Pictures and mini update

It's been a while! I've been quite busy with all sorts of things, including beginning the pursuit of an MMus, some electroacoustic music, and working on a bunch of new, New Weather Machine songs. I will have a some news regarding the new album in the coming weeks (and ideally sooner rather than later!).

Thanks to everyone who made it down to the Lethbridge Girls Rock Camp fundraiser show. We had a great time, we hope you did as well! Some pictures from the night are below from my brother Andrew, who also played sax on a number of songs.

Jon

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Landmarks, Windy City, New Video

Busy time of year! The February Mixtape was a little late coming together, but it’s officially out now. My song for this month is called Ocean Memory, which is available on the music page.


Another compilation song was on the blocks this week, for Norwegian Blue’s Windy City 2 comp. With the limited amount of time we had, it turned out to be a really fun song to record. We had set a session up for the middle of the week, so I put a song together on Tuesday and we banged the bed tracks out on Wednesday night in a couple hours. It’s strangely(and alarmingly) uncommon these days when a song actually gets recorded in room with a bunch of people all at the same time, no click, no headphones, PA on, etc., essentially a rehearsal situation with the recording mics set up. Given the nature of modern recording setups, people typically do songs bit by bit and piece everything together like a puzzle more than a snapshot of a moment. One isn’t inherently better than the other, and I’m definitely a fan of both ways of doing it, as the results are completely different, but this time we chose option A. The song is called Is This Tomorrow? and should be released by Norwegian Blue in the coming weeks on their Windy City 2 compilation.


Finally, I had an experiment I wanted to try with make a dynamics-controllable supporting instrument and gave it a spin yesterday. The idea was basically to generate new, useful, and related sounds from what is already being played by the guitar and vocal. It’s controlled by the volume and duration of certain frequencies, so it can be used somewhat like an additional supporting instrument that is manipulated in real time. I’m going to take a few more stabs at the idea and see what I can do with it, but here is the result of the experiment with a song called From The Outside.


Full Moon party!

This Friday the 13th we’ll be having a most excellent Full Moon Party! While the particular alignment of a Friday the 13th and a full moon means nothing in actuality, it is the last time it will happen until 2049 (which is jetpack territory). It’s also what’s called a “honey moon,” due to the moon’s intense yellow nature in the month of June. The New Weather Machine will be once again joined by Jesse Plessis on the piano, and will be sharing the bill with the fantastic Brenna Lowrie Band.

I tried my hand again at digital painting with a drawing tablet to make the poster for this particular event, and took a swing at recreating a scene from a book I was reading called Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler about the interwar period in Russia which I highly recommend (the book not the interwar period in Russia).


new weather machine full moon party poster




SCF 2014 Finals

Last weekend Jon joined a group of excellent Southern Alberta songwriters at the South Country Fair Songwriting Competition at The Slice in Lethbridge with the song Can’t Go Back. While they didn’t manage to take the big prize, Jon, Paul, and Kris came in a very respectable second place! You can check out the performance below:


Pictures!

Apparently I like to post pictures after shows, and I’m not one to disappoint. Pictures courtesy of Andrew Martin.

Gig notes: Really enjoyed it, great crowd! Mental note to test extra technology being used thoroughly prior to using. Tried a pair of speakers made by Weber that are supposed to be as close to vintage purple-back Fanes’s as you can readily acquire and was pleased with the speaker compression and cut. Mental note #2: figure out how to not smash my toes to bloody bits while performing and remember to wear dark coloured socks in the event that I don’t sort it out.

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Adventures in strings and things

I am a big advocate for artists getting paid fairly for their work, and think that when said artist choose to give away the milk for free, it hurts themselves and the community in the long term. However, fundraisers can be worthy and excellent exceptions, as was the Philippines benefit at the Slice on December 6th.

I thoroughly enjoyed all (but one) of the groups and individuals performing, most notably honest and stripped down sets by Tyson Wiebe and Pow Navarro.

I wanted to try something different for this show and used it as an opportunity to put together a different and excellent cast of musicians to throw some new songs through the ringer. I have always loved the sound of a string quartet, so I decided to try and mash the most contextually sensible version of one together - with guitars being violins, cello being cello, removing the viola, and adding upright bass. For additional happy fun times, piano and percussion were added.

Musicians were found and secured and due to the extremely limited timeframe in which we were working, basic acoustic demos were sent to everyone and I hoped for the best. I knew we would only get the chance for one or two rehearsals so, after spending to much time setting up and figuring out how to effectively fit six people with large instruments (har har har) in a tiny space, we went through the new and first song on the list, Can’t Go Back.

Now, as I get older, I find that I am constantly looking for new experiences that are genuinely new, enjoyable, satisfying, different, purple, etc. and for whatever reason, be it simplicity or witch craft, within the 15-seconds of playing music together I was graced with one of those ambiguous happy feelings and a good old fashioned shit-eating grin. The rest of the rehearsal, as well as the gig that followed were equally as enjoyable and satisfying. Long story short, I am on a new mission to figure out how to get that feeling bottled up, and Bowie willing, do at least one properly prepared gig with the group!

You can check out some pictures from the show below.

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Halloween pics

Thanks to everyone who came out to the Halloween show and to Bands as Bands! We had a hell of a good time and hope you did too!

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Crowded Spaces finished

So Crowded Spaces has been mastered and, while it will be up on the interwebs in the usual places within the next couple days, you can check it out right now!


Recommend listening for proper effect: all 4 tracks in one go with some decent headphones or a stereo


Crowded Spaces

I’ve been holed up for the last month or so getting project submissions finished for a conference and finishing up a second electro-acoustic album I’ve been working on called Crowded Spaced. It will still be just a little bit longer before it’s officially released, but my brother Andrew Martin did up some album artwork that you can check out right now below:



Crowded Spaces is an ambient/art music/noise hybrid and looks at looks at different ideas of crowding that exist as a result of modern perspective and technology. There are four movements that each contain three smaller subsections.
Track list:

I’ll keep you posted about a release date.


On the other side of things, The New Weather Machine be playing an event held by The Meliorist on April 5th. I know that another local band called The Utilities and a couple others will be performing as well.

Most importantly, the new David Bowie album is out and it’s fantastic, but I didn’t need to say that did I?

Pictures PIctures

Several new pictures have been added to the pictures page from our gig last week. Check it out!

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