All These Things

Lately for me life is hard & good.  Too much work to do & not enough time is frustrating, but at least it keeps me from falling in with my demons.  Sometimes I see friends with the same demons in a place in life where they are sinking & usually I don’t have the strength to pull them out & keep them from drowning for fear of drowning myself.  I think because my life seems in a good & stable place (married with a kid & all that) people assume that it’s easier to not hear something calling you to destroy yourself.  It’s there every single day for me.  Lately I’ve been writing comic scripts about it that I don’t even send to the guy who says he would love to draw any comic I write, just leave them in my memo pad & eventually put it with the other 9 memo pads of things I’ve never bothered to bring to fruition.  It’s all good.  Once it’s on the paper it all bugs me a little less & I’m a little more able to appreciate the sun shining & that there are people in the world that think it’s a better place for me being in it.

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Silber Newsletter June 30, 2017

Hello,

I hope all is going well.  I’m feeling pretty good about things here at Silber.

The new issue of QRD is up with interviews about music, art, & fatherhood.  I always feel good when a new issue comes together.  It feels good.  Maybe it’s because it’s the thing I’ve been doing the longest, but I often do feel like it’s the one thing I do that would make the most sense for me to be able to make a living off of even though I admit I have no idea how to make it make money.  But there’s something good about being able to make something that is what I want to read when no one else seems to be doing it.  77 issues & 22 years in, I feel like it might be my greatest success.
http://www.silbermedia.com/qrd/archives/77about.html

Two new musical releases from us this time out.  Dusty Tears (a collaboration between Shane de Leon (Miss Massive Snowflake) & Jamie Smith (Danghead)) relaunches our 5in5 series with a fun bit of lo-fi pop & experimental tour haze poetry.  Electric Bird Noise did the score/soundtrack for a play called The Moonflower that’s essentially a greatest hits collection of the past several years of EBN.  A little more info on each below (along with the three releases from earlier in the month).

As I briefly mentioned last time, there may be some weirdness with the Silber digital shop in July where I’ll have to manually send links when you purchase stuff there.  I really don’t find out if that’s the case until it suddenly is & at that time I’ll try to switch things over to Bandcamp.  My only problem with that is it means another cut away from the money I can pay out to bands, but it’s good to have options.  My experiment last month about giving releases away for free on Bandcamp to create a spike in support didn’t really work out; but it’s okay, I’ll figure out how to work that platform to Silber’s benefit eventually.

Thanks for your continued interest & support, & if you want off the mailing list just let me know.

Hrt
Brian John Mitchell

www.silbermedia.com
https://www.facebook.com/silbermedia
http://twitter.com/silberspy

Dusty Tears
DUSTY TEARS: INTERNET HITS
Shane de Leon (Miss Massive Snowflake) is back to Silber with his long time friend Jamie Smith (Danghead) & together they are Dusty Tears.  Recorded by Smith when de Leon was on a tour stop for Miss Massive Snowflake, Internet Hits really captures one of the great things the 5 in 5 series can do.  You have an afternoon of downtime as a musician on tour?  Hang out with a pal & make something.  Part punk, part lo-fi pop, & part experimental streams of consciousness, this pretty much captures how a mind works after long drives, sleeping in the van, & living the rock & roll daydream.
File Under: Lo-Fi Pop, Streams of Consciousness, Road Life
Recommended if you like: Rllrbll, Miss Massive Snowflake, Danghead, Beck
Listen or buy on Silber – http://www.silbermedia.com/5in5/DustyTears-InternetHits.shtml
Listen or buy on Bandcamp – https://silbermedia.bandcamp.com/album/InternetHits
Listen on Spotify – https://play.spotify.com/album/3yqgbopfh9DcoZ25LMGLHT

EBN The Moonflower
ELECTRIC BIRD NOISE: THE MOONFLOWER
The Moonflower is a murder mystery play by creative powerhouse Philip James Fox (Wicked Gift, Gratisphere) & the Electric Bird Noise soundtrack is essentially a greatest hits collection covering the past seven years of the band. Nearly every musical side of Electric Bird Noise is represented, from discordant ambient jazz structures to synth pop to ambient drone to darkwave to electro. Sit back & solve a murder mystery or how all of these songs come from the same project.
File Under: Ambient Jazz, Drone, Darkwave, Soundtracks
Recommended if you like: Music for art gallery elevators
Listen or buy on Silber – http://www.silbermedia.com/ebn/the-moonflower.shtml
Listen or buy on Bandcamp – https://silbermedia.bandcamp.com/album/the-moonflower
Listen on Spotify – https://play.spotify.com/album/7KswoLDBkx17Apx2ykrYrX

