“Burden”- When Darren (Mutemath’s drummer) sent me the demo of this, I thought it was beautiful already, but I thought adding a good amount of dissonance in the chords could make it even better. So I started building simple chords with the violin and viola, then added in dissonant notes to add tension. This was also reflected in the piano chords I recorded on top of the strings.
Mutemath “Clipping”- The crazy strings you hear at the beginning of the clip, were written by Darren King. He had an idea for the strings, but didn’t know how to explain what he was hearing, so he just sang it to me over the phone. I was going through a phase where I was using ukulele on everything, and I thought, “how cool would it be to play the ukulele on a Mutemath song?!?”. So I recorded the part that you hear in the clip, and they actually loved it.
Mutemath “Lost Year”- I seem to remember that I wrote the strings for this the night before the album had to be turned in. Paul called me around 8 p.m. and told me he was sending me a song, and that I should “just do my thing” with it. So I recorded a draft, and sent it over around midnight. We actually ended up making three more versions before we slept that night. We were having a hard time keeping the strings from sounding too sentimental. By around 6 the next morning, we finally found the sound we were looking for. Simplicity.
Mutemath “Pins and Needles”- This is probably my favorite thing I recorded on the Armistice album. At the time, I had never recorded in such a high register on the violin. I remember it took me hours to get a good take of the high violin part in the clip. It was a turning point for me to learn how to expand what I was doing on the violin sonically, and this opened up a lot of doors for my writing.