‘Hymns of Mare Nostrum’ turns 10…

I’m old. (Get off my lawn.)

The Hail the Titans debut album “Hymns of Mare Nostrum” came out 10 years ago today.

Coincidentally… that album was engineered by Chris Lantrip at Headless Dinosaur Recording, and my current band – Towering Above – is working on our new album, again recording with Chris at HDR.

Be sure to follow us on the ol’ FB for updates.

OK, that’s all for now… cause I’m old.

Much love.

So… what’s next?

Recently a friend asked me something that I had already been thinking a lot about. It was two questions, actually:

  1. What have you been working on?
  2. What’s next?
Photo by Jill Friedman.

The first question is pretty easy. I, as a solo artist, and Towering Above finally had a first public performance since everything shut down early last year. I’ve been promoting the release of Remembering Anarcha (see it on VOD, review at Rotten Tomatoes), I’m near the final edit for a music video for Electric Blue Yonder’s upcoming album, I’ve edited and done some poster art for a new short documentary (from Terrible Master Films, Carolyn Jean’s Son Visions, 803 Films and Early Riser Films), and I’ve been helping edit a new project from Foolish Henry Films.

Then the hard question… what’s next?

That’s always the hard one. I think most artists feel an almost constant need to create, so when you’re between projects, it’s easy to feel kind of lost.

Somewhat related, there’s also the “post-show blues” that happens at the end of a project. I know that hit me earlier this year after the close of Sweat. When you spend almost every day for over two months becoming a character, there’s a bit of grief when the play closes. Or at the end of a film project. People become like family in a short amount of time, and then everyone is off to something else.

Towering Above is about to return to Headless Dinosaur Recording to begin work on a new album, so that’s something to look forward to as a “next,” but I want to do more acting, make more movies and music videos, write more songs, write more screenplays… and I don’t know exactly where to begin on any of it at the moment.

Sometimes the initial idea is the hard part for me. Hopefully something will spark soon.

If you’re wondering about a point I’m getting to here… um… I don’t really have one. This has been on my mind recently, and I haven’t blogged in close to a month, so it was time to express my thoughts. Hopefully it was an enjoyable read anyway.

Thanks for reading, and for your support and encouragement. Hope to see you at a show soon. Much love.

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Towering Above acoustic EP coming soon

Towering Above, the band formerly known as Barrens, has a new acoustic EP coming out soon called “Repeating the Moment.”

Above (towering, one might say [rimshot] [groan] [eye roll] [I’m so sorry; please keep reading anyway]) is the cover art for it.

The image comes from a photo I took back in late December in northwest Alabama. It’s an old drive-in movie theater that I have passed many times. Normally, I’m in a hurry when going through that area, but last year, I had more time to make a few stops and take some pics on the way to my destination.

I thought the image was fitting to the name of the EP. As a filmmaker, I follow some film festivals on social media, and during the COVID-19 pandemic we’ve all been dealing with this year, some festivals have gone online, and others have also started doing drive-in showings. It’s history. Nostalgia. Repeating the moment.

Also, most of the songs on the new EP are acoustic renditions of songs that appear on our debut release “<content>obsolete” (released under the name Barrens.) So again, repeating the moment.

For “Repeating the Moment,” we tracked our parts individually, recording at our respective houses during the quarantine period in March and April. We would send each other tracks to build more parts on, and then I mixed it. Once mixed, we sent it over to Chris Lantrip at Headless Dinosaur Recording in Montgomery, AL for mastering. (He tracked and mixed “<content>obsolete” as well as the first Hail the Titans album “Hymns of Mare Nostrum” and some stuff for Breaking Aim and the Rhythm, which Towering Above guitarist J. Slickwood was in.)

Anyway, a release date and track listing will be released soon, so make sure you’re following the band on Facebook and Instagram.

Thanks for reading, listening, watching, and supporting. Much love.

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Aug. 26 – Hymns of Mare Nostrum

Aug. 26 is the official release date for Hail the Titans‘ “Hymns of Mare Nostrum.”

We are very excited. The CD release show is that night at Head on the Door, and our good friends Hellakopta of Love are opening. Show details here.

Here is the official poster for the show:


Photo credit: Pint Bottle Photography. (Photographer: Tyler Caldwell.)

The album was recorded by Chris Lantrip with Headless Dinosaur Recording in Montgomery and mastered by Jamie Uertz at Sarcophagus Studios in Opelika.

We had two amazing artists work on the album art. The outside artwork was done by Winfred Hawkins (who also plays bass in Hellakopta of Love.) The inside art was drawn by Kevin Sanders.

This album has been a long and detailed process. We began recording some time in January and spent many hours in the studio (see some recording highlights on our YouTube page). Then came the mixing and mastering stages. Then, with the help of the many people who gave us donations in cash and via the IndieGoGo website, we were finally able to get CDs (digipaks, even) made.

So we hope to see you on Aug. 26 for the release party. Because the venue got to capacity early last time, our plan is to have a merch table just outside the door. That also means that anyone under 21 who is interested in purchasing the CD that night can do so. (You can also hear the music pretty well from outside, as we are loud.)

Thank you for your continued love and support. It is greatly appreciated.