Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Neon Phosphor on holiday

Nothing to say at the moment.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Jam session

Arta and Steven tried to write a song and came up with something with D and Adim.

Mark on "Don't Lose It"

Mark: "Give me a good song and I'll have to do something about it."

Mark bumped the song to the key of A, changed some melodies and shortened the post-chorus.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

"Last Day"

Steven recorded a demo of "Last Day," the new song written mostly by Arta.

Friday, January 27, 2006

"Do you have any new songs in the pipeline?"

----And get oil or natural gas all over them? I don't think CD-Rs do too well under those extreme conditions. They can't even handle a sticky label. That's why none of the Sculpted Static Sound Check CDs work anymore, thank goodness.

"No, I mean, are you writing new songs?"----Neon Phosphor only writes for publicity, although I was once a song. Then, they turned me into "Anne Bancroft."

"You bastard, is the band writing new songs?"----[sniff] You didn't have to remind me that I was the bastard child of "Lost Child" and "Velvet Ropes," both of whom abandoned me right before I was born out of convenience as a filler track for Sound Check. Oh, I was so convenient. Look what happened to me, man. Now I just earn my living blogging as a semi-fictional character.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

"Who is Lucy, and what did she do to you?"

Lucy the Elephant is a six-story elephant-shaped architectural folly constructed of wood and tin sheeting in 1882 by James V. Lafferty in Margate City, New Jersey, two miles (3.2 km) south of Atlantic City, in an effort to sell real estate and attract tourism.

The idea of an animal-shaped building was innovative, and in 1882 the U.S. Patent Office granted Lafferty a patent giving him the exclusive right to make, use or sell animal-shaped buildings for seventeen years. Lucy is the oldest example of zoomorphic architecture, and the largest elephant in the world.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

"When/where are you playing again?"

----In about ten seconds on your desktop speakers or headphones, if you go to our music page and click on our mp3s.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Sculpted Static flashback of the day

Diehard fans of the Tonics know that their favorite band was once known as Sculpted Static. Who could have forgotten Sculpted Static's marvelously forgettable output, which ranged from pop goth songs to Radiohead rip-offs? Today, we highlight a Sculpted Static song so obscure that it has never been heard outside the band.

Easily the most bizarre Sculpted Static track ever, "The Jam" was an avant-garde conceptual piece incorporating musique concrete elements and a multi-movement structure reminiscent of Pink Floyd's "A Saucerful of Secrets" and the Beatles' "Revolution 9." Recorded in the same session that produced "Curb Crawling" and "Apart," this 10 min 18 sec track was a collaboration between the two lead singers of the band. Ironically, there is no singing on this track. However, there is a spoken word section featuring Steven reading from a used car ad.

Despite the title, "The Jam" had a carefully arranged sequence of musical concepts based on a storyline hammered out over dinner at the dining commons. Lucky for us, the narrative of "The Jam" has survived to this day. It is reproduced below.
Part I (The beginning): Our hero witnesses a horrific car accident on his way to work at an advertising firm. He develops an intense hatred of cars.

Part II (Jaguar): At work, his boss assigns him to create an advertisement for the same model car as the one that he had seen crashing earlier. He does a very poor job on the ad, and he is fired. [Steven will read a different car ad (from the newspaper) at each concert.]

Part III (Quiet part): He becomes disillusioned with capitalism and heads for the valley in a VW Bus in search of a hippie commune.

Part IV (Riff): On his way to the valley, his disillusionment turns into anger. He turns around and heads back to the city to inspire a worker's revolt.

Part V (Organ solo): He finds many supporters, who listen intently to his rambling discourse on the evils of capitalism and the greatness of communism.

Part VI (Ending): During a march, he turns around to address his followers. Then, he backs into an intersection, which, for some reason, had not been closed off. A car, driven by a young advertising writer in a hurry to get to his first day of work, smashes into our luckless hero and kills him.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Site update

High-quality .mp3s of "Sunday Night," "Mean Song," "Distance," and "Get Things Done" are now available for download on our music page. This web version of "Get Things Done" is a special mix without the introduction.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Photos from the Lava Lounge gig

Gear shot.

A picture of Alek, making up for the fact that he was obscured in all the photos from our previous gig.

Mark, before his bass guitar failed him on the last song. Where's his leather jacket?

Steven (after the first Lava Lounge gig): "I'm going to cut my hair since we're not playing anytime soon." Little did he know...

No problems with the E string this time. Arta looks more relaxed.

What a tiny stage! How did we fit on there?

