Ice cream metal: The making of

Ice cream metal editedAfter months of procrastination, I got to record and release some of the best music I’ve written.

In my previous album, ‘Ballads with balls,’ focus was on pretty guitar melodies and typical progressions. ‘Ice cream metal,’ on the other hand, is replete with riffs meant for a mosh pit.

Clocking in at only 37 minutes, I had given myself a break, or had thought I would, in recording a smaller set of songs, seven as opposed to the previous 16. This made for less stress and quicker production. Still, it took about 25 hours spread out over four days to complete, not counting minor tweaks and repairs.

Foo faster – I didn’t know what to call this track until just before publishing it online, and just went with a dumb pun involving Dave Grohl’s band. The riffs contained here were the driving force behind wanting to release another album.

Patnubay ng gabi – This was what I had entitled the track from which I based the main riffs, and the Tagalog just sounded right for it.

Hoping I don’t, wishing I do – A reworking of a track I’ve released on ‘Bodega,’ this features bass, drums, and additional ear candy on top of the rhythm and lead tracks. I would say that this piece, in its various incarnations, is my favorite piece of music that I’ve come up with. The odd melodies in the middle of the progression are a purposely ignorant attempt at jazz. My main regret is that this version reminds me of Taylor Swift’s ‘Last kiss’ and Christina Perri’s ‘A thousand years,’ though you wouldn’t mistake the two for my song.

This is what your brain looks like – I first played the riffs themselves in 2012, and arranged them in three parts the year after. Main influences are Megadeth and Pantera, although the third part reminds me most of Symphony X’s ‘The odyssey.’

Eradicate, eradicate – The title is a shoutout to any ‘Community’ fans out there who know Inspector Spacetime, Dan Harmon’s homage to ‘Doctor Who.’ The demo version I made of it even has voice clips from the show, which I was not at liberty to use in the final version. I’m especially proud of the arrangement of this song, with its shifts in key, its variations of the main riffs, and the melodic interlude in the middle.

Happiness midchapter – Originally meant for ‘Ballads with balls,’ I wasn’t satisfied with the version I’d made during those earlier sessions. There’s a lot of electrical ground heard in that album, but for something like ‘Happiness,’ which lacks drums, the ground was much more audible. This time around, there’s still some buzz heard, but minimal. I still prefer the original imperfect first draft of this piece, but this one’s fine as well. I first composed this in 2010, during the same recording session that I came up with ‘Certainly richer.’ That month signified the beginning of what I’d consider my ‘mature’ phase of musicmaking.

Writers – Original title ‘Writers are a variation of dialogues.’ It came from one of my most solemn guitar-playing experiences, in March 2013. Back then, it reminded me of Queen’s ‘Don’t stop me now.’ Now, years later, I’m reminded of Jean-Jacques Goldman’s ‘En attendant ses pas,’ sung by Celine Dion. The melody throughout is just me improvising variations on a motif, but with the overdrive solo in the middle being mostly premeditated.

Even though this might be considered my ‘metal’ album, the ballady, clean-guitar stuff takes up a little more than half of it. I guess ‘Ice cream metal’ is apt because like actual ice cream, the ‘heavy’ stuff melts, into sticky sap. I also do like ice cream, and know others do too.

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