The Longest Stylesheet

Tuesday January 31, 2006

Actually, it's not that long, but I couldn't think of a better snarky headline for this post about the launch of the new Pharaoh website, designed by me. I've certainly seen MUCH longer stylesheets. But the new album is called The Longest Night and that title begs to be satirized, so I did what I could. If you don't like it, you can go pound sand!

So, what's next for me? I'm in the middle of writing and recording the guitar solos for the next Dawnbringer album, which is a long-running project of Pharaoh's drummer Chris Black. It's an interesting challenge for me, because Chris is looking for a specific sound, but he doesn't really want to articulate the specifics of what he's looking for. It's up to me to figure that out. I feel like a real studio musician, trying to decipher from the song what the "client" wants from the guitarist. Of course, I'm not getting paid to do this, save for a free CD (I hope!) but it's a fun experience and it's forcing me to play in a way I wouldn't normally play. I even used my friend Gary's wah pedal! I'm a regular Kirk Hammett! The release of the album is entirely dependent on the speed with which I finish my solos, but I hope to be done in a couple weeks, so the album will probably be out in the late spring. I'll keep you posted.

When I'm finished with Dawnbringer, I'd like to sit back and do nothing, but that almost certainly won't happen. I'll get bored. My next big undertaking is the design and launch of Feast or Famine online. I'm resurrecting my not-quite-dead print zine on the Internets, to be published in monthly issues. My plan at the moment is to write a custom CMS (content management system) with Ruby on Rails, a pretty new web framework based on the Ruby scripting language. At work, we have a project in the making using Ruby, so this Feast or Famine experiment will be a good way for me to expand my understanding of the language/framework offline (or if you'd like, my work assignments will help me to make a better zine.) I don't expect to get this done anytime soon, but I'll optimistically say that sometime in the summer I'll be ready to reveal the first online issue of Feast or Famine.

It occurs to me now that this post reads like one of those photocopied status reports one occasionally finds in Christmas cards, and I do apologize for the absence of real humor in this post. Perhaps I should put a mark on my calendar that reads "Be Funny on Blog," but I have a feeling I'd just ignore it if I did.

Posted by Matt at January 31, 2006 09:25 AM


Nice job on the new Pharaoh site! Much easier on the eyes than the last version, and easier to read, too.

Posted by: Rob Weychert at January 31, 2006 10:32 AM

Thanks, Rob! The whole thing validates, too! And I promise that very soon I will digitize those 7"s for you. And those of you who, in reading this, think that I'm talking about something dirty when I mention 7"s, grow up!

Posted by: Matt Johnsen at January 31, 2006 10:35 AM

Well, it's a Pharoah day for me. Not that I question your guitar playing skill, but did you type "wizardry" yourself? I thought you more modest, Mats J?hns?n.

Of course, if I had any musical skill at all, I'd tootle my own horn - and one might actually recognize the tune. Oh, well, back to my tuneless self.

Posted by: Rich Evans at January 31, 2006 01:02 PM

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