The Machine that Howled, Growled and Wailed

A lot has happened over the past four years; four years from when that little green light turned yellow on my network attached storage (NAS), four years since that strange whining sound sang out from my hard drive, indicating that the majority of my digital creativity had been wiped away. (http://suboken.com/2013/letting-go) Music, photos, graphic designs and illustrations that were all in progress toward bigger expressions of art; gone.

Sifting through the ash of 1s and 0s that once represented so many ideas, including new music building toward two new albums, The Unsound Symphony and The Machines that Howl, Growl and Wail, and only two songs had survived; one sitting on a 16 Gb flash drive, the other on an iPod.

There was never a question of whether or not to produce a follow-up to 2011’s Three Sides of the Same Coin. It was just a matter of when. But the sudden loss of all those songs sucked the energy and excitement out of creating music. A stall that has lasted four years.

After the data crash, I focused my creativity toward other expressions of media; writing, sculpture and illustration. I started teaching more after school programs for children. And, focused a lot on building and creating with LEGO which has been a fantastic healing process.

But the biggest life event was becoming a father. My days have been filled with discovery and love and insomnia and patience and frustration and joy and purpose. Art, in all the expressive ways that I had once wielded, took a back seat.

Our son recently started preschool. This has opened up time for me to center on creative projects that have been smoldering on low heat over the past three years. This brings me to music, and the point of this blog entry.

I decided to dust off the music box last week, and see what I could conjure up. I ran through a few keyboard exercises, familiarized myself with my audio software, and then gave a hard listen to one of the surviving songs from 2013. It’s now a week later, and I am excited to say I have four new tracks!

This fall, Suboken – The Machines that Howl, Growl and Wail (2017) will be available on iTunes Store, iTunes Music, and Bandcamp.

In the meantime, here’s a demo cut from the album.

Is The Osteodontokeratic Hammer Built Or Grown? part 2

A five or six month hiatus can move by pretty quickly. I tend to have three or four projects going on at the same time. The summer months, as hot as they are, can be the perfect time to focus on some of these other projects.

Trapped inside a heavily air conditioned apartment, I focused on producing my fifth album, Three Sides of the Same Coin. With the summer sunshine in abundance, I set off to non desert locales to find more In A Place scenes. IAP benefitted twice that summer since I was also focusing heavily on the layout of the art book. Sherry Wisener joined the IAP project as the book’s editor. By the time the fall colors started to arrive, In A Place: An Art Book was finished.

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