Music


MUTEMATH posted an update on 4-4-2011 at their site that was full of bittersweet, mixed emotions.

Here is the good news:

The NEW ALBUM IS DONE. We flew out a few weeks ago to LA to play it for everyone we work with in it’s entirety for the first time. The reaction was more overwhelming than we could’ve hoped for. So if everything stays on course, the album should be out by September… but I’m hopeful you’ll start hearing things sooner than that.

Sorry, this is not good news, it is great news! I know they had been working hard on it and that they flew out and showed it to Warner Bros. on 2/2 and I glad to hear that it is done.

Now for some sad news:

Also, another bit of news is that back in October, our guitarist, Greg decided to leave the band. It might be a complete surprise to some, I know to others it’s not, but there were a lot of reasons that have been building up to this. However, it just came down to… a change of scenery was overdue. And it seemed best to happen before we went into making another record. The last record took more of a toll on us than we ever really let on, and once it came time to do it again, it became obvious that we couldn’t. Some kind of change had to happen. The split was certainly amicable and there are no hard feelings. We’re grateful for all the years Greg spent with us and wish him all the best.

 Greg Hill is going to be missed. He is/was a major part of the sound that is/was MUTEMATH. What are the reasons that have built up to this? Creative indifferences? Perhaps, but I hope they are creative differences that will only push MUTEMATH forward and also do the same for Greg Hill where ever he winds up. So, who has been taking care of the guitar on the “completed” album?

However, the task at hand was still staring at us. How would we make this new album. We decided it would be refreshing to go about it completely different than the last one… which amounted to… we wanted to be left alone. The idea of complete isolation was the only thing that appealed to us. No camera guys, no producers, no engineers, no record label people, no management… NO ONE would hear or comment on what we were doing until we were done. The three of us would share the new found guitar duties, lock down in my house in New Orleans and not come out until we had something we thought was great. No matter how long that took. Thankfully, it only took about 6 months. Now as a consequence to working like this, there were of course no vlogs or things like that posted, and for that I apologize. But we really set to make this album with as little distraction as possible. So I hope you’ll forgive us once you hear the results.

Wow! The three remaining artists will share the guitar duties. We have seen Paul Meany play guitar live on “Clockwork” and now we have proof that Roy Mitchell-Cardenas is playing on the album. I don’t doubt that Darren King is playing guitar but I have yet to see it. With all the duties each performs live, who will be playing their live shows?

Soon enough we’ll be getting to work on a new show. We HAVE recently found a new guitarist and when we get back on the road, we’re looking forward to introducing you to this new era for our band. But first we’re heading into the studio this week to start on final mixes.

I can confirm that there is in fact a new guitarist. I was sworn to secrecy and cannot say who he is or where I learned of the information, that is not my duty nor is it fair to the band, but I do know he has been learning the songs that are in the live show, that he is a relatively unknown, and that he has big shoes to fill. Greg did much more than play guitar. He played keys, used the pedal board as a hand-held instrument, sang back-up vocals, played drums in “Pins and Needles”, and played the Xylophone in “Burden” among other things. Greg was also very selfless in his style of play, never having any major solos and being a major complementary sound rather than the forefront sound that most guitarists demand, even though he has the skill to do that.

Will all the changes morph the sound of MUTEMATH into something totally different? Possibly, but the Drums and Bass are the backing sounds that fuel them, in my humble opinion, and those sounds will remain prominent. What I do hope for is a guitar that complements the elements of MUTEMATH the way Greg Hill did, and I have little doubt it will since it is the members of MUTEMATH sharing guitar duties. I also hope that the guitar parts fuel a desire for a little more jazz influence like what we hear in “Obsolete”.

Only time will tell what the new album and the new MUTEMATH sound like. And while Greg Hill will be sorely missed we are left with the promise of a record that has been the sole focus of 3 amazing artists for the past 6 months. That cannot possibly be a bad thing.

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The River Empires is a band that caught my attention due to the members being from one of my favorite bands called Falling Up (who had one of the most overlooked albums of 2007).  The sound that TRE brings is a fresh one. It’s fused with Folk/Bluegrass/Classical and it follows a story. Here is how they describe their sound:

Infusing bluegrass, dark melodramatic folk, and deep cinematic overtones, TRE has promised to cross the line of the artistically sane and drop like a boiling sun into the dark and strange waters of pure imagery. The band is more than just a musical vision, it’s a geometric glance at a ghost story that spins the imagination into lost and haunting infinities. In other words, it’s like sitting around a campfire with friends, summer naps, young love, jumping off a dock into the lake, and all the while getting haunted by a ghost.

The album synopsis is here:

Ultimately, The River Empires seeks to revive the love of musical art and bring together fans and friends alike to share in the journey as they fight to make music they believe in, travel the road doing shows, and love everyone possible. Nothing is what it seems, everything is foreshadowed, and every character, scene, and emotion play out in deliverance to the arched and sweeping crescendo. Welcome to the town of Astral, where the story of The River Empires begins.

They go into studio on May 25th to record their first album.  No date has been set for the release but this is my most anticipated release other than Mute Math who is also in studio recording as I write this.

To hear their music go to: myspace.com/theriverempires

Great bands on this sampler and a lot of bands I have never heard.  I am excited to hear Mojo & The Info (Featuring Matt Morginsky of The OC Supertones).  Here is the link:

http://www.indievisionmusic.com/wordpress/2008/05/09/summer-slam-vol-2-free-digital-compilation/#comments