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Silber Newsletter June 11, 2017

Hey Starz,

Been a while, I hope all is well in your part of the world.  I feel like things are going well even though the world’s been throwing a bunch of curves at me.  The main Silber computer had a hard drive failure & I had to rebuild it.  The whole family had a stomach flu that made me go junkie thin.  My crawlspace flooded under the house (still trying to figure out why).  Some other health issues as well making life a little harder (new low fat, low sugar, low carb, low salt diet is a bit of an adjustment).  My webhost doesn’t want to do a security patch so the digital shop may start failing in July (in which case my contingency plan is getting the catalog up on Bandcamp, which I was planning to do anyway).  But I think it’s a good time to be alive & positive things are happening too.  I got a new fairly industrial paper cutter (thanks to Blake of Copy This for the tip!) that’ll cut down the assembly time of my comics.  I had a good first show of Remora as a drone rock trio with me on guitar & organ & Jason Ward (Irata) on drums & Brian McKenzie (Electric Bird Noise) on bass.  I recorded a pilot for a podcast (still trying to figure out if it’s something I can manage to do in a way I like).  & we have new stuff available for you.

In the comics front we have three new mini-comics about Robert E Howard.  Two pseudo-biographical pieces (REH #10 & REH Another Life #1) & then an autobio book about my lifelong relationship with the man who killed himself over 40 years before I was born.  So yeah, a niche market on these books, but I admit I really only make them for myself anyway at this point.  You can check them out here:
http://silbermedia.com/comics/current.shtml

In the music front we have three new releases.  A new album of art rock meditative jazz from Moodring recorded at the edge of a volcano that really is worth checking out if that sounds even vaguely interesting to you.  A moody pop single from Philip Polk Palmer.  & a split single of post punk & post rock from M is We & Thorn1.  More info on them below, & more stuff coming soon from Electric Bird Noise & Small Life Form & Dusty Tears (a Miss Massive Snowflake side project) & Chvad SB & lots more.  If you are a Spotify user, you can always listen to the latest from Silber on this playlist:
https://open.spotify.com/user/silberspy/playlist/4nuz7tocaNt9OkFetPsHhG

As mentioned above, we’re probably going to be expanding working with Bandcamp.  As an experiment to how Bandcamp works, I’m offerring 100 free downloads of the massive compilation QRD: The Guitarists.  If you are interested in it, just send me an email.

There is going to be a new issue of QRD out in time for Father’s Day (hopefully!) with about a half dozen interviews with musicians & cartoonists.  Keep an eye out on Twitter & Facebook for when it goes live.

Thank you so much for your interest & support over the years, it really does make it feel like the hard work isn’t in vain.  If you want to get off the newsleter just let me know.

Hrt
Brian John Mitchell
www.silbermedia.com
https://www.facebook.com/silbermedia
http://twitter.com/silberspy

Moodring: Cottage Mess
MOODRING: COTTAGE MESS
Moodring is back to Silber with art rock jazz meditations recorded on the edge of a volcano.
File Under: Art Rock, Meditative Jazz
Recommended if you like: Rllrbll, Bauhaus, Can, Bardo Pond
Listen or buy on Silber
Listen or buy on Bandcamp
Listen on Spotify

Philip Polk Palmer - Who Knows?
PHILIP POLK PALMER: WHO KNOWS?
An outtake from 2015’s Here in the Deadlights, it seems the time has come around for a song admitting what we’ve become.  There’s a mood to this moody pop gem.
File Under: Moody Pop, Pundit Conspiracies
Recommended if you like: The Church, The Reds, Echo & The Bunnymen, Nick Cave
Listen or download for free on Bandcamp
Listen on Spotify

M is We/Thorn1
M IS WE/THORN1: YOU CAN’T GET BACK/ASTHMA
Thorn1 & M is We return to Silber with a split single post punk & post rock showing their darkwave & goth roots. Both tracks mixed by Brian McKenzie (Electric Bird Noise).
File Under: Post Punk, Post Rock, Darkwave
Recommended if you like: The Twilight Sad, Aarktica, The Cure, Cabaret Voltaire
Listen or buy on Silber
Listen or buy on Bandcamp
Listen on Spotify

