Tuesday, January 31, 2006

#7 Weekend Edition

The fruits of last weekend's efforts:


This is another Ryan & Nick experiment. The order was drums & bass -> rhodes -> dual guitar attack. I find it to be quite different from their previous experiment in Post #2 which is cool. Recording these free-form sessions is already helping to lead everyone in new directions.


Speaking of new directions, I didn't set out to record a "free jazz exploration"; it just turned out that way. Something about playing an acoustic guitar by one's self (when you can't sing) is frustrating: I want to hear chords and a melody together, but just can't seem to do it. Anyways, like many before me I tend to escape the frustration of an organized chord progression and carefully manicured melody by embracing chaos. The order of recording was acoustic -> organ -> drums.

#6 70's Trio Spot Hit Fire

2005-12-28 Bounce

Another 70's sounding jam, but with a different lineup and instrumentation. This file is a .wav

Drums - Ryan
Bass - Nick
Guitar - Brett

Monday, January 30, 2006

#5 Two Chords Broken

2006-1-11 Bounce

Broken chords are similar to arpeggios but the rules are a little less stringent. Basically it means something like playing all the notes in a chord: not all together, but, separately and in some sort of consistent note pattern. That's basically what the bass and rhodes are up to here- hammering repetitious patterns with slight rhythmic variation until the hands and brain cramp and cry out for mercy.

Again, this is a pretty long unedited track so be warned.

Drums - Ryan
Bass - Brett
Guitar - Nick
Rhodes - Jeremy

Drums - Nick
Bass - Brett -> Guitar
Rhodes - Ryan
Guitar - Jeremy -> Trumpet

Friday, January 27, 2006

#4 70's Trio Spit Hot Fire

This session was decided as sounding vaguely like a 70's movie/television theme. Sure, why not: it's got organ, it's got drums, it's got trumpet. Speaking of trumpet, we're hoping to add it to our concert arsenal in the near future. We're working on a tune that might have an opening for a little trumpeting. We'll get there, we'll get there.

70's Theme - The Mugs

Drums : Nick
Organ : Ryan
Trumpet : Jeremy

Monday, January 23, 2006

#3 New Years Eve 2005

NYE 2005 - The Mugs & Friends

We decided to celebrate the arrival of 2006 by holding an open house jam celebration at our rehearsal space. Fortunately Joe and Lori Raffa found the idea intriguing enough to make the trip from Syracuse. Armed with two well-stocked coolers and a folding table, they transformed our space into a pretty cozy spread: food, beer, wine, champagne, whiskey a plenty. We also invited a bunch of our good friends. Everyone was welcome to play an instrument [including 2 full drum kits] if the mood struck. The result- sonic jello. Clocking in at over 45min this is a heaping pile of jam. I'll do my best to credit the guilty parties. Oh yeah, in order to simplify things we only used 2 overhead mics so the sound quality is very ambient. And... we're lazy so we didn't chop the bounce into individual songs. Below is a menu:

0-7:40 : Headfirst into The Heavy
Drums - Steve Schlefani (aka: Headphoney)
Drums - Todd Raffa
Rhodes - Ryan Mug
Bass - Joe Raffa
Guitar - Nick Mug
Trumpet - Jeremy Mug

8:05-10:30 : Where is My Mind? (Pixies cover)
Drums - Headphoney
Drums - Todd
Rhodes - Ryan
Bass - Nick
Vocals - Jeremy

11:00-15:30 : The Medicine Takes Hold
not sure who plays what on this...

15:40-29:20 : Lift Off
Drums - Headphoney
Drums - Todd
Rhodes - Brett Mug
Bass - Ryan
Guitar - Nick
Trumpet - Jeremy

30:15-32:30 : Tofu Todd & the Mixed Nuts play a selection from The Ramones' song book
Drums - Ryan Raffa
Bass - Joe Raffa
Guitar/Vocals - Todd Raffa
Tambourine/Backup Vocals - Lori Raffa

33:05-46:00 : Tofu Todd Joins The Carnivores
Drums - Ryan
Drums - Brett
Bass - Todd
Guitar - Nick
Rhodes - Faith Hsu & Annie Wu (featuring Jeremy on Boss delay effect)

Wednesday, January 11, 2006


These two tracks are two takes of the same "song." Before the Protools setup, we only had a cassette 4 track and one mini disc microphone so it was pretty much impossible to record multiple separate tracks at once. We could either record everyone together with one mic and hope for a lucky mix; or, be patient (which is not as fun) and record one track at a time. Ryan, it turns out, is a patient man so he made his way to the space on a few random Friday nights armed with a bottle of booze and laid down whatever he felt like with whatever instrument he felt like- one track at a time. The order was more often than not: drums->bass>rhodes->guitar... You can hear some of these experiments at his myspace.

Now, with the Protools setup we can record multiple people at once. Still, it's a fun experiment so Ryan and Nick gave it a go last month:


They played and recorded the drums [Ryan] and bass [Nick] simultaneously. Listened to it once and then laid down rhodes [Ryan] and guitar [Nick] simultaneously on top of the now existing bass and drum foundation. It was fun so they did another pass over the original drum and bass to completely different results:


And there you have it. I like both.
- b