abbr. relation

abbr Front Cover CD“abbr. relation” will be my second EP. It is a mini-concept album in a couple dimensions. As the title perhaps more obviously indicates, the four songs cover the span of a relationship in a highly truncated manner.  Even with a limited run time of about fourteen minutes, the record possesses a surprising amount of diversity in musical texture, style, and emotion. Love is probably art’s most visited subject matter, but when carefully communicated through a personal voice it can provide an extremely powerful connection that transcends any sort of art-y nomenclature. To help emphasize and encourage that human exchange of knowing, I have shifted from the electronic sounds of my first EP to an organic ensemble of brass, woodwind, and rhythm instruments. This arrangement lends a jazz influenced classic rock sound to the album. However, my approach to songwriting and composition retains recognizable similarities between EP’s.

The concept of “abbr. relation” is also present in regard to the format and album art. On the cover is an image of cubes, tubes, and circles that captures the essence of a relationship as minimally as I could visually conceive. When considering the length of the EP, I had to compare my idealistic visions of how an album should be approached with how listeners will actually approach an album. Rather than try to make a full length album with high hopes that the average listener will commit time to the whole thing, I focused on making a cohesive four song EP. Each song leads into the next, much in the same way that many of my favorite records do. I am confident that “abbr. relation” contains a satisfying album experience that will make even avid iPod shufflers want to listen in full.

Track list:
1. Farmer’s Market
2. Sylviane
3. Star Projector
4. Goin’ Down

$5 for Iowa City area Pick-Up/Delivery

$7 for Shipping

This album was created as a post-post-art project in cooperation with the PS·Z FREE STUDIO RESIDENCY®. Each CD and sleeve was hand-printed by Dana at Zenzic Press. It is as much an edition of prints as it is an album. CD’s come with a free digital download code. If you aren’t into physical things, you can download the songs on Bandcamp.


Ryan Smith – Flute and Alto Saxophone
Jonathan Birdsall – Tenor Saxophone
Curt Oren – Baritone Saxophone
Peter Gillette – Trumpet
Zach Spindler – Trombone
Jayna Andersen – Tuba
Riley Cook – Drums