Working on the cover of “in motion”

Happy new year! Let’s get moving!

Looking so much forward to all what this year will bring. The album is getting together. Music is mixed. Mastering is booked for 16 of january two weeks from here.
Currently working on album covers and editing jam tracks. There will be some jamtracks involved with the package. Don’t want to reveal too much yet.

Here’s a so demo sketches of the album cover. I put them in small size because it’s they are rough. These are absolutely not the final covers. I’m simply testing and sketching ideas.

About the design. I’m really thinking of the idea of Mr. Fastfinger fighting against his inner demon. The guitar is used like a katana to cut the head of the demon. Sounds aggressive, but like some sayed on Facebook, you cannot be too rough with your inner demons ;)

Oh and I need to start writing down all the credits and notes for the album as well. Ohh so much stuff. Later!


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Germany workshop tour

What a week, what a week!!! Seven days is a row. Full overdrive. I’m beaten but so happy. Lucky it was mostly the students that needed to play the guitar for the last two days. After mixing the album the fingers kind of got surpised of all the sudden hard rock playing. 

Thank you to Ralf for making this happen with Modern Music School. Thanks to each and every school I had a chance to visit. The teachers and school bosses, you super people. I’m very taken by the hospitality and the reseption. Andy!
 Hughes & Kettner friends, especially Phillip and Franky. 
All the great people for showing up for the workshops. It was a pleasure!

Clip from workshop in Koblenz. Outro to a song called Unravel.

Funny clip of what tends to happen when I do a masterclass. Getting carried away. The end is funny, had to put this out.

Here’s link to a photo album of the life on workshop road. Photoalbum in Facebook


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All songs mixed

20111128-125414.jpg
Check – check – done – done. We have it all. 12 songs all sounding strong and big!


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Mixing it all to stereo

Great news! We’ve finally started to mix the album together. This time I’m not doing this alone, I’m gave my old good friend Mauro Gargano the main role as the “mixing dude”. Although I’m a control freak, I’m learning to give others some room. I have a vision (I’m the producer) but Mauro sure knows better how to get there (the faders, pots and pans). Also as the project has taken so long, so it’s good to get help from other people at this point. Not to mention a second pair of ears (and brains) is so good for the overall results. Doing this with Mauro also makes this part of the project so much more fun, I’m sure you’ll hear it with the results.

For the mixing I prepared by exporting multitrack audio files out of Cubase. At this point I also need to be careful to make sure all the edits and stuff is good. Mauro then imports these files to Pro Tools for the mixing.

We began by setting the standards. Tweaking the sounds. I chose a song called “Mountain Mover” as the first track to work on, because it was “fairly simple” and represents the overall tonality of the album quite well.
The song really went into the next level thanks to Mauro, we had did some edits and magic to many parts. Added special hits and effects to emphesis turns and dramatic points of the song. We also both agreed we want to be graphic and dramatic with the overall mixing approach. The song and whole album is like a movie for your ears, mixing should also support the story being told. So with each song I also need to explaing Mauro what the song is all about. Sounds oddball and hippy, but in fact it’s an ear trip!!!

WARNING: Contains revealing material from the album.
Here’s a little teaser clip from “Mountain Mover”Mountain Mover_clip

In the end of the second day we got ourself the mix of the first song. And it sounds so sweet, exactly how it should be.

So far we got three songs down. It takes time, but it sounds superb!


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Classic Tapping Boogie live!


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Finishing the recordings soon!


Hope you’re doing fine there. Yes, it’s been a long time since I really had time to work on the album. All sort of no-Fastfinger related work project have taken my time off my dearest project. But now things will go forward!

In addition to the two upcoming Mr. Fastfinger shows I’ve sceduled so that the last recordings of the album WILL be finished this month. Biggest part is the fact that we are actually going to re-record one song. “ThunderPantz” is something I’m not really satisfied with. It does not rock as hard it should, it need’s to be more AGGRESSIVE and DRAMATIC! I’ve re-written the main guitar riff, we’ve tweaked on the drums parts during band rehearsals… It’s little painful to re-record something. But we actually rehearsed this well now. Even all the guitar parts are written and rehearsed. The re-recording won’t be that big issue.

Next week we have the final drum session, then all the guitars and bass and keys.

The Daemons & Ghouls material you sent to me will be opened tomorrow. We are doing that live now (this is so awweeesome!) and thinking of taking some of that FX stuff for the live show backing. Hui!!!!

The mixing of the album will take place next Month. Instead of doing it all by myself I’ll be doing it with my good old friend Mauro Gargano. Poor Mauro has some hard time ahead when Mr. Perfectionist arrives. It’s time to see what our friendship can take;)

Will be right back!

Mika


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Mr. Fastfinger anti-competition status

Thank you so much to all who sended material for the anti-competition! There’s seriously scary material there. And it’s very versatile. There’s definelty material I will be using.

