Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Almost there!

So after 3 solid weeks off all nighters and hard work the album is done except vocals! The mixes are basically done and I have to say this sounds amazing, Jeff understood and added some great things to our music so I cant wait to get this album out there, as a band, this is clearly the strongest album we have done, it contains some of the most beautiful and heavy work we have done. So now we have a month off to refine the vocals and go over the mixes for fine tuning in the first week of feb, we truely have a special record on our hands and we cant wait to share it with you! We have to thank everyone who is involved at this point, Paul for his all night pro-tooling, Jeff of course for his vision and attention to detail, Angus for keeping Jeff in vodka & Kenny for always keeping a tuned guitar in my hands and tending to almost every other musical need we had... not to mention being a great house mate and great cook, kenny I owe you many dinners! So now we take it easy for a few weeks and then get this album finished! cant wait! be sure to check back at the start of Feb! For now we hope you all have a great xmas! - Mark

Sunday, December 20, 2009


Ok, so as you all know we are tracking vocals in Feb and tweeking the final mixes then also, so the last few days have been getting the basic mixes together, this is quite an involved process, we go through each track tweek th eq's add any additional instruments and over dubs and sort out the large amount of keyboard parts supplied by our keyboard player Maria which of course she tracked in Finland. We have only 2 tracks to go and this process will be done! The idea is that we let these ruff mixes (which believe me are not ruff by anys standards) and then give them a month to settle and come in and refine everything. Vocals Jeff and myself will workshop vocal melodies tomorrow, I have of course written them but the idea of having a producer is of course outside input so Jeff and myself plan to refine these ideas, focuse on the hooks and just get the best possible result we can! Its all sounds really great at the moment, huge sound, yet very spacious, we cant wait to share this with you all! - Mark

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Darkness has set in....

Ok - Saturday has come... the darkness is rolling in over Byron Bay... major thunder and lightening storm, and I blame the darkness that is being created in the studio.

At the moment I think we have 4 or 5 songs mixed to a point that is working, and when Mark comes back in Feb to do the vocals, the finishing touches will be added.

I must say at the moment, the album is sounding awesome - Dark and Heavy with an amazing "Bonhamesque" sound to the drums pounding underneath. This would have to be one of the only recordings I've done, that I am so very happy with.... it's gonna be good people.... very very good.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Delerium & Desire

So we are moving forward now, sorting through keyboards parts, refining mixes and adding the occasional overdub and its sounds great, we basically finihed a song yesterday called 'Delerium & Desire', its everything The Eternal is and more, I'm really pleased with the outcome, so until monday we will going through this pattern with all the songs working the Jeff Martin hours of 2pm till 5am:) It seems to work well. After monday it seems we I will return start of Feb to do vocals but all music will be in the bag, we have accomplished so much in the last two weeks, I can put it down to having a great team and also that we reheased our asses off and we were tighter than I have ever heard us, but anyway, its 1pm so i gotta go get ready for another all nighter! - Rock! - Mark

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Studio fever

Paul is no longer allowed to move from his seat

Another beautiful day in Byron Bay today and we are locking ourselves in a small dark room again to roll out the remaining acoustics and keyboard parts. With all the leads done including some absolutely blinding solos from Mark and a few little gems from the big man himself, everything is really coming together. Now it's all about the colours and layers that make Eternal records what they are.

Paul and Mark have been busy loading in the various keyboard parts care of our Finnish friend Maria Ilmoniemi which are being mixed and chopped and changed with various Keyboard/Piano parts that Jeff is contributing. Acoustic layers are being placed carefully within the mix giving it all a very organic sound.

It's about this stage of course that we are all suffering from a bit of studio fever. Insanity and ridiculousness is pretty much all we capable of at the moment. It is only going to get worse for the next few days also because the days are getting longer and the average finishing time is creeping towards 5am every night. Tomorrow I will be leaving the boys to go back to Melbourne, back to work and back to normality, at least for a little while. Thanks to everyone who has been reading these blogs and I like the rest of you ill be looking forward to hearing all about how the session wraps up. We have done so much great work so far so I assure you this album will be something special and the boys and I can't wait to hear it.


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Guitars, guitars & more guitars!!

Its been a few days since our last blog but we have been doing hectic 14-15 hour days so forgive us! Well everything is coming along well, its shaping up to be a very different album for the band, in some ways our heaviest and rawest but in some ways very much our most rock album, Jeff has been amazing with his attention to detail and seems to be able to create every jimmy page guitar sound on demand:) For you guys and girls out there that care about the technical details, I have tracked most of the rhythm guitars on my gibson les paul through the classic supro amp and a mesa, I have used a telecaster for most of the lead work, either through the supro or a marshall with a 'big muff' pedal. I will be finished my guitar parts on monday & then Jeff with go through and add some additional parts himself on his collection of guitars!

