X-Sweet

X-Sweet is the original project. It started very bad. Probably hasn’t gotten any better since. X-Sweet is an attempt to do “real” songs. It’s usually me and a cheap drum machine someone left at my house. Started as tapes circulated among friends and by mail, then CDs. As of 2006’s “One Last Goodbye,” X-Sweet is all digital. As of April 2016, I’ve been sitting on a batch of about 20-30 songs, but just haven’t had the time to give them a proper recording. Maybe before the year is out.

Happy Life (2010)

HappyLifecover

1) The Key to a Happy Life (4:23)
2) Went Away (4:41)
3) Down Down (4:37)
4) So Much Blood (3:21)
5) We Are Walking Avatars (4:39)
6) Magic Nights (3:49)
7) Summer Bottles (5:28)
8) Ma vie est terminée (1:22)
9) The First is Last (3:27)
10) At the Window (3:04)

Recorded in 2009 and 2010 and released to the world via mp3. Recorded with FL Studio 6 and Adobe Audition. All songs by Eric San Juan. Cover photograph by Eric San Juan. Third record(and the last?) of phase 3 x-sweet. Heavily inspired by my bloody valentine, jesus and mary chain, ride, and others, but hopefully it forges its own ground. Recorded with fl studio 6 and 9, adobe audition. All songs by eric san juan. Cover photo by eric san juan. blah blah blah.

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Running Out (2007)

RunningOut

1) Entrance (Singing My Song) (0:40)
2) Country Road (3:06)
3) Got A Purple Pain (3:00)
4) Think That You’re On You’re Own (3:14)
5) Untitled New Song (3:56)
6) Interlude 1 (0:39)
7) Sunshine Girl (4:08)
8) Misery (2:04)
9) I’m Saying Goodbye (2:17)
10) When The Cows Come Home (3:47)
11) You Don’t Say (3:15)
12) Interlude 2 (0:40)
13) Runnin’ Round The Place (7:22)
14) Exit (Song Of Stars) (0:49)

Recorded in 2007 and released to the world via mp3. Recorded with FL Studio 6, CoolEdit Pro, and Adobe Audition. All songs by Eric San Juan. “Misery” written in 1994 in Austin, Texas, and is dedicated to Jeff Combs. Cover photograph by Eric San Juan.  Second album of X-Sweet phase three, tried to really explore a lot of approaches here. Some of it works, some of it doesn’t. I’m not altogether happy with the first few songs, but there are others on here I really like (“When The Cows Come Home,” “Runnin’ Round The Place”). This is how all over the map it is: “Misery” was written in 1994, and “I’m Saying Goodbye” was literally written while the tape was rolling; what appears here is not simply the first take, it’s actually just me making it up as I went along. As raw as anything I’ve ever put out there.

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One Last Goodbye (2006)

onelastgoodbye

1) The New X-Sweet (0:37)
2) Goodbye, My Friend (4:15)
3) Roll It Over (2:53)
4) Purple Rose (2:40)
5) Blue Moon (3:02)
6) Breaking (4:57)
7) Rowhouses (0:50)
8) The Bottom of Things (2:09)
9) Martha Dear (4:35)
10) Holy Roller (4:07)
11) Oh Sister (5:38)
12) One Last Goodbye (1:32)

Start of Phase Three. The first X-Sweet recorded to the PC rather than the four-track. Recorded using FL Studio 6 and CoolEdit Pro. Most songs were written circa 2002 or so as acoustic demos. Blue Moon is circa 1997. Purple Rose is 2006. Cover photo by Eric San Juan (of a great work of art). Phase 3 of X-Sweet begins here. My first experiment with moving songs onto the computer. Drums by FL Studio. Attempts to have a cleaner, less abrasive sound. Recorded in 2006, most of the songs were written in 2002 (though Blue Moon dates to 1997, and Purple Rose was brand new).

