Sep 8, 2017

NEW ALBUM - RARE / UNRELEASED!

Hi friends - we just released our new compilation Rare/Unreleased (Available now on all streaming and download platforms!). This is a bit of a behind the scenes take from me on each of the songs. Thanks for being nerdy enough to want to read some thoughts on these random tunes. In a weird way these are some of my favorite songs we ever recorded, so don't ask why most of them remained unreleased until now(the answer is "poor decision making"). I wrote some of these blurbs back in 2011, when we kinda secretly released about half of these rare recordings to our "fan club" - so some of these thoughts are 6 years old, and some are from today. I've always found album leftovers and b-sides to be an interesting window into learning more about my favorite bands.  It can often highlight inner-workings, and show off some (often failed) attempts at experimenting with your own art.  This is by no means a "greatest hits" collection, but hopefully you'll find something that compels you!  Again, thanks for reading/listening and hopefully these notes will shed a little light on these songs for those that are curious. Thanks for digging deep with us! -John


1. Mona Lisa Overdrive.  (Mar 2009)  We recorded a grand total of 26 songs during the sessions for our second album, Horror Vacui (many of which ended up on our two EP's, The Beached Margin/Done Waiting in addition to the twelve on Horror Vacui), totaling 50+ days in the studio, spread out over a full year.  The plan for the album gestated many times- the initial tracklist and proposed running order being incredibly different from the final product.  "Mona Lisa Overdrive" was recorded during the second set of sessions for Horror Vacui, and at the time was intended as the first song on the album.  It was to replace the former contender for opening track, which you'll read about in a bit.  Most of us are still relatively proud of MLO, but I'm quite glad that at the 11th hour, we wrote "Beneath You All The Way", halted the mastering process, and had it recorded a week before the album was due at the pressing plant.  May the best song win(it did)!  (originally appeared as a digital bonus track to the Get Big 7")
2. Waiting On A Wire.  (Apr 2011)  Probably my favorite song in this collection, "Waiting On A Wire" is a prime example of IWTDI's ability to do some of our best work under pressure.  I wrote this song around January of 2011, the band half-learned it, but it just wasn't connecting, so we let it fall into the void of forgotten songs.  For some nutty reason, we decided to book a few days in the studio for the week immediately after our return from a month on the road in April 2011.  We had a last minute change in what we planned to record during those sessions, and were left in need of an additional tune.  We spent one afternoon relearning and finalizing "Waiting On A Wire", and tracked it 2 days later.  To add to the pressure, James had to miss the first few days of recording to attend his grandfather's funeral.  It was a rough time for him (his dog passed away on the same day!  Can this guy catch a break??), and recording drums last is highly unusual, but he came in on the final day and nailed it, of course.  (originally appeared as a digital bonus track for the compilation Live From Nowhere Near You Vol 2)
3. Ladybug. (Apr 2011)  So this song definitely needs an explanation...We were asked to write a children's song for a benefit compilation that never actually got released. We've been sitting on this song for six years hoping the compilation would be completed, but it never was, so here's our song! I'd had the music and melody since the early IWTDI days, but it always seemed weird/out of place to me for some reason, so we never used it for a "real" IWTDI tune. When the children's comp idea was presented to us, Rachel and I wrote some playful lyrics and laid it down first chance we got. It's just the two of us - Rachel on vocals and banjo, and me on everything else. This is weirdly one of my favorite IWTDI songs. I'm not quite sure why. But I'm proud of it. (previously unreleased)
4. Yours Truly. (Aug 2015)  Our most recent recording/release. Rachel wrote the bones of this song for her solo project around 2014, but it didn't quite fit with what she was doing, so in the summer of 2015 we recorded it with a new full-band arrangement at our house with Aslan Freeman handling production. It's easily my favorite sounding recording we've ever done. One of these days we're going to make a full album at the house with Aslan... (originally appeared as Yours Truly digital single)
5. Halloween.  (Nov 2010)  Written way back in 2005, James and I even played "Halloween" once or twice in our old band, En Garde.  Called "Halloween" because a)it's one of my favorite words b)it's my favorite holiday c)it's my favorite scary movie franchise, and d)the titled seemed to fit the spooky nature of the music.  I was pretty happy with the way the song was turning out during the Preludes sessions, I'm not even really sure why we decided to not include it on the album.  Our publicist wondered the same thing!  Oh well. (Originally appeared as the b-side to the digital single, Regulators)
