Updates from Springtime Argentina

It’s springtime here in Buenos Aires!

Early October I was able to release the first single made in Argentina “Biten Dün”. It was a great learning experience and an opportunity to get back at producing music. I am always amazed how I truly learn from lived experiences, once an album or a song is officially released and digitally distributed. That’s when I lose 99% of the interest in the new release, and can finally take some distance from it, and learn my lesson.

The release of “Biten Dün” allowed me to complete the production and release cycle in a new environment. It gave me the opportunity to see what I could produce in my current limited situation in terms of equipment. I was able to see how much I could accomplish in a nomadic situation without having access to real amps. The experience allowed me to work with a DAW I had never used before. Record with a Stratocaster which, believe it or not, was a first for me. And finally, I was able to use a microphone I had never used before.

Master How You Can Situation

As far as the mastering process goes, this was the second time I was using LANDR (an online algorithmic mastering platform). I had used it for my previous release “Found Acoustics 08”. On Biten Dün” I have to say that, at the end of the day I am not very pleased with the mastering. I find the general sound to be way too compressed. This is something I need to work on for the next release. It could be that the the excessive compression on the virtual amps and drums may have also set the ground for a mediocre mastering. I used the medium level of mastering on LANDR. Maybe using the low level would have been more appropriate. I wish there was more granularity with LANDR. It’s a very convenient tool. I’ll use it until my mastering engineer skills can beat it. Mixing and mastering is not my forte to start with, and it is awfully difficult in my current situation to perform these tasks. I have fairly small mixing monitors, and the room I live in is not perfect in order to have the most neutral sound. My lease here at my current apartment ends at the end of December. Who knows?  My next place might sound better for mixing and mastering İnşallah.

Debriefing on the First Release in Argentina

If I had to describe how I feel about this first release made in Argentina, I would say that it feels little bit like a soccer game during which I fought really hard, did my best, ended up loosing the game, but the whole team (I), and the coach (I2), learned a great deal on what could be improved. For that reason I think that the experience was beneficial for Black Sea Storm. Now I need to do better with what I have. I’m sure I can get better results without investing a dime in new gear. I am currently working on the second song made in Argentina. It’s exciting, It feels like I am slowly getting back into the zone. Or I should say, into my zone, into the Black Sea Storm zone. Well, you get the idea.

40’000 Word Band Bio!

Besides music, I’ve been putting in words some of my experiences in regard to a healthier living attempt on a separate blog. It’s been taken a lot of my time, but I am extremely motivated by the project. If I can make a positive change in the life of at least one person, all the effort would have been worth it.

As far as the Black Sea Storm “Story” goes, in addition to the 10,000 words I have on this website, I was able to write 30,000 additional words to narrate the entire adventure from the beginning until today. What had started as a sort of a band bio, ended up becoming a first draft of something completely different. I have now 40,000 words sitting on my hard drive, and a backup of it on Dropbox, narrating the Black Sea Storm adventure from 2002 to 2017. I am going to follow Stephen King’s advice of letting the first draft sit for  at least six weeks, then read it with fresh eyes as someone else had written it. Then, I will decide if it’s worth putting some time and effort into writing a second draft. What matters at this point, is that I had fun writing the story, and it allowed me to revisit my past. It was a sort of therapy, and at the same time I could see the turning points in my life when I took some good and bad decisions since I’ve started Black Sea Storm.