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FCIO – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

rogue one

I was born in 1975.  So like a lot of guys around my age, Star Wars was a dominant piece of childhood.  It wasn’t like today when you had infinite access to re-watch something as a kid, only one TV in the house & I think we got a VCR for Christmas in 1983, so most of my ideas about Star Wars come from playing with the action figures with my buddy Sam & only vague ideas about the actual films.  I remember being totally let down when the prequels came out because I remembered Star Wars as this dark edgy thing; but having seen bits & pieces of the originals on TV over the past ten years, I’ve come to realize my memories of the movies are completely inaccurate – which kinda hurts to admit (though I still think Empire seems good & I liked Revenge of the Sith).  A couple years ago when the new Star Wars movie was coming out, me & my wife (who’s never seen any of the Star Wars movies) tried to watch the original Star Wars & we couldn’t make it through it, I was shocked that it crept along at the pace of 2001 & so I still haven’t seen the 7th movie.  But I heard good things about this one & so I got it with my free Redbox rental to watch while working my data processing job.  I have to say the tone of this is fairly close to my personal memories of Star Wars.  A dark bleak world wear resistance is futile, but you resist all the same.  You pray to gods you don’t understand only hoping they’ll allow you to not die in vain.  I hardly think that if you have never liked Star Wars that this movie will change your mind, but if you’re around 40 & been let down by actual Star Wars versus your memories of it, this is a good one.

Oh, & I guess I’ll mention part of what this whole movie is about is answering the geek question, “Why the hell did they make the Deathstar easily destroyed?”  The answer essentially is the main designer was a rebel who intentionally put the defect in, which is a better answer than I could come up with.

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Almost Back

I hope everyone is doing good, I know I haven’t been too active lately.  I did get the Silber machine back up & running, but then my daughter came down with a cold & insisted on me holding her through the night & missing a sleep period, so that gave me the cold & now Bride of Silber has it as well & it’s taken away the time/energy to do my Silbering.  It’s always something.  But hopefully I’ll be back on track in a few days & be getting some things done.  I did send out about 35 solicits for interviews for the QRD Father’s Day Special the other day (only one back in so far), so that’s at least something & I have a few button orders to fill & then a bunch of comics to assemble after some art tweaks & then some press releases to write & new releases to prep & I’m looking forward to a productive summer.

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dreams

Not a lot going on, but hopefully I’ll get the parts at my parents house to rebuild my laptop on Sunday.

Old Dreams
June 14, 2014
I’m working at the video store again. I’m shocked the place is still open almost twenty years later & that they are still dominated by a VHS back catalog instead of DVDs. My buddy Matt still works there & our task for the week is a physical inventory of the entire store. I’m working in a section that’s nine shelves of animated non-anime non-kids movies that definitely didn’t exist when I worked here. There’s a movie called “Birth of Cool” with a biker on it done in a style somewhere along the lines of Fritz the Cat & the front says, “A loving tribute to rock & roll.” There’s another on the next shelf called “Death Dealer” with a Frank Frazetta cover & on the back, the stills look like charcoal sketches actually by Frazetta.  While I’m working on the inventory, a lady checks out a movie & Matt is telling her about how for $2 more she can rent four more movies & she says, “I don’t have time for that!  I’ve got to get to a hair appointment!”

June 18, 2014
I’m staying with Nathan Amundson (Rivulets) in a bullet ridden cinderblock building.  In the bathroom, part of the wall & ceiling are missing.  I wish it was after the apocalypse, but I’m pretty sure it’s just a really shitty apartment.

June 20, 2014
Instead of starting QRD & Silber at ages 19 & 20, I started them at ages 16 & 17.  It’s the first week of my senior year of high school & in all my classes I’m busy writing letters to bands & music directors & reviewers & I realize I just need to drop out of school to focus on my work.

I have a new guitar pedal that looks like a Digitech PDS double stomp delay pedal; but instead of two stomps, it has two rows of two stomps (four total).  I think it is a double looper with the ability to synchronize or non-synchronize the loops with each other.

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Making a Go

So I finally got the replacement drive in, but for some reason I can’t get the cloning software to work properly.  So I’m going to try to find my image of my current drive that I think is at my folks house on Easter rather than trying to find a new software that will work as I got to get to work on my taxes & I just drug those off that computer & will be doing that on my data processing machine & I’m sure it will take up all my time this week anyhow.

For the curious, I finally did the physical inventory & the production cost of the discs destroyed by the flood last year was $9,924.01.  Which I guess should help my taxes to be a bit lower this year!

I got to go to a baby shower today for a family that takes the music class my daughter is in.  I dread needing to talk to other parents.  The fear of both them judging me & me judging them.

Was listening to a talk about Robert E Howard.  Later in his career while still taking care of his mother he was writing around 20 pages a day.  What a machine.  One day I can get my groove back on & balance it all.  I like to think I’m still as productive as plenty of artists/cartoonists/musicians are in my lull period, so I’ll take that as a win.

