The Audio Graves compilations

1998, Normal, Il

Audio Graves is a collection of 300 songs. That’s 12 releases x 25 songs each of my outtakes and demos spanning 1994-2017. I started putting these together in 2009 as free downloads to anyone who might want to dig deep (really really deep) into my little world. Audio Graves reaches back from pre-4-track boombox recordings through all of my bands and projects. None of the songs or versions of songs have been previously released.

Instead of party, I recorded. Instead of smelling the flowers, I recorded. Instead of being a social person I recorded. You get the point.

The Audio Graves, all 12 volumes, all 300 songs, are available for free download on my bandcamp.

If you ended up on this page and are still reading then I am going to assume that you are interested in what I’ve been up to musically. What follows is some real geeky insider stuff, so if you aren’t ready to nerd out, then that’s fine. You can be excused now.

Ready, nerds?

When I look at Audio Graves as a whole I see a collection of songs that define who I am. Throughout all of the bands, side projects and jumping all over the map the constant for me has been coming up with a musical idea I thought was worth looking further into and then, usually immediately, starting in on the recording and figuring the rest out along the way. I love letting the process of recording take me on an adventure.

I’ve been in some recording studios and eventhough the engineers have been great I just don’t think in the end I gave a better performance than what I could’ve at home with minimal equipment. This is not to say I’m not thankful for any and all opportunities I’ve had.

Wait, I just want to from the bottom of my heart thank my friends whom I’ve have had the unique situation of being bandmates with. It really becomes something so much more than just being buddies when you really dig into being in a band with someone. It easily blurs the line of friendship and family. We were in it together, against the odds, and I know we all sacraficed a lot to do everything we did. When I look back on it I wouldn’t trade one of those minutes we all spent together. Please know it was beyond important to me.

Even when I’m in a room alone surrounded by cords and busted-up drums, I have this calming feeling that everything I’ve done in the past has lead me to this very moment. Battle of the bands in high school, driving for 5 hours to play in a basement to 10 people, releasing our first 7″, seeing our band’s name in a zine, booking our own tour, that beautiful Chicago skyline lit up by a billion volts of electricity as we drove in for another Fireside Bowl show. It all mattered.

Now when I listen through Audio Graves I hear certain things. I hear how I was influenced by my friends and by my surroundings. I hear beginnings of ideas that wouldn’t fully be realized until years later. I hear concepts that dissolved quickly. I hear demos of songs that in hindsight should’ve been done up right by the whole band and others that I’m glad I kept for myself. I hear albums that never were.

Hundreds of outtakes is obscene; I get it. I don’t think I expect anybody to listen to all of the songs. Overall, these collections are for documenation’s sake. I created these things and they have passed some quality control measures and I’ve deemed them worthwhile in some way. Take it or leave it; here they are.

Audio Graves 1, Vols. 1-4 (2009)
Audio Graves 2, Vols. 5-8 (2011)
Audio Graves 3, Vols. 9-12 (2017)
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