Two eight hour sessions of work with Joe in three days is a lot of intensive work, but we are very happy with the way that things are going, deep into the third of the (probably) four tracks we need to finish the album. I have said that this new stint of work feels different from the last, and it is quite noticeable that our way of working has changed slightly and that there is a much greater feeling of calm and a unified approach to things.
Last time around there was the slight but present doubt about how things would actually sound once we got them into a studio, because although Sibelius does a decent job of letting us know how things are, it is difficult not to conjure up the image of elven sprites wandering across a fantasy landscape whenever we play back our latest sketches. Having completed the first sessions we now have a much stronger idea of what will and will not work, and that has bred confidence in our writing.
I was also up slightly early on Thursday morning and used the opportunity to get some preliminary sketching done on a new piece for a commission. This is a slightly ambitious project whose success will rely on the planning I do before I get to the placing of notes on paper, but the elements I managed to get down yesterday are certainly positive.
Tonight RetroChic play once more, our second appearance in Bristol in a week, and next week I am back onto the usual treadmill of things, rehearsals, writing sessions, and a weekend of church work. This weekend, though, is church free, part of a plan to give myself just a little more breathing space over the coming year.
It is also time to begin writing up my lecture notes for the term, having spent several weeks doing preliminary listening, which is the fun bit. There is no particular pressure to get these finished quite yet, but I would still like to remain as ahead of the game as possible to make space for any writing that might crop up, especially as Christmas begins to come into view over the distant horizon.