Apr 23, 2006

When I set up the Myspace profile for Borrowed Time (feel free to add us), I chose Erik Satie as background music. I don't have any idea where this came from, since I hadn't listened to or even thought about Satie in five years or more. It literally just popped into my head. I took that as a sign that I needed to dig in, so I picked this up:

Satie: Popular Piano Works by Aldo Ciccolini

I'm not nearly well-versed enough in classical music to attempt a review, but I can tell you that I'm extremely glad to re-make Satie's acquaintance. His work is tinged with dramatic melancholy, but it never feels morose. To my ears it sounds like proto-jazz, and for some reason it reminds me of the solo works that Charles Mingus did on piano. This is a far from academic opinion, I know, but trust me. If you dabble in classical at all and haven't given Satie a try, do it. His most famous work is the Trois Gymnopedies - you'll get what you need by starting there.

I also couldn't help but note the similarities between the album cover and the book cover, something that was completely unintentional. There seems to be some way in which these two things belong together. I hope to find it.
I don't have all the details worked out yet, but it looks like Saturday, June 3rd will be the date for the book's release party. If you're in or can make it to Baltimore, pencil it in. I'll keep everyone posted as things firm up.

Apr 20, 2006

Five new Borrowed Time preview pages have been added at the book's official weblog. Head on over for some fun, and for a surprise or two. Comments are welcome and encouraged, as always.

I also set up a Myspace page for the book, so anyone out there who's into that sort of thing should hit us up.
Staying on the art tip, Sam Gilbey, of Pixelsurgeon and elsewhere, has updated his portfolio site with some new illustrations. Click here to check 'em out and show Sam some love - he's a good fellow. And that L'Oreal illustration is hella good.

Apr 13, 2006

The Album Cover Project, Part Four
(One, Two, Three)

The content: Considered minimalism: illustrations and text in silver rest on a deep, flat blue. Emblematic of the time. The Message: Enigmatic but strong, with an artiness rarely found in more mainstream releases. The Picture: Magic Hour. Not that I necessarily maximized it, but it's a start. As always, click for larger versions.

The Crownhate Ruin were born from the ashes of Hoover, one of the most impressive and influential of the early-nineties Dischord acts. This kind of thing happened a lot in that era. It was a special time for independent music, as a raft of really talented people caught their second and third creative waves. And in many cases, it wasn't just the music. Most of the folks involved in these bands were (are) good at something else, as well. Often, "something else" was design.

This particular cover is by Jeff Mueller, who also played music in Rodan, June of 44, and the Shipping News, among others. It's a nice example of the kind of high-level minimalism that was popular at the time. Strong, simple ideas were paired up with quality materials to create a stylistic backdrop that, looking back, defines that era almost as much as the music. It's hard to say how far the influence stretched, but the body of work is impressive.

Apr 9, 2006

I put up three (the first of many to come) Borrowed Time preview pages over at the weblog. Check 'em out!