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Because No One Actually Reads This

So of course the replacement drive so I can fix my computer & work on Silber stuff didn’t arrive yesterday so I couldn’t get that process started while I’m out all day on a drive job for my medical transporter gig.  & because I didn’t get the replacement drive I ended up totally caught up on my data processing job.  So I decided to bring some of my old notebooks with dream entries with me to type in while I’m sitting in the waiting room.  I’ve been threatening to start typing them in again for a while, so now seems as good a time as any…..

May 23, 2014
I’m working at the airport & because it’s designed poorly, I have to drive the luggage across twenty gates run by a different airline.  I run over a chock someone has left in the middle the tarmac & I think the carts are going to flip, but I hit the gas & the forward momentum keeps them from capsizing.  A supervisor from the both airline starts yelling at me to learn how to drive, but I just keep going trying to do my job.

I’m on a spirit quest & the road I’ve been following leads into the ocean.  I go on a nearby pier & a woman gives me a ship in a bottle with the masts down & tells me I’m not done yet.  She points down at the beach & there’s a man standing on the shore where the road turns into cobblestone before going into the sea.  I go down to the man clenching to my chest the bottle & a notebook documenting the journey.  The man tells me to follow the road.  He can tell I’m scared.  He takes my right hand, holding it with his left, which is somehow re-ssuring instead of creepy.  I walk into the ocean holding his hand.  When the water is up to my waist I notice he’s walking on the surface of the water.  I keep walking & he’s let go of my hand sometime after my head is already below the surface of the water.  The turbulence of the ocean knocks me off my feet & the waves cast me back on the shore.  But it’s not the same beach; I’m not even sure it’s the same planet.  I try to write everything down in the notebook still clenched to my chest, but it’s been destroyed by the water.

May 25, 2014
I’m watching Cheers & it’s an episode I’ve never seen before.  Frazier asks Sam to seduce Lilith to find out if she’s been faithful or not, but it creates an internal moral struggle of Sam’s ideas of friendship, infidelity, & the value of the entire life he’s lived.

May 31, 2014
My body’s in a room so large & dark that I can’t see the walls.  It’s on a gurney with dozens of wires hooked up to it.  I can’t tell if I’m sleeping or in a coma.  A technician comes to one of the machines & starts twisting knobs that alter my dreams, which fundamentally alters my reality, but I can’t get my consciousness back into my body to wake it up.  The dream alterations are pulling off everything that makes me me, one piece at a time.  It hurts & I already can’t remember why anyone would want to do this to me.

June 6, 2014
I’m riding in my car with Adrian Wilson (Maya Gallery) in Asheville talking about ideas to push his shop & Silber.  Both one time ideas to make it through the month & bigger ideas to survive long term.

I’m a gladiator in an alien arena. They give me a rifle & tell me that if I survive the day’s games I’ll be set free. I know they’re lying to me, but I’ll do my best all the same. I wish I had the guts to just let myself die.

June 9, 2014
I’m playing at a relatively small club opening for KISS.  KISS decides they want to play first because they want to get to bed early.  Not only are they not in make-up, they are super loose & generally awful.  The lead guitarist’s parts are out of place, too loud, & he has a horrible tone.  Half the crowd has left before Gene has a chance to spit blood (I thought he might not even bother).  After they’ve finished & I’m setting up my equipment, the sandman comes over & tells me there’s no reason for me to bother playing & I tell him, “I’m already here & ready to go.”

June 12, 2014
I’m loading explosives & mortars & shrapnel in an AKE (a contoured container designed to fit perfectly in an aircraft for shipping – jargon for these containers is “cans”) & from the back of the can through its clear wall dozens of TV crews are filming me do it. When I finish, I tell the people standing around the back that the load is designed to destroy anything within 50 yards of the back of it & I don’t suggest hanging around behind it. A gas station attendant in her green polo shirt with a BP logo embroidered on it asks me, “Where are we supposed to go? Where’s safe? Mexico?” I tell her, “Lady, Mexico isn’t even Mexico anymore. If I were you I’d just drive out into the country, to the middle of nowhere, & just stay alive for as long as you can.”

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Cheers & Fears

Okay, so I was out of town for a week & a half going to a comic convention & visiting family.  Things went well at the con, I got in the spare time the previous week to have 5 new comics debut there. Not a lot of sales, but a lot of hanging out with friends & feeling like what I am doing is worth my time.

