Thank you for sharing "Crime And Passion". We appreciate your help in spreading word of The Theory. Please choose your sharing option:
June 28, 2010 - Week 1
"Crime And Passion"
We are overjoyed to present you with "Crime And Passion," our first new release in over a year. We've had a blast touring, jamming, and transforming the music from our Self-Titled album into a live experience. But now we are returning to the studio - or livingroom, in our case - and we are getting set to bring you a new song every week in addition to regular blog posts in between releases. It has been thrilling for us to return to the writing and recording process, and we channeled that excitement into "Crime And Passion." This track is a collective unleashing of pent up creative energy. It starts with a bang and it never lets up. We hope you enjoy it.By SeanCrime and passion is a song about two lovers who get off on robbing banks, leaving a wake of terror as they tear across the country in a crime spree. The main character of the song may be a cold-blooded killer, but he's still human. Even crooks need love songs and there's a cool sexiness to Bonnie and Clyde type relationships. You've got your girl by your side and you're making yourselves rich by living a wild-west lifestyle. Snatch. Grab. Kill. Crash. Run. It's one of my favorite sets of lyrics I've written.Crime And Passion by The Theory of Funkativity Verse: How soon can we leave How fast are we sinking Everyone's gone, tell me What were we thinking One hand on the safe One hand on the button You want it your way But you're too damn frightened You'll make excuses I'll cover for you You'll jump out of windows And i'll escape too We'll wear disguises And we'll improvise Who the hell knows what we're trying to do Chorus: The flash of the camera Makes you want to stay But you'll get much smarter And grow up one day It gets to you now But i'm screaming out I won't let you be the one that got away Verse: Nothing for me Is your favorite percentage I'll take what I get Just know that i meant it You renegade you Where is your jacket Here are your lines Please, no overacting You'll make excuses I'll cover for you You'll jump out of windows And I'll escape too We'll wear disguises And we'll improvise Who the hell knows what we're trying to do Chorus: The flash of the camera Makes you want to stay But you'll get much smarter And grow up one day It gets to you now But i'm screaming out I won't let you be the one that got awayBy MichaelAs I sat down to begin the writing process after a year long break from composition, I was overwhelmed by a feeling of freshness and excitement. I kept flashing back to the swirling energy that I get when we play live, and I wanted to our first song to embody that feeling. This sensation manifested itself in the driving rhythm behind the chorus, which was the first part I wrote for the song. I found myself wanting to strum once on every single beat, which created a strong sense of momentum. As I played, an accompanying melody began to emerge. I picked out the melody out on the lower strings, using it to feel my way through the chord progression. The proression kept wanting to move... in the end, with just one exception, no chord is repeated. The underlying melody became so strong that I started to straying away from the every-beat-strumming in favor of a downbeat-emphasized rhythm. I ended up having the bass line for the chorus follow the melody exactly, although it is still implied in the lower strings of the guitar. I love how the progression falls and rises, how the bass does it's own up and down motion at each step of the way. I had no trouble writing a verse that felt natural following the chorus. While the chorus had a heavy emphasis on the downbeat and kept chugging forward, it wanted to spill out into a more open and playful verse. The bass and the guitar have a destination, but they are constantly dancing around each other. As is the case with nearly all of our music, the final guitar and bass lines are almost entirely improvised around an underlying progression. I was left needing a way to transition back into the chorus from the verse, and I ended up creating something of a hybrid between the two parts. It starts off by strumming hard on each downbeat - the rhythm that originally inspired the song - but then half way through each of the two phrases it releases into the playful rhythmic style of the verse. The same is true of the harmonic progression: it starts out by teasing the chord progression from the chorus, but then breaks off into something different. The piano is a departure from our usual style, but it compliments the song well. I don't normally consider piano when writing, but after recording a demo take of the guitar and bass I felt the song needed something more. The piano ended up assuming a very important role in the song. It almost defines the piece. The piano trill during the chorus is subtle, but it causes the chorus to swell up and contributes to the song's feeling of progression. I doubled the trill half way through the final chorus to give one final push. There's not much I'll ever be able to say about any of the guitar solos. They are never pre-conceived. You can always tell when a guitar solo is written ahead of time, and while that suits some styles of music, it wouldn't be right for The Theory. When you repeat a solo, you can't help but focus on the relationship of that solo to the previous take. You lose sight of the music very quickly, and you end up with an inescapable melody etched into your mind. By keeping things spontaneous, I know that each take will be just as raw as the last, and that when we play the song live I will have no problem letting go of the album version of the solo to play something that is right for the moment. The outro is essentially a bass solo on top of a reinterpretation of the verse by the guitar. It seemed like a fitting conclusion for the song. It's the first moment of relaxation, and that creates a powerful contrast with the rest of the tune. Once again, our live work was an inspiration for the part. The song finishes, the crowd is still pumped, the four of us are exhausted, and Kyle and I take it down a notch, while paying tribute to the frenetic intensity of song that we are concluding. If you want to learn more about my writing process, I encourage you to check out the post for our Self-Titled album.By MichaelI've spent a lot of time thinking about how to best approach these engineering sections. I could write pages and pages about all of the techniques we use to get our sound and the challenges I face during the mixing process, but I think it would be more interesting to discuss a few specific elements in each post. If anyone is interested in further details, please feel free to pose a question in the comments and I will either respond to it directly or, if it's a lengthy topic, I'll discuss it in a subsequent post. For a full explanation of the equipment we use and further discussion about my approach to mixing The Theory, hit up the engineering section for our Self-Titled album. I like our recordings to be extremely loud, thick, and cohesive, and I'm perfectly happy making sacrifices to achieve that. In this way I'm a fairly untraditional engineer. Engineers typically try to leave as much space as possible (loudness war aside) in the mix to give the track an open, three-dimensional feel. When you play a modern pop track next to a classic tune, you immediately notice that difference. Modern tracks are much louder and more even sounding, while older tracks will have greater variation between loud and soft parts. This is a result of the loudness war: music sounds better when it's loud, so engineers are always trying to make their mixes louder than the competition. Bands and labels want it that way so that their music stands out and sounds more exciting. As a member of the loudness war generation, much of the music I listen to has been flattened out to achieve maximum volume. In a lot of cases I don't mind that. As long as the drums are still punchy, I prefer the sounded of a mix that's been pushed. In a loud mix, the instruments react to one another in a very musical way. For example, the kick drum might temporarily push the bass guitar out of the way, and the snare will sometimes land right on top of the vocals. In fact, that type of interactivity is a critical element in a lot of electronic music. On the downbeats, a heavy kick drum will knock the other instruments out of the mix, and they'll whoosh right back a moment later. It can be a very cool sound. So yes, I make our mixes loud and compact, and I'm not ashamed of it. If I played our songs for a ninety-year-old who had never heard music played on anything but a phonograph, he might take issue with the nature of the mix. A punk rocker in his twenties, on the other hand, would feel right at home.