Social Isn’t Just Another Word

In our last monster blog post, we explained what we’re doing with our music – and our desire to forge connections with you & Keep It Personal.

Most importantly, we explained why we’re doing it.

A wonderful person read our last post & paid us the ultimate compliment: she called it “radically human.”

That’s Us in a nutshell.

And now we want to take that further.

We want to start a conversation with You.

You see, we don’t believe that “social” is just another way to sell your wares or toot your own horn.

For us, being “social” isn’t supposed to be about “marketing.”

We think “social” is supposed to be about People.

About being Human.

And about sharing conversations, information, joy, sorrow, outrage – and a desire to make things better. In the character-limited posts we all create, we seek to reach out to each other – to open a door, a window, a line of communication – and find a like-mind; someone who will read our posted thoughts, and perhaps respond in kind.

For that reason, we (acl) want to use “social” to take this idea further.

So, on Monday, in our social feeds, you won’t see us doing open posts about our album – instead, we want to start conversations. One-On-One.

This is going to take us a while to accomplish, but starting tomorrow, we’ll send you a series of three or four messages – they will be highly individual in nature (hey, we pay attention to what you post)… and they won’t be spam.

 

Here’s all we seek to accomplish in these messages:

1) To formally say Hello for the first time (this may seem silly, but hey – we were taught to be polite) and to tell you we appreciate you – because we wouldn’t be following you if we didn’t appreciate who you are, what you do and what you contribute to this world.

2) We’ll probably point you to our album as a way of introducing ourselves – because this particular album represents who we are, what we do & what we believe. Our music is free – and will always be so – and if you like it, it’s yours.

And hey, if you like it, feel free to share it with others. If not, that’s cool. We’re not for everybody, and we know it.

3) Most importantly: To start the Conversation. And perhaps you might start or open up new conversations with others as well.

That’s the meaning of “social” to us – To Start Conversations. To bridge gaps & get us talking to each other, openly and freely, without bullshit.

To be truly human.

And we’re not looking for anything – no favors, no sales or shit, nothing like that.

And perhaps this all sounds corny and stupid – but in this jaded world we currently live in, maybe this type of corny-ass activity is what’s required if we really wish to re-humanize our cold-ass inhumane society.

Again, this will take us time – but we’re dead serious.

 

We follow you because we like you. We like what’s in your head. And we seek to champion anybody with the courage to create – because let’s face it: whether you make music, write, create art, whatever – even if you view it as just a job, creating is an intensely personal act of courage; it’s baring the core of your being, putting it on display and then shouting out into The Void in hopes that someone, somewhere might be listening.

We’re listening.

And we want to help.

 

So…

Howdy.

We’re another cultural landslide. We make music.

And we’d like to make your acquaintance.

kirk & wendy

p.s. mzkitty sez hi

 

 

Where You Can Find “last days last days”

last days last days is out – and we are truly humbled by how it has been received.

And we are grateful to you. Gracias.

Now, rather than pepper news feeds with multiple posts featuring link after link, we decided to bundle them one place: right here. We’ll add to this as more links come online. (Streaming was supposed to come online last Wednesday. Well, It WasYeah. Riiiight. As of right now, Rdio is definitely live; no joy from Spotify & Medianet-distributed streams. Points go to Rdio.)

Remember – our music is ALWAYS Free.

Bandcamphttp://anothercultland.bandcamp.com/ or music.anothercultland.com This is the site to find the best audio quality, since we uploaded here at 24bit/88.2Khz – and as such, we’d recommend downloading it at the highest quality you can handle. IT’S FREE.

Soundcloudhttps://soundcloud.com/anothercultland/last-days-last-days-complete This one is special, as it’s the only place on the Net where you can hear the album as if it were a CD – completely gapless, as we designed the album to be. And it’s downloadable, too.

Alonetonehttp://alonetone.com/anotherculturallandslide/playlists/last-days-last-days-final-release-version alonetone has been our home away from home since it started; it’s also a great place for musicians to post their music with no hassles and be a part of a community. For free music with no boundaries, it’s the place to be.