So before I left my computer had acted wonky.  I thought it maybe had a virus or something & had switched anti-virus software, but I was mainly worried about getting the comics ready.  When I got back home it wouldn’t boot properly & a little web-search told me the problems I had were the symptoms of a failing solid state drive. So today I went to the local place to get a new drive in the hopes to clone the old drive & get the machine going again & they didn’t have any SSDs that were over 40 gigs in stock, so I had to order one & I’m still in limbo as far as my ability to do anything because all the folks on the internet say the more you use an SSD with errors, the more corrupted files you’ll end up with.  So yeah, it sucks & my wife has been telling me for over a year that I really should get a new machine & learn some modern softwares to do the things I do & she’s probably right, but maybe with the new drive I can avoid that reality for a few more years, but it’s hard to want to change from softwares you’ve been using for 15 years & I hear that the programs I use that were designed for Windows 98 don’t work on modern machines.  If this had happened a few years ago when things were kinda on hiatus I would’ve unquestionably just let it all go & keep writing music & making comics & writing stories that no one would ever see, but as it is I feel the need to keep going as I feel like things are on an upswing for Silber for the first time in a while.

So anyway, that’s why there’s been delays on some of the expectant new releases & such.  Love you all for caring.

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New Post Rock, Shoegaze, & Psych Pop from Hotel Hotel, Moon Gravity & d’Animal

Hello,

I hope all is going well.  The warm afternoons we’ve had lately I’ve tried to out maneuver work & take my daughter to play at the park, but we’ve still managed to get some stuff ready for your eager ears the past few days.  An EP of epic guitar & violin based post rock from the final Hotel Hotel studio recordings from back in 2009, the debut EP of glacial krautgaze from Moon Gravity, & an album of psychedelic/experimental pop gems from d’Animal (Dan West of LoveyDove & Sidewalk Society).  More info on them all below & you can save $2 on the download on our sales page – http://www.silbermedia.com/sale/

Of course if you’re a Spotify user you can always listen to the ten latest releases from Silber here – https://play.spotify.com/user/silberspy/playlist/4nuz7tocaNt9OkFetPsHhG

Over the next few months I plan to be putting the entire Silber back catalog up on Bandcamp.  So if you’ve ever thought about doing the Bandcamp subscription thing, now is probably a great time to do it.  In fact for $7 you get the three newest releases plus four out of the back catalog along with the stuff coming soon.  Here’s the link – https://silbermedia.bandcamp.com/subscribe

As far as the up & coming releases, the M is We/Thorn1 split as well as the Space Sweeper album have been postponed a little by us making videos for them, but should still be out soon as well as releases from Fullness Off Lack, Jon Dawson, Andrew Weathers/Shaun Sandor, Moodring, & Small Life Form.

Thanks for caring about our work.  It’s always good to know some people still care about the work we’re doing.  If you want to be taken off the mailing list, just let me know.

  Hrt
Brian John Mitchell
www.silbermedia.com
https://www.facebook.com/silbermedia
http://twitter.com/silberspy

Hotel Hotel: Cactus hands
HOTEL HOTEL: CACTUS HANDS
Recorded in 2009, Cactus Hands is the first half of the follow-up to The Sad Sea.  The band expanded from what I think of as their classic three piece line-up (guitar, violin, drums) to have piano, bass, & a second guitar.  Soaring shimmering instruments, this is post rock from Texas.
Listen or buy on Silber - http://www.silbermedia.com/hotelhotel/cactushands.shtml
Listen or buy on Bandcamp - https://silbermedia.bandcamp.com/album/cactus-hands
Listen on Spotify – https://play.spotify.com/album/250kddxiwRRBiiQbgeq1dg

Moon Gravity: Antarctica
MOON GRAVITY: ANTARCTICA
Moon Gravity’s debut Antarctica is a droney, shoegazey soundtrack for freezing winters, its sound living in the realm somewhere between Slowdive & Stars of the Lid.
Listen or buy on Silber - http://www.silbermedia.com/moongravity/antarctica.shtml
Listen or buy on Bandcamp - https://silbermedia.bandcamp.com/album/antarctica
Listen on Spotify – https://play.spotify.com/album/1ivc9DPztJaZOomCn9goTJ

d'Animal: d'Animal l'Ogic
d’ANIMAL: d’ANIMAL l’OGIC
This is a poppier spin on the Silber style & we’re excited to have it in our catalog. Combining both timeless 1960s psychedelia & ahead of its time experimental pop, d’Animal l’Ogic fits in at the party whenever the collective time machine crash lands in a post modernist pop paradise.
Listen or buy on Silber - http://www.silbermedia.com/danimal/logic.shtml
Listen or buy on Bandcamp - https://silbermedia.bandcamp.com/album/danimal-logic
Listen on Spotify – https://play.spotify.com/album/3R7laxuT6scuCXfDeepajF

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