Recording at Electrical Pt. 1

January 23, 2013

With great foresight, a pen, and a calendar we devised an adventurous plan: book time at a studio, record our next record, and f*cking release it. Sounds simple, but it is far from it for this band. Step one is direct and easily understood – 2 sessions at Electrical Audio, the finest in the land, with our infamous “Eyrie” engineer Neil Strauch on the boards.

The first session, completed in December, went down without a hitch beyond spurting thumb blood, endless belittling, one frustrated I-can’t-f*cking-play-this-song moment, and a few you-can’t-play-this-f*cking-song moments. None of us knew that the esteemed Steve Albini was so into poker and cats and Jason was so into something called “pee parties”. It felt good to be in the same room as Neil again. As first timers at Electrical, we were in awe of the cavernous drum room: a nearly three-story tall behemoth with a Dr. No style descending staircase around the perimeter. The room is responsible for the larger-than-life sounds on many Electrical records. Man, it’s cool as shit.

4 songs were tracked and successfully recorded with one noted by Jason as “needing his parts to be punched in starting with measure 1.” The new songs feel meaner, more precise and concise. On “Eyrie” we were working through the end of a two year period of honing in on the way we approached songwriting. Coming from the Timeout Drawer, where everything was possible, it took us some time. In fact, we recorded  10 songs for “Eyrie” and tossed away the 5 that weren’t right. This time that work feels done and we can get on with gettin it on.










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Recording commences on “Eyrie” follow-up

January 21, 2013

Making records around the busy schedules of four men in a famous rock band is a trick to say the least. With all of the performances, appearances, music videos, and interviews; fulfilling mail order from the back corner of the practice space, with our own private stash of boxes and stamps, writing each and every “to” and “from” address by hand; it’s a miracle of sorts that there is time for the basics of songwriting, that thing you signed up originally to do. When all of the houses are bought, and vintage car collections amassed, divorces signed and mailorder postage printed and paid for, what’s really needed from this band of bickering man-childs is another record.

With a fresh batch of songs under our arms, from countless nights in lockdown under ground, in a new practice space buried deep in the bowels of Chicago, in a structure originally built for housing gunpowder, with walls thick enough to sustain an accidental blast, we’ve booked time in December and January to lay the foundation for the new recording, at none other than Steve Albini’s Electrical Audio, in Chicago, over there on Belmont and California, where all your favorite records have been made, right across the street from Devry, a large police station, and the sight of the former Riverview amusement park. With “Eryie” engineer Neil Strauch on hand, the new record is underway, god dammit.

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Shooting the cover of “Eyrie”

January 17, 2013

The album art for “Eyrie” was crafted from photographs shot by our drummer, Chris, in the Sierra Madre mountain range, in Monterrey Mexico, a mountain range that’s truly impressive: 610 miles long, and home to the Zone-tailed Hawk, a bird of prey that swarm the tops of the mountains there. It’s an incredible place, breathtaking during the often cloudy, dense mornings. He was visiting there as a guest teacher, teaching a class on designing record covers, of all things, with a clear view of the mountain range from the classroom. The sight of the lingering, moody fog across the mountain tops eventually got the best of him.

Having no idea how to get anywhere, nor having any means to do so, he asked his students to meet him at 5am the next morning, when the light would be the best and the fog was sure to be thick. 3 of 20 showed up, escorting him into the mountain range, and one of them, Sarai de la Cruz, captured the above photo of him shooting the now infamous cover.

The hawks were circling a tall rock outcropping that closely resembled a beak made of stone, a peak if you will, nearly the very definition of “Eyrie” as a “high inaccesible place or a nest of a bird of prey”. An almost perfect and serendipitous converging of elements. All it needed was a gargantuan pyramid of interlocking triangles hovering atop the whole scene, but you can’t ask for everything.

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Beak zine and gigantic poster

January 15, 2013

All of our limited edition LP’s come with a free 8 page zine that folds out into a giant 24″x36″ Beak poster. Designed by Someoddpilot. Grab one from us at our shows or pick one up with a vinyl purchase here.

