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Steve Ison
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IAC Prime Member


Steve Ison

12/30/2007 8:31:01 AM

Lars Mars
Lars Mars write such excellent,beautifully crafted vocal-centric pop songs!
Sunny,imaginative n creative with great lead singer..
The production is really lofi.....I really wish i was supa-rich and could pay these guys to go in a proper studio with a great engineer..
Thats sometimes the tragedy i feel about modern times...There's so many 1000s of bands with none of their songwriting ability,but know their way around a studio-So get rewarded far more and get tons more attention....
In todays indie scene you're expected to be a great instrumentalist/singer/songwriter/arranger/engineer/producer/promoter/buisnessman..All in one..
Not everyone has all those skills..

Its not right-but is the way of the world unfortunately...

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Hugh Hamilton

12/30/2007 12:51:08 PM

Just had a listen to "Rubber Canoe" and "Gotta Love Somebody"...those two don't sound too lo-fi...at least not as lo-fi as some of the stuff I've done (lol)...

I have to laugh a little Steve - when I first heard some of your stuff I wanted to drag YOU into a high-priced studio...now any "lo-fi" elements I hear in your stuff I've come to appreciate as a significant part of the charm...anytime you wanna plop yourself in front of my new gear, all ya gotta do is find your way to Ye Olde Philadelphia...don't know if it would constitute any kind of "improvement" at all, but sure would be fun...

Happy New Year!


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Steve Ison

12/30/2007 6:26:02 PM

Cheers Larree..

Hugh...I totally still love the 'charming' quirky elements of lofi production-little strange bits of instrumentation etc and things..I definitely still don't like things supa-slick-but there's certain elements (like the drums n bass mainly) that its good to get sounding hifi..Especially with a band sound.And to get good mastering.
Thats one of the things i can really appreciate after listening alot here..
Thanks again for the offer mate..Maybe one day!

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Steve Ison

12/30/2007 6:39:15 PM

Heres another cool song that unfortunately sounds like it was recorded from a cassette....using a microphone at the speaker lol

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Lars Mars

12/30/2007 11:18:21 PM

Thanks so much for the kind words regarding our tunes Steve. Coming from you, it's especially appreciated. We admire your songwriting (as well as Hugh's and Larree's) a great deal.

As to the recordings... well, yes. I won't make excuses, we'd love to spend your money getting it perfect in a studio, so get rich quickly! And yes, we do know the difference and have recorded in LA and Boston studios (long ago)... but even if we had the money, we are really short on time together, as we're now spread from SC to Cape Cod.

Our fun has always been in working out new tunes. It's what we've done since we were 16 and it was the competition to come up with a better tune than the others that's driven us all along.

I'll wax philosophic regarding the beauty of lo-fi soon, as I consider it intrinsic to the energy of indie music. And, as indie may be the most important movement in music since the sixties, it's a worthwhile topic for discussion.

Thanks again,

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Steve Ison

12/31/2007 7:13:24 AM

I really wish more bands/artists had your attitude Glenn..
There are (admitedly) a stack of stellar songs on IAC-tho i put in alot of effort and search HARD for them-maybe one in 20 songs i check out makes it onto a station..

I'll switch off a song the moment i hear a 'forced',asleep vocal line-really cliched chord changes etc....

I love arranging n producing tracks-but-like you- try and never never lose sight that the 'song' at scource is king...
Its weird how songwriting-the real key to freedom in the music imho- isn't as valued as production and performance by most people........
A check on most really succesful tracks on indie sites-as well as the charts in the real world bares this out

Would love to hear your thoughts on the beauty of lofi,definitely..

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Lars Mars

12/31/2007 2:31:42 PM

I love arranging n producing tracks-but-like you- try and never never lose sight that the 'song' at scource is king...

I think you've struck the perfect balance, regardless of what Hugh thinks of your production...

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Hugh Hamilton

12/31/2007 5:09:05 PM

I love Steve, his music, AND his production...didn't mean to suggest otherwise...would love the production more if it happened in my presence - only for the fun of observing...and maybe even (dare I say it?) PARTICIPATING...

Rock on, musical bruthas!


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Lars Mars

1/1/2008 12:09:39 AM

I know Hugh, it shows... I just couldn't resist. And thanks for sticking up for us.

(thinking of becoming a one 'n' Glen... think of the saved time over a lifetime)

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1/2/2008 8:58:01 PM

Steve...thanks for the great comments on our music....although I have to take exception to the "lo-fi" thing. I always thought of us as "medium-fi". That aside, thanks again....I don't know how Nick Lowe will like being compared to me though!

(The other half of Den and Glenn)

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the kozy king

1/3/2008 7:34:42 AM

My wife & I streamed quite deeply into your Lounge station last night and I commented to her that you obviously liked a "homemade quality" in a song. (Still, I was almost embarassed at the way "Whatever" sounded compared to some of them.)

We just got back from the big city of Toronto where my son was married. We made a little detour into a subdivision construction site. I was appalled at the lack of quality in these $300 - $500,000 homes. They are slapped together, then covered up with expensive finishing materials -- ceramic tile, hardwood floor, and exterior bricks.

I'm sure you can see the analogy with most commercial songs. They do the creative work with the any available materials and then cover up the mess with slick production.

I still prefer great song-writing AND great production, but the song definitely has to be there FIRST!!

Best wishes to everyone for continued inspiration in 2008.

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Steve Ison

1/3/2008 8:12:09 AM

Many thanks for listening to THe Lounge Koz,Whatever Happened To You is a lovely song..
I actually like really well produced music,but absoloutly not at the expense of genuine personality and 'a song'

A vocalist i don't like is actually the most off-putting of all-but that usually goes together with alot of 'corporate' songs...

I like your analogy!
To my ears,many indies sound corporate without actually being signed or anything..You can hear the dream of $$$'s and the desire for fame in the song,the production-everything.....
The total lack of charm,the ultra-earnestness,the forced quality of the writing,the impersonal 3rd person site with a zillion useless bragging press-quotes are usually giveaways..
Its the 'shiny poison' as someone so eloquently put it..And its a real,real shame so many are seduced by it...

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Hop On Pop

1/3/2008 10:52:52 AM

Went and listened and found a beautiful song for my "The Good Stuff" station.
"Everything She Does" is pure George Harrison.

And there's more, too.... but I gotta have time to sift through it!

Thanks, Steve.

And nice work fellas.

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Steve Ison

1/3/2008 11:06:50 AM

Nice one Todd:)

Hugh..Thanks again for your kind words..I'm definitely planning on UPPING my productions this year

MaryBeth..I think Nick Lowe'd be delighted!

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Hugh Hamilton

1/3/2008 11:08:27 AM

Hey! $$$ I just rewrote the info on top of my page in the 3rd person!! $$$

LOL - $$$ - but it's kind of a joke...$$$


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Steve Ison

1/3/2008 11:14:28 AM

I hardly think your 'stay-at-home father of three' intro could really qualify as 'corporate' Hugh lol

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1/3/2008 3:38:58 PM

Todd...thanks for the comments on "Everything She Does" I don't play a lot of lead guitar, but I always loved Harrison the most....that one just kind of flowed out of me. If only these darn hands would cooperate a little more often!

(PS I'm actually Den of Den & Glenn, not really MaryBeth!)

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