I had some coherent final thoughts on this album, but these aren’t them. Even so, it might explain a few things. —Keir

I hope everyone enjoyed our revisiting of this album and everything in its orbit. I know we (or at least I) have never truly stopped talking/writing/posting/whatever about all my band stuff, so I appreciate everyone who read this for humoring me yet again. I’d like to say it’ll be the last time, but we all know better than that, don’t we?

Why? Well, when I started this series I had a plan to wrap it up with some grand unifying theory of nostalgia, but I already did that in book form a few years ago, and that thing’s not due for an anniversary til 2018, so it can go on hold for a while. Seriously though, this “How Far is the Fall” business was, for me, less a trip down memory lane than a necessary exorcism. To explain that, I think I’d better squeeze out one last drop of self-indulgence and expand a bit on what i said at the end of the previous post:

“This project was the beginning of the end of my obsession with ‘being in a band’ and getting too wrapped up in that as an identity. The time spent making this album was also the time that I finally landed a real job in the design business, so I kind of feel like it’s the bridge between two chapters in my life. That’s a lot to put on ten songs and eight grand, but when we finished it, we only played six more shows over the next twelve months, and then life exerted its gravity on Honey White as we moved on to other things. I also hear what every recording is: a document of specific songs made with four other creative people, in a particular location and time.”

I think what this thing really represented was the last time I’d really commit to making music with a group—or indeed undertaking any major creative project with a group, outside a professional context anyway. I didn’t know if I’d write any more lyrics after “Hold Still,” the “How Far is the Fall” outtake that was easily the nastiest, jerkiest thing I’d ever made. I was wrong—my subsequent “Weapon of Young Gods” fiction novel/instrumental soundtrack project ate up several years in its own right, but still inspired me to write lyrics again. And yes, we reunited Honey White (and even the Mojo Wire…sort of) in 2010 and released much fun stuff (some of which I’m pretty proud of), but that still seemed like a lark. We all have grown-up lives and responsibilities and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it does curtail the selfish impulses that so often fuel creativity. Or at least MY creativity.

And yet even that seems to be failing—or at least stalling—for me at the moment. Getting wrapped up in AIGA and other professional design commitments put a major dent in my home-recording/music-making time. It wasn’t a total loss, because I have spit out at least 5 new lyrics since 2013—but it’s taking forever to record the simple tunes I’ve composed for them and the project they’re attached to is still stuck in neutral. The funny thing is, I don’t mind. I don’t feel compelled to express myself with lyrics and music the way I did when I was 19 or 25 or 28 or 34 or whatever. It’s still there, and it’ll never go away, but it’s not so urgent anymore.

So by any measure, “How Far is the Fall” really was the last project of its kind for me and maybe for the other guys as well. Brian’s making great music with his wife Rebekah, and Bryn and Adam still get together and play, but it’s all obviously different and that’s not a bad thing. I read something about this years ago that really clicked with me: Derek Sivers of CD Baby (our distributor) once said this about indie musicians: that for so many of them out there, the finished album is the endpoint. Not the promotion/gigs/touring—simply the act of creating, recording and getting the music out of your own head, and I think that’s true. It’s a good yardstick these days when there’s little point in attempting a music career unless you really bust your ass to do it. But then that’s always been true, so who the hell knows.

Anyway, what IS probably true is that this Honey White album was the best expression of our overall aesthetic and how we created music together, and yet it also stands as the end of Honey White proper—or at least the beginning of the end, like I said above. I still count it as one of my best creative experiences even though it was at the beginning of my professional creative career. It seems like a contradiction, but contradiction is balance, right?

I dunno. Thanks for hanging in there with this stuff. I (and the others in the band) sure do appreciate it. If I ever do anything else for this site above and beyond the “parade of milestone anniversaries with only a few updates if Bryn or Brian have new projects or gigs to report on,” I’ll flog it to death the way I always do. Until then, enjoy all the other gloriously unprofessional music we made. This album was as close we got to being real pros, and it’s special.