So there are these two albums of tunes I wrote and home-recorded a few years back and released on CD-R — that is to say, I made a few CD-R copies, but didn’t receive much interest in them and mostly ended up giving them away to people who didn’t ask for them and didn’t want them. I put the name Chuck Hoffman on the covers; I took on the name Distant Trains later, in 2010, in order to avoid confusion with various other people named Chuck Hoffman or Charles Hoffman, as well as for its psychological effects, which I needed at the time, of freeing me to new creative approaches by pretending this was a new band/project.

Here’s Title Of Photograph: Filled With Dread In Los Angeles. The material on it was recorded on my Yamaha cassette 8-track intermittently over a period from 2003 to 2008 in Waterloo, Iowa, first in my old trailer then later in that basement and garage of my house on Kingsley. The majority of people to end up with CD-R copies were people I rudely and unsolocitedly gave them to while I was on tour in July 2008 playing bass for Samuel Locke-Ward.

And here’s The Small Slate-Colored Thing. Most of it was recorded in that garage at Kingsley in the spring and summer of ’08. After I moved to Des Moines I put the finishing touches on it and mixed it and made a few CD-Rs that no one seemed to want.

There’s also a third album I put up on bandcamp that’s a collection of stuff that was left over at around the time I took on the name Distant Trains. It’s got some pretty interesting tunes and sounds on it too. The recording dates range from ’03 to ’10. Gabe W especially digs this one.

Of late, however, I’ve begin to consider these earlier releases as part of the whole Distant Trains continuum. Stylistically they don’t fit so much with the more experimental or noise-oriented tendencies of recent Distant Trains stuff (which is kinda just picking up on some approaches from my even earlier project Flight Attendants) — rather, these are one-man indie rock albums with some noise and industrial influences, but in that way they’re very much along the lines of Distant Trains’s Teen Lust album, which I have gotten some very good reactions to (and still have a goodly number of cassette copies of by the way, you should get one if you don’t have it). Pat at Lava Church says he loves it. And anyway I’ve declared Distant Trains to be open-ended in a genre or style sense, really just an overall identity for music I make primarily by myself, whatever it sounds like, and whether it has verses and choruses or doesn’t.

Here’s Teen Lust, by the way:

Anyway… here’s what I’m on about: something I’ve got to thinking about lately, and which I am posting this in order to try to gague interest in, is whether anyone would take an interest in a new release of this stuff. Hypothetically if I rebranded this stuff as Distant Trains albums and re-issued it on cassette or CD-R, would anyone want them? Or is just downloading these good enough for y’all? Or does nobody really give much of a crap about them at all? Post a comment.

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Podcast episode 2

Published on January 06, 2018