YouTube: Yes, YouTube. Heck, we even have our own channel there. (Oooo! Fancy!) With the assistance of MzKitty’s personal photographer AJ Galli (yes, she has a personal photographer – sheesh), we’ve posted simple videos of all 16 of last days last days‘ songs – so if you’d like to post one song in particular within your social feeds, you’ll find a video for it there.

And this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uYsrwYuqTyc&list=PLFjdIyKHXlrp6HhLqNG-aDdDNYegQ2eJT should take you to a complete ordered playlist of the entire album. We have found, however, that Playlists don’t seem to translate to mobile platforms. Go Fuckin’ Figure.

Also, it you’d like to make a video of one of our songs, knock yourself out! All our music is CC-BY-3.0, so if you make something and we like it, we’ll tell everyone where to find it.

last.fmhttp://www.last.fm/music/another+cultural+landslide/last+days+last+days We think we’ve beaten all the bells & whistles, and you should be able to listen to the entire tracks here instead of the 30 second previews. We think. At least we did enable it, for what it’s worth. We’ll see. You should at least be able to download from here or get it on their “radio” app.

iTunes: Yes, we’re on iTunes – we’ve been there since 2008 – but you won’t find our music for sale, since we don’t sell our music. Instead, search for us under Podcasts – that way we can get it to you for free. (We love subverting commerce.:) Hell, you can even subscribe & get our stuff whenever we make it.

(Note: looking at their latest listing, iTunes has does something weird with the Podcast section, so things are all bolloxed up as far as track order. When we get a chance, we’ll figure out a way to fix this.)

Streaming:

Streaming is showing up late – but we are definitely live on Rdio (sounds amazingly clear & defined), we are clearly listed on Gracenote & Songza – but Spotify and MediaNet distrbution still have yet to show up. Figures.

Where you won’t find last days last days:

Google PlayAmazon, eMusic. Our music is Free. Not a product. So, not there.

Same goes for Pandora. (No way. More on that in another post.)

iHeartRadio. Clear Channel Radio and acl Do Not Mix. At least not in this lifetime, if we can help it.

We’re still debating about doing Sirius.

Finally, it is quite possible that due to the way digital aggregation works, you will see the album appear on certain sites with Money attached to it; this is an unfortunate artifact of the way aggregation works. DO NOT PAY MONEY FOR OUR MUSIC. We went with aggregation strictly to enable streaming. And we won’t be looking for royalties, either.

So, there you have it. It’s our fondest hope that something in our music will make you smile.

And thank you for listening!

More later…

k&w 😉

P.S. mzkitty sez hi

 

It’s Free.

Ahem.

last days last days – the new another cultural landslide album – has just been released.

There were times over the last four years we didn’t think we’d ever type that last sentence – but… there it is: music.anothercultland.com 😉 (We’ll post additional links shortly.)

And now that it’s out in the wild, we’re doing some pretty unusual things with how we’re releasing it.

Think of this as Our Big Experiment.

This is a long read – but we think it’s a good one.

The Basic Dilemma

Around 18 months ago, this album started telling us it wanted to be promoted (yes, our albums talk to us – it kinda creeps us out, but we’ve learned to accept it) – and we needed to do whatever was required to get the word out.

And, most likely, promoting this album was going to require us to create a CD.

Problem is: we don’t make CD’s.

For all of the 11 years we’ve been making music together, we’ve only released our music in an electronic/downloadable form – we embraced this decision from the very start, as it granted us the freedom to do whatever the hell we wanted to do with minimal cost; and we could then throw our very limited resources into doing one thing, and one thing only: Making Music.

Even better, it allowed us to give away our music for free. Music literally saved our lives – that statement isn’t an exaggeration, and living through that experience had an earth-shaking effect on us (we’ll write about it one day) – so we’ve tried to return that gift by giving our music away, creating a one-on-one relationship with our listener and then encouraging them to embrace their dreams in whatever way possible.

(Yeah, we’re weird. But that’s just who we are.)

So, even though we’ve received a lot of requests to make CD’s, since we didn’t sell our music, and since we believe that having a one-to-one relationship with our listener is awesomely important & manufacturing a mass-produced CD kind-of negates that relationship, making CD’s was something that we were just not going to do.

