003: ASTRAL DREAMS + OLD MISSIONS

THE BI-WEEKLY NEWSLETTER FOR INTER


A Spirit has fled its own body and a life of world fame as a performing escape artist along with it. Now, drifting along with no physical sensation it searches for meaning in a place without form known as the INTER.

INTER is an ongoing, serialized story told through weekly music and sporadic comics releases.

UPDATED ON:

BANDCAMP | LIBSYN | STITCHER | SOUNDCLOUD


05: Astral Dreams

Despite having found respite from the physical world, old memories begin to find their way back to the Spirit.

06: Old Missions & Appendicies

Memories of the past begin to overwhelm and the Spirit considers how much of its old life it really needs.


Art from the upcoming comic by Rachel Ang.

This marks the end of the first chapter of INTER, and with that we'll take a break from the music.

But this doesn't mean we'll just leave our Spirit drifting in the INTER. Over the course of the last month you've been seeing different illustrations in the cover art for each track, and these pieces by Rachel Ang are all part of a 20-page comic which accompanies this first chapter.

Art from the upcoming comic by Rachel Ang.

Art from the upcoming comic by Rachel Ang.

The entire first chapter will be collected as an album and available for download at a pay-what-you-want price soon, and alongside this release will be the accompanying comic with Rachel Ang, available both digitally and in print.

Over the next two weeks there will be more previews of the art and some more info about the future of INTER.

Daniel

002: UNGROUNDED + SUPPLICATION

THE BI-WEEKLY NEWSLETTER FOR INTER


A Spirit has fled its own body and a life of world fame as a performing escape artist along with it. Now, drifting along with no physical sensation it searches for meaning in a place without form known as the INTER.

INTER is an ongoing, serialized story told through weekly music and sporadic comics releases.

UPDATED ON:
BANDCAMP | LIBSYN | STITCHER | SOUNDCLOUD


03: UNGROUNDED

Having left the body, what link remains between the Spirit and its old physical senses?

04: SUPPLICATION

The Spirit seeks an inner resolve to keep memories of the past from invading.


Art from the upcoming comic by Rachel Ang

Art from the upcoming comic by Rachel Ang

Art from the upcoming comic by Rachel Ang

Art from the upcoming comic by Rachel Ang

001: INTERLUDE I + EMERGENCE

THE BI-WEEKLY NEWSLETTER FOR INTER


A Spirit has fled its own body and a life of world fame as a performing escape artist along with it. Now, drifting along with no physical sensation it searches for meaning in a place without form known as the INTER.

INTER is an ongoing, serialized story told through weekly music and sporadic comics releases.

UPDATED ON:

BANDCAMP | LIBSYN | STITCHER | SOUNDCLOUD


01: INTERLUDE I

Our narrator welcomes us to the INTER and introduces the Spirit with a recap of its old life.

02: EMERGENCE

The Spirit reawakens and wonders—what is the INTER? And what has become of the Spirit's self?

THIS PAGE will be updated with lyrics for each release if you want to see the epic poem take shape over time.


This week is the official starting point for INTER, no turning back now (or at least it'd be strange if I did so soon after starting). I'd say it feels like a momentous occasion, but for a story that's been sitting with me in the background of everything for so long, it's like more of an extension of a thing already in motion. Ever since our Spirit escaped from its own body at the end of the 2015 album no Matic, it's been floating around in a faraway cloud of nothingness and has plenty to report on. How long has it been? One-and-a-half years? Or is it closer to 90? Has time even passed at all for this aimless ghost?

(Art by Rachel Ang from the upcoming INTER comic)

(Art by Rachel Ang from the upcoming INTER comic)

As it turns out, the movement of years, minutes, and seconds don't seem to make so much sense in the INTER, and if you'll allow that very same Spirit to bring you up to speed, you may even notice that this is a place you've been before, or perhaps somewhere you've always been in some capacity, and the more you spend here the more familiar it becomes. For those encountering this space between for the first time, think of it as a window into the void, one you may find again someday.

 

Before things get underway I want to give a special thanks to Ogi for providing such a consistent stream of inspiring sounds and helping build the framework for what's occupied much of my creative thought for these past couple years (and further back in other forms).

You've also been seeing some peeks at artwork by Rachel Ang, which in full looks as incredible as the previews suggest, but I'll talk more about that in the coming weeks. (If you happen to live in Melbourne and manage to get in contact with Rachel or find your way to Sticky Institute you can get your hands on a copy of the comic now, otherwise stay tuned...)

And even though the comic isn't yet available, it's not by mistake that it's mentioned side by side with the music as the two run in loose connection, not incomplete on their own but both supplementary to the other.

