The obligatory year-end wrap up…

snow

A few days late, naturally.

In 2013…

We mostly recused ourselves into our little womb—a dank, moldering basement in Queens—and created: songs, experiments, etc.

We wrote and recorded one EP. This took up most of the time devoted to Cardinal Points related activity. Nearly done. Due early Spring. Expect promotional activity to commence soon.

We played two gigs, with two different drummers, both at The Rock Shop in Brooklyn. (We turned down a bunch of other offers. Each time we mix up the line up, it takes an inordinate amount of time to get back into fighting condition. Hopefully we’re sorted for the moment. Perhaps we’ll play out more often in 2014. Or less.)

We spent a lot of effort trying to come up with crap content to feed the Social Media Beast, and then got bored.

We took time out to re-wire the machine. All went well and is much better now.

We explored the theory of rock band as platform for omni-media expression.

Looking forward to 2014.

Cheers!

Last Night…

Last night, I dreamt that we were playing a show but somehow forgot Bick’s amp, so he had to play through the PA. The stage was set up in a corner behind the bar so we couldn’t really see the audience, and Crider had to set up across the room. I can’t remember if Tommy was there.

In the dream I couldn’t remember the words or even chords to our new song. When I woke up, I was relieved that I hadn’t forgotten the song because we never wrote it in the first place.

-JW

9/28 The Cardinal Points at The Rock Shop

rockshop-092813-1000New date (our first in a while): September 28 at excellent Rock Shop in Brooklyn with our friends I Am The Heat and Jessie Kilguss and our new acquaintances, New Madrid from Athens, GA. Doors at 8. We go on around 10.

We’re dragging our old friend Tommy Emery out of early retirement to play the drums, and we’ll be debuting a few new songs from our next EP.  It promises to be a totally rad night.

Tickets are $10 at the door or $8 advance.

Recording

bick and tommy
There’s an element of unadulterated terror not unlike that of driving too fast along winding cliff roads associated with recording. It’s silly, really (because it’s just rock and roll), but recording captures a moment of “truth” much more definitive than any live performance. Even though you can go back and redo bits and fix mistakes, if you don’t get the essence of the thing right from the beginning—find the murmuring and beating heart of it—the record will never be quite right. Probably because The Cardinal Points came together as a recording project, we use our studio not just to capture a performance of a song, but—as pretentious as this sounds/might be—to attempt to capture the very heart of it.

 

Critical Band

Performed by members of Zeitkratzer Ensemble.

“On hearing Tenney’s composition Critical Band (1988), [John] Cage renounced his fifty-year antagonism to harmony,saying, “If that’s harmony, I take back everything I ever said. I’m all for it.”
Ciarán Maher

It’s 17 some odd minutes, more or less on a single note. No backbeat. No singing. No bass solo. But it’s a note that’s pulling and prodding, inviting the listener to wonder what exactly it means to be “a note.”

Listen to it loud.

“G” is for Gretsch

gretch1

One of the most distinctively stylish features of Gretsch guitars past and present is the “G arrow” control knob. If you already own a Gretsch, you know what we’re referring to—the volume and tone knobs on your instrument, which are in most cases adorned with an engraved later “G” pierced by an arrow. This was an early but not original development.

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