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Buy “Eyrie” vinyl from our store

January 10, 2013

Thanks to the support of our people via Kickstarter, we manufactured gorgeous vinyl 12″ editions of “Eyrie” complete with 4 color artwork on a beautiful sleeve designed by Someoddpilot, and an inner B/W sleeve with liner notes and lyrics. As an added super-bonus the record comes with a Beak “Zine”: an 8 page short form magazine dedicated to us, naturally, that folds out into a gigantic Beak poster. This shit is hot, ships directly from us, and we still have some left. Super limited edition. Buy it here.

Also available from Carrot Top distribution and Reckless Records.

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Beak with Arbogast, Arriver, Admiral of Black

October 18, 2012

A Chicago metal line-up in support of Arbogast’s soon to be released new record, join us Friday, November 2nd for the goods at The Ultra Lounge. Tickets here. Photograph by Alicia Daubner.

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“The Weight & Time” music video premier

September 18, 2012

Watch the new Beak video, our third from “Eyrie”, premiered by Metalholic magazine. This is anxious mastery – with levels of analog distortion that are truly hallucinogenic combined with digital film experiments from post-editing effects artists. Christopher Rejano directed this piece, with editing by Glorily Velez, visual effects by Dan Zabinski, and playback by Eric Anthony. Huge thank you to all of them for their beautiful work.

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Beak, Norska, Yob photographs

September 17, 2012

The show with Yob was tremendous. Capturing the night on film, John Mourlas is making an intense catalog of Chicago metal shows. Our latest show is here.

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New Music Video Coming Soon

August 29, 2012

Our third proper music video from Eyrie, “The Weight & Time” was shot and directed by Chris Rejano, with CG and editing by White House Post. This will be our first video not directed by our drummer. It’s a stunning visual piece that brings to mind visions of Richard D. James in “Come to Daddy”, as some subtle CG work transforms Jon into someone or something who, well, just looks really really displeased. Look for it in the coming weeks.

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Beak with YOB

August 20, 2012

Portland Oregon’s doom metal masters YOB descend on Chicago September 12th with Norska (featuring Yob’s bassist) and Beak (that’s us). Show starts at 8 (it’s an early one) and completely accommodates the 17 and over group. If that’s you, it’s time to celebrate. Tickets here. Photography and design by Chris Eichenseer of Someoddpilot.

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Beak, Arriver, Alma Negra photographs

August 19, 2012

Dozens of show photographs, courtesy of John Mourlas.

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Beak @ The Empty Bottle with Arriver

August 9, 2012

Next Thursday there’s a free show with RSVP at the Empty Bottle, featuring ourselves with Arriver, Planetsexploder, and Alma Negra. We’ll knock the Thursday from the place.

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“Billions Of Eyes” Video Debut on Stereokiller

July 10, 2012

Today our new video premiers on Stereokiller: “Billions Of Eyes”.
Watch it above.

From the press release: “Shot on location in the Mojave Desert, California and Chicago’s legendary venue The Empty Bottle, the “Billions of Eyes” music video is an epic realization of Beak’s bombastic metal. From the heavenly bodies that turn in their grandeur above, to the single minded pursuit of the hunted below – the only refuge is fear. Written, directed and produced by the band’s drummer Chris Eichenseer of Someoddpilot, with live band footage directed by Chris Rejano.”

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New video debuts Tuesday

July 5, 2012

We’re very excited to release the brand new music video for “Billions Of Eyes” next week. The video debuts Tuesday, July 10th in celebration of  the vinyl release of ‘Eyrie’. Both will be released on the same day. Do not sleep babies.

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Vinyl release shows this Saturday, Chicago

July 2, 2012

Saturday is a huge day for us – the vinyl record comes out next Tuesday, but early copies will be available at these shows: At 5pm we will be playing a free & intimate set at Reckless Records on Milwaukee. Then we pack up, drive 1.2 miles northwest up Milwaukee Avenue, park, and cram it all back again into The Ultra Lounge for a $$ show with Ganon and Rabid Rabbit. What’s more radical than the drive up Milwaukee: You made this happen. We owe you. Let’s play. Saturday, July 7th, 2012. Chicago.

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