Pre-Order Vincebus Eruptum #19

Hey folks, we just wanted to let you know that you can pre-order a copy of the next issue of Vincebus Eruptum.  Just click on the image of the cover just over there on the left.  It has an interview with us and some other cool bands plus it’s a pretty cool zine.  It comes out 10 April and when that happens, we’ll have a pretty big announcement to make.  (wink wink nudge nudge)  

Stay tuned.

 

 

 

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We’re releasing a song this summer for the book Planck: Driven by Vision, Broken by War

Planck

 

 

I know, we said we weren’t going to announce or post anything until it was 100% done but this cat is kind of out of the bag right now anyhow so we may as well announce it. We’re doing a slightly different type of release this summer…

We’re releasing a song for a book!  

Yup, a while back Brandon Brown, a buddy who we’ve known since high school, was telling us about a new book he was writing for Oxford University Press about Max Planck.  I asked him if I could get an advance copy and loved the book so much that I asked him if he minded us writing a song for the book and Brandon was totally down with the idea.  So I came up with this chord progression and a melody, Clinton (the better vocalist by far) later took over on vocals, added an some Heiderian melodic touches, an opening, and a coda to the song, and all three of us (Brandon, Clinton and I) collaborated on the lyrics and before we knew it, voila – hey, we have a new song for the next album.

But here is the thing, unlike the other songs we are recording, this one will be released digitally to coincide with the release of the book.  I’m not sure exactly how that will work.  Will it be a different version than the album version? How will we post it on-line?  How will we do the release show?  We don’t know.  We’ve never done this and I don’t think the folks at Oxford have ever done something where a Book has a song written for it.  It’s the usual LP4, hey this sounds like it’d be fun and so we just kind of do it only to find that’s not the way folks go about doing things.  We’re weird that way.  However this turns out I can at least report that we’ve been having a good time recording the basic tracks and should easily be able to have it ready to go by July of this year which is the estimated release date of the book.

So keep a look out for this over the summer and check out Brandon’s book over at Oxford; it’s really, really good ( http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780190219475.do# ) and, for good measure, here is the book’s Facebook Page ( https://www.facebook.com/planckbiography ).

Oh and here are some pics of the sessions.

Until next time, Cheers from the LP4

 

 

Clinton and Larry Recording Basic Tracks for “Planck”

Ramon Laying down tracks for "Planck"

Ramon Laying down tracks for “Planck”

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Vincebus Eruptum #19

 

Hey, check it out! Italy’s Vincebus Eruptum has an interview with us in their upcoming issue. We talk about the band’s history, our upcoming album, the economics of vinyl,  making videos, and Charlie speaks in non-sequiturs.   We haven’t gotten it yet (it comes out at the end of March) but it’s a way cool zine that is always graced by some gorgeous artwork so we’re pretty excited.  You know they even run a vinyl only label?  Yeah, they are that cool!    If you haven’t checked them out: http://www.vincebuseruptum.it/

PS. There’s a lot of other cool junk going on right now but, in keeping with our new blogging philosophy, we’re keeping things under our hats until they are signed on the dotted line done.  But keep an ear on the floor, cool stuff is a comin’.

 

 

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New Hearts of Animals Video

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I know we said we wouldn’t be posting as much in 2015 and here we are posting just a few days later but you’ll have to excuse us as our good friend and frequent collaborator Mlee Marie ( well-known under her nom de plume Hearts of Animals ) has just posted a video from her latest album, Another Mutation.  It’s pretty neat so we just wanted to take a moment and share it with you all so here it is.  Enjoy.

 

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Happy New Year! A look ahead at 2015

And so we come to the end of another year.  We had lots of fun, put out some music and a kooky video, played a lot of shows, made a lot of new friends, even got to play on a Hearts of Animals album, and last night we closed out the last rehearsal of the year under a cloud of bourbon, beer, and pointless drunken debates with Lord Hightower.  So thanks everyone for a lovely musical year.

Now though we’re moving on to 2015 and we figured we’d share with all of you some of our plans for the year.

  • Less talk, more rock.  The first thing I’d like to share is a change in the whole blogging and posting thing.  You’re going to see a lot less of it in 2015.  We’ll still be busy at work in our underground Rock and Roll laboratory but I’ve come to the conclusion that, as a band, the whole constant blogging thing is pointless. You know what we do every week; we drink and we jam.  There isn’t much more to it than that.  Eventually all that work pays off with a few songs that we can share and hopefully y’all will dig it.  Nobody needs to know where a record is in the manufacturing process or how far along we are on a video, all that’s really important is when it is released. If we slip off of your radar for a few months, that’s OK.

