Juxtaposition Liner Notes
All songs written, performed, mixed, and mastered by Chris Stark
Recording engineering by Marci Stark & Chris Stark
© 2017 Chris Stark - Groove Maneuver/ASCAP
1. Surfing The Jetstream
This is a high-energy modern take on the 50s and 60s instrumental guitar surf rock Stark grew up listening to. The rhythm guitar parts are the PRS Custom 24, and the lead parts are the blue floral pattern Ibanez JEM.
2. Angular Momentum
This song is a prog-rock-feeling piece with bursts of 9/8 and 5/4 time. This was actually the first song Stark wrote for the album. The rhythm guitars are the black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG, and all of the melody parts were played on the green nebula burst Ibanez S.
3. Highway One
This song was inspired by the few times Stark had the pleasure of driving down the scenic Big Sur coastline on California's Highway One. The rhythm guitar parts are a mix of PRS Custom 24 and Fender American Elite Stratocaster. He played his Strat for all the melody parts.
4. Dancing In The Rain
This track is sort of a country/folk-rock sounding tune inspired by the frequent heavy rain showers over Stark's home town. There are a lot of guitars on this song! The rhythm guitars are a mix of the Ibanez acoustic/electric, Fender American Elite Strat, and PRS Custom 24. The melody parts are played on the Strat, black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG, and green nebula burst Ibanez S.
5. I Beat The Wall Of Flesh
There is a story behind this song title! Stark was browsing an IT-related tech forum website one day at work at the observatory while trying to troubleshoot a weird Linux issue. In one of the margins on the web page, someone had listed an issue with the heading "I beat the wall of flesh but the jungle did not grow restless". It turns out that it was a game tester trying to get through part of a game being tested, but that didn't make it any less awesome of a title!
The song is a funky 70s-flavored Edgar Winter Group-inspired groove with just two guitars effectively playing the same thing (except a tiny little harmony bit). The first guitar is his Fender American Elite Strat with an octave effect, and the other is his black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG with no effects.
This track was inspired by Stark's love for all things related to gazing deeply into the night sky. It's sort of a prog-meets-fusion piece. The rhythm guitar parts were all played on his green nebula burst Ibanez S, and the melody parts were split between the Ibanez S, black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG, and floral blue Ibanez JEM.
7. Speed Of Night
This song is a straight-up jazz blues piece. This song started its life as a jazzy chord progression that Stark would frequently use with his looper pedal during practice sessions (Em9 - Am9 - F#m7b5 - Cmaj7 - B7). His guiding mantra during this song was a quote from Mozart:
The music is not in the notes, but in the silence in between.
The sparkly clean rhythm guitars in the chorus are his Fender American Elite Strat, and the melody guitar is his floral blue Ibanez JEM.
8. Pillars Of Creation
This song was inspired by the amazingly beautiful gas cloud structures of the Eagle Nebula (NGC 6611). This is a fusion of soundtrack-inspired electronic ambience and melodic rock. The heavy rhythm guitar parts from the chorus were played on his green nebula burst Ibanez S, and the melody parts were played on a variety of guitars: Ibanez 540R, black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG, floral blue Ibanez JEM, and the Ibanez S.
9. Memory Of A Friend
This melancholy song was inspired by the sad feelings that often accompany our memories of friends who have lost touch or who have passed on from this life. This song is entirely in 5/4 time. Stark is a big fan of Robert Smith and The Cure, and the soundscapes created in this song are a reflection of that influence. In this song, the lines are sometimes blurred between rhythm guitar and melody guitar. The guitars used on this song were his 7-string Jackson RR7R, black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG, Fender American Elite Stratocaster, green nebula burst Ibanez S, Gibson Les Paul, and floral blue Ibanez JEM.
10. Pacific Blue
This blues rock song was inspired by the gorgeous Pacific Ocean that surrounds the lush tropical islands where Stark lives. The rhythm guitar parts were played on his Fender American Elite Stratocaster and black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG, and the melody parts were played on the black onyx RG and his green nebula burst Ibanez S.
This is a straight ahead rock song with a lot of arpeggios and fun-to-play funky 70s-style classic rock riffs. This was the last song written for the album and the track that gave the album its name. There are a number of juxtaposed parts to this song (like the fluctuation between minor and major), but the entire album itself is a juxtaposition of various flavors of rock, so it felt like a perfect way to sum up both the album and the song.
The rhythm guitar parts on this song were played on the green nebula burst Ibanez S and Fender American Elite Stratocaster. The lead parts were played on the floral blue Ibanez JEM and black Ibanez JEM upgraded with DiMarzio Evolution pickups.
12. Joyride To Jupiter
This track is a high-energy classic rock shuffle inspired by daydreams of jumping in a spaceship and cruising around the solar system. The rhythm guitar parts were played on the Gibson Les Paul, and the melody parts were played on the PRS Custom 24 and floral blue Ibanez JEM.
13. Cumulonimbus (remaster)
This Satriani-groove inspired piece was a reaction to a series of out-of-season thunderstorms that battered Stark's home town earlier in 2017. The track has been remixed and remastered for additional clarity. This song was played entirely on the black onyx Ibanez J. Custom RG.
14. As Time Goes By (alt. version)
This song was the result of a late afternoon challenge Stark made to himself in early 2017 to write and record a song starting at 4pm and finish before midnight. The song was released earlier in 2017 as a free download, but afterwards even though played with a lot of feeling (and played the guitar melody in one take), Stark was a little disappointed in his sloppy playing on the original version. For this version, he re-recorded the melody lines with better articulation, timing, and melody. The rhythm guitar parts were played on the black onyx Ibanez J.Custom RG and the melody was played on the floral blue Ibanez JEM.