic guitar and singing, no overdubs or anything. There's a funny bit of synchronicity toward the end of the album when one of the other computers in the room finished burning a DVD and played its little mexican jumping bean "I'm finished burning now" song just as the song ended. The lyrics for "Water" are about the day I visited N!ck Dr@ke's grave.

down in the sky
light turns to ice
slowly burning

walk all morning
east of nowhere
in the mist

now we rise


Ian C Stewart "Downhill" and "Unnoticed" Youtube

Wow, I just did a search on my own name on Youtube & it's pretty dire. I guess the middle initial makes all the difference in the world still....

I accidentally encoded these two songs together on Youtube just now. No wonder it's six minutes long!

I did a lot of extremely informal recording in those days usually with a handheld tape recorder & an acoustic guitar. After I got my first camcorder, I recorded a few songs that way as well but I'm not sure that it had the same effect. You can actually see the conditions I wrote and recorded in, in addition to hearing them. That alone is enough to scare me away from trying anything like this now.

"Downhill" seems relatively uptempo but still has those sad big boy chord inversions. The tempo changes were due to my feeling that the songs should be able to go in any direction at any time. "Downhill" is the rare occasion when I was singing di…


Ian C Stewart "Garden Scene" MP3

It seems like all I do here is bellyache and berate myself for all the missed opportunities and lapses in quality control I've slackered myself into.. I guess there are very few things I've ever recorded that I consider unqualified successes. "Garden Scene" is one of them.

This piece was recorded in 1995, one of the last things I did before firing up the AUTOreverse mechanism. I was in the zone just before I packed up the studio stuff for good. It wasn't for good, obviously, but that's sort of the effect it had on me at the time.

The song is a total, unashamed ripoff of all things Cocteau Twins and 1980s. Everything is reverbed to helen back. The drum machine is dialed in on that 4AD setting. The keyboard was probably my big Casio which was my workhorse for this song and most of the of the stuff on the Samarkand 'smooth jazz' (not really) album Pitch Wheel.

I don't need to make excuses for any aspect of this …


Hazy "Dream" MP3 + "Road" MP3

From the band that never was, the albums that never were, the songs that almost were. The lyrics, titles and cover art that definitely did happen.

These are the last two songs on the first Hazy album, Atmos. Just like Rick Rubin said, ask someone to write ten songs for an album and inevitably the most recent two are the best ones.

I'm pretty sure no one has heard this stuff in its entirety, at least I hope not.

On "Dream", I used an old funky drum break for the drums, then some clean bass & guitars, all reverbed beyond reason. The vocals are the weak link, naturally. Hopefully they're low enough in the mix that they don't ruin the whole thing. If that's even possible.

"Road" has a drum loop from who knows where. Actually I do know where, it was an old remix kit sent by a friend for a very early bunch of Acid remixes. We're talkin' like 1998 or 99 here. So he played the drums, which is why the …


Ian C Stewart "These Chords are like Family to Me" MP3

From the 2003 made-to-be-made-not-made-to-be-heard album I Don't Know Why You Think I Won't Kill You.... this is the last song.

This was the beginning of my dabbling with intentional randomness in songwriting. The lyrics for the whole album were compiled from albums by other artists that I enjoyed a lot, such as Adrian Belew's Twang Bar King, The Cure's Pornography, Voivod Nothingface, Mercyful Fate Melissa etc.

I wrote out entire lines of their phrases and chopped them together. I think at the time I described it as 'sad psychedelic love songs about satan' overall, which is really being too generous.

The music was also randomly chosen from tablature found on t'interwebs for favorite songs of mine. In general I played the chords in reverse order to the original songs but I can still kind of tell in a couple of places what the songs were.

The titles were my own, obviously. Although I did chop toget…


Ian C Stewart "Souvenirs" Youtube

Many lifetimes and receding hairlines ago, somebody somewhere had the idea to make a fresh compilation CD of new mopey acoustic guitar based songs. The CD was called Because it's Cheaper than Therapy and that's all I'll say on this potentially volatile subject.

"Souvenirs" was my submission.

down the hill


Ian C Stewart "B0khara" MP3

This song is so new I don't really have any perspective on it. The drum loop came first when I recorded this thing, um, a couple of days ago.

Actually the middle guitar break came first out of the whole song. Playing across the middle strings of the guitar, I came across a mopey kind of descending thing, which, when I voiced the notes correctly turned out to just be B major, B bleah something, A major, G major, which isn't very mopey at all.

It's kind of anti mopey actually.

The bass line came next and I found a nice rub with that Eric Avery/Jane's Addiction kind of rollicking line.

And the drums were just a bunch of percussive things to keep the whole thing moving. Or not. So who knows. I like the chords very much but who knows if this will ever amount to anything & grow some vocals.