At this stage looks like we will track vocals in January as we really need to make sure they are right, so this week will be finishing the music and mixing. Jeff and myself will then spend some time refining the lyrics and melodies.

So its sunday right now, our first much needed day off, we have been going usually from around 12pm till 4am everyday, so today we cruised around byron bay with jeffs guitar tech kenny who is also staying in the house with us, he is a great fellow and already we love him dearly. A nice afternoon at th ebeach then the pool, now dinner then rest up for work again tomorrow. No rest for the wicked it seems:) - Mark

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Kelson keeps it moving

We are nearly at the end of day 7 and the rhythm guitars are nearly all finished. Today was spent hammering out layers of Mesa and Marshall guitar tones over the already rich rhythm sections that have been laid down already. The studio has been inhabited by Mark, Jeff and the boys for many hours now, and the fruits of their labour are tasting pretty sweet. It seems all of the months of practice and hard work in the rehearsal room has paid off with Mark nutting out super tight guitar tracks at a inhuman rate. All we can do now is rest for the days of lead, acoustics, keys and vocals that are due to be laid down in the next few days.

The rest of the boys have been making the most of the weather and beautiful surroundings that Byron Bay has to offer. This truely is an amazing setting to work in and the album that is unfolding is a reflection of this. Thanks for everyones kind words and encouragement, we are all in this together and we couldn't do it without your support.

Dave and the rest of the boys

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

.... and then, there was guitar!

So under the watchful eye and ear of Jeff Martin - Mark has smashed out some amazing sounding guitar track. Using the combination of Mark's Les Paul, and Jeff's 1971 Les Paul Recording through a Supro amp, the base has been laid for what will be one of the best guitar sounds I've heard on a recording in a long time!!!

The Supro is the amp of choice for Jimmy Page on the early Led Zeppelin albums, and you can see why. It has a great tone, and if this is the start of this guitar sound - I can not wait to hear what comes next.

Today the guys have also laid down some haunting sounds to flow over the top of Delirium and Desire. I won't give away too many secrets early on, but when we hear the finished product, it's amazing the detail that has gone into this sound.

At the moment we are still laying down some Supro sounds, and up next will come the Marshall, Mesa and Fender sound (see pic above to see what we have setup sound wise at the moment), along with a Leslie and so much more it's almost mind boggling!

The next few days will bring some interesting moments I'm sure........

Monday, December 7, 2009

Hats Off To Dave Langlands

So as quick as he began, Dave is done! Our monster drum tracks now have a firm partner in Daves bass work. It pretty much took a day and a half and he was done. We ended up sticking with the '76 Fender Jazz / Ampeg combo, as we only had a '93 Fender Jazz we must make a point to thank our friend Karris for being trusting enough to lend us that beautiful instrument, it really did make the difference. So we now have the basis for 10 songs plus our little outro down, I can pretty safely leak the track listing here : control / under a new sun / delerium & desire / down to size / taste of deceit / the sleeper / a thousand shades of you / collapse / despondency / cast in stone / departure ... can you feel it? We surely can!:)

So now Marty & Dave can kick back because its my head on the chopping block for the next two weeks:) A shit load of Jeff's guitars just showed up and I'm about to feel like a kid in a candy store:) gibsons, fenders, double neck matons, dan electro etc... I know all you Jeff Martin guitar nerds out there are totally going to be drooling over the next bunch on blogs:) So in true Mr. Martin style our sessions are making there way into the evening which is very fitting for the brand of dark rock n' roll we are making here, this thing is shaping up to be a monster:) - Mark

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Day 3

Well, no one can be sure how it happened, the hard work, the endless practice or the influence of aleister crowley but one thing is for sure, the drums are done, tracked in a day and a half, perfectly! The sound is like bonham x 10! We are all really happy, so hats off to marty oshea!

So a short break now and a quick meal prepared by one Jeff Martin before we settle in to an evening of Bass, we are doing well for time and so far this album is turning out to be better than we could have hoped for! - Mark

Friday, December 4, 2009

Day 2 tracking drums

Friday was a combination of swimming, sun bathing and waiting around for things to kick off. Anticiption was thick in the air and the boys were waiting with baited breath for the big man to arrive. it all kicked off around 6pm and after hours of retuning drums, changing mic positions and pure god damn fear, the drum sound was acheived. A slight change of plans regarding tracking saw only drums being recorded with bass to follow. We all got an early night and started fresh at 12pm this morning tracking drums. it's now 5.11pm and we are 3 songs down, with excellent results. Stay tuned for more updates

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Here we go

It's business time! Today is day one of drums & bass. Last night kenny joined us, who is Jeff Martin's tech guy and he spent the evening fine tuning drums and getting the basic drum micing prepared at Jeff's instructions. It's very different to what I have seen, and needless to say we have gone for the 'John Bonham' technique, I'm expecting this to sound huge! So with the team of Jeff, Paul, Kenny and young Angus we shall get to work!:) So Dave & Marty are first heads on the chopping block, expect a further update tonight;) - Mark

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

more of the same... and then we hit the studio!!!