6. A Way Out Of Here (Jun 2012) We were way too prolific around 2010-2011, so much so that we started a second band - Idiot Family. IF didn't do much, played a couple shows, etc - but we came out of it with 8 or so songs that seemed more appropriate for IWTDI than anything else. The weird thing about Idiot Family is that we switched instruments - so it made the songs difficult for IWTDI to play live, and the writing process was way different as well. We came out of those sessions with the Blood On The Beach EP. A few tunes were left on the cutting room floor from those sessions - and "A Way Out Of Here" is one of them. (previously unreleased)
7. Sugar Settle Down (June 2012) Another Idiot Family song that we turned in to an IWTDI song. This song is technically unreleased, unless you count the few dozen people that signed up for our email list during a short period of time when the promotion was "we'll send you an unreleased song!" (previously unreleased)
8. Better Side (June 2012) "Better Side" is from the same Blood On The Beach/Idiot Family sessions, but is actually more of a traditional IWTDI composition. I just happened to write the basics of this song around the same time, so we tracked it during those sessions, thinking it would come out as a single or on a compilation release, etc - but it never did. We played this song live a couple of times, and it worked best in the concert setting, but it fell by the wayside pretty fast nonetheless. (previously unreleased)
9. Actors (Acoustic).  (Apr 2011)  From the same session as "Waiting On A Wire" and "Ladybug," this acoustic version of "Actors" was intended as an alternate of a track planned to be featured on Vexations.  We indeed recorded the full-band, more rocking version of "Actors" up in Minneapolis in summer 2012, but it ended up being the one song from those sessions that did not appear on the album.  I'm very proud of the tune, I'm very proud of the lyrics, but it just didn't seem to fit Vexations thematically or musically. (previously unreleased)
10. Actors (June 2012)  The full band version of "Actors." I think I prefer the acoustic version. They're pretty similar overall, but it's interesting to hear the acoustic version as essentially a demo - since the full band version has some producer-touches from Josh Cain and Ed Ackerson. I'll never understand why they felt the intro of the song needed to have four passes before the vocal starts instead of three. Three is right. I'm right. Right? (originally appeared as the b-side to the digital single, My Internal Din)
11. I Keep My Head Above It.  (Jun 2007)  "I Keep My Head Above It" is the oldest recording in this collection, coming from the sessions for our very first album.  I still like this song a lot, but hearing it shows how much we've grown as performers (Rachel and I really stepped up our singing over the following years).  In retrospect, I wish we'd dropped two or three songs that turned up on the album, left those as b-sides, and put "I Keep My Head Above It" in their place.  (Originally appeared on the cancer research benefit site CyTunes.org)
12. The Hollow Men.  (Nov 2010)  One of the first songs we worked on during the year-long writing process for Vexations, but it actually ended up on the cutting room floor of the Preludes sessions.  "The Hollow Men" stemmed from a jam between Curtis & Joe, and then Rachel and I fine-tuned various elements.    I like this song decently, but I don't think we quite nailed the presentation- it was one of our first attempts at a "slightly different" IWTDI approach (fun fact: I played bass on this one, and Joe played guitar) for Vexations, and we got WAY better at that after a few more ideas made their way into the practice room.  (previously unreleased)
13. Like A Hole In The Head.  (Aug 2008)  One of my lesser favorites, "Like A Hole In The Head" was one of the many songs attempted during the first sessions for Horror Vacui, and it just didn't come together as well as the others.  Clearly a bit underwritten, I guess you could say it was an exercise in breaking the "big chorus" habit we were in- doing the "loud verse/quite chorus" trick The Pixies perfected so well.  It certainly has a couple little things that I like, but listening back, I cringe at all the details we could have fine-tuned to make a better whole.  (originally appeared on the cancer research benefit site CyTunes.org)

14. Benediction.  (Aug 2008)  Remember how I said "Mona Lisa Overdrive" replaced another song as the planned opener for Horror Vacui, before we came up with "Beneath You All The Way" at the last minute?  For quite a while, "Benediction" was that planned opening track.  Change is good!  Definitely not one of our standout tunes, although I still think the lyrics have some merit.  Also, fun fact: it's only in hindsight that I'm able to see this, but all three of those potential lead tracks were "us against the world"-type love songs-- an interesting coincidence considering the jilted, loner, fuck-off vibe of every other song on Horror Vacui.  (originally appeared as a digital bonus track to The Beached Margin/Done Waiting 12")

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Apr 4, 2017

AWESOME SHOWS COMING UP!

