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Jasun Tipton (Abnormal Thought Patterns)

Interview with Jasun Tipton from Abnormal Thought Patterns
by Jasun Tipton at 14 August 2013, 2:14 PM

Jazz has played a huge part historically and musically in the evolution of Rock music. But one band has decided to expand on that influence and turn their latest record into a full-blown tribute to the music of improvisation and letting loose. ABNORMAL THOUGHT PATTERNS surely made a sweeping impression on Metal Temple’s Lex Mishukhin, who gave their new album “Manipulation Under Anesthesia” a shameless 9/10 rating. Guitarist and keyboardist Jasun Tipton sat down with Lex to tell him about his past zoning out to Jazz in his bedroom, and how those experiences have come to define him as a musician. 

Hey there Jasun, first of all I’d like to tell you how much I enjoyed your new album. It is truly one of the best I’ve heard in a long time, and also thank you for giving us at Metal-Temple this interview. How are you doing?

I'm doing great man. Appreciate the kind words and very happy to hear you're enjoying Manipulation Under Anesthesia.

First off, how did the decision come about to create an instrumental project rather than going with the traditional approach and recruiting a vocalist?

It was a complete accident, honestly. I basically finished putting together my recording studio and decided to do a couple of test runs with recording a couple of instrumentals. It was helping me learn the ins-and-outs of the new system that I had. One of those songs written was “Velocity and Acceleration" movements 1-4. Once Troy heard it he said, "We should put out an instrumental CD." I was hesitant to do it, and then I started playing it to some of my friends, and they just said, "This instrumental material needs to be heard". The reaction was very cool, and then we saw ANIMALS AS LEADERS out there playing and they were getting a great response for instrumental music. Mikey, Troy and I have always liked doing this style of music. With us playing together for so long it's an easy fit for us. I'm free to do whatever I want guitar-wise with ABNORMAL THOUGHT PATTERNS. I will play with a lot of feel in areas - a lot of crazy, abnormal patterns that work against and together with the crazy bass and drum lines and add some chord chemistry of Jazz with Fusion/Bop licks. As an instrumental act we can push the instruments as far as we want.

Manipulation Under Anesthesia is your second album, and a lot of artists consider the second record to be the toughest. How would you compare the writing and recording of this album to the first?

The first CD was much more stressful due to finding new things I wasn't aware of with my recording studio. You think you're all set to go but you find many bumps in the road along the way. With Manipulation Under Anesthesia I felt really at ease knowing how to use the gear. The writing process was great for me. Once I had a starting point it seemed the rest of the song would just write itself.

As I mentioned in my review, “Calculating Patterns” is almost pure Jazz, something very rare for a Metal album. Has Jazz been a big influence on you?

Thank you for the great compliment as I really wanted to bring a true Jazz feel and sound with "Calculating Patterns". My mom would play albums by Bill Evans, Pat Meheny, and Dave Brubeck to name a few. My mom played nothing but PAT METHENY's Travels for like two years straight. That album had a very big impact on my brother and I. I loved listening to "Are You Going With Me" and "As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls" on Travels. I studied Jazz for two years straight and it changed my whole thought process in regards to how I play and write new material. I thought I was doing pretty well until I saw RUSSEL MALONE perform a couple sets in San Francisco. Reality kicked in that it would take me forever to achieve the level of playing I desired. I would never claim to be a Jazz guitarist. I have a deep love and appreciation for Jazz music and I just happen to add some tricks of Jazz into my Progressive Metal style.

Your brother and you have a very distinctive sound, how did you go by creating it?

Troy and I always wanted to achieve our own style. We were influenced by so many bands and players that were all over the place in regards to styles and genres of music. We always wanted to tell a story with our music. One thing that really helped our style is we'd put a movie in the DVD player, mute the sound and play to what we saw on the screen. We'd play our instruments over the scenes we'd see in drama, documentary and horror movies which helped build our writing style.

There’s some use of electronics on the record. Is it something we can expect more of in the future?

I enjoy using electronics on our material but I'm not sure just yet. If the song calls for it I will it add it in. I get a better idea what to add after the guitars are recorded.

Manipulation Under Anesthesia flows very seamlessly. Was it written with that thought in mind?

We really concentrated on having a well-balanced album. There's a lot of dynamics and feel from song to song. Manipulation Under Anesthesia really does have a nice flow.

The technique on the album is absolutely fantastic. What got you to pick up a guitar in the first place?

The first band that really made me want play guitar was RITHCIE BLACKMORE'S RAINBOW. Blackmore is the man and his playing was all over the place. He was the first one to make me want to go out and buy a guitar.

Growing up in Northern California, who were your main influences as a young player?

Ritchie Blackmore, Pat Metheny, John Sykes, Jason Becker, Paul Gilbert, David Gilmour, Gary Moore, Marty Friedman, Buckethead, Sean Lane, Greg Howe and many more.

