Friday, November 2, 2007

My band...

Sometimes I really miss playing in a band, and everytime I watch a live DVD with a great band, I get all nostalgic. Even more so when I watch a live act. One might argue that I'm in the entertainment business already with what I do for a living, but it's not the same. I haven't played live since the late 90's, and I know full and well that I ain't got the time, but sometimes I wonder what kind of band I'd play in. Based on what I usually play and record at home, I've come up with the following list of genres/band types I'd be comfortable in:

Pop metal
Pros: I'd love to play in a good-time metal outfit in the style of Van Halen, Extreme, Wig Wam, Warrant or Poison. Lots of variety, plenty of opportunities for guitar solos, and an excuse to play the almighty power ballad every now and then.
Cons: Limited to feel-good party music. No double bass drums, blast beats or odd time signatures.

True Metal
Pros: Classic metal in the style of WASP, Dio, Firewind or Dream Evil. The latter is an example of true metal not being extremely self-conscious, which is a good thing, as it allows for something other than standing with your arms crossed and being serious.
Cons: Not too many, really. Less melodic hooks and fewer accessible lyrical themes.

Thrash metal
Pros: Every now and then, I find myself coming up with slight variations of Mustaine riffs and licks anyway, plus you have a real opportunity for releasing pent-up anger through the power of the E pedal riffs.
Cons: In a thrash outfit, it ain't cool to show any emotion other than anger, which doesn't exactly match up too well with how I am IRL.

Symphonic/progressive metal
Pros: I love bands like Symphony X, Treasure Land and Pagan's Mind, and it would be awesome to have the possibility of breaking up a "straight" metal tune with inverted themes and progressions and odd time signatures before bringing it all home to a catchy chorus. Plus - all the solos I might want.
Cons: In this type of band outfit, you can't play a simple rock/metal tune anymore, as you're expected to play math rock in weird time signatures. The freedom becomes your prison.

Power and extreme power metal
Pros: Helloween, Gamma Ray, Edguy, Labyrinth and Dragonforce. Nothing but sing-along choruses, double bass drums, speed picking, whammy pedals and high-pitch vocals. Awesome! Plus, you can get away with being happy every now and then, and you can even show a sense of humor and play the occasional power ballad.
Cons: No clean arpeggiated songs ever again...

Epic/symphonic metal
Pros: Mix of classical music and power metal in the style of Rhapsody and Kamelot. Technically challenging, fast, solo-friendly and catchy.
Cons: You're either stuck with some lame keyboard or sampling guru for the orchestrations, or you have to somehow find enough classically trained musicians to make it work. Difficult...

Neoclassic/melodic metal
Pros: What could be cooler than playing neoclassical/melodic metal in the style of Yngwie, Angra or Last Tribe? Metal versions of Air all night long..... Tight verses and open choruses - teh awesome.
Cons: It would be cool if someone outside the band liked the music...

Some cover band
Pros: No real limitations as far as style - you could even have different themes for different occasions. Plenty of opportunity for drawing crowds, i.e. potential revenue.
Cons: You can't play original material, and riding a bicycle from Norway to Cuba is more feasible than getting a record deal.

It wasn't all good, though. There are definitely aspects I don't particularly wish to relive, including but not limited to dealing with lead singers who think they're Roy Khan or Andre Matos, but in reality sound like a poor Axl Rose/Bon Scott imitator, which ain't a good thing. Playing in freezing or poorly ventilated venues for a staggering crowd of 25 people who are more busy fighting than rockin' to your act. Getting paid in beer. Being asked to play "Enter Sandman" or "Knockin' On Heaven's Door". Incompetent band members who are irreplaceable due to their having a van or a PA. Hungover and drunk band members who embrace the rock'n roll lifestyle but don't have the musicality to back it up. Pub owners who refuse to book you unless you play "Paradise City", "Sweet Home Alabama" or "Smells Like Teen Spirit". Even worse - being forced to play hits by Norwegian redneck bands such as DDE. Being billed as the opening act for semi-famous bands and having their lead guitarist ask you to "not play so fast". Et Cetera


Anders said...

So, it's some form of metal or a cover band for you, or no band at all?

Oh, btw, if you've ever been a part of Idol, it's OK to release an album of cover song. Or if you play "the blues"...

Wilhelm said...

Well; can you honestly say that I would fit any other genre? Do you see me in a blues band?

Anders said...

Well; can you honestly say that I would fit any other genre?

Well, I know you like music that does not end with "metal", but I guess those are all in the "cover band" bag? How 'bout some more classical rock, like in the style of early Gary Moore?

Do you see me in a blues band?

I honestly think you would have no problem pulling it off. The problem is that you would be bored by the material pretty fast. (I estimate it to about tow seconds after the first "Woke up this morning" or just after you've finished covering Red House/ Just Got Back from Baby's. ;-)

On the other hand, I think you would enjoy some neo-classical blues (Paganini in a shuffle, it can be done!).

Wilhelm said...

Oh yeah; early gary Moore + perhaps Aerosmith and Thin Lizzy. I think I might have enjoyed that as well. Whiiite Knuuckleeeesss!!!

Paganini shuffle - LOL. I might just record that. Which caprice would you prefer hearing as a shuffle? The 24th?

Anders said...

Paganini shuffle - LOL. I might just record that. Which caprice would you prefer hearing as a shuffle? The 24th?

Seriously, that would be cool to hear. Yes, it may end up sounding crap, but you'll never now. A fun project at least.

Wilhelm said...

I'll see which one of the 24 is best suited to teh shuffle format.

Probably the 24th, actually....

That WOULD be quite cool...I'll make it happen