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Thing A Week 8 - In The Garage Cover

I had a little bit of trouble picking my project this week. Originally I had planned to continue working with Flask, but I was just at a loss for a small web app project idea. I had been playing around with some Weezer songs while playing guitar one morning so I decided to record a cover of In The Garage for this week’s thing. If you don’t feel like reading this to get all the way down to the Soundcloud player here’s a link.

I was pretty faithful to the original, mainly just taking some liberties with instrumentation in a few parts. I really like the dirty guitar and bass in song so I found some amp models that kept with that style. I did swap out the harmonica riff for a thin, high piano part over a crunchy bass. I really liked the hollow sound it created and it felt in line with my tendency to add keys to things. In that same vein, I used some synth in a few parts as well, replacing the little guitar riff in the verse and working with the guitar in the solo.

I actually had a lot of fun with the solo, again staying pretty true to the original but taking some liberties here and there. The synth was a fun addition and really beefed things up. I ended up falling back on some blues riffing during the end of the solo because I’m just not as metal as Rivers.

Again I used Garageband’s Drummer feature for the drums. I spent a bit of time dialing them in and I was pleased with how they turned out. While laying out the song I did discover that Garageband doesn’t let you change time signatures in the middle of a song. There is a single measure of 2/4 time in the verse so I had to just offset thing. I was worried that the automated drumming would sound weird around this change, but it ended up being fine.

The vocals… This is always tough for me. The verses turned out ok. They’re pretty straight forward and in my range but the chorus was tough. Some of the high notes were a big of a strain for me and in general the choruses felt a bit lack luster. I just don’t know how to get more character out of my voice. The last chorus with the high harmonies was especially difficult. I was really straining my voice there. As always, doing stuff like this is great practice and helps me improve so I just need to keep that perspective.

I wasn’t especially pleased with the mixing and production on this song. I felt a bit rushed because I started working on this a little later in the week. I had recorded some of the guitar parts in a chopped up way and I can hear some lack of fluidity. None of the parts were difficult enough to get right to justify this type of recording but I was just in a rush to get something down. In general I think things just feel a bit choppy, but I suppose that’s the price of doing things on a time crunch.

All in all, it was a fun project and it’s alway nice to spend time recording. Enjoy:

bonus thing!

I also posted a comic to Mount Saint Awesome this week (the first in quite a while). It didn’t feel like a big enough art project to be a full Thing a Week thing, but it’s still worth checking out.