Ian C Stewart "Song Ideas 1987 01" MP3 + "Song Ideas 1987 02" MP3

Lucky you, two tracks today from the next tape in the seemingly endless supply of tapes recorded by me. The only information given this time is "Song Ideas by Ian '87" written on the cover. Okay. That tells us almost nothing. But that's still more information than many of my tapes have on them. I've always been bad about writing stuff like that down.

Both sides of this 60 minute cassette were filled with all manner of silliness involving a Mattel Synsonics toy drum machine, a wee jobby of a toy Casio PT-80 keyboard and distorted guitar. I'm pretty sure that to this day I've never listened to this tape. It was probably cranked out in an afternoon or two. I should listen to it sometime, shouldn't I. I might've cured cancer or something.

I've never been ashamed of my ability to rock a funky beat with the Synsonics. Oh, no. And I could even break out a thrash/polka/…


Oracle "Jam 2" MP3

Here's the ultimate of our Dokken/Celtic Frost crossovers. I believe Dave is on guitar and I'm on drums for this jam. It's such a strange combination of elements, I almost wish we'd been able to take it somewhere. What does happen when you mix glam and sludgy doom?

Probably nothing. I'm sure there's a reason we never got together again after this!

The riff was definitely Dave's. I always enjoyed playing it and could probably still bust it out if I wanted to.

I'm not positive that I'm playing the drums but it does sound like me. This would've been like my third or fourth time ever behind a kit. My usual 'drum set' in those days consisted of the air and a pair of drum sticks, sunglasses and leather gloves optional. No, really. I'd sit on the corner of my waterbed & blast Venom's 20 minute epic "At War With Satan" and air drum along as best I could.

The funny thing about playing in Dave's b…


Oracle "Jam" MP3

Skipping ahead to March 1987, probably my next experience jamming with other guys. This time with several chaps who I didn't normally hang out with. We all seemed to like aspects of the same music but our playing styles were pretty far off from each other.

Let's see, we played in this guy Dave M.'s basement. Even though we weren't bestest buds or anything, Dave M. was the guy I knew the best out of this session. I don't remember if we even had any classes together, we just both loved talking about playing the guitar. Which was certainly not uncommon at the time. He seemed to be a George Lynch acolyte whereas I still had yet to declare a style of my own.

So, to confuse things further, there was a third guy, named Matt, I don't remember his last name. But he was there with his drums. He played drums fairly well though none of us were virtuosos. Matt also played guitar decently. Dave, who primarily played guitar, could hold his own on the d…


Ichor "Jam" MP3

This tape is labelled "Ichor Again" which refers to another tape dated a few weeks earlier. That tape consists of at least 60 minutes of us waiting for the drummer who never arrives.

But this time, September 14, 1986 apparently, the drummer was in the house. Well, in the garage, whatever. Same drummer as 'Argus', but it appears that without Matt or anyone else to keep us together, we both space out in different directions. Meaning that by this point we probably didn't know any of the same songs anymore. I wasn't really writing songs yet, I mean nothing that I felt comfortable showing to other people!

That being said, the chords I'm playing on this jam do correspond with maybe the one & only song that Keith and I ever tried to write together. Or maybe it was just an inside joke at one point that I tried to solidify into a song. I finished the lyrics and recorded the song for one of my first cassette releases. The song was called …


Y'know, I don't even remember recording this session in Darrin's basement, but here's the proof that I did. I forgot that it was on this tape, which I used for the Samarkand gig at Andyman's Treehouse a few weeks back. Which means that the video of the 2004 iteration of "Bloomer" is lost to posterity. No matter, we still have three sweet tracks.

I'm playing guitar and trying to sing. Michael Bill played bass and Darrin played drums. MCB and I must've traded axes on the day because it looks like I'm playing his ESP strat thingy through his half stack & he's playing that Squier MB-4 I had briefly. I miss that bass!

The idea behind this session was to make fresh recordings for a 3" CD single to be included in the Samarkand box set, which I (thought I) was finishing work on at the time. I think this was during a lull on the Devilcake end of things.

And we're playing the songs as though, well, it's the first time we ever played t…


matt & ian 1986?

Argus "Louie Louie" MP3

This cassette is dated April 14, 1986 and I believe it's the first time I ever jammed with classmates. I'm playing guitar, the drummer I believe was named Jason, the singer might've been Matt and I forget who could've been playing bass. I think Matt played bass all the time & all the rest of the day but maybe his brother or neighbor suddenly appeared in the garage once we started making all that noise? We used the lyric sheet from my Motorhead "No Remorse" album for the words.

Check out my pre CC Deville over the top guitar solo. Holy cow.

I don't think I jammed with Matt again. He later joined the Penguins. I think I tried to jam with Jason again at his house, but his parents went ballistic after like half a song or something. I don't know if he even played drums after that. I was actually kind of surprised that he played in the first place.

The band name Argus was give…