Funny story! In what was a brief bit of site downtime I thought the site was as dead as us! Then when I told Phil that the final recorded Philoceraptor song was done, he asked if I had posted it to the Tumblr soooo…. HELLO!!!
"Do Whatchu Want" was conceived of a band of three unknowing terminal patients and the arresting rhythm of a maraca only 3 takes before this recording was made as a reference to revisit. Then Philoceraptor was dead.
The thesis [of The Monitor] is that we all have to be accountable for our happiness. Our hero—well, it’s me, but I’ll refer to him in the third person—he’s not necessarily that happy with himself but he finds solace in the self/other relationship, and is able to define himself positively only in relation to others who he defines negatively. The character feels a lot of angst, and ennui, and is able to pass the buck onto the enemy that we hear so much about throughout [the album]. But ultimately, in the end, he finds that’s what the other guys were doing. He finds that in the end, we’re all the same, we’re all slugging it out because it’s something to do, it’s easier than taking responsibility. In the end, nobody wins and nobody ends up making any progress, just like how the Monitor ultimately couldn’t destroy the CSS Virginia. The Virginia ended up being blown up by its own crew, and the Monitor was brought down by engine failure. Ultimately we can only be responsible for our own happiness, our own self-actualization or, if we chose, our own destruction. In the beginning of the record, there’s that quote by Abraham Lincoln that says, “As a nation of free men, we will either live forever or die by suicide.” Our point is that ultimately, we have to be responsible for defining ourselves positively, and not by absence, which is a symptom of our own post-modern nightmare. But ultimately, like any human, I’m just bouncing around on a big old spaceship I can’t possibly understand.
Like hair and fingernails on a corpse, “The Dregs” continues to grow with rarities!
Fun fact! The vast majority of Philoceraptor songs were written on a single acoustic guitar. This created many exciting challenges, like “What the hell are you going to play Justin/Steve?” and having a solid idea of what the vocal melody was but being absolutely unable to hear it while rehearsing in our little red jam space. (Added insult to injury, the new jam space we got to use once has FANTASTIC vocal monitors). Furthermore, while the idea would pop up come recording time, acoustic guitars were outlawed from Philoceraptor recordings. So many layers of self loathing!
Anyway, somehow Evolution 107.9 became a huge advocate of Philoceraptor from Philosoraptor onwards, so when asked by Aaron Rota to come in and play an acoustic set on Making Contact we agreed. Justin and Steve got together for a quick jam and swiftly realized that having never actually heard each other sing in harmony due to deafness, poor acoustics, and alcohol, that they had a lot of work to do to pull this off. Several stressful practices later we pulled off “Clever Girl” live on air (and Surfer too somewhere…) and there has not been an acoustic Philoceraptor performance since.
Let’s take care of some of the “Thank you” part of the program!
Eeek! Were one of the first batch of complete strangers to befriend this batch of complete strangers. Together, with the help of enlightened beautiful intelligent folk like Beatroute BC’s Glenn and Claire we played some shows that were way radder than our weight class. Here’s a moment where we exploited that opportunity, and joined forces with Eeek! to form a one song supergroup covering The Stooges “I Wanna Be Your Dog”. You can also catch Eeek! also being awesome as members of NEEDS and BESTiE.