We have three great shows coming up this spring, we hope to see you out and about!

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Dec 18, 2016

JOHN'S FAVORITE ALBUMS/SONGS OF 2016!

Howdy all - it's time once again for my annual "Best Albums Of The Year" list! I've been doing this every year for at least the past 20 or so - I love geeking out and talking music, so let me know what your favorites were as well!

1. Kanye West - The Life Of Pablo
2. Bob Mould - Patch The Sky
3. Rob Crow's Gloomy Place - You're Doomed. Be Nice.
4. A Tribe Called Quest - We Got It From Here... Thank You 4 Your Service
5. David Bowie - Blackstar
6. Bon Iver - 22, A Million
7. Jaws - Simplicity
8. M83 - Junk
9.  The Posies - Solid States
10. White Lung - Paradise

And here's my Spotify playlist of my favorite songs of 2016 - check it out!

 

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Nov 29, 2016

LAST MINUTE SHOW SUPPORTING THIRD EYE BLIND AT THE RITZ!

We'll be supporting Third Eye Blind at The Ritz next Tuesday December 6th - we'd love to see you there!

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Jun 16, 2016

IWTDI + THE ENGLISH BEAT!

Surprise! We have just added this very awesome show to our schedule - we can't wait! Join us at the Cat's Cradle on August 26th for this great cause, and some great music! Grab your tickets now!

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Mar 29, 2016

FIRST SHOW OF 2016!

Raleigh! We can't wait to see you on Saturday April 23! It's going to be a damn good time. Grab your tickets now...

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Dec 30, 2015

JOHN'S TOP TEN ALBUMS OF 2015!

Howdy! It's that time of year - time for a top ten list! Let me know your favorites, be sure to check out the Spotify playlist of my favorite songs of the year, and have a happy new year!

1) Brandon Flowers - The Desired Effect

2) Grimes - Art Angels

3) Dutch Uncles - O Shudder

4) Wolf Alice - My Love Is Cool

5) BNLX - Good Light

6) Christine And The Queens - S/T

7) Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp A Butterfly

8) Big Sean - Dark Sky Paradise

9) Bully - Feels Like

10) Lupe Fiasco - Tetsuo & Youth

 

 

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Sep 1, 2015

YOURS TRULY!

Oh hi. We are very excited to share with you our first new music in 2 years - our new single, "Yours Truly."

Produced, recorded, and mixed by Aslan Freeman (and mastered by Jesse Cannon), "Yours Truly" is likely the first of a new set of songs on the way from IWTDI. We're very happy about it. We hope you are too.

Please come rock with us at The Cave in Chapel Hill this Saturday, September 5th - in support of Planned Parenthood!

Thanks for listening,

IWTDI

 

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Jun 9, 2015

THE 90s ARE BACK & SO ARE WE!

Howdy! While it might seem like IWTDI are laying low, we've actually been a bit more busy in recent months than usual - we have even started tracking a new song, which got us excited and talking about possibly tracking a whole lot more songs as well! It'll be a slow process, but we're beginning to kick around ideas about making IWTDI album #5! We'll let you know when we know more.

In the meantime, we've been keeping busy with other projects. One such project for John, Rachel, and Curtis is 120 Minutes - our 90s cover band. It's silly fun, and we're playing a FREE show (and our last public Triangle show until October) this Thursday June 11th at Oak City 7 in Raleigh City Plaza. We play from 9-10:30pm, and the awesome See Gulls and Mary Johnson Rockers & The Spark are opening up for us.  Here's a little taste of what we can do....

