Your Efforts Add Up...But Only If You Make Them, Apparently

My best friend and his wife visited this weekend to see my band play and see our beautiful new house and of course Aria, and we had an in-depth conversation about reconnecting with our past selves as a way of moving forward in our lives. Highlighting the people we’ve met, the friends we’ve lost touch with along the way, and how everything seems to come down to willpower and our own efforts, be it in work or relationships or eating and brushing your teeth. As daunting and maybe unfair as it is, the truth is that after a certain age, everything really is completely up to you and your ability to put energy forth into the world.

Leaving Midgar

Leaving Midgar

One of my fondest video game memories is the 90 hours or so I plunked into Final Fantasy VII as a kid. The whole first act of the game takes place in Midgar, an oppressive, gloomy city, carved out in claustrophobic corridors. It's dank, trashed out, and the sun literally never shines there. There's a scrappy underdog quality to everything you do there; it's not great, but it's home, and you've got your little niche (it's basically terrorism, but you know, good guy terrorism). About eight hours in, however, you up and leave the city, suddenly thrusting your party into the whole wide world, which up until then I wasn't even sure existed in this game. This blew my mind when I was a kid. Now we were no longer scavengers scraping by in a totalitarian hellhole, barely escaping with our lives. Now, we had to...to..

..wait, what do we do next? 

Studio Fortification, Post #2

Progress has been made! After mangling the insert frames with some less-than-sharp-and-intact borrowed snips, I managed to break my drill bit on a bit of steel embedded in the window jamb ceiling. Luckily my Father the Carpenter saved the day.

 The caulk/brick and bit of 2"x4" on the other side is another story... 

The caulk/brick and bit of 2"x4" on the other side is another story... 

The Climate Seal insert sounds great so far! Can't hear the yard work across the street at all, which is exactly what it was intended for. We left enough to space to be able to remove the cracked single pane behind it and replace it with a two pane slider one day, but this serves its purpose very well as is.

We also have a door! (One of four I bought and wisely stuck in the garage months ago instead of doing anything with them..)

 And carpet for a wall! 

And carpet for a wall! 

Hardware and such coming soon. But it works! Thank again to my dad, without whom this would have likely taken years and been a complete mess instead of handily done in a matter of three visits. He even helped me speed along the installation (read: stapling of velcro to ceiling) of the four ceiling sound panels, creating a proxy booth in front of my workstation while conveniently killing early frequencies for mixing purposes.

 The vocal booth? It's riiiiight (steps forward) here.

The vocal booth? It's riiiiight (steps forward) here.

We're getting much closer! Just have to move some electrical boxes, drywall these new walls and old doorways, drywall the back of the wall in the other side of the basement, and we'll have ourselves a little sound fortress! The clarity's definitely starting to show through in new recordings. Here's a sample from today:

The mid-highs are less severe, the track feels more present and forward, the low end isn't all murky and junked out from leaky windows and big corners that lead upstairs. It's sounding like a real booth in a real studio! Imagine that. A little tweaking with my mastering to open it up a bit more, and we should have a very nice sound indeed.

Stay tuned for more updates!

<3