Nov 18 2014
We had created two tracks (the first two of the last three studio tracks listed on the music page) collaboratively. Each was created by sending small bits of audio back and forth between us, manipulating and/or adding bits, and building the tracks in a fairly organic process.
The first track, titled Those Deeper Natures, began with a brief two syllable segment of a Buddhist chant that Sander recorded. It features an environmental recording he made inside the food court at a Japanese market in Costa Mesa, and also includes a rather beautiful drone section.
Carloff is an avid collector of old vinyl records. Somewhere, he found one that was recorded for Brigham Young University, for an English Lit class. This particular record is focused on the spiritual poetry of William Blake, specifically his poems of Innocence and Experience. Carloff created a rather complex and subtle set of edits of this material, which sort of became the frame around which Tiger Tiger grew.
Sander started working on ASA’s third and final studio track just as Robert was going back to school. He remembers Carloff’s instructions were, “DRUMS! I want drums!” Sander took the clicks and pops from his old record and created a rhythmic part in 7/8. He tried, for months, to line up drummers, but it seemed like every time he got close, something would interfere.
Eventually, Sander connected with Brian Campbell, who had studied Hindustani percussion for years, and played for festivals at local temples. He listened to the clicks and pops on ear buds, and Sander recorded multiple takes of him jamming to it. Brian also performed the vocal parts, which Sander chopped up and reassembled them as they are in the final track.
Almost immediately on the heels of that, a previously elusive jazz drummer, Alan Cook, said he was finally available, and Sander recorded multiple takes of him playing various things in his kit. None of these takes from Brian or Alan had any kind of timecode or reference to the click, or to each other. They were all ‘wild,’ and needed to be aligned by hand, which took a very long time.
Sander wanted a kind of culmination just before the big change, so he used a recording of a rather weird, pulsing, water feature in the sculpture garden of the Cerritos Civic Center. He then added heavy drum samples, and took a recording by trumpet player Dave Williams and completely deconstructed it, and reassembled it. He used another recording, of a different fountain, at the very end because the splishly splashy sound evoked the fluidity of Brian’s tabla performance. The Ruling Affection, with starts and stops, took probably a year to finish.
Here are some project screen shots of The Ruling Affection: