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Industrial-Metal Piano Rock
Today on the Jukebox: "Movement (Alternate Spin)," by The Lady anoNYMous

I know, I know, I said I'd try to stop with the Alternate Spins, with the theory being that, since I've been spending more time with my songs before publishing them, there would be less chance that I'd desire to change them at some future point. Well, every song on the new album - Dialectical Observations - that has been on a previous release has been altered for this one. Some to greater degrees than others, so those with more subtle changes (even the new intro for "Less Sinister Cousins") haven't had the Alternate Spin qualifier attached to the title. When approaching this song for alterations that I had considered making to its bass line, I found myself exploring more than a few "what if"s, including bumping up the overall tempo - which led to a little rerecording and an overhaul in remastering - so that it ended up earning its extended name.

"Movement" was an exercise in restrengthening my musical muscles after they had atrophied during a hectic summer that involved a wedding and a relocation. I'd been able to release the EP Elemental because it included previously-recorded rarities and a slightly altered version of a bonus track on the Artist's Edition of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. And Elemental was mostly about the artwork by +cyril rolando that was the inspiration for, and the centerpiece of, the EP's Artist's Edition. I had wanted to include a bonus track on said Artist's Edition, but it wasn't feasible, so I promised my Patreon patrons that Elemental "b-sides" were in the cards further on down the line. "Movement" was the first song I felt truly inspired to write for these "b-sides."

My inspiration for "Less Sinister Cousins" occurred while I was still in the middle of "Movement," which was being written and recorded in spurts, so "Cousins" was actually completed first. I'd spend a lot of time rerecording, editing, and polishing these chunks while I waited for the next "movement" to be made clear to me. Sometimes I'd start writing something, but the next time I came back to the song, I would throw it out and start over. So the truly inspired bits that were feverishly written and recorded can now be easily identified as different portions of the tune by even a casual listener. I named the song for these surges in its progression.

After being Patreon-exclusive tunes for several months, they were included on the EP Counterbalance. For that EP, little alterations were made on "Cousins," but "Movement" felt solid and remained the same. Then I listened to it over and over as part of the playlist that evolved into the track listing for Dialectical Observations, and that niggling about the bass line led to my thinking "Why the hell not?" since I'd already made changes to all its other songs. And you know the story after that.

"Movement (Alternate Spin)" is track 04 on Dialectical Observations, a new album that can be streamed on YouTube Music, Google Play, Apple Music, Microsoft Groove, and TIDAL. To directly support me and my art, you can buy the song or album at my Snail Tunes store - http://theladyanonymous.bandcamp.com. Purchases include downloads in a format of your choosing - from standard MP3 to lossless audio - as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app.

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Ambient Neoclassical Post-Rock
Today on the Jukebox: "When Anchorage Became An Island" and "Man Seeking Cocoon (For NSA LTR)," by The Lady anoNYMous

It's been an interesting and surprisingly full day, considering how few events actually took place. I drove myself to an appointment with a new therapist in an unfamiliar town, about thirty miles away from home. This is relatively close, as things are spaced pretty far apart out here. The big deal with driving myself is because I don't often drive very far; vibrations aggravate the neuropathy-related pain in my hands and feet. Usually, I take meds for such things before a car ride, but I won't take meds before driving. So this was pushing myself. However, I pulled it off and even hobbled around the local Wal Mart with the assistance of my walking stick. I know, I know, I'd boycott Wal Mart if there was any other affordable alternative (or really any alternative at all) in this area. So, suck it up.

Meeting with the new therapist was interesting. I already knew him in passing, and he'd facilitated a session of my Dialectical Behavioral Therapy group once. He'd actually asked my previous therapist to send me his way - I guess picking my brain is of particular interest to some. The facilitators of the group talk about all of the group members in "consultation team" meetings, so I can only speculate on what they say about me... Anyway, it was a pleasant little orientation session. He's not my previous therapist, who was a totally awesome woman who I had several common interests with, so it was really easy to go off-topic with her. We'll just have to see how this works out.

Finally, I believe that at some point during the night, my step-sister (who I get along with very well) and her daughter (whom I've never met) might be arriving, "might" being the operative word. We haven't received any definite one way or the other; she'll just get here and she gets here. As I'm usually awake until 4am, I'll probably be up and about to greet her if she arrives

NOW, as far as today's song is concerned: I went ahead and created a track on my YouTube channel combining songs one and two on the new album, Dialectical Observations. I'd done the same with "Signor Fancypants" and "Less Sinister Cousins" to demonstrate the intended abrupt transition between the two, so now I'm demonstrating how these two tracks flow into each other, not missing a beat while subtly shifting the tempo. It gives the album a somber opening that transitions smoothly into a more neutral-but-epic ambience, which facilitates the change of tone and energy from "Anchorage" to "Familial Germs." That's the intention of the song placement of "Man Seeking Cocoon," anyway. If you'd care to bypass "Anchorage," seeing as it was yesterday's post, you can just skip to 4:03.

This album is now available to stream on YouTube Music, Spotify, Google Play, Apple Music, Microsoft Groove, and TIDAL. If you'd like to directly support me and my art, consider buying the tracks or album from my Snail Tunes store. Purchases include a download in a format of your choice - from standard MP3 to lossless audio - as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app. An Artist's Edition of this album is currently available to all pledges of support at http://patreon.com/theladyanonymous.

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Ambient / Neoclassical / Trip-Hop
Today on the Jukebox: "When Anchorage Became An Island," by The Lady anoNYMous

Even though I've gone through the album once, and I've been doing preview posts of songs in varying stages of completion before its release...well, it's such a short album and I'm so in love with it that I'm going to go through it again. Also, this will give you a chance to catch a song post from the album in case you missed one, and I use these posts as a sort of journaling of my personal life as well - - but today wasn't all that eventful. It was my step-dad's birthday, but I didn't have much involvement. In fact, I slept much of the day after doing a lot of arduous physical labor the day before. I have extensive neuropathy in my hands and lower legs that I've been building up tolerance for, training my body to work with, while also building my physical strength back up since my hospitalization in February of 2014. One year ago I couldn't stand for very long without physical aid or being in tremendous amounts of pain. Now, I'm getting around with a walking stick and able to do some physical labor. It's been three-and-a-half years, and it seemed like very slow going along the way, but a lot of progress has been made. Still, I was worn out and recuperating most of today after yesterday's efforts.

These physical efforts, while being gratifying, also get in the way of my songwriting; after a day of using my hands for anything strenuous, I have no dexterity and I'm unable to record; I do a lot of my songwriting by doing experimental recordings. But I've been able to do a lot more than being mostly stationary and occupying my time writing and recording songs. So releasing two EPs in one year, culminating in an album that's much more discriminatory than previous albums - for which I had 16-track quotas - has been quite different than releasing four the previous year.

Still, when inspiration strikes and I just have to record something floating around in my head, I try to put everything else on hold to make time for it. This song is built around a cello piece that I recorded, which I later returned to and recording on two tracks using the "bowing" effect on my touchscreen to simulate a more realistic rising and falling of volume and velocity, a technique I also used for the cello opening of "No Introduction Needed" and "Jade's Theme (Introduction)." The single-note repetitive baritone piano was inspired by the opening of Tori Amos' Boys for Pele. Everything else just kind of fell into place, with a bass synth, muted hand drums, and drum-edge tapping (I'm sure there's a better word for that) that gave this ambient/neoclassical piece a bit of trip-hop flavor. This song was recently likened to Radiohead by a peer for mine, which I had never thought before.

It's a natural opener for an album, and thus begins my new album, Dialectical Observations, which is available to stream on YouTube, Spotify, Google Play, Apple Music, Groove, and TIDAL. To directly support me and my art, consider buying the song or album from my Snail Tunes store - http://theladyanonymous.bandcamp.com. Purchases include a download in a format of your choice - from standard MP3 to lossless audio - as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app.

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Electroacoustic Pop / Neoclassical / Industrial-Metal
Today on the Jukebox: NEW VERSIONS! "Signor Fancypants" and "Less Sinister Cousins," by The Lady anoNYMous

Today was pouring rain, deterring any work outside, and free of obligations, which meant finally watching Deadpool on my DVR. I can never afford to see movies in the theater anymore, so I usually wait for them to be available on DVD at the library (which I maintain is the most AWESOME resource known to man), but in this case I was able to snatch it off Cinemax. It's been weeks since I recorded it, as I haven't been able to set aside time to just sit down and watch a movie, and I have to say, this one was predictable but OODLES of fun! And it did have tiny surprises to throw you slightly off balance here and there. But in this movie, it was all about style.

HOWEVER, I remain in promotion mode for the new album, which I'll probably extend to putting out feelers for new radio allies. I've gotten this far by flagging/flowing various hosts and stations that seemed promising to a degree, but I've fallen waaay behind on pursuing this tactic. I need to get back into it and keep the ball rolling further and further afield, while maintaining my current alliances. It's a time-consuming and tricky balancing act to maintain (you're always forgetting about somebody, it seems) but it is part of the job of an indie artist.

Part of it is also maintaining these Jukebox posts and seeing if they snag any attention, as well as providing followers with personal info and musical insights, so without further ado...

You may recollect "Signor Fancypants" and "Less Sinister Cousins" from the EPs Elemental and Counterbalance, respectively, retrospectively. "Signor Fancypants" is a swaggering electroacoustic pop instrumental with blasts of industrial-metal to throw listeners off balance. "Less Sinister Cousins" is a neoclassical ballad filled with odd post-industrial, sometimes metallic, elements. It was an unlikely pairing, putting them in as tracks 07 and 08 on the new album, but after endless amounts of shuffling and juggling, it's what felt the most natural.

Then, one night, it occurred to me to try making them flow together in a more creative way, and I tried cutting off different amounts of bars at the end of "Fancypants" to make the transition into "Cousins" more abrupt. That didn't seem to be working, and I turned my attention instead to attempting a slightly extended intro of high-hat and shakers, and I was proud of what I came up with after a couple hours of toil, but I was unsure of how that was working either. I tried one or the other; I tried different bars of space between the two. I tried continuing the drum track at the end of "Fancypants" straight into the new intro for "Cousins." That's one I found the right amount of bars to cut into the end of "Fancypants" and struck gold (in my opinion) by having that song cut off abruptly in favor of the new intro to "Cousins."

Which is why they're combined here, so I could convey what I had accomplished after hours of work through a mostly sleepless night. It's a transition that's important to me, and may not be experienced by listeners on any other streaming service. I may also put up "single" tracks of these new versions (which are different from their previously published incarnations in other ways, as well) on my YouTube channel, where, most importantly, "Fancypants" will not end abruptly. Conversely, I may give "When Anchorage Became An Island" and "Man Seeking Cocoon" the back-to-back treatment on my channel, because I believe the transition from one into the other is beautiful when heard on the album as a whole.

I do hope you enjoy these tracks as presented here. You can stream the album with this transition on my YouTube channel - http://youtube.com/c/YouHaveFailedUsBlogspot. You can also stream the album on YouTube Music, Spotify, Google Play, Apple Music, Groove, and TIDAL.

To directly support me and my art, consider buying the songs or album from my Snail Tunes store - http://theladyanonymous.bandcamp.com. Purchases include downloads in a format of your choosing - from standard MP3 to lossless audio - as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app.

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Post-Industrial Trip-Hop Piano-Pop
Today on the Jukebox: "Fleeting Fractals," by The Lady anoNYMous

Today was my last season with the most awesome therapist ever. Sigh... She hasn't listened to the physical copy of the Dialectical Observations Artist's Edition, for fear of making herself cry. I told her that it only starts out sad and somber, but it becomes possibly the most cheerful and optimistic album I've ever recorded! Then we discussed the moods of each song, and we came to the conclusion that it's a bit of a roller coaster, and would best be listened to in a dimly lit room with a pack of cigarettes and a stiff drink. So, there's my therapist's advice, y'all! Get your American Spirits and Maker's Mark, rent a hotel room that has venetian blinds and a neon-lit sign outside, and listen to this album with the lights off.

Track 06 y'all may be familiar with by now. This is the album version of the advance single that was released a couple of months ago. With this remastered version, I tried to match the more treble tone of the rest of the album, but it was hard. This song is meant to be very bass-heavy, like it would most properly be listened to on a sound system equipped with a sub woofer. This bass-meets-hip-hop-beat-meets-industrial-guitars aesthetic was inspired by How To Destroy Angels, that "post-industrial pop" project of Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, and I tried it accompanied to a little piano ditty. The soprano piano ditty practically wrote itself, though it gave the song an undeniably chipper demeanor. Somehow, through it all, it retained that quality I think of as "post-industrial trip-hop." I just think "piano-pop" snuck in there somewhere along the way.

The title began as "Fluttery Fractals," but I was working on "Butterflies on Ganymede" at the same time and wanted to avoid a fluttery theme in the album. But with "Man Seeking Cocoon" thrown in there, it seems that maybe I shouldn't have bothered with the name change. There's definitely a chrysalis-and-emergence thing going on. Yet "Fleeting" also seems appropriate, as the title was inspired by the Lichtenberg fractals often found in nature. They can even be used to predict patterns in nature...up to a point, when other variables fuck it all up. So, yeah, they're a bit fleeting.

This song comes in at track 06 on the new album, Dialectical Observations, which can be streamed on Spotify, YouTube, Google Play, Apple Music, Groove, and TIDAL. To directly support me and my art, consider buying a song or album from my Snail Tunes store - http://theladyanonymous.bandcamp.com. Purchases include downloads from a variety of formats, as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app.

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Orchestral Post-Rock EDM
Today on the Jukebox: NEW VERSION! "Familial Germs," by The Lady anoNYMous

I said in my earlier post today that I was facing a day of back-breaking labor. The day did not disappoint. Pretty much, my step-dad and I chopped up the remains of a collapsed shed to bits and hauled the pieces off the either the burn pile or the...I guess you'd call it the property "dump." After that was nearly complete (there's really just a clearing filled with some rubble now) I joined my mother in the garden patch (it's the size of a modest field) and weeded among the rows of cucumbers and bush beans. It was a nice, hot, sunny day for it, and there was a lot of sweat and dirt involved, and I felt like an old man by the end. With neuropathy in my hands and legs, it was pretty amazing that I was able to pull all of this off; a year ago, I wouldn't have been able to. But I've been developing a tolerance, stamina, and a lot of practice to be more physically able, which has admittedly taken time away from my songwriting. Still, it's been a year of developing new techniques and further understanding of my tools, with greater attention to detail. And I believe that, after a year in the making, my new album, Dialectical Observations, is an enormous step up from my first five albums. It represents a new era in my music.

Track 3 on the album may be familiar to y'all from the EP Counterbalance; an experiment in mimicking a sound from a song by Tori Amos led to the opening whirr-and-beats while the accompanying piano set the course of the song, which was to be one of straight-up orchestral rock. The name had occurred to me either before or during the writing and recording process. I had developed a fascination and reflection, for the day, on how germs are willingly and often unthinkingly shared in close-knit social groups, whether it be family or friends. They often share food and drink, bottles and glasses, pipes and joints, and all other manner of things that can be shared. But they most likely keep this sharing within "the family." I just tacked the name onto this composition without thinking too hard about it, as I often unquestioningly do with my songs.

I make a point in today's Jukebox title that this is a new version of the song. Pretty much all the "familiar" songs on this album are as they have not been heard before, though most of the differences are subtle. In this song, a couple of measures were cropped out, and some of the acoustic guitar was rerecorded. I think it creates a better flow, which affects how it is unconsciously received. And this song, following "Anchorage" and "Cocoon," is the first step away from the album's ambient beginnings into post-rock territory.

My new album, Dialectical Observations, is now available to stream on YouTube, Spotify, Google Play, Apple Music, and TIDAL. However, you can directly support me and my art by buying the song or album from my Snail Tunes store - http://theladyanonymous.bandcamp.com. Purchases include downloads in a format of your choice, as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app.

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Ambient / Post-Industrial / Neoclassical
Well folken, here it is: a year in the making, marking the anniversary of the EP Elemental, which laid the first stepping stones in the creation of this album with the songs "Signor Fancypants" and "Fistfuls of Whimsy." Since then, an Alternate Spin of "Whimsy" has been making its rounds on indie and mainstream radio, and another EP - Counterbalance - laid more groundwork for this album. With four new songs and each previously published song being altered or remastered, this marks a new era in my songwriting.

Without further ado:

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Electroacoustic Ambient Rock
Today on the Jukebox: "Jade's Theme (A Dirge)," by The Lady anoNYMous

The release date for the new album draws ever closer, and I can't seem to stop fucking around with the songs. Actually, most are solid and concrete, but with some (right now, "Man Seeking Cocoon," "Fleeting Fractals," and aw hell, I just created an Alternate Spin of "Movement") I've been creating nuances to mess around with after listening to the latest recordings a few dozen times. I need to stop. I need to release this record out into the world so that I can stop, if nothing else, and move on to other things. My concentration has lingered on this project for too long. And so I think I've come very close to re-perfecting "Cocoon" and "Fractals," and the Alternate Spin of "Movement" is, well, different, and I'm going to put it out there just to let it sink in and see if it really is an improvement or not. That's why it's an Alternate Spin, and why the original is out there on Counterbalance. Anyway, I started converting the finished artwork for the album to PDFs for the booklet, and then I have pages to create for acknowledgements and credits. I am this close to just firing out the Artist's Edition at my Patreon patrons, and letting that keystroke be the gong of finality. By the way, if you're interested in downloading the Artist's Edition, just pledge any amount at http://patreon.com/theladyanonymous before the end of the month. Pledges come with a bunch of other rewards, as well.

Now, I almost shared "Signor Fancypants" today because I was presented with the odd fact that it's currently my most popular song on Apple Music. I say this is odd because I have several other songs that are clearly more popular in the grander sense, but "Fancypants" is struttin' its stuff over at Apple. However, I'll be promoting it some more when Dialectical Observations is released, since it (originally released a year ago on the 30th on Elemental) is included on the new album. Instead, I've been reminded of this song a few times lately, so here it is: one of two songs that changed a piano ditty originally called "Introducing..." into the recurring theme for a fictional alter ego of mine, the hippie-chick badass, Jade.

Jade's the lead protagonist in several stories in my head, and even a novel that I started, but can only publicly be found in the short story "A Jaded Beltaine" in the Snail Tales section of http://youhavefailedus.blogspot.com. The story behind this song is that it's a funereal march for Jade's friend Theo the dog, whose death is yet to be chronicled, but I can assure you was quite heroic.

Since my Internet connection is currently calling to mind the stone age of dial-up, and I wanted to listen to this song while typing, I've let my iTunes play through the latter half of my third full-length album, Jaded, and I'm reminded of how much I love it. While Occultation sounds awfully amateurish to me these days, with the exception of a couple of songs, Jaded has so many songs that have stood strong throughout my efforts as a solo composer. It includes this song (of course), "The Seventh Swan," "Lily White" (enhanced by the vocal stylings of The Arcane Insignia's Alejandro Saldarriaga Calle)," "Cold Sunlight" (which is my most successful attempt at including my own vocals in one of my songs), and the stoner-hit "The Tranquil Isles." What I'm saying is, listen to it! There's a lot of great material, if I do say so myself.

Jaded can be streamed on Spotify, YouTube, Google Play, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Groove, and TIDAL. To directly support me and my art, consider buying a song or the album from my Snail Tunes store - http://theladyanonymous.bandcamp.com. Purchases include a download of your choice from a variety of formats, as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app.