The Philosophical Hard Decision

The fact that we needed to step away from how we’d always done things to actually create a CD also posed a major philosophical dilemma to us, since we sincerely believe that over-commodification has been the primary eroding factor affecting music today – not file-sharing.

There’s an air of desperation within the music world today: you see it in every promotional Tweet or Facebook mention; you hear it in all the licensing & copyright battles; you read about it with the labels trying to argue rights-termination clauses for music they marketed in the past by trying to tell the courts that the music was actually produced as Work-For-Hire (surprise!). It screams from every battle, lawsuit & online discussion over streaming royalties, or the lack of them thereof; it hides in plain sight, the ever-so-subtle context peeking out from behind every discussion about “music’s value.”

In reality, all those things only revolve around one thing: Give Me Your Money & I’ll Give You Some Music (Or At Least A Limited License To Listen To It).

And that’s seriously fucked-up.

This is a dehumanizing attitude that basically states that people don’t matter – except in large anonymous groups – and all that really matters is What’s In Your Wallet.

Worse yet, this diminishes the music being created: the need to view music as strictly a commerce-generating activity is a corrupting influence, insideously worming its way into the subtext of what’s being created; risks don’t get taken for fear of alienating an existing fan-base, and growth doesn’t occur since that might alienate the core demographic.

And let’s be honest: if you are constantly worried about generating capital, of producing a singular “product” – how can it not affect what you are creating?

Moreover, as a musician, how can all of this background noise not make your listener feel like they don’t matter to you?

And if you don’t care about your listener, why the fuck should they give a shit about you?

It’s as if music has now become an after-thought behind a desperate need to monetize & survive. Image, identity, maintaining fan-base & generating a living wage are much more important that the actual music being created. It’s a devil’s compromise of ever-diminishing returns, one that eventually robs us all blind and sucks the life out of Music.

In essence, it’s putting all those things before what you are creating – thus putting walls up between you and your music.

And that just seems ass-backwards to us.

People are not Wallets. They are individuals – and deserving of the respect as such.

People Matter, Dammit.

And Music is not a product, or content. It’s Music.

Our entire musical mission has been centered around those two simple beliefs.

And as we have stated before, our primary rule in making music is The Music Must Come First. And we have held fast to that principle.

 

So we were in a quandary – how could we reconcile the need to create & the costs involved in creating CD’s to promote this album  – and at the same time stay true to ourselves, while making some of these CD’s available to our listener – all without violating our stated desire to NEVER sell our music?

That was a toughie.

But… after a great deal of thinking on how to resolve these oppositional forces, we think we’ve found a way.

Let’s Get Physical

We designed the CD’s with a built-in capacity to be personalized, so that each & every one of them are unique – while still providing media outlets with a mass-produced CD.

sig-adapted

And we decided that if we were going to do this thing, we were going to do it right – it would be a spiffy CD, and would look like something acl would do, with as little plastic/carbon footprint as possible.

And then the wonderful Rachel Sclare volunteered (!) to work on the cover and actually made it look good. (We are not artists, and you do NOT want to see our original design. No Way In Hell.)

And we ended up with this:

InnerSpreadBcamp

DiscBcampFrontspreadBcampSig

We did deep research into CD manufacturing, got past all the overpriced main players (boy, we have some interesting stories about that side of the business), found a decent small manufacturer in Texas who offered DigiHub technology, locked in a sweet deal at around half the price, and then set aside our paltry income tax refund to create a limited run of 250 CD’s.

Out of that run, we set aside 100 CD’s for our listener. Each CD will be individually signed, numbered – and if asked for, personalized – with the foreknowledge that we will never create a mass-run CD again. (This will be the only time. Period.)

Originally we wanted to give these CD’s away online at no cost whatsoever; but upon discovering that there was no internet platform methodology available at this time to do that  (not yet, but there will be soon) – there was always some minimal charge involved somewhere – we were forced to accept the platform cost issue, but were able to repurpose the platform’s inner workings to our needs.

Also, sending physical stuff out takes money for packaging & mail – and since we’re tapped out (it’s always a bad thing when the local pawn shop people know you by name when they see you at the grocery store), we had to find a way around this as well.

