It’s not always easy to describe your own music, especially when it’s an instrumental project that transcends different genres. This is the case with Daily Thumbprint Collection, a recording project where I compose the music using software, and then go back to record select parts with live instrumentation. The songs typically center around heavy rhythmic themes, while subtly exploring melody and harmony as combinations of sonic texture. The result is synthetically-human, a bit moody, but also driving and really cool.
The project name, Daily Thumbprint Collection, was decided on after several years of developing the concept behind the writing style, which eventually formed around long term revised composition. I found that each song developed differently over several years. The core concept stayed the same, but melodies or harmony would change depending on the influences from my daily moods or experiences. If the songs had lyrics, I would be re-writing them over and over again to revise my story.
Specifically, I found it interesting to think about how instrumental songs inherit a descriptive song-title. Without lyrics, the identity of a song relates to other factors. For me, it was the date it was started, since that was the “core” of the song that would stay the same after years of revisions. The “timestamp” of their start dates has become the identifying feature, like a thumbprint.
Something else that has developed with time is the intention of the music. Specifically, I’m getting more comfortable saying that this music is designed to be listened to “as is” on the album. A byproduct of that sentiment is that I’ve learned I don’t want to hire a band and perform this music live.* While it could be possible, it would change the music. With these recordings I am focused on designing textures of sound; in a live environment, the music would be based around performance. To put it another way, this is less about Caleb on the drums and more about the listening experience that Caleb designed.
You might also notice that I have been avoiding classifying this music with a specific genre. It’s more ambient / rock / electronic stuff, but to say that doesn’t really give it justice. I think that instead of saying what the music is supposed to sound like, I think it’s better to recommend how you listen to it: I suggest putting it on headphones while you jog, walk, or ride the subway. Play it while you’re driving, studying, or performing any task where your mind is free to wander. It’s best to listen to it alone; think of it as a personal soundtrack to a moment of your own design.
2015, Vol 3, The Hum (in production)
2015, Vol 2, Stencils (Official Release Date: September 1, 2015)
2008, Vol 1, Daily Thumbprint Collection (Released Jan 2008)