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Date: Thu 26 Oct, 2006 at 11:45
Headline: BoB Round #3
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Greetings & Salutations!

Now, that was going in cold.

What with one thing or another, we didn't get a chance to rehearse before the most recent BoB, and unfortunately it showed up in the performance. Sloppiness abounded, especially from your humble correspondent.

One song that I think I really need to put more woodshedding time into is the title track from Clarity. It's a bit tricky to play and sing at the same time anyway -- at least for me -- but the real crux of the problem is that even with having the bass line and vocal down, both are so relentless, such a piece of clockwork, that there's no margin for error or improvisation. If, say, one accidentally inhales a lungful of smoke at the beginning of a verse and loses some of the words as a result, it's not really possible to fudge the phrasing to make up for it, and if one tries anyway out of sheer boneheaded relfex, one risks derailing the song altogether. Little distractions can add up to big problems where that one's concerned. So, more practice!

I'd like to be able to tell you how the other guys played, but I didn't really get a chance to hear much of it. As with the previous Battle, we weren't really using a PA as such, just an amp for the vocals and a couple of monitors that were, at best, mischievous. I can say that DC was on fire that night; he hit those drums like they said something bad about his mom. It was a treat to watch.

Matt had joked before we hit the stage about the guitar-amp incident at the Porcupine Tree show, saying that it better not happen here, because we didn't bring a backup amp. And wouldn't you know it, Tim's FX box crashed during "Hey Waif," leaving his guitar out of commission for a big chunk of the song. I think we held things up pretty well while he focused on his vocal, then got the gear back up and running during the bridge, but it was still an amusingly jinxy moment.

Always looking for the silver lining in these kind of situations -- 'cause, like, what else is there to do? -- I think it helped narrow down some ideas I've had about what direction the original set list will be headed for our CO run in November. Some things I was specifically trying this time proved not to be as successful as I'd hoped, and some other things that I hadn't counted on working fell into place nicely, so...learning is good. Or something.

One more Battle to go, then we unpack the FloydShow from the mothballs and hit the road again. Stay tuned...

TB