So we struck a happy medium.

Basically, it comes down to this:

If you can pick up the cost of us shipping it to you, we’ll give you the CD for Free.

This also enabled us to finally respond to the many requests we’ve received to make it possible for others to support what we’re doing in some other way than just spreading our music around – i.e. financially (It’s still hard to believe, but we actually do get asked this):

For anyone donating above the minimal shipping/platform costs, we would also send along an “artifact” from the production of last days last days – these could be actual handwritten lyrics, worksheets, all sorts of stuff; and each artifact would be accompanied by a handwritten note explaining what the hell this “artifact” was and how it was significant to last days last days, giving you some insight into our weird-ass working methodology; and we will also be sending you a nice handwritten note, thanking you for your support. (Our mothers trained us to be polite while causing trouble.) And hey, if you want something associated with a particular song, just ask us – and we will find something special for you.

Oh – here’s an example of an Artifact:

Artifact

We want you to know that you are special to us – that you matter. And that we will NEVER take you for granted.

Also, all donations received above the minimum shipping costs will be use to promote the album – i.e., mailing the CD to media outlets – so you can help us spread acl to an unsuspecting audience. (Cue evil laugh.)

BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE!

We not only scored an excellent deal in getting the CD’s done, but by the time we got done with discounts and what not, we were actually able to create our first (& only) acl poster basically for FREE.

Now, as stated in earlier posts, we’re not artists. We have weird ideas, but executing them?

Ha. We suck. (See Artifact Example.)

Well, Wonderful Rachel stepped up to bat, took our stupid idea and made it into something even more acl than we could ever have made:

postersigned

actual-photo-posteradapted

(these are way cool)

And what we did with the CD applies to the Poster:

If you can pick up the cost of us shipping it to you, we’ll give you the Poster for Free, too.

And if you donate above the minimum shipping/platform cost, you get an “artifact,” a handwritten note explaining the “artifact,” and a nice handwritten thank you note as well.

And of course, all donations received above the minimum shipping costs on the poster will be use to promote the album – i.e., mailing the CD to media outlets – so here’s yet another way you can help us spread acl to an innocent & unsuspecting audience. (Cue another evil laugh.)

So if you’ve been wanting to support what we’re trying to do (other than sharing our music with anyone & everyone & telling people about us), there’s now a way to do that – and hell, you get something nifty in return.

Plus you get to spread acl to an unsuspecting world. (Cue… oh, well, you know…)

Finally, we listened to you and created an option to allow you to donate to what we’re doing without getting something in return – yes, finally a “tip jar” – but we’ll still want to send you a thank you note. (Hey, that’s just the way we are. Polite troublemakers.)

And hey, just because it’s how we roll, we also decided we wanted to itemize each & every cost we encountered, and reveal it to you:

CD: at $3, $ .20 to Paypal, $ .30 to Bandcamp, $ .51 for mailer, aproximately $2.07 to mail – we eat $ .10 of the cost (or more)

Poster: at $3.50, $ .20 to Paypal, $ .35 to Bandcamp, $ .90 for the mailer, approximately $2.07 to mail – we may break even (or not)

Of course, on international, we’re going to take a bath.

 

So there you have it: open, straightforward, ethical. No bullshit.

That said, we estimate our chances of failure at around 92 to 96 per cent.

In other words, odds are we’re most likely going to get creamed.

But we’re going to do it anyway.

You can see we’re not in this for the rock-star treatment… so, then – why the hell are we doing this?

 

The reason.

Well, of course, the short answer would be: We’re Insane.

 

But besides that, what it all comes down to is this:

 

We believe in People.

And we believe music is a gift to be shared.

And we believe in people helping each other. We’ve benefitted from it, and we want to pass it on. Like a virus.

A good virus.

And we believe in encouraging people to create not for commerce, but for the simple joy of creating and sharing that creation with others.

And so we’re putting our money – what little we have – where our mouth is.

 

We also realize in doing this we’ve just made ourselves Snark-Bait. We’ve painted a big target on our foreheads and hung a KICK ME sign on our backs.

