We don’t really cover nearly enough post-rock / spacey instrumental stuff on this site – so I’m stoked that today we have an exclusive playthrough from Pray For Sound drummer Steve Aliperta, for the track “Congratulations, You’re Alive.”
Pick up the band’s new album Everything is Beautiful at this link!
Steve says of the tracking process:
Tucked away in a cabin for a week with the sole purpose of writing a record is something I’ve definitely never done. I think being able to focus 100% on writing a record together had us all really excited. The last record (Dreamer) was a result of innumerable night sessions, crammed in after a full day of whatever else was going on. So to take the process in a completely different direction was both exciting and inspiring. We wanted to streamline a process that had taken us a full year before, and cook it into a week of intense focus. There wasn’t really too much fucking around while we were out there writing Everything Is Beautiful. I think the most distracting aspects were puzzle-building and cooking dinner. My days kind of went like this:
9-10am – wake up, work on the puzzle
10:30am- coffee and breakfast, sneak in puzzle construction
11am – start playing
1pm – break, hit the puzzle game hard
1:30pm – keep working through today’s song
4pm – no one’s looking, try to finish the outer frame of the puzzle (it was a bird puzzle)
4:30pm – more jamming
6pm – dinner time, Joe made nightly feasts
7:30pm – finalize the day’s song, keep running all night it until it feels tight
Bruce and Nick had most of the skeletons laid out beforehand, so each day we took an idea to flesh out and work through together. Everybody’s energy was up, we were just really into the idea of creating something from start to finish together. This song was a result of day three, and I think by this point we were totally in the flow. It turned out to be one of my favorites, I’m always a sucker the heavy-hitting songs.
During Dreamer, all of the experimenting was worked through during the tracking process. We built it from the drums up, and there was a lot more wiggle room to play around with. This time around, the drum arrangement was more of a group effort, stemming from a full day jam session where we knew how we wanted everything to go. I don’t think I would have come up with the same ideas if I’d approached it like we did with Dreamer. Being able to work through every section together removed that unfamiliarity that comes from playing through new music. It was great attacking it from the opposite direction this time around. I loved being solid with every hit, knowing what was going to happen and how it would interplay with the rest of the band. I don’t think we even used a scratch for drum tracking.
I never finished the puzzle.
I know it’s an SJC custom build, and it’s a maple kit
– 8 ply on the kick
– 6 on the shells
– Beaver-tail wing nuts
– Rims cut at 35 degrees for a thuddier sound
– 22″ Zildjian Constantinople crash
– 23″ zildjian sweet ride
– 14″ sabian aax hats
– 23″x15″ kick,
– 16″x13.5″ Floor
– 13″x8.5″ Rack
– 14″x6.5″ snare