 

  • No more posting about some cockamamie idea that is floating in the ether. From now on we’ll only post about shows or projects that are imminent.  You folks don’t need to know what ideas we have or when we expect to have those ideas ready.  Odds are those plans will fall through.  Sure, we might have some cool idea floating around but then it may look better on paper than in reality and when that happens, we discard and move to more productive things.  That’s pretty standard for any creative endeavor but if you post about an idea that eventually goes nowhere, people will come back and ask about it and you just sound like a dork.  Yes, we have a gazillion screwy ideas and yes, 90% will fail. We’ll spare you that and just surprise you folks with a show or release when it’s a real thing.  Ideas are a dime a dozen; it’s the ideas you see through to the end that matter.

 

  • NO MORE 7″!!  A perfect example of cockamamie ideas is the whole 7″ plan we had involving a release every six months.  What we found out is that regardless of whether you release a full length or a single, it will take just as much (or almost as much) work and time to release it. Add to that the fact that when you release a 7″ it is a money loser.  Consider “C is for Cthulu” – just the manufacturing cost of that release (ignoring the costs of the video and a lot of other junk) comes to $7.50 per copy and, yes, we sell them for $7.  That’s right every copy we sell costs us fifty cents just on manufacturing costs.  That’s fine with us – no complaints really – but if we were to put the same amount of effort into a 12″ or a CD, the costs would be the same or less and we can sell them for more which is totally nuts when you think about it.  No, we won’t be raking it in but we can at least break even which is much more reasonable as we can then throw that into the next release.  Additionally, a 7″ gets very little exposure.  Release a 7″ then release an album and see which one gets a reasonable amount of press and which is at best a blip on the radar.  The album just naturally get a lot more recognition because there is just a lot more to discuss for a writer.  In short, that same song you worked so hard to spotlight in that 7″ will get a lot more mileage if it’s part of an album so I say balls to the 7″ format.  Balls I say!  Don’t get me wrong, we’re happy with the ones we’ve released and glad to have made them without cutting corners despite the costs but we just want to release more music and for that, albums are just the way to go.

 

  • So what can we say for 2015? Well, of course we will be playing shows (and we’ll mention those as they come along) but, for now, the big plan is to write new material for the next album.  We’re a band and making music is what we do.  Will the new stuff be Stoner Rock? Psych? Maybe a Space Rock Opera or some other thing united by a theme?  Who knows?  All we know is that we have a lot of ideas that we’re already throwing into the pot and what comes from that process is anyone’s guess.   Just know that we’ll be hard at work every week, drinking beer, having drunken arguments with Lord Hightower about junk we’ll forget the next day, and making loud, stupid noise!  Each week we’ll be a little more deaf and our livers and lungs will be a little worse for wear as we march towards that new album but fear not, new tunes are coming and they will rock.  That much we can promise you!

 

Until then, thanks for a lovely 2014 and Happy New Year from all of us at LP4 Labs

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Nursing our Bryan, Texas Hangovers

Holy Crapola do I have a nasty hangover but dang if that wasn’t one hella fun show last night in Bryan! Great crowd, Revolution was a fantastic little venue, and The ExOptimists and Funeral Horse totally killed it in every manner conceivable!

Time to nurse our wounds, pass out for a few more hours, and recover from last night then let’s do this again tonight in Houston!

Photo Kelly Minnis

Photo Kelly Minnis

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What up? Well, Shows, Jamkazam, and LP4 Laboratory Work. That’s What!

Hey, I know we’re behind on posting but we don’t have large attention spans and we get distracted easily  by the smallest things: Larry’s latest brew, killing the next level boss in Dark Souls, ESA’s Rosetta mission, NASA’s Orion Launch, buying some idiotic musical equipment we can’t really afford, new episodes of Adventure Time, wondering which new D&D manual to buy first or why Tony Stark such an utter dick in the latest issues of Iron Man, and LOOK shiny objects… shiny, shiny objects..  Look, there’s one now!  Oh right! See what I mean?  Our company physician has been telling us it’s all that herb, beer, and 100 Watt Marshall stacks and she’s convinced we’re hopeless and doomed from all the damage done to our neurons.