I’m currently busy working on something complitely else (It’s something you will see if you go to see Dream Theater live on their world tour starting next week). Once I finish this other project, I will take command on this album project again. Also start going through the material you sent and put together the song. Also two other songs need some work.
I had to delay the album release to early next year. Due to the fact that I also need to make a living somehow. As much as I would love to dedicate my days complitely on the album creatition.
I’d see the album coming out january or february. I want to make sure everything is exactly like I want it, before I put it out.

Take care, rock on, stay tuned!
Mika


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Motion Beat premiere – Mr. Fastfinger do the rap!

Enter the beat! This is not for the faint at heart. It's a clip of Mr. Fastfinger Band premiering the song Motion Beat from the next album.
More of a light hearted song. Perhapas not really representing the new material of the following album in best way. But it's a fun number.
This is basically the beginning of the song with Thomas doing a cool drum number as extra live intro. The actual chorus is cut out totally. And so are many other parts as well. Don't want to put the full song out because
a) This was our first attempt to do this live and we still need to practice this track more to get it tighter
b) Don't want to reveal it complitely yet. Something to left to surpise you when the album comes out.

The guitar solo is the same as on another video on this channel. http://youtu.be/HbU1F8uMBC0
Some people won't believe the solo was played in real time on that video (the footage looks a bit fastforwarded because i was so much in motion with the playing) so here it is played live with the band in front of an audience. It's not perfectly exactly tight played but this is rock and roll. Or atleast rocking dance music.

Oh and that guitar tone comes from that new Hughes & Kettner baby Tubemeister. The head alone weights 5 kg, but it really, really burns!

Shake that booty!


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And now something complitely different

The encore from Mr. Fastfinger Band show at Runebar / Bar Soho 14/8/2011.After a complite hour set of Mr. Fastfinger music, we were totally out songs. So we cleverly returned as "Las KaKalMas" our other band that is specialized in improvised music. The only thing we knew before this song started was the title: "Coconut Oil".  Also we decided that the song goes in the key of G and in somepoint moves to the key of E. Aah the excitement, the excitement!
Once in a life time, we won't be doing this song again. Very happy how this came out and that we actually got it captured for you to enjoy it!

Las KaKalmas isn't about shredding, it's about creating music together and on the spot. Enjoying the creation aswell as entertaining the audience. Pure joy on stage and damn exciting.


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Aftershow thoughts

What a fine duo show we had yesterday. After a great and fun band gig on sunday, have to admit, it was little bit less inspiring to go to do a show as duo. I wasn’t really worried about anything. But this made me very relaxed and in general performed better (on individual level) than on sunday with the band. With out the band there’s a lot of things missing from my playing. All the interaction and imprivised goodies. But technically etc. I made less stupid mistakes etc.
In addition to the duo show we had two song jam with the guys from Lakewood Experiment. Peter Niemi, Rofl Pilve and Pauli Petas had done a great job mastering Both “Wax on – Wax off” and “Mountain Mover”. We had time to play waxing tune during the soundcheck but no way to Mountain Mover. So we listened it through in my car once and talked about all the spots and how to avoid problems. All went very smooth. Thanks guys!

This reminded me of the book “Effortless Mastery” by Kenny Werner. It’s not a guitar book, yet it’s possibly the best guitar book I’ve read. It’s all about that mental side and stuff. One of the teaching was something like: when you don’t care who’s in the audience or panic how important the gig is, you can relax and perform so much better. Better read the book again, I’ve forgotten most of it. You should check out the book as well!

http://www.amazon.com/Effortless-Mastery-Liberating-Master-Musician/dp/156224003X

Yesterday most of the time I actually felt like a effortless master on stage, and when I left the stage the audience had bought it. All starts inside of you. Believing yourself, finding the right state of mind and attitude.

My ritual before a gig has become a stare on a mirror before the show. Even just a moment helps. When I stare to my very own eyes through a mirror for a moment it helps me to connect with myself. And remember what’s it all about. To me doing gig’s is all about playing (like with toys), feelings, fun, emotions, rocking, going crazy, entertaining the audience, making new friends, making a fool out of yourself…

Preparing for a gig is another thing. On sunday that he had actually mastered one tight bass line and go it down. But then he realized he could only do it while sitting. This is a commong problem especially with more technical music. Guitar playing is usually much harder when standing. Or atleast different. And on stage (if you play rock or such) you should have some moves and all the stage action. So, it should be clear that when preparing and practicing for a gig. You should practice not only the parts but also the stage performance.

Practicing the performance and material helps a lot, but once you’re on stage you just have to do the thing… Let go! Let flow! Go crazy!

Will get back to the grrreat band show we had on sunday. Some footage will appear for sure!!!

soon,
Mika

Oh and my new baby Tubemeister is a such killer amp on stage!
Tubes are running hot: the roaring riffs, exploding solos and screaming harmonics!


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