Meanwhile, Microfome continues to hold me down through this unconventional turn, which I'm endlessly grateful for, as well as all the folks who've lent their ear and feedback along the way.

That's about it. Feel free to roam around at your leisure, listen every week, listen to songs out of order, wait a month and try a chunk of story, wait for the comic, wait until it's over, wait for that moment where it feels right to you. (One of the upcoming tracks has been described as feeling like a cup of ginger tea. Try to guess which as we progress through the weeks)

 

Now that we're both here peering over the edge of this blank space and considering taking that first step into what could be a long running experiment in storytelling with music and comics, maybe I lied about this not being momentous for me, despite however much time I've spent here before you showed up. But I suppose we're in it together now and there's only one way to find out what's over that edge.

Daniel

 

000: INTRO TO INTER

THE BI-WEEKLY NEWSLETTER FOR INTER


A Spirit has fled its own body and a life of world fame as a performing escape artist along with it. Now, drifting along with no physical sensation it searches for meaning in a place without form known as the INTER.

INTER is an ongoing, serialized story told through weekly music and sporadic comics releases.

INTER will launch June 21 with music produced by Ogi.


Throughout the entirety of INTER this newsletter will update every Wednesday along with new music or comics releases, with the exception of breaks in the schedule. Each entry will lead with important news for anyone only interested in the announcement of new releases, followed by the occasional ramblings or news of unrelated projects from myself or collaborators below.

Where to find INTER updates:

Music will update every Wednesday.
Comics will be announced as necessary.

INTER is presented by Microfome and will include multiple collaborators as the story progresses.


With that out of the way...

                       (art by Rachel Ang)

I've wanted to do this for some time, tell an ongoing story in music without the confines of the usual running time of a single album. The limits of a format offer their own challenges and insights, but I wondered what would come of a more open ended project, something that allows for wandering and dwelling in a moment. As attention spans with music releases shorten, as do our expectations of the immediate availability of stories, it caused me to wonder: What would a modern musical epic poem sound like? And how could a long form work be stretched out to feel like an actual journey?

Growing up on serialized media like comics, cartoons, TV shows, there was something about that timeless nature that played the routine of weekly/monthly installments against the unpredictability of stories not contained to a set end date. Whether it was a sitcom that started and ended with the characters in roughly the same place every episode, the endless myths of superheroes, or radio dramas, each long running story had a certain reality of its own, a world that didn't always require absolute investment, a completionist binge watch, or a grasp of anything outside of what the story provided.

To fall into the rhythm of the serial is to be provided a frame for periods of life, or even instead a place outside of time. A relevant guide or an escape. The best part is, they existed in the world as pieces to be discovered, possibly out of order. The missing issue of a comic book at a garage sale, a chance encounter with a rerun of a previously unseen episode. These worlds existed with or without me, but they were always there waiting for my return if and when I chose, and the best of them still reward being read or watched in their entirety.

In terms of music, concept albums can also create their own world, one that can be stepped into at will, that maintains its own sort of internal logic, and though they're generally bound to a more rigid time span like movies, poetic storytelling, and particularly stories written to music, still hints towards a looser relationship with time through the repetition of music and rhyme/rhythm. The language of poetry and hip hop is able to circumvent logic for the sake of feeling or sound. It's something that music and poetry have in common with comics as well. A moving image or a train of thought is offered in fragments of the sequence, and how much is communicated between one frame to the next or one idea to the next relies on how well the unique language of this world makes itself known.

How all of these combine is the great question here, and the core of this work. INTER is an epic poem constructed in (nearly) real time, one that incorporates both a visual language and spoken language in comics and music. It's just as much of a serialized experience to me writing as I go as it is to anyone listening, and I'm hoping this is true for the talented people collaborating with me on this too.

INTER seeks to push against any limitations of form while sticking within the mediums of music and comics. Maybe some interesting answers will arise through the evolving story, but what compels me is process, the act of doing, starting the train without stops in mind. I'm welcoming anyone to join along for the ride, or come and go how you see fit.

As for the story itself, there isn't much I want to say here. The driving idea is discovery and experimentation, and I'll be sticking with that til the thing is done. There is an end in mind, specific plot points and ground the story will cover. A certain amount is done to varying degrees, and the further down the line it goes the more of a rough state it's in. Beyond this it's free to grow and carry the immediacy of something figuring itself out along the way.

INTER directly follows no Matic, an album about a world famous escape artist who decided to separate his spirit from his body in an effort to get out of a stifling performance contract. INTER stands alone as a tale of the wandering Spirit, while the album no Matic and the comic The Amazing Vanishing Man add an optional texture and a more tangible frame of reference, if that's what you're into.

Let's see where it takes us!

Daniel