Ray Toler - Song-A-Day 2017

A Whole Different Vibe

At the end of 2016, I moved back to Milwaukee. I had given notice of my resignation from my executive role earlier in the year, wanting to live in at least the same city, if not the same house, as my wife. My writing during Song-A-Day 2016 was a big part of convincing myself that it was time to leave.

I was in the fortunate position to be able to take a break from work for a little while. I did so with the intent of getting our new house going, setting up the studio, and just doing some general decompression. I even flirted with the idea of going down to the Caribbean and getting my Dive Master and Instructor certifications. Mary’s still mad I didn’t do that.

The songs from 2017 convey an obvious difference in my mental state from the previous year. There’s a lot more chill, a lot more ambient. I felt free to take long breaths and try even more experimental things, especially with software and effects. There aren’t really any angry songs here. There are some dark things, but they’re dark rooms full of candles, not dark rooms full of teeth.

Another item of note – I spent most of January trying to get the studio set up. There are a lot of wires. February 1 showed up and, in typical Song-A-Day fashion, the impending deadline forced me to prioritize. The first track is all soft-synths – I didn’t have any physical gear other than the controller keyboard, computer, and monitors set up. Over the course of the month, I added pieces in as I needed them. The first vocal track shows up on the 11th, and that only because there was a challenge.

  1. Critical Path Ray Toler 3:27
  2. Peter Tricks the Magpie Ray Toler 3:50
  3. The Verdant Wasteland Ray Toler 7:16
  4. Octahedron Ray Toler 8:07
  5. Osaka Cascade Ray Toler 4:04
  6. Bad Hominid Ray Toler 3:58
  7. Hypnopompic Ray Toler 4:00
  8. Shoebox Ray Toler 1:28
  9. Conceptual Trajectory Ray Toler 3:31
  10. Cellin Ray Toler 3:04
  11. Failing Fast Ray Toler 3:08
  12. Lupus Interruptus Ray Toler 3:31
  13. The Sixth Prime Ray Toler 2:20
  14. Add A Track (C-D-R Mix) Ray Toler 1:52
  15. Pretty Bomb Ray Toler 2:28
  16. Steady Stateless Ray Toler 3:16
  17. The Forgotten Pond Ray Toler 1:58
  18. Sit Down, Mary Brown Ray Toler 3:57
  19. Wetware Diagnostic Ray Toler 6:48
  20. Gonna Funk All Night Ray Toler 5:50
  21. Somatic Cube Ray Toler 4:50
  22. Push/Pull Down (Chris Greacen Cover) Ray Toler 2:18
  23. Where I Cannot Follow Ray Toler 5:02
  24. Pulse Detonation Engine Ray Toler 3:34
  25. Seeker (Part I: Heliosphere) Ray Toler 9:23
  26. Seeker (Part II: The Oort Cloud) Ray Toler 9:46