So day 3 of driving came with some... exciting times?? About 70kms from Grafton, we hit a deep pot hole, and after that the car started handling badly... so we pulled over to find out that the back passenger tyre had been completely destroyed!! So we pulled into a nearby petrol station ( i use that term loosely.. just a petrol pump and a cash register in the middle of nowhere) and proceeded to change the tyre. Almost getting the tyre off, I found one of the nuts WAY to tight to get off, so we called on the help of a local tough guy to help us get it off!! He directed us to the nearest tyre shop to get another spare... as we still had a 150kms or so to go, and had to get back to Melbourne also at some point!!!

So after getting to Grafton, we got a new tyre, and headed on to Byron Bay, loaded our gear into the studio, and headed to Mullumbimby to stay the night, as the Studio Accommodation wasn't ready to go for us yet. Mark and I had a.... few beers, and headed off to bed.

Today we got up, headed into Byron Bay for some lovely breakfast, and into the studio to set up. The drums arrived, and got set up thanks to Greg from The Drum Cartel, great guy!! Paul, our engineer, and his assistant Angus have made us feel very welcome so far. Angus has made sure he knows how we take our coffee, because he has designated himself our Coffee Boy!!!

Dave arrived by plane (not very Rockstar Dave!!) and we got everything ready to go for tomorrow.. when Mr Jeff Martin arrives and we get stuck into making album number 4!!!! Good times.... Good times....

All the drums... two DW kits, about 8 snares and a big Ludwig KICK!!!

A nice gong ... I'm sure we'll find a use for it!!

The monster kit, all setup and ready to go!!!

The MIC gallery... oh my lord!!!!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Day 2 of long drives and country towns.....

So - From West Wyalong to Armidale... 600+kms of outback NSW ... the scenery stays pretty much the same, and the towns range from 2 houses, to a few thousand people. Nothing too exciting to report though.

We had a late breakfast / early lunch in Forbes... let me give you the hot tip, Forbes really isn't known for good meals or drinks (well by The Eternal anyway). Bad coffee, bad orange juice, tough steak and over priced chicken schnitzel.

One highlight was a little Koala that I spotted out of the corner of my eye as we flew past. We turned around the took some video of the little guy - he was pretty switched on for a Koala!! When the car was moving, he sat and watched us... until he thought we were stationary, and then he would trot along, and when we moved again, he stopped and sat down, quite aware of his surroundings... which I think is a little unusual for an animal that sits up in the top of a tree all day getting stoned... but very cool even so!!

Right now, Mark and I are sitting in a hotel room in Armidale, saving backing tracks, and updating you guys... there may or may not be a few beers involved, but with a 400 or so kms drive tomorrow.. we won't go hard at all!!!

Talk to everyone soon, enjoy the picture of the little Koala!!

Monday, November 30, 2009

West Wyalong... and beyond!!!

Ok - So Mark and myself have now made it to a little hotel in a town in New South Wales, called West Wyalong!! Leaving at 5.30pm and arriving at midnight made for an interesting drive in the dark, through country NSW!! For the most part, the drive was eventless and mindless chatter ensued... but somewhere in the middle (we were too scared to ask where we were) we encountered a small General Store in the middle of absolutely nowhere.

Needing some food, and needing a quick "call of nature" stop - we ventured into the small shop. After purchasing some snacks and drinks, we asked where the toilet was.... she said she would "take us back in a minute". She waved us back behind the counter, and through the back door into the house!!! We passed a young girl on her computer, that never looked up or away from the computer... and then into a lounge, that smelled like dim sims, cigarettes and other assorted bad smells!!! On the couch in the lounge, there was a big old country guy, wearing a "wife beater" and 'apparently' sleeping... we think he may have been dead... maybe! She then left us in the back of the house to use her toilet, after which we scurried out and left in a big hurry!!!

We took a quick photo of the small general store in the middle of nowhere... Hmm. But now - we must sleep.. get up, and drive further on to Armadale tomorrow... then the next day, travel onto Byron Bay, where we shall lay down the best Aussie Heavy Rock Album known to mankind!!!!!!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

So it begins!

