Singled Out: Gone Quite Mad's Neptune
I'll jump right into the juicy stuff and level with you readers: Neptune came about in the midst of a depression in the summer of 2015. Our previous drummer had just left the band, the singer (Christopher) and I had just moved apartments, and I had a pretty good little heartache going. I can recall remarking to Chris in the kitchen of our new place that this might be the way Cobain felt before he ended his relationship with consciousness; feeling completely spent of musical energy and ideas, feeling like there was nothing left to offer. It was a dark, reflective summer for me.
So I changed my approach to songwriting and simplified things. Or in the words of George Knox's character in Angels in the Outfield, "we're going back to fundamentals!" It pulled me out of my slump, and working together with Steve Remp, our new time-keeper with all his fresh ideas and youthful vigor (whom I affectionately refer to as 'Stove') and Joe (the bassist), we wrote the monster riff and the nasty, progface transition that permeate the song. Joe was all over it and added his ten cents, shaping the concussive exploits of the verses with a Tim Commerford-ish line (RATM for those not in the know) that takes me back to more than one stale-beer-smelling high school basement.
Chris penned lyrics that encapsulated the celestial brutality of the riff and also told a bit of a love story at the same time, which both played at my soft heart a little and makes the song as a whole more relate-able. His melodies call and respond to bass and guitar leads to tell the story and put the reader on Neptune's swirling blues watching this space race he concocted in his maniacal brain. In our practice studio through a haze of smoke and whiskey breath we improvised the middle section together in a decidedly latin flavor in a bit of a nod to the love story, albeit maybe unconsciously. But if you ask me, unconscious is the best way to play anyway.
This song is relentless but considering the conditions it was created in, I would expect no less from this group of musicians. It is best played (and consumed) loudly after a few stiff drinks. Or if you're feeling adventurous, stronger mind benders. You know, for science.