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Unfinished Stories About Stan (1998)

unfinishedstoriesaboutstan

1) Gentle (0:41)
2) Sunshine (4:55)
3) Heart of Stone (2:18)
4) Columbian Rain parts 1 and 2 (3:04)
5) Tortured Ways (3:10)
6) Until You Called (2:02)
7) Know That You (3:27)
8) Fish Boy (instrumental) (6:16)
9) Listless (2:42)
10) Vorashna (3:07)
11) In The Day (2:12)
12) Rosebush 2 (6:59)
13) Gentle (reprise)(0:47)

A collection of unfinished songs recorded in a rush right after completion of all over again. “Rosebush 2” is a different version of the song that originally appeared on Buddy Bradley Falls In Love.  Was intended to be the full follow-up to “all over again,” but floundered just as I was getting a grasp of doing My Bloody Valentine on the cheap. Brought back to life as a collection of ideas, unfinished efforts and instrumental musings. “Fish Boy” was written with vocals, pre-X-Sweet, but no recordings exist. Despite its unfinished nature, it’s among my favorite X-Sweets. The end of Phase Two.

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The Kitchen Conspiracy (and other distractions) (1997)

thekitchenconspiracy

1) The Kitchen Conspiracy (parts 1-6) (25:23)

  • a: Shifting Up (6:43)
  • b: The Pad Lowers (1:49)
  • c: The Tides of Europa (4:39)
  • d: The Slow Walk (4:57)
  • e: Meddle (2:58)
  • f: Holidays (5:17)

2) The Behavior of Guild Writers (parts 1-6) (22:28)

  • a: Delaney Sleeps (5:51)
  • b: Delaney Returns (1:46)
  • c: Birth (1:36)
  • d: Stutter (2:04)
  • e: Twitch (9:05)
  • f: Hum (2:05)

3) Your Baby Is Crying (14:43)

X-Sweet at its most pretentious and obnoxious, “The Kitchen Conspiracy” was supposed to be made up of noises from home appliances and the like, then I found out Pink Floyd wanted to do that, so I dropped the idea. Salvaged the tracks anyway. Recorded as an experiment in long songs and “suites,” this was probably as obnoxious as X-Sweet got … and it makes sense, as this coincided with the birth of both m2 and Slumbersigh, two projects that lived and breathed long, sprawling soundscapes. Following this experimental record, X-Sweet would never again venture so far into the experimental, instead retreating back into more traditional song structures. (Hell, I wouldn’t release an X-Sweet record for another TEN YEARS!) In truth, it qualified as X-Sweet almost entirely because of the crappy drum machine that all but defined pre-2006 X-Sweet. As of this writing (November 2009), I hope to remaster these recordings and once again unleash them on the world. Album cover is by the long lost Hai Tran. Hai, where are you?  All songs are largely first-take improv, with overdubs following along. “Holidays” is an exception. All songs by Eric San Juan except a brief clip from “Your Baby is Crying” by Jane’s Addiction. Cover image courtesy of Hai Tran from alt-music.smash-pumpkins.

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all over again (1997)

alloveragain

1) A Beginning (3:35)
2) The First Song In G (8:26)
3) Hal’s Last Words (2:51)
4) Destroy Her Gently (4:26)
5) The Tides of Europa (5:44)
6) Drifting In The Moonlight (5:48)
7) The One (7:57)
8) Delaney Sleeps (4:12)
9) Ultrasound (7:08)
10) Sialna’s Glade (4:19)

The start of “phase two” of X-Sweet. Lo-fi, noise/shoegazeish music recorded on my trusty old Tascam Porta 7 four-track. Really crappy drum machine, self-indulgence that sometimes goes on for too long, singing you can barely hear over the overdriven guitar. The sound gets more layered and noisy, the songs more self-indulgent. I was finally starting to feel my way into something of a comfort zone. Not quite there yet, but getting there. Initially “released” on cassette, where I mailed out many copies, and then moved to CD. The cassette version has a shorter edit of Hal’s Last Words, and Drifting in the Moonlight (and I think A Beginning) do not appear. Hal’s Last Words is a slightly reworked version of Where R U? I Can’t C U? from “Io, Europa, and Hal’s Last Words,” from which Destroy Her Gently is also drawn. The First Song in G once received airplay on a Canadian college radio station. Jumping headfirst into louder, more noisy sounds, and longer songs and soundscapes.

