Robust, like knotted cotton.

“An Avalanche in Hell” is gone from the world-wide web forever, or at least until it shows up on a proper album, which probably won’t be too far off in the distance. In its place on Spyspace is something I just mixed now. Most of it was recorded yesterday, and the drums were tracked today. It would have fit in pretty nicely on CHICKEN ANGEL WOMAN, but it didn’t exist in any form until late yesterday afternoon.

The acoustic guitar is a sixty-something-year-old parlour guitar that I think is probably possessed like the other one. It doesn’t quite have the same volume or richness of tone, but it records ridiculously well and doesn’t look too shabby either. For some reason I didn’t feel like writing words, so I just improvised them while recording. They don’t make much sense, but at least I had a good excuse to garble the words, so half of them probably aren’t even intelligible.

In other exciting news, I just had a discovery I could have done without. I ordered and received three hundred Taiyo Yuden CDs, now that I’m no longer paying a media broker to duplicate/replicate this stuff for me. These are touted as being the best spinning things money can buy, the most reliable, the longest-lasting, and all that good stuff. I believe all of this is probably true, given their reputation. But when I burned a copy of the new album on a few Taiyo Yuden CDs to try them out, I noticed the music sounded different.

It’s a very subtle thing, but the high frequencies seem a little duller than they are on my master copy, which is on a TDK CD. I made a safety copy from this master copy when I finished/sequenced the album about two weeks ago, also on a TDK disc, and it sounds exactly the same as the original. So it’s not an issue of second generation sound degradation (which isn’t something you have to contend with when you’re working with CDs anyway, since we’re a few worlds away from making a cassette tape dub).

Maybe there’s something wrong with my brain, or my ears, or both. I just keep listening and comparing and hearing this tiny difference. Even though I doubt many other people would hear it, it would drive me nuts if I let the album out there knowing it didn’t sound exactly the way I know it should and everyone was hearing something just a little bit different from what I intended. I’m not sure if it’s a good or bad thing that my ears are so ridiculously sensitive I notice a sound difference in an area where most audio professionals are adamant that there is no discernible difference, ever, regardless of what brand of media you use, and you only hear what you want to hear. If that were the case, then the Taiyo Yuden CDs would be the ones that sounded better, because I listened to them with the knowledge that they’ve long been an industry standard and the name most mastering houses rely on. At least TDK printable CDs should be more readily available around here, or so I would hope.

It gets even better. Word on the street is some TDK CDs are rebranded Taiyo Yudens. I don’t know if it’s a different dye used for the recording surface that’s responsible for the difference in how high frequency information comes across, or what. I guess the good news is I can still use these Taiyo Yuden CDs for backup purposes…which means I probably won’t have to buy any more blank discs for this purpose, or any other, until the year 2015.

Of all the stupid things…

Well hey — if TDK ever wants to put together some sort of endorsement deal and pay me an obscene amount of money so they can use my likeness in their advertising, I think it would be pretty hilarious and I’d probably give it some consideration.

JOHNNY WEST — MADE AND PLAYED ON TDK.

Not that anything of the sort would ever happen. You need to be something of a known artist in order to get a lucrative endorsement deal from anyone. But I still think it would be funny.

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