Straight From The “Butcher’s Mouth”

In case you haven’t seen the And Then There Were None Dance Contest Entry our staff submitted some time ago, you may not realize that around here, we are big fans of the video game Rock Band, for what should be obvious reasons.

Now we’ve already played Underoath’s “Desperate Times, Desperate Measures” too many times to count (and witnessed the band fail out of their own song) so we thought “hey, we should try and get some of our other bands on here!”

It seemed like an easy enough objective, and now that we’re able to format and add whichever songs to the Rock Band Store we choose, one that could be accomplished in the (somewhat) near future. This was of course until we came to the realization how much work it actually takes to format a song for Rock Band.

Every detail of a song can and does need to be programmed: drum hits, spotlights, crowd movement, guitar strumming…you name it, someone (not yours truly, luckily – there’s an intern and two other trained staff members for that) needs to program it.

So of all the songs we could’ve chosen for our first venture into Rock Band Programming, which did we select?

Emery’s “The Butcher’s Mouth.”
An excellent choice in my humble opinion.

So now, after many man-hours, the song is currently in the testing phase. Needless to say, most of us have taken a crack at “auditioning” it. My first try was doing guitar on Hard and in no-fail mode. My score? 53%. Yeah, embarrassing. Tell me about it. I didn’t do so bad in Medium but nothing compared to John, who got something like an 85% on Expert. Show off.

Now we’re not exactly sure how long it’s going to take to actually get the song completely formatted and into the store, but we wanted to give our loyal readers of The Official Tooth & Nail Blog a heads up, and a sneak peek at our handiwork.

From The Vault: Roadside Monument

L to R: Jon Ford, Doug Lorig, Matt Johnson

In most any conversation about the Cornerstone Festival involving a seasoned festival veteran, the name Roadside Monument will almost always be mentioned when the conversation rolls around to “memorable performances,” probably because there were more than a few that stand out, including the band’s 1998 performance (video below), which was shortly before breakup number one. Don’t get me wrong on this point though, Roadside Monument was not just a Cornerstone band. In its various forms the band logged hundreds of tour dates across the country with other T&N bands like Frodus and Training For Utopia as well as serious heavy weights like The Promise Ring and Don Cab, and I’ve heard more than a few people refer to the band’s shows with phrases like “changed my life” and “one of my favorite shows ever”.

It’s rare to find a band that pulls that kind of weight in the indie rock scene that was so short lived. The band signed in 1994 (only a few months after forming), and disbanded for the first time shortly after Cornerstone ‘98, only to reform in 2002 for about a year, until normal life couldn’t sustain touring and playing full time. In just those five or so years the band released two split EPs and a 7-inch, as well as three full lengths, including the acclaimed second full length “Eight Hours Away From Being A Man.”

After finally call it quits for good sometime in 2003, all the members of Roadside went on to various bands and projects, the list of which is a whose who in Seattle indie rock. Jonathan Ford (bass guitar and vocals) helped form T&N band Warlord, filled in on bass with Pedro The Lion, started post-rock outfit Unwed Sailor, and played bass for a time with Decahedron. Matt Johnson (drums) went on to play drums with The Out_Circuit, Raft of Dead Monkeys and Suffering & The Hideous Thieves as well as lending his magic drum sticks to countless recordings and shows for countless bands. Matt is also (according to our knowledge) the most seasoned T&N player, being a member of more T&N bands than any other musician in label history. Doug Lorig (guitar and vocals) went on to form the incredible Seattle grunge revivalists Patrol, as well as Black Eagle and played, for a time, in Raft of Dead Monkeys alongside Johnson.

- Jordan Butcher

“Sperm Ridden Burden” from Roadside Monument’s “Eight Hours Away From Being A Man”

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(In)form: The artwork of “To The Secrets & Knowledge”

To The Secrets & Knowledge
Working On It

One of my favorite parts of being an in-house designer at the label is that normally I get to hear the records before I start the artwork. It really helps inspire me more than I ever thought it would. I feel like I’m able to better capture the mood of a recording after hearing it, and hopefully create some art that “feels” the way the record “feels”. For the artwork for “To The Secrets & Knowledge,” I wanted to make the art convey the upbeat and clean feel that the record has, as well as play off of the mysterious nature of the title. After talking it over with Jeff (Schneeweis), we decided to make these small collages made of all the simple shapes that (for the most part) make up everyday life. Everywhere you look, these shapes are found in man made things, which represent ‘knowledge,’ and in nature, which represent ’secrets’. I also used small symbols for each song title with each song’s corresponding track number. I had a ton of fun making the art for this record… getting to look through piles and piles of old science fiction magazines and books for inspiration. Go pick up the record on January 26!

-Jordan Butcher

Welcome To The Official Tooth & Nail Blog!

Welcome

We heard a rumor that this internet thing is going to catch on so we figured we’d try to get our hands dirty with some blog business.  But don’t we already have a website, MySpace page, Facebook page, YouTube Channel and Twitter, you ask?  Well…yes.  (See links to the right.)

Those all seem so “official” though.  And because we’re so awesome, and you’re so awesome, we thought we’d share some more sort of “behind the scenes” super-exclusive “we’d tell you but we’d have to kill you” type stuff that can only be found here, on our blog.  Except without actually having to kill you.

Acceptable?

If you answered yes, then party on Wayne!  You’ll be able to get news, videos, art and all sorts of various goodies and opinions from various members of what is possibly the greatest staff on earth (just sayin!)

If you answered no, well, we hope to eventually wear you down and win you over with our outrageous wit and charm.  Deal?