Happy Ordeal Liner Notes
This was our first CD release (our previous 2 releases were vinyl only) it took 2 years to record and about 2.5 years to finally get it out. Fourth Dimension/ Dirtier finally did the deed during the early part of 1994.
Various aspects of urban decay formed the conceptual foundation of this one. Most of the pieces reflect the environment of the times, as we lived them in Troy, NY. The city was (and still is) going through a heavy post-industrial economic decline. The pieces REVISITED, DENIALS AND OVEN were all about our experiences in this climate. While PENNANCE, RHETORIC MAN AND PIECE ON EARTH focused on other larger issues.
PENNANCE was the piece where we ventured into the seemingly private space of the roman catholic confessional . Armed with hidden tape recorder and microphone, each participant would go into the darkness of the confessional booth and confess to really exaggerated transgressions. The purpose of this was to have fun (of course) and to force the priests to confront the contradictions of there flawed belief system (always a favorite activity). In the end, I was pleased with how the piece turned out, sound and dynamics- wise, but still feel that we could do a better job with the covert recordings. I consider this to be the unfinished business of the CD. Further confessional operations will definitely take place for a future recording.
This was really the last CD before I really became interested in the computer as a compositional tool. Most of the sound collages were done with tape, although Steve was using an Amiga for most of his contributions. I think Jay really shined on this CD both as a percussionist and multi instrumentalist. Jay became really interested in processing the sounds of an old violin, and also did some interesting guitar work. This would be Jay's last full time work with us, as he was about to embark on his long journey to a Phd. in Philosophy
It took a long time to get this one out for some reason. No US label was interested in it but after a variety of flirtations with other labels, Fourth Dimension and Dirtier came along. The US distributor was Charnel Music which sold most of their copies to Tower Records.
By the time that it came out, Demek was barely functioning; both Jay and myself were busy with grad school. There was no time to perform , record or promote the CD in any way. Steve and I worked on Videordeal which came out a few months before.