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all over again (cassette) (1997)

1) A Beginning (3:35)
2) The First Song In G (8:26)
3) Hal’s Last Words (2:18)
4) Destroy Her Gently (4:26)
5) The Tides of Europa (5:44)
6) The One (7:57)
7) Delaney Sleeps (4:12)
8) Ultrasound (7:08)
9) Sialna’s Glade
(4:19)

Cassette version. Mixes are slightly different than CD and digital version.

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Songs Never Heard (2000)

1) Funky Instrumental (3:23)
2) The Way She Looks At Me (2:35)
3) Gold (3:58)
4) Reverse Fortunes (3:20)
5) Four Days (2:23)
6) Song In D (3:40)
7) What The Vocals Sound Like (4:43)
8) Sad Songs (3:17)
9) Echoes (2:13)
10) Anlior
(14:00)

A collection of early X-Sweet songs that never made the final cut on the early cassettes. Distrubuted only to friends. CD release, given out in 2000 but recorded largely in 1995. The end of Phase One. Technically gathered in 2000, it’s listed here because it falls into this early period. This is a collection of songs that did not make the first four X-Sweet cassettes. As with any collection of cast-offs, this is some spotty bullshit. Since early X-Sweet is spotty bullshit to begin with, this is REALLY spotty bullshit.

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X-Sweet is Dead (1996)

xsweetisdead

1) Kevin’s Song (4:47)
2) See The Lines (3:01)
3) The Fall of Tulin (3:59)
4) Heaven Cent (Hope To Die) (3:15)
5) Superdeflated Love (3:13)
6) All My Bad Days (1:57)
7) Soft Echoing (She Weeps Softly) (4;10)
8) Big Strums (4:41)
9) Landscape (1:13)
10) Holidays (original version) (3:43)
11) Mt. Misery (1:52)
12) Unreal (12:30)

Recorded at a time when I was sick of doing X-Sweet … hence the title. The true end of Phase One, since “Songs Never Heard” (above) was recorded before this. I intended to drop X-Sweet at this point. Pretty scattered. The cassette version featured longer version of “Kevin’s Song” with different mix, and did not include “Landscape,” “Holidays,” “Mt. Misery” or “Unreal,” all of which I put on the CD version. Cover image from Frank Miller’s ‘Sin City.” “All My Bad Days” shamelessly stolen from The Flaming Lips.

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Snowed In (1995)

snowedin

1) Will Not See You Tonight (4:20)
2) Sally (5:15)
3) I Wanna Fall (4:22)
4) Three Chord Rhumba (1:47)
5) The Lily (I’m Very Sure) (4:24)
6) Goodbye (Bein’ High) (7:26)

Third in the initial trilogy. Distributed on cassette. Cover photo by Eric San Juan.

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Io, Europa, and Hal’s Last Words (1995)

ioeuropaandhalslastwords

1) No Better (3:15)
2) CP Trip (4:43)
3) Destroy Her Gently (4:17)
4) Where R U? I Can’t C U? (2:18)
5) Livin’ In The City (3:47)
6) One Song (3:30)
7) Entheme Revisited (3:50)

Second in the initial trilogy. Distributed on cassette. Handed out to friends, given away online, and sent to a few folks who review music. The music was, objectively, terrible. The poor drum machine that defined early X-Sweet was present, as was the poor recording, poor vocals (still have those), and poor songwriting. “Where R U? I Can’t C U?” and “Destroy Her Gently” would both later appear on all over again in a different form.

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Buddy Bradley Falls In Love (1995)

buddybradleyfallsinlove

1) Track #1 (3:53)
2) She’s Lookin’ (3:46)
3) Ride (2:45)
4) The Fields of Galadriel (3:15)
5) Rosebush (3:19)
6) ……. (0:23)
7) Night Alone (2:48)
8) Endtheme (6:50)

The first X-Sweet cassette. Distributed via snail mail and to friends. Photocopied cover features Frank Miller art (used without permission). Submitted this and the follow-up to an early website, where it was savaged in a review. Deservedly so. This is not good music.