Ok, so I'm packed... I think... Marty & Myself will start our drive up to Byron Bay today, we will do it over a few days and arrive the night before set up (The evening of the 2nd of December). Dave will fly up rockstar style on the morning of the 3rd & I think Jeff will arrive at a similar time. So over the next few days we shall drive and I shall be on the laptop saving out guide files to assist Marty & Dave in laying down their tracks. Currently the idea is to lay down drums and bass live to tape, which should sound great. Jeff insisted we not bring to much as he is shipping in a bunch of guitars, he made the mistake of saying 'what is his is mine' so I assume that the '59 gibson Les paul is mine! mwahaha!:) ...I couldnt resist bringing a few toys as you can see from the pic's below, so we are bringing: Gibson Les Paul, Fender Stratocaster, Fender Telecaster, an extra Les Paul, 2 Fender Jazz Basses (Thankyou to Karris for the Fender Jazz '76... awesome!!!), Korg Tritan, Chinese Pipa, Mesa Head (Thankyou Hanny!) a bunch of pedals and stands & a lap top with Pro-Tools & Logic, so I can be sorting out files such as Maria's Keyboard files which are coming across from Finland. Once we get there I shall update you with what sexy toys JM brings in, I'm sure I'm going to be a kid in a candy store! Ok thats it for now, we shall hit the road this afternoon! - Mark

Friday, November 20, 2009

So here we go, album number 4!

It seems like yesterday we were in the studio nervously recording our first album 'The Sombre Light of Isolation'. Six years later, with three albums & three international tours under our belts we are about to take a step into the unknown.

From the day we started to write the album we had Jeff Martin in mind to produce. Upon sending him 'Kartika' he agreed to become involved in our new album which was very exciting as we knew someone like Jeff could really bring something fresh to the table as well as years of experience. Also for myself I had been following his career for the last 15 years and for a fan to get the chance to work with one of their true heros is a rare experience in this life, so needless to say we will be enjoying every moment of this experience:)

So with twelve months to write an album, you might think that is a bit rushed, but with such a clear vision from day one it all just seemed to flow out. It's also worth noting that Dave & Marty also contributed in jam sessions and this will be the first time The Eternal have tried this approach to writing. We also managed to write two of the tracks in Los Angeles while we were on tour for two months earlier in the year.

You could say this album has been very influenced by the experiences the three of us had together on the recent tour, seeing the whole world, dealing with things like the loss of members mid tour seemed to only make us stronger. In-fact, I think clarity as a band really came at our show at the Filmore in NYC, I looked around at dave and Marty and new, finally, this was The Eternal! Three guys that have the same vision and have the drive to really make this thing happen, at times in the last six years I faced this band head on and often alone, recording 'Kartika' was one of the hardest and emotionally draining times of my music career and often I felt I was fighting a battle I couldn't win. I believe we are about to make an album that reflects the three of us. This was a team effort and remains to be so.

So upon returning for the recent tour we went about setting up a full time rehearsal room and began rehearsing the new album frantically 3-4 times a week and putting all the fine details of this album together.

'Under A New Sun' was a title I came up with on our first days as a three piece band, we were on the bus to Helsinki, Finland, angry and somewhat confused about some events that had taken place in the previous days. I was looking out the window watching the ice on the lakes melt and it occurred to me, the three of us had stuck together through thick and thin and under this new sun was a new beginning and a new chapter in The Eternal. So the title itself took on quite a strong meaning for us, this was the day we were clearly solidified as a three piece band and we were not going to let anything stop us achieve what we had worked so damn hard for.

So fast forward to November 2009, 10 months of writing, a cross continental tour and months of hard rehearing and we managed to come out with 14 very strong songs. With a few phone calls and some guidance from Jeff Martin, I also feel it is one of our strongest lyrical statements to date. I immersed myself in literature and also took time to reflect on everything that had happened in the last year, so as with the music, the lyrics just seemed to flow out.

With a wealth of experience and hard work behind us, I believe we are about to make our clearest and strongest album yet, this may not be the sound all of you know, but then again those of you who have stuck with us from day one know that we do not like to repeat our selves and like the evolution the band has taken. We grow as people and musicians, so of course we will not want to make the same album over & over again. Expect the next chapter in the bands evolution to be an exciting and diverse one!

In many aspect we are unsure what the future holds for the band, new label? more tours? we don't know. What we do know is we have given everything we have to making an album we are damn proud of, so come back and check this blog through december and join us on this journey that is 'Under A New Sun'.

Peace, love and all those great things!:) - Mark