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Always There

foothilltribe on September 08, 2012 03:44

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    “Always There” is one of the final uploads from our “Conspiracy No. 9” album (“CNN”). The song was recorded during the beginning of the making of CNN, and for the band it ended up being one of the jewels of the album. The song definitely leans toward our more psychedelic side, but the song also involves a swimming (but hopefully solid) slow-burn style funky groove, some interesting musical and vocal tendencies, and the ending section hints of jam sessions past and future. For me personally, the end section leaves me yearning to climb behind my drums right now as I write this. It also leaves me yearning for those moments (like the ending section of this track, or entire sections of intensity in our "Rough Lightning" jam) where we just let go and lose ourselves in the groove and music channeling through us in that moment - that's where the magic lives.

    Although we don’t recall exactly how the song came into existence, Clay had the chords for a long time before we started jamming with the ideas in rehearsal and tossing things around until we had the outline of the song, and ultimately the completed song. I remember working on the lyrics with Clay and we spent a lot of time focusing on and developing the phrasing of the lyrics in the verse. If you listen you will hear a sort of “rhythmic pulse” type of phrasing to the lyrics during the verses, and there's a subtle different in the chorus sections. It's a pretty cool thing in my humble opinion and it was great fun to sing.

    The song style and the production quality of the recording make the song sound like it could easily have been on our "Stone Fly" album. An interesting note is the last section of the song was never completely developed or finished. During the last section of the song from around 3:15 onward (beginning immediately after the last chorus section) you will hear the band go into a stepped-up grooving sort of jam feel that is just laying the floor for more. Clay commented that he wanted to leave the last section of the song undeveloped (or to be developed later). The idea was to leave the end of the song open for an outside producer to have input on and to work with us to see where we could take the ending jam (recall during this time we were talking with different producers about possibly working with the band). As a personal note, I really enjoy Clay’s swimming guitars and his wah pedal work on the song (check out Clay's understated solo wah parts starting at 3:15 or thereabouts). The bass guitar lines and drums during the ending section combine into a pretty cool interplay and groove (one of my favorite interludes in the track is the short breakdown around 4:10 where everything drops out except drums and bass). The bass playing is some of the most interesting on CNN in my opinion. On drums, I was doing a lot of rolling type of snare accents and the bass drum might be a bit too busy in places, but I feel like it still works for the jam-groove section because we were digressing naturally from song-mode to jam-groove-mode. For a totally unimportant note - a few times during the song you will hear me using my kit's 8" bell. This is one of few instances my kit's bell can be heard on any of our studio recordings (that I can think of at least). That 8" bell has a distinctly warmer tone than my ride cymbal (which itself is a 22" Sabian Heavy Ride - its a monster thick ride cymbal capable of cutting through the heaviest wall of guitars when struck with conviction). I know, I know, enough drum talk already.

    We really hope people find the song interesting and unique to the ear. Thank you for listening and for your feedback. Sincerely, Rob@TheTribe.

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