As of today, my current internet service provider Metrocast has closed the use of port 25 (to outside servers) for all consumer customers. Business account customers ($99/month) on static IPs get to use port 25 unrestricted because they are easier to trace and manage.
This is the port that outgoing email traverses. Metrocast does allow the use of its own SMTP outgoing mail server over port 25, but not to other servers (like, mine). And guess what? Metrocast’s domain is blacklisted by SpamCop today, 24 hours of blackhole bliss (grrr) courtesy of something with “cop” in its name… I’ve always hated cops. Sorry, if you’re a cop. Not you, okay? Bottom line is that the unlucky confluence of the port 25 clamp-down and the SpamCop blacklisting of Metrocast’s domain rendered me unable to send email in my usual way.
I enjoyed chewing out the tech support guys at Metrocast so much I called three times tonight. But they were actually a pretty cool bunch. Ben in particular had a great persecptive on the political climate surrounding spam right now and what we might expect coming up. He thinks port 25 users on dynamic ip addresses are going to experience more frequent outages in the near future due to ip blacklisting, and his solution is to move to Gmail. Using Gmail you can forward mail from multiple domains to the Gmail account and reply with the appropriate addresses in the “From:” line, a great feature for users of POP email clients who need to manage email in multiple domains.
So, that may be my solution. I hate to bow to Gmail though. I may just use my own domain’s webmail during “port 25 outages” and keep pushing mail through the “old port” whenever possible.
It’s no joy watching spam flood into my POP email client, not phased in the least, while I am unable to send out a legitimate message. Spam has finally won.
Having laid down a click track for “Roadrunner Blues”, I tried an electric rhythm track over it and it ended up not being “Roadrunner Blues” at all. We’ll have to try again on that one. Once again the click seemed too slow. What am I thinking on these click tracks. Anyhow, we ended up with a little power chord progression to play with on that.
We also worked on a number that Michael cooked up with the drum machine and MIDI, which I then went over with some natural drums. Memory already foggy on what else we may have done this session.
We plod on.
“The February March” was looking like a throwaway, but we salvaged it be redoing one of the horn lines and adding an alto flute melody line. These MIDI sounds can be really gorgeous.
We also worked on a short piece for just electric guitar and voice which is essentially cathartic noise and yelling. Yoko Ono would be proud. It’s a stark contrast to “The February March” (a pretty little piece, I think) in its utter unlistenable-ness. We kept it to 50 seconds or so, mercifully. But it’s worth including to extend the variety of our little RPM album.
Breaking the two song barrier isn’t easy. We tried a dirgy piece with low horns we’re calling “The February March” but it needs serious help. Hopefully work on that some more next time.
We broke in the middle of the session as members of The Rhythm Ship filed in for our first ever Mindfest planning committee meeting. That’s right, we pulled off the last couple years over email. But as the event grows, we’re seeing an increasing need to get together and talk out the fine points.
After the meeting (bonus!), Jamie sat behind our house kit to bang out tracks for “The Condition You Describe” and “Grand Theft”. He even left his drum mics and snake to help us out. Thanks Jamie!
We always knew Cheney had an itchy trigger finger, but to receive such irrefutable evidence is almost beyond belief. We now have proof that the man doesn’t look twice before he shoots.
Iraq, anyone? Surprise, surprise… in pursuit of fowl enemies (pun intended), innocents get shot along with the bad guys. You’d think someone in Cheney’s position would avoid hunting just to prevent such a clear metaphorical event from taking place.
Dick Cheney, you are a national disgrace. You are smart enough to look before you shoot, but you let your bloodlust take over. How come you never get birdshot in your hawkish ass? Fuck you.
Well, getting to 10 songs by month’s end isn’t looking likely, considering we’ve only worked on 2 thus far. More likely, we’ll be shooting for the 35 minute minimum, and sticking some serious experimental fluff in there.
Nevertheless, “The Condition You Describe” got a nice boost last night when we found a killer alto sax sound in our collection of MIDI plugins. We also did some work on the intro of “Grand Theft” which remains molasses-slow, but now at least has a little more of a plan to it.
I’m having an awful lot of fun with this project.
Michael and I continued to work on the slow blues number called “Grand Theft.” And slow it is. Too slow. I’d like to redo this one, but there won’t be time within the month of February. We have to move on to the next track!
The happy news that the Hoxies will be visting later this month means that Justin will be on this 28 day album too. Yay!
Thus far we’ve worked on two songs, with lyrics. I am thinking we might benefit by doing something more experimental next time, to prime the ol’ creative pump and color outside the lines.
The collaboration with Michael is already paying off in spades. Saturday, he arrived with some software courtesy BitTorrent, and after a couple hours we were off to the races.
Welcome to MIDI! I always knew it would be fun, but not this fun! I had bought the Edirol UM-1X MIDI interface (USB) so I could attempt to hook my MIDI-compatibles (a Yamaha P-80 and a Boss Dr. Rhythm) up to my PC at some point. Now, we can record MIDI tracks right alongside the raw audio tracks in Sonar 4 (can Adobe Audition even do this we wonder?). Fabulous.
With the help of a couple Edirol plugins, a whole new sound palette has come alive for us. We continued work on “The Condition You Describe” with one of the bass sounds, and got a start on a song called “Grand Theft.”
I love MIDI.
Michael and I decided to meet Tuesday and Thursday nights 7-10pm, and Saturdays 1-8pm for the RPM Challenge.
February 2: We decided to work on a song called “The Condition You Describe” first. It has some acoustic guitar and vocals right now. I did some awful backing vocal tracks, one of them falsetto. Unlistenable. Already tired by 8:30pm, we sat around and belly ached about not having a real bass to track with. This led us to think maybe we could find some nice MIDI bass sounds and play them through my MIDI-compatible keyboard.