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Musician writes first note to last

Published: Friday, Nov. 13 2009 12:00 a.m. MST

Chris Crisci, guitarist/vocalist for the Appleseed Cast, formed his other band, the Old Canes, out of "selfish" reasons.

"I just kind of wanted something where I wrote the first to last note," Crisci said during a phone interview from his home in Lawrence, Kan. "I just wanted to write the entire composition.

"Another part of it is I just love playing music that is kind of folk music, and I like the melding of the intensity of drums and the basic folk chords, melodies and instrumentations."

Crisci released the first Old Canes CD, "Early Morning Hymns," in 2005. A few weeks ago, he released the follow-up, "Feral Harmonies."

He listened to "Early Morning Hymns" probably two times throughout the recording of "Feral Harmonies" to gauge where he was going musically, he said.

"I made the drums a lot louder on the new one, and the overall feel is more chaotic in places," he said.

"I wanted to do that, but I wanted to see how far I have gone. I didn't want to go too far, because I really liked the first album and a lot of my friends liked the first album, and I felt like if I went too far, then they (fans) would've held a grudge against me and tell me that I lost what I was doing."

Crisci recorded "Feral Harmonies" in his home studio.

"It keeps costs low," he said with a laugh. "You don't get the most polished album, but I didn't want a very polished album."

Crisci said he wrote the vocal and guitar parts simultaneously, and then he wrote the drum part.

His strong opinions about the album's drum sound conflicted with how he wanted the overall album to sound.

"So I had to call a friend and have him listen to the songs, and he told me the drums were what the album needed."

Other than that, things went pretty smoothly, but, Crisci said, he had a hard time figuring out when to add more instruments in the mix.

"Once I lay down the drums, I lay down the guitar and other instruments," he said. "I love putting those things on, and if I don't edit myself, it becomes a big blob."

Crisci said he also hates "cheesy lyrics."

"I will write songs several times over because I can't stand the lyrics," he said. "The biggest challenge is finding the right words."

If you go ...

What: Old Canes, Victory Heist, Discourse

Where: Kilby Court, 741 S. Kilby Court

When: Nov. 15, 7 p.m.

How much: $6

Web: www.24tix.com or www.kilbycourt.com

e-mail: scott@desnews.com

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