I called the photo “comping zouk” but NO it’s comping OCTAVE MANDOLIN! But octave mandolin like few people have heard it before. I’m not going to say nobody, but not many people, because this is not how this instrument is played. I’m driving this thing so downtuned and so hard that it’s a trial keeping it from slipping out of tune by the end of the song.
Part of that problem is that these strings are at the end of their life and I need to change them out, and I would’ve have already done, but I’m afraid I’ll lose the special sound quality I’ve managed to get the last few sessions.
And partly that slippage, the wearing, that’s also intentional, because the song’s about a coming apart of life, an overdriving of everything when faced with that, a place where all engines are running at 120% rated output and everything’s still firing but at the same time everything is absolutely tearing itself to pieces as a result and there is nothing you can do about it, and it’s necessary, but… you still know.
Because, see, this is a straight-up Doctor Who song, it’s based on a Vixy & Tony song called “Thirteen,” and it’s forthrightly about the Doctor dealing with whelp this is it, this is the last go, after a 12th regeneration, facing mortality right in the face, which was super-current when I wrote it, which meant for about six weeks, THANKS A LOT MOFFAT.
But even if it’s a period piece now, which it is, I still think it’s good, and while I’ve only played it out a couple of times so far, even audiences which know and love Vixy & Tony’s original – and their fans are loyal – have been all, “wow. …that works.” So I’m recording it for Conflikt, and it’ll be on the Conflikt convention CD.
And, pleasantly, it’s proving a good warm-up for getting back into the studio for Din of Thieves. I do often like being in the studio. Sometimes, I forget that.
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