Finally, we DO have an IWTDI show on the calendar - Friday July 3rd at Deep South The Bar in Raleigh with our awesome buddies Youth League. We probably won't play a show again for quite a while after this, so we hope to see you there!

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Apr 15, 2015

FIRST SHOW OF 2015!

We'll be hitting the stage for the first time in 6 months on May 16th 2015 at Deep South Entertainment's 20th Anniversary Street Festival in Downtown Raleigh! Check out all the details here and buy your tickets now!

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Dec 25, 2014

JOHN'S TOP TEN OF 2014!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS, Y'ALL! 

We played some very memorable IWTDI shows this year - including sharing the stage with our heroes, The Posies - among many other great acts. We're looking forward to 2015 - you might even hear some new music from us... ;)

As usual, I've geeked out and made a Top Ten Albums Of The Year list. And for all you hip kids with your Internets, I've made a Spotify playlist of favorite tracks from these 10 albums and other highlights from 2014.  Check it out here, and be sure to let me know about your top ten in the comments!

JOHN'S TOP TEN ALBUMS OF 2014

#1 LYDIA AINSWORTH - RIGHT FROM REAL

#2 U2 - SONGS OF INNOCENCE

#3 RYAN ADAMS - RYAN ADAMS

#4 RUN THE JEWELS - RUN THE JEWELS 2

#5 A SUNNY DAY IN GLASGOW - SEA WHEN ABSENT

#6 BLACK MAP - ...AND WE EXPLODE

#7 TOBACCO - ULTIMA II MASSAGE

#8 TYCHO - AWAKE

#9 PORTER ROBINSON - WORLDS

#10 D'ANGELO - BLACK MESSIAH

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Nov 20, 2014

FINAL SHOW OF 2014!

We're all staying busy with life and other musical projects at the moment, so the IWTDI shows have been getting fewer and farther between. Our last show was in August at Oak City 7 with The Posies, definitely a milestone for us!

Since it will have been a full four months, we're really looking forward to our last show of the year (and our last show for another long while).....check it:

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Oct 7, 2014

YOU CAN'T TEAR US DOWN

I Was Totally Destroying It recognizes that we have fans on all sides of the political fence and we appreciate each and every one of you. We also recognize that North Carolina’s state government needs a serious makeover. We believe in equal rights and equal pay for all genders and races. We believe same-sex marriages are entitled to the same benefits and protection as heterosexual marriages. We believe in the funding and availability of comprehensive women’s healthcare. We believe what a woman does with her body is her business. We believe in funding programs for those who are down on their luck, and we believe we cannot judge those who use them. We believe that students, the elderly, and minorities all deserve ample time and opportunities to vote. We believe teachers should be treated with respect and adequately compensated. We believe the state’s per-pupil funding needs to be increased. Finally, we love motorcycles and vaginas but believe they don’t belong on the same bill.

It’s cool if you don’t agree with us. It’s cool if you do. But all the complaining on social media and in real life means nothing if you don’t put your money where your mouth is and vote.

Here is a link to a new IWTDI song attempting to express some of the beliefs listed above, featuring great contribution from Aslan Freeman (vocals, guitar, production, engineering, mixing) and Mike Kane (drums), both from the band Unifier. The song is called "Parentheses" and is paired with a remix of "Parentheses" by Paul Leary, as well as a new song from our friend Lutie Cain. Thanks to the NC Music Love Army for having us and for giving proceeds from the purchase of this single (available now on Bandcamp where you can "name your price") to the causes that need it most. Thanks for listening and thanks for doing what is right on November 4th.

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Aug 12, 2014

AUGUST 21 WITH THE POSIES AT OAK CITY 7!

Our only show for the foreseeable future is next Thursday August 21 at Oak City 7 with one of our favorite bands of all time - The Posies!

Lowderstill, Rebekah Todd & The Odyssey, and Dragmatic will kick off the night, followed by IWTDI at 8:30 and The Posies at 9:30pm.  The show is completely free - check out OakCity7.com for all the info!

We plan to debut a brand new song at this show, plus play a lot of the old favorites!  Come cap off the summer with us and enjoy some great live music in the process. 

Here's a classic from The Posies....

 

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Jun 16, 2014

SUMMER SHOWS!

