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Veronica Smiles

(Late June / Early July) – J Cruz took certain vocals from The Boy in the Dark Shirt and put it in reverse, and this created the ghostlike vocal effects in the background of the instrumental to the song. The last verse of the song was challenging for me, I rewrote it approximately six different times until we finally decided it was perfect.

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The Mermaid Queen

(Early - Mid July) – This was a song that I felt captured alienation and isolation quite well, and I had written it months before I had written any of the other songs. I ended the track with the guitar riff of The Boy in the Dark Shirt. What I like most about the song is the concept of someone seeking the consolation of a fictional character, as if I’m trying to say, “Don’t worry about what’s troubling you right now because The Mermaid Queen will be there to help you feel better.”

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A Flower and a Dream

(Mid June) – A happy accident – as we later called it. I originally had guitar chords playing and my vocal harmonies layering the beat. The night after we made the instrumental together, I received an email from J Cruz of the demo instrumental and he forgot to track out the guitar along with the rest of the track, leaving only my vocals over the beat. I heard it and became dumbfounded, realizing it sounded infinitely more intense and therapeutic in a sense without the guitar. We then decided to have guitar only come in at the third verse of the track.

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Just Another Day on Planet Earth

(Mid – Late July) –My entire idea of the track was to show the sounds of the earth through the perspectives of all animals and all people: Exhibiting the planet’s acoustical resonance through sound. “The earth is so beautiful and rich, it’s amazing…” basically sums up the philosophy I wished to share. We also had the idea of fading down my voice during my verse, and fading in the sound of an overdubbing guitar in reverse, which gave it the holistic trance at the end of the song.

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The Boy in the Dark Shirt

(late June) – the darkest song on the album. J Cruz later called it “a play.” It’s theatrical in a sense with a dramatic relay of emotions. I cupped my hand in front of the microphone and yelled, “I hate this party!” It was a cool effect I had learned from The Beach Boys when they made Pet Sounds and Smiley Smile.

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A Little Bit of Blueness

(Early June) – The first verse of the song I didn’t feel comfortable with, so I rewrote it twice till I felt it was pretty good. The second verse of the song was purely accidental: J Cruz fiddled about creating some cool effects until we realized this post-dubstep drum/bass needed an electro-energized flow. We also placed the microphone at one end of the room and I yelled from across the studio “IN THE BLUE” as loud as I could, we added that part in the bridge section between the first and second verse. The track was a lot of fun. I got some happy memories from that day.

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Beautiful Anne

(Late August) –a hypnotic trance – thinking of nothing but Anne and how beautiful she is. Entrenched by her essence, as if he’s standing on a ledge and repeating her name over and over, and that’s basically what I wanted to create. We added wind chimes along with an orchestral symphony during the second half of the track. The percussions at the last few bars of the song was layered by the beat from Mermaid Queen.

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Dream Away

(Mid June) – The most inspiring song for me is that one, in terms of lyricism and the overall quality of the song. I felt really thrilled when we first made it and I strongly favored it to be the intro to the album. I told J Cruz I had an idea to have the second verse consist of no drums, but a match being lighted and me snapping my fingers, as insane as it sounded he caught on well and we made it happen! It was around this time where our musical chemistry only became more and more synced as we progressed through the album.

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Kush Man

(Early August) – Unlike our other songs, I wanted this one to consist of only 2 chords playing back and forth. We made this song in 2 days, which was quicker than any other song we ever worked on together. I also wanted it to sound like it’s a short radio single: thus the enthusiastic German radio host introducing the song to the audience. We desired the ending to be even catchier than the hook so we created a tribal rhythm everyone can dance to.

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Lauren’s Got a Boyfriend

(Early June) – The first track we made, and we made 6 different versions of it, the final being the harmonic influence I wanted to add at the end. I originally wanted to get a children’s choir to sing the hook of the song but we decided not to pursue that. My favorite part on the entire album is the end of the track, when I’m singing “look who’s got a boyfriend”

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