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Jason Bock

Heavy Metal
Wisconsin, USA

Bock was also a member of Sardonyx.

Discography

1991 Short Notice
1992 Transference

Short Notice

1991 Independent

Jason Bock - All guitars, bass guitar, keyboards, vocals, and drum programming

  1. No Retreat, No Surrender
  2. Solace
  3. Alkedama
  4. Mechanical Horizon
  5. Northern Lights, Summer Sky
  6. Home

“This was the first demo tape I ever made by myself. I wrote the music over the summer of 1991, and I finally got around to renting a 4-track recorder along with a crappy drum machine for one week before I went back to college. That was a scamble as I had to get everything down and mixed in 7 days and I had never worked with a drum machine or a recorder on my own. Hence the title of the tape, “Short Notice.” But I really liked what I came up with. The drums…they sound awful. The bass from my church I attended at the time really needed some processing - you can hear lots of buzzing from it. And I was in track-bouncing hell as I wanted to fit dual guitar rhythm parts along with harmoized leads. But I didn't care. It was a week of pure joy.

All of the songs are instrumentals, although there's one song that I “sing” on - I'll explain what I mean by that in the song notes. I threw my Laney stack in the closet with the only mic I had (which I still have!) and at the time I was very happy with the guitar sounds I got from my Charvel. Now they sound too fried at times, but I wanted them very prevalent in the mix (although the solo sections sound OK). The bass was direct into the recorder with no processing and it shows - it's not a great bass sound at all. The keyboards were done with my Roland Juno 60 (which I still have, and no, it ain't for sale - I'm never giving that classic up!). I had very limited choices with what I could do with the drum machine so that's why the patterns are very repetitive.

The cover art was done on a CAD machine (can't remember the name of it) at Thomas Industries. That was the first summer I worked in their engineering department and I think they didn't know what to do with me so they ended up sticking me in front of a CAD machine and said, “Have fun.” So I did. I have no idea what that comet-like thing is on the front or the circular pattern in the liner notes. They have no significance other than I was playing around with line patterns.”


Transference

1992 Independent

Jason Bock - Guitars, bass guitar, keyboards, drum programming, background shouts
Marlo Bronikowski - Vocals on “The Rose in the Field”
Time Heinen - Background shouts
Dan Johnston - Vocals, background shouts

  1. Walking on Nails
  2. Eternity
  3. Fallen World
  4. Lost in the Shadows
  5. The Weekend's Here!
  6. Transference
  7. Mind Warfare
  8. The Rose in the Field

“I made this the summer of 1992. I like Short Notice, but I wanted to do something more “professional”. So I saved up my money and went into a small studio owned by a guy named Greg Rakun. He was a real nice guy - very easy to work with and really didn't tell me what to do with my song arrangements (although he did give some good advice on two small keyboard parts). The problem was that he just did not get a great distored guitar sound. Listening to the songs now, the guitar is not that bad, but at the time I was kind of disappointed with it.

I also wanted vocals on this tape. So I asked a guy by the name of Dan Johnston (guitarist and singer from a band in Milwaukee in the late 80s called Scarlet Rayne) whose vocal styling I thought would fit really well, and he did a great job getting all the parts done in one day. In retrospect, I wished I would have had more time with him as he had a couple of slight goofs with the lyrics and I wanted to develop more harmony ideas, but all in all he really added life to the songs. My girlfriend at the time sang on one song - she also did the cover art. And my long-time musical friend Tim stopped by and added some spoken words and background shouts. I like the lyrics - even though I was still in my religious Christianity phase of my life, they're not overbearing and I think they work well.

Greg let me use his drum machine, which was considerably better than the one I had for Short Notice. Plus, he let me borrow it while I was still in my Spring semester of my junior year in college, so when I had time I could develop the parts. I didn't do a great job tweaking the drum fills - they get repetitive here and there, but they sound a lot better. Guitar setup was my Laney stack with the Charvel and the buzzing bass. Acoustic were recorded with a mike so they sound pretty good. Greg also had an arsenal of keyboards (including a Kurzweil!) so they came out really nice. The one thing I wish I would've spent more time on were the guitar solos. I kind of improved them in the studio and it shows. They're just not all that exciting.”