We're back!  Two shows lined up for this summer, both are FREE FREE FREE.  Free.

Friday July 4: I Was Totally Destroying It @ Deep South The Bar, Raleigh, NC

(immediately following the fireworks, which are best viewed from Deep South The Bar's patio!)

Thursday August 21: The Posies, I Was Totally Destroying It, more @ Oak City 7, Raleigh, NC

See y'all soon!

-IWTDI

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Apr 10, 2014

SPRING SHOWS!

Quick update on some awesome free outdoor shows we have lined up over the next month!

SATURDAY APRIL 12: Live & Local on Hillsborough St, Raleigh, NC.  IWTDI plays the Horne St Stage at 5pm.

SATURDAY APRIL 26: 140 Plaza, Chapel Hill, NC. IWTDI plays three separate sets between 3pm and 7pm.

SATURDAY MAY 3: OutRaleigh!, City Plaza, Raleigh, NC.  IWTDI plays at 3:30pm.

Hope to see you out there!

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Feb 24, 2014

FIRST SHOW OF 2014 - AND MORE!

Hello!  Hope you are all having a great 2014 thus far. 

Our first show of the year is shaping up quite nicely...

FRIDAY MARCH 28 w/Blanko Basnet, Jessica Long & The New Kind, Eric + Erica.

@ Cat's Cradle Back Room (the awesome new space behind Cat's Cradle)  $6/advance $8/at the door

In other news, we've all been active with new musical ventures as well as keeping IWTDI going when time permits!  Curtis has launched his new project Panels, of which John and Rachel are both members as well (along with members of Unifier and Lila, etc).  The band is very excited about what is to come - they released their debut single "In The Dark" earlier this month and will be releasing more songs throughout the year - and making their debut live performance in May.  "Like" Panels on Facebook to keep up with details on that!

Rachel has also begun releasing solo material, including "Circles" - produced by John, as well as Aslan Freeman.  Check it!

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Dec 21, 2013

JOHN'S TOP ALBUMS AND SONGS OF 2013!

I've been doing year-end lists for as long as I can remember, and here are my top 10 albums for 2013!

I've also made a Spotify playlist (embedded below - or just click here to launch) of my favorite tracks from these albums and others - except my #1 album is missing as it is not available on Spotify, so head on over to YouTube to listen to my absolute favorite record of the year...

Oh, and if anyone is keeping score, this is my favorite song of the year...off an album I wasn't super into otherwise....

So check out this list, let me know your picks, and enjoy the mix while you're wrapping presents for loved ones!  Hope you've all had a great year and we'll see you in 2014!

-John & IWTDI

1. MY BLOODY VALENTINE - MBV

2. HAIM - DAYS ARE GONE

3. KANYE WEST - YEEZUS

4. DAVID BOWIE - THE NEXT DAY

5. DISCLOSURE - SETTLE

6. DAFT PUNK - RANDOM ACCESS MEMORIES

7. VIENNA TENG - AIMS

8. PAUL MCCARTNEY - NEW

9. BOARDS OF CANADA -TOMORROW'S HARVEST

10. BIG SEAN - HALL OF FAME

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Nov 19, 2013

DECEMBER 6TH IN RALEIGH!

We are very excited to be playing our first show in 4 months (and what will be our last for several more) at the Deep South Entertainment 18th Annual Christmas Party at Deep South The Bar on Friday December 6th!

The lineup is insane: come early for openers Unifier, Vinny Vegas, The Roman Spring...and stick around for the super secret surprise headliners that I totally can't tell you about for really real.

Advanced tickets are only $7 and are on sale now.  You can buy at the door for $10, but if I were you, I'd buy now.  Deep South The Bar only holds 100 people (25 of which will be in the bands playing, haha), and a lineup like this would usually play at a room 5 times the size...

Bottom line: this is one of the best shows we've ever assembled and it's going to be a giant throwdown.  JOIN US, Y'ALL.

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Sep 25, 2013

BLOOD ON THE BEACH!

Hello world, please enjoy the new IWTDI mini-album, Blood On The Beach.

It is available to purchase/download now on Bandcamp via name-your-price, and available to pre-order through iTunes if that's more your thing.  Thanks for listening.

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