Uncharted Sampler: Volumes 1​-​9

by LCW

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What the hell, LCW? You've been around for *how* long, and your full-length albums *already* number in the double digits?

Yeah, we know. Believe me, it seems weird to us, too. We're either dead and someone with high hopes of being another Alan Lomax has decided to release our recordings from a long-forgotten storage locker, or we're releasing everything we record.

I can assure you we're not dead, and we don't release everything we record. Well, not *quite* everything, but certainly a lot... That's just how things work for us.

All of our releases contain only high quality live-in-the-studio recordings made with an absolute minimum of post-production processing. In fact, we don't even mix our recordings. All the instruments go straight to a an analog mixer on which none of the controls have been touched for years. The stereo mix gets recorded to a CF card. I load the files onto my computer and run a script to do the post-production work. Hey, I'm lazy... The script trims the beginning and end of each track, runs a normalizer to bring the peaks up to full scale, and applies just a little bit of compression. Just a little, really: the peak-to-average ratio is somewhere around 10 dB, depending upon the dynamics of the recorded track. We're talking 1960's levels of compression, where the objective was to keep the needle from jumping the groove rather than trying to sound like the loudest possible recording.

OK, LCW doesn't spend a lot of time on production. That still doesn't explain so many releases. You have to *write* the tunes, right? Well, we write *while we're playing*, and play every tune exactly once.

I know you're thinking, "That can't be good" as you imagine fifty shades of "Down by the River."

It's not that at all.

So, "The Dark Star Variations", then...?

Maybe a little. Try imagining "Dark Star" without the musical scaffolding that made it recognizable as such. We think of bodies of work like "Dark Star" as more of a spiritual ancestor of LCW's music. And then that gets crossbred with the musicianship of a jazz trio. Not Jazz-as-you-know-it, but small-j jazz. Jazz as a mode of group composition. Irreproducible music.

Each of us decides what to play in the moment. Not in an "I'm gonna do my own thing and to hell with the rest you!" way, but rather in a "Holy cow, *now* what do I do to make this sound like music?" way. Remember, this is all in real-time. We don't stop to discuss. It's all forward motion. Put something out there and deal with the consequences, all the while trying to shape the resulting sounds into something that bears the structure of a tune. Or a suite. Or a symphony.

The best way to understand is to listen. Turn down the lights, warm up the lava lamp, kick back, put on your headphones, and pay attention. LCW's material definitely rewards detailed listening. Or put us on in the background while you're working. We don't mind our music being wallpaper if that's what you need.

Check us out at lcwmusic.bandcamp.com . If you like the music, come back for a visit now and then; there'll be more.


released May 8, 2017

Guitar/Looper/Effects/Synth: David Lamkins
Bass/Cello/Looper/Effects: Stephen Caird
Drums: Joe Williams

Recorded live at Lone Fir Cemetery Studio, Portland, OR.



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LCW Portland, Oregon

Guitar, effects, synthesizer: David Lamkins
Bass, cello, effects: Stephen Caird
Drums: Joe Williams

Recorded live, direct-to-stereo; no edits; no overdubs.

This is jam jazz as a group exploration in which all input contributes equally. The group's direction is a sum of individual vectors, determined entirely in the moment. LCW showcases exploration, not individual virtuosity or ego.
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