About

I record life. I capture moments. I document myself and others. I use cameras, recorders, lighting, and production gadgets to create motion pictures; training, promotions, short docu-vignettes, music videos, and experimental films.

I compose music from scratch with my hands on guitar, keyboard, knobs, or mouse, with my voice, and from a digital universe of samples and software.

I use computers in nearly every facet of my life and I archive what I've found and created. 

 

Monday
Jun182012

Zoology 2 Released

Zoology 2's would-be FAQ.

What the hell is this stuff?
It's Scott Thomas ChavezKenny Pardo, and Steev Dinkins improvising in a rehearsal studio (except for a few rehearsed pieces).

What were you guys thinking?
We were trying not to.

Is that Scott or Steev on vocals?
It's both of us at different times and/or the same time.

So you guys call this music?
I guess so. It's more like cinéma vérité and documentary approach, so you could call it raw realism recording, as opposed to conventional commercial recording.

So are these songs or something?
It's all one big edited heap of happy accidents.

So you guys just wanked off in the studio?
Actually we worked pretty hard for a year and half to be able to do stuff like this.

Why are there so many fuck ups?
Because we didn't exactly know what we were doing and were caught wallowing in it.

And you expect people to pay for this?
No, it's available as a free download from bandcamp or right here

Also available for free - Volume 1.

 


Wednesday
Jun132012

Zoology 1-3 Released

Finally after 4 months of editing, mastering, and experimenting with the final song order, Zoology 1-3 is getting released. Over 130 tracks, 3.5 hours, fresh from the middle of industrial silicon valley Bay Area suburbania.

This was a long time dream that many musicians don't quite understand. See, early on in playing with bands, my favorite moments weren't perfecting songs, they were the stupid things that happened in between rehearsing songs. What happened when the guard was down was far more honest, real, weird, and full of character. We're in love with weird sounds and Zoology is full of just that - unconventional ravings of 3 monkeys.

The technical stuff was insane:

http://holyzoo.com/photos/1969-2005/2001-2002_Holy_Zoo_Band/large-88.html http://holyzoo.com/photos/1969-2005/2001-2002_Holy_Zoo_Band/large-85.html

The quality of sound that came out of all this tweakery stands up after all these years. We all had in-ear monitoring of mic'd drums, guitar, bass, vocals, and audio samples. The final recordings here are essentially my monitor mix from night to night which I constantly tweaked with for 9 months.

Here's the blurb from CDBaby and BandCamp so far:

Zoology Volume 1 of 3. Frustrated by rehearsing songs, Holy Zoo invent an unpredictable universe of freeform fuckery, miraculous disasters, happy accidents, psycho rhythms, ridiculous improvs, and violent wipe outs, rattled off from out of nowhere. Set up in a dingy rehearsal space for 9 months, live - no overdubs. Recorded from April-December 2002. Volume 1 starts the journey in unknowing genesis, technical difficulties, angst, and comedy. Be sure to check out Volumes 2 and 3.

Be warned, this stuff is brutal, offensive, and uncensored.

Volume 1 Direct Download - Uncensored Version

Here's Volume 1 Artwork by Scott Chavez.  

Tuesday
Nov292011

Holy Zoo Faire

After more than 12 years, Holy Zoo Faire is finally finished, including copyright and digital distribution setup. Only thing now is waiting on CreateSpace to give thumbs up on ordering a proof for the physical CD.

Here's the album on BandCamp

Update:  The physical CD is up now on CreateSpace.

Digital purchase is also available on Amazon, iTunes, and CDBaby.

 

Full image artwork...

 

Sunday
Oct252009

Ant Killer

I hate ants.  Found a few in the bathroom, and my experience tells me to go look outside and you're going to find a trail.  Well I found a massive one.  This had developed in about a weeks worth of time after rain.  I got em good, but also had a chance to shoot some more test footage with the GH1.  

Ant Killer from Steev Steele on Vimeo.

The initial intention was to try out the Nikon Micro Nikkor 105mm Macro - it can focus about 6 inches from the front of the lens.  It's essentially a 200mm telephoto on the GH1, but with that close of a focus.  Most of it was shot with that.  I opened up the aperture to around f8 and f11 to increase depth of field.  The issue I found was light leakage with the 4/3rds-Nikon adapter I'm using.  So I gaff taped the leak, and all was good.  However, it makes further aperture adjustment a challenge.  Gotta take the tape off and put it back on.  I'm not sure if this is the case with all lenses.  More testing on that later.  Once I saw a story developing, I used a Sigma 20mm  f1.8 for the establishing hand shot, and the Ortho container product shots.  I had to go high shutter speed for all of these to get somewhat the aperture I wanted.  I was too lazy to hunt down ND filters.  Singh-Ray Vari-ND is on order now.  I got tired of primes, and didn't need macro or shallow DOF for the rest of the squirt shots, so I used the GH1 kit lens 14-140.  

 

Every single shot I used the articulating display adjusted in some way to my benefit.  I wouldn't have bothered with my 5D on this kind of frivolity shoot.  But it does point out something important to me about the value of that display.  I love this camera more and more.  But the 5D is still my serious cam.  Tests with the 7D come this week - it arrives tomorrow.