Riot — The Frantic Face of Mania

Side B of Electric Rain continues with the dark, driving drone of Riot. Above all, this piece seeks to capture the frantic, reckless nature of mania. That is to say, inappropriate risk-taking and delusional thinking. I have suffered from these symptoms in the past. They have debilitated me. But I'm happy to say that I've survived it and that I now put that energy to more creative purposes. So, here's the music.

Listen on YouTube: Riot

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The Making of Riot

Probably, Riot is the most genre-specific piece on the album Electric Rain. It is clearly a somewhat melodic example of drone music. I created the underlying drone in two takes. That is to say, using two different arpeggiator patterns keyed from the same single note. I then improvised a couple of passes over the resultant drone.

It was a tricky Mix-down. In other words, it was a challenge to bring out the many different voices in the music without making the mix too hot. But it was well worth the effort. In the end, everything comes through.

Riot - The many faces of mania.The Many Faces of Mania

Manic episodes come in many guises. For example, one can become hyper-focused on a particular activity. Or delving into unhealthy and destructive behavior. Sometimes the condition is so severe that the sufferer becomes delusional. Meanwhile, there is the downside of disrupted sleep and feelings of invincibility.

I've been on both sides of bipolar disorder. For the most part, I've created with the excess energy I have but I've also been on the destructive side of the scales. These days, I use my elevated moods for creativity. Medication has helped to smooth out the highs and lows and I find myself being far more productive as a result. I channel my moods into my writing and music. Art is a great mood stabilizer. I wouldn't be the same without it.

To sum up, this album is for those living with mental disabilities. I'm one of those people. But I chose to defy the definition. I chose to make music.

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