Today Gina and I had a scheduled Arcati Crisis rehearsal labeled “Brown Bag” on our calendars, which is our not-so-covert code-word for working on a new Live @ Rehearsal CD. We haven’t released one in over a year.
We held a brief rehearsal off-mic to tune up our cover songs, and then headed into my home studio for the official proceedings.
Despite being well-rehearsed and in good voice, something felt off about it to me. I frowned over my mic at Gina after our third take.
“I don’t think this works anymore.”
She looked up from her guitar. “Hmmm?”
“This. Live @ Rehearsal. I don’t think it works anymore.”
“What do you mean? That was a pretty good take.”
“That’s my point. They’re all good takes. We could record every rehearsal this way, and have an endless amount of songs for people to hear and download. But, I don’t know if we can improve any more. I think our performances are pretty consistent, and we’re not doing anything new…”
“Unless we’re drumming with Chaz.”
“Right, unless we’re drumming. And I don’t think I can mix better without isolating us and putting up multiple mics for each guitar.”
Gina contemplated for a moment.
“You’re right. And I suppose the point of the CDs is that they were better than we’d be live, but that’s not really the case anymore.”
We kept rehearsing on mic, which turned up a few random gems. The mixing limitations are real, though – I can’t set up for our duets with the same level of quality control I do for my solo takes. That means further Live @ Rehearsals would never live up to the increased fidelity of my recent CK demos.
Does this mean we’re finally due for a ::gasp:: proper album? I’m not sure. But, it definitely marks the end of the second phase of our evolution of a duo. The first phase was simply learning songs and forging a sound. The second phase was becoming consistent and fine-tuning our identity.
What might phase three entail?