An extended Artist's Edition of the album is also among the many rewards for a pledge at http://patreon.com/theladyanonymous.

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Post-Industrial Trip-Hop
Today on the Jukebox: "Mr. Douter (Sin Palabras)," by The Lady anoNYMous

It's weird when you look back on your day and it feels as though it's been full and productive, and it's gone by quickly, but when you look back on it, it seems as though not a lot actually happened. My day started with a little promo action on the computer, then was filled with weeding out a strawberry patch and a bed of tomatoes, as well as pruning/nurturing the plants. After that it was already time for dinner, and I watched some zombies afterward(I've been going through The Walking Dead from beginning to end again), and then I did the work on "Movement" that I'd been contemplating. And now it's already the end of the day. Regardless, I think that I'm going to go work in the studio, now that it's dark and relatively cool out. I want to hear what I've done to "Movement" (which I believe will qualify as an Alternate Spin) on the studio speakers; I'll probably end up playing around with the levels as well.

Anyway, I'm pretty happy with the bass lines that I have rewritten, and I'm trying out some "what if"s in one of the drum tracks. That's the main thing I want to test out on the studio speakers: I want to hear how these extra bass kicks come across, and I've added a few - and changed the levels on - some high hats, cymbals, and claps. All in all, the changes are all somewhat subtle, but are so numerous that I feel it deserves to be set apart from the original song. It's getting a little hard for me to discern what qualifies for the "Alternate Spin" moniker. For example, "Less Sinister Cousins" has a few seconds of an introduction added to it for a transition from an abruptly cut-off end for "Signor Fancypants." I'm not discerning them from previous versions, because the differences are all for the sake of a transition. There are subtle changes in every song appearing on the new album, whether it be a couple notes, a cut measure, or just some remastering. Yet, I feel this version of "Movement" and the version of "Fistfuls of Whimsy" that's been making its rounds on radio stations are worthy of discernment from their previously published forms. Anyway, it doesn't really have to make sense to anyone else. It is, after all, the artist's prerogative.

Today's Jukebox song jumped out at me particularly because I had finally put together a playlist that's a counterpart to the Nothing Left To Lose demo, which ended up being another twenty tracks of songs that didn't make it onto the demo for one reason or another, yet I believe them to be quality tracks worthy of representing my music. When it came to this song, I couldn't quite decide if I should include it's sin or con palabras version - with or without vocals. It was originally written hand-in-hand with a spoken-word piece about my ex-husband. The word "douter" is the archaic term for those bell-on-a-handle candle snuffers you see in period pieces. The poem uses it as a metaphor for my ex trying extinguish my "spark." Anyway, the writing process for both the prose and the notes affected each other and formed a whole. So, in my opinion, this without-vocals version feels rather naked, but it's proven to be more popular, for whatever reason. In the case of the playlist, I went with the con palabras version. Again, artist's prerogative.

"Mr. Douter (Sin Palabras)" was, for quite a while, a rarity that Patreon patrons were privy to, for a pledge of support at http://patreon.com/theladyanonymous. When I was putting together the EP Dissonance, it seemed that the instrumental versions of both "Douter" and my song "Lily White" would lend themselves nicely to the EP's overall atmosphere. And when I was assembling the album Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, a theme of rarities and instrumental versions of previously released songs developed, so this tune was, yet again, a natural fit.

Dissonance and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy are available to stream on Spotify, Google Play, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Groove, and TIDAL. To directly support me and my art, consider buying the song, EP, or album from my Snail Tunes store - http://theladyanonymous.bandcamp.com. Purchases include a download of your choice from a variety of formats, as well as unlimited streaming on Bandcamp and the Bandcamp app. An Artist's Edition of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is among the many rewards for a pledge of support at http://patreon.com/theladyanonymous. Pledges up to the end of this month will also gain access to an Artist's Edition of the new album, Dialectical Observations, upon or before its public release.

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