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Lava Lounge gig

The band played well despite some technical problems. Unfortunately, the venue was almost cleared out by the time we performed "Save the Day," but that's to be expected from a midnight gig that started 30 minutes late. Pictures to follow.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Twenty CDs ready to rock

Our latest batch of Get Things Done raises the number of CDs to 37. Characteristics of the third pressing:
  • A more close-up inner spread picture
  • The track listing on the CD case is shifted over a bit.
  • CD-Rs are made by TDK, written over with a red Sharpie.
  • CD cases are recycled from Steven's personal collection. These cases formerly served the likes of Radiohead, Coldplay, LucasArts, and others.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Today's mass e-mail

We are pleased to announce our second gig at the Lava Lounge!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006 @ midnight
Lava Lounge
1533 N. La Brea Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90028

21 and over. Doors open at 8:30pm. Drink specials until 10pm. We are the last band/artist to play that night, the others being Jonas Lyn, Satellite Class, and Kyrie Maezumi.

If you would like to familiarize yourself with our music, please visit http://www.popgothetonics.com/ for a streaming version of our new album, *Get Things Done.* You may buy the album on the web site or at the show.

By the way, thanks to everyone who came to the first Lava Lounge show. We had a great time. Hope to see you again!

The Tonics

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Lava Lounge gig on Jan. 18

The Tonics are playing again! Lava Lounge, Wednesday, Jan. 18 @ midnight. Doors open 8:30pm.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Tonics have a crisis meeting

Last night, the Tonics had a top-secret, closed-door meeting inside one of AOL's chatrooms. Somehow, Neon Phosphor was not invited, so I can't tell you what happened, except that the band members emerged looking exhausted and refusing to speak to the media. I can only guess that one or more of the following things happened:
  • An angry dispute over the distribution of the $20 earned from the Lava Lounge gig. In particular, band treasurer Steven has not yet bought pizza for the band despite promising to do so when he pocketed the money.
  • A musical brainstorming session leading to creative differences within the band.
  • The destruction of various instruments, including Arta's brand new Dean Palomino.
  • The vandalism of the AOL chatroom and subsequent arrests made by AOL "Terms of Service" enforcers.
  • Mark vetoed one or more of his own songs off the already-released album, necessitating a recall of the 27 CDs in circulation.
  • Arta threatened to dissolve the band unless he received sole songwriting credit on all Tonics songs, because "they wouldn't be anything close to rock-and-roll if it weren't for my guitar parts."
  • Record label censored the Get Things Done cover art because it was too sexist.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Work being done on the cube

Looking at the northeast corner of the cube. Notice some of the windows reflect more blue than others. That's a separate building in front of the cube, in case you're wondering.

Are they replacing the windows?

A close-up of the scaffolding. Notice some of the windows are boarded up.

Monday, January 09, 2006


  • I heard a rumor that the cube is in pain. Something about it "looking like the second Death Star under construction." I haven't seen it yet, but I'll go first thing tomorrow to snap some pictures.
  • The new website is up. It's really fancy.
  • Mark wrote a new song called "How To Win."
  • Here's a picture of Arta's vintage-looking guitar:

Saturday, January 07, 2006

"By the way, who is Lucy?"

Lucy Katherine Pinder was born 20 December 1983 at Winchester, Hampshire, England. She is a Page 3 or glamour model based in the United Kingdom. Lucy was a dropout in August 2003 when a freelance photographer spotted her sunbathing on the beach in her home town. On the back of his photos, Lucy signed a professional modeling contract with national newspaper The Daily Star, which thrust her into the public eye and garnered an immediate fanbase. Lucy has subsequently become famous for being the first glamour model to refuse to pose showing her nipples in any photograph, although she has posed topless, covering her nipples with her hands or in some other way. She is famous for her large breasts (UK size 32G bra).

Friday, January 06, 2006

"Don't Lose It"

Arta wrote a song called "Don't Lose It." It's his first song with a ready-made set of lyrics, melody and chords since "Easter Island" in 2001. Way to go for the George Harrison of this band.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

"I want an album! Gimme..."

----Sorry, man. The album's so good that we sold out all 27k copies. Did I just say "27k copies?" I actually meant 27 copies. Lousy keyboard. Go listen to the stream while we make some more.

Arta's new guitar

Read all about it: http://www.deanguitars.com/palomino.htm

This is the second Dean guitar acquired by this band. The first one is Steven's Dean Playmate bass guitar, so named because it looks and plays like a toy.

Monday, January 02, 2006

"What's next for the Tonics?"

----Breathe, eat, sleep... that sort of thing.

"Are you playing any more gigs?"----We can't confirm any dates yet. So, for all you know, we could be finalizing a deal with Clear Channel or some other media giant to headline at Staples Center. Or not.

"I want an album!! How do I get one?"----Sit tight and listen to the stream while we figure out how to get this PayPal business going. Or go to our MySpace page to hear some high-quality mp3s.