Anyhow, despite the lack of posts over the last few weeks we are actually up and doing junk.  Tonight we head up north to play with our friends The Ex-Optimists and Funeral Horse in Bryan, Texas and then, tomorrow night, we play our last show of the year at Rudz with the same cats.  Should be fun. Come on out.

We also did a gig for this cool company called Jam Kazam on Wednesday night.  The idea is like a Go To Meeting for musicians where they can just plug-in and play with people from around the world.  Kind of cool and they had us spread over three homes in the Houston suburbs so we could play remotely.  Connection problems not withstanding, it worked really well – we were able to hear each other pretty well and react to what we were doing pretty well too.  So it was fun to be Guinea pigs for these guys and we’d likely have even done this for free but they actually paid us which was kind of cherry on the icing of the experience.  They may post video of us performing on their Kickstarter so that may be pretty hilarious.  The service is still in its infancy and from talking with them it’s clear they are looking to add features to make it even more cool but you guys should check it out at some point if you are interested in this kind of thing.  Kind of neat.  http://www.jamkazam.com/

Anyhow, after we finish up with our upcoming shows, we’ll be going down into the deep bowels of the LP4 bunker laboratories to prepare for our next album.  We’ll be quiet for a while but that’s only because when you conduct the kind of heavy-duty musical experiments we conduct, it requires complete mental focus… that or herb, beer, and 100 Watt Marshall stacks.

Cheers folks, see y’all soon.

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Shout out to The Wild Moccasins and Galveston Island

 

Moccasins

As we wait for Philae to land on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, I just wanted to give a shout-out to one of our fellow Houston bands, The Wild Moccasins.

They just had their video for “Eye Makeup” premiered on NPR last week with a nice write-up by Ann Powers (which is a big deal for a Houston Band if your name is not Beyoncé).  It’s been fun to watch the Moccasins develop musically and artistically over the years.  It almost seems like one minute they were playing a warehouse party and the next minute they are on tour with Of Montreal. (There’s a lot of hard work in between all that of course.) Now, in their most cuckoo move yet, they’ve gone all out Andy Warhol (which goes with nicely with the whole disco thing) for the new video and it’s a total hoot. You should check it out.

10748180_552817734851607_856131391_nI find one coincidence here a bit amusing and that’s the location of Galveston Island.   It’s impossible to call two videos in the space of about two weeks a trend in Houston music, but it is funny how both their video and our video feature Galveston island and the Moccasins video just kind of hammers the point home for me that Houston is just too damn respectable these days.  Its architecture and trees seem to be constantly demolished to make way for the next great luxury apartments – out with the old in with the new.  That may be wonderful to those oil workers sucking off the teat of the current oil boom, but it makes for a very dull and uninteresting backdrop for any filmmaker. When you’re filming, you need character and that new fancy luxury apartment complex with the expensive “simple southern food” restaurant that serves $21 meatloaf just ain’t gonna cut it.  On the other hand, do you think a place like Lafitte would ever survive in Houston these days?  Helks no!  That’s why you gotta drive down a ways to get to some real character and Galveston still has that intact.

I know that when I went to go shoot backdrops for Cthulhu’s island on the jetties and at Fort Travis as well as the beach for the closing scene, I remember thinking how lucky I was to have Galveston nearby because Houston just wasn’t gonna cut it.  Houston is money now and the thing is, money is kind of dull.  I mean yes, of course you need it to get you by and all that junk but, in and of itself, it’s somewhat boring stuff and I guarantee you that any one of the Galveston queens in the Moccasin’ video has more interesting stories to tell you than any passel of Houston bourgeois. So, thank you Galveston and thank you Moccasins for keepin’ it real.

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“C is for Cthulhu” now fully unleashed!

Today we have one last announcement and that is that the video is now open for embedding anywhere and you can even download it from Vimeo.  Look, we now even have a YouTube version…

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So share and share away, and thanks everyone – the folks who helped us and the fans who’ve been so kind.  This was a lot of work but well worth it.

Cheers,
The LP4

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Big Takeover Premieres “C is for Cthulhu”

Big Takeover is a wonderful scrappy zine that has been around for 34 years. For decades, it’s celebrated D.I.Y. in all its wild and woolly forms and so we’re more than honored to have Jack Rabid’s labor of love premiere our new video, “C is for Cthulhu.”  Go and check it out now!!!!

http://bigtakeover.com/news/video-premiere-c-is-for-cthulhu-by-the-linus-pauling-quartet

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