And we’re okay with that.

Because sometimes Principle Matters  – and sometimes it’s the only thing that matters; and we would rather fail miserably in doing something we believe to be right than to succeed in doing something we feel to be wrong.

This is our experiment:

We’re going to believe in people.

 

This album isn’t about us.

It isn’t about being cool or hip, or fitting in.

It’s about trying to change the way we as a society think about things.

It’s about trying to change the way things are done.

It’s about making a better future.

Being idealistic isn’t stupid.

It means We Give A Shit – about You, about people, about the world we live in.

About Music.

And what’s the hell is wrong with that?

k&w 😉

 

p.s. mzkitty, as usual, sez hi

 

 

 

The Official Announcement You Never Thought We’d Announce.

 

last days last days – another cultural landslide‘s first full-bore album since 2009 – will be released on September 16, 2013.

Yes.

We have a set release date.

You can stop laughing now.

It’s really coming out on September 16th.

 

More importantly, if you know us, acl announcing a release date is a radical departure from how we’ve done things; in the past, when we’d finish an album, EP or song, we’d look at each other, say “Are we done?” – and if we both nodded our heads “yes,” we’d post it in one of our secret cubbyholes for you to find. No announcements or hoopla – just “Psst – here’s something new.

And we always gave it away for free. (And, by the way, our music will always be free.)

So, announcing an actual release date? That’s pretty weird.

 

Want something weirder?

For the first time ever, we’re actively going to promote the hell out of this album.

(Yeah, that one kind of shocks us, too. We as a rule don’t promote our stuff.)

 

So why are we stepping so far outside our comfort zone with last days last days?

Because another cultural landslide has always been One Big Goofy Experiment.

 

Let’s be honest – we’re just two goobers with a weird way of looking at things, who just happen to work in a band that’s run by a cat. (That’s our story and we’re sticking to it. Besides, we have the scars to prove it.) Making that kind of an insane public statement immediately allowed us to be discounted by everybody – which also immediately freed us to do whatever the hell we wanted.

Sometimes being ignored is a blessing: our weird anonymous outsider band status gave us a safe refuge to be with each other, do our weird-ass thing and shut out the rest of the insanity around us without any expectations. We were just happy to make music with each other, whether it was for ourselves or for other people’s use. And hey, we’ve done pretty okay by that on all counts…

And hell, we’ve always gone way out of our way to push the envelope & do things differently – going as far as creating a rigid set of rules, chock-full of self-destruct triggers so that there would be no possible way for us to compromise what we stated we wanted to do – putting the music we create First – in an experiment to see just what the hell would happen…

… and last days last days was our big experiment to see what would happen if we allowed everything we’d put in place to go to its logical conclusion.

We didn’t expect what happened.

Because we didn’t make this album.

This album made Us.

 

We have never taken ourselves seriously – but by ceding full control of this album over to the music, making last days last days focused us in a way we’d never known before. We had no idea where the music came from, or how the lyrics came to be. We didn’t think. At all. We just… Did it.

It honed us, relentlessly directing our every move. It carved us – sometimes rather painfully. It possessed us. It drove us like an Iditarod dog team. Sometimes we would look at one another & wonder where the living hell an idea came from. (We never found a satisfactory answer for that question.)  If we tried to force something, the whole process would grind to a standstill. It wanted what It wanted and It was going to get what It wanted. Or Else. Things only went smoothly when we got out of the way.

The whole damned experience was spooky weird.

 

In the end, this album also finished itself, demanding that we relearn every process we knew to deliver exactly what it wanted – or it would never finish itself.

And one day last month, It finally finished itself.

The last thing It wanted: push it out to the world.

And after living through four years of something we still can’t explain, we know better than to get in Its way.

 

So, two weeks from now, last days last days gets released everywhere. For Free.

 

We have no expectations.

We only hope you enjoy it…

… because, amazingly, after listening to it – we believe in what this album has to say.

 

Next week, we’ll explain how we’re doing it.

There will be Surprises.

We Promise. 😉

 

kirk & wendy, aka acl, aka anothercultland, aka another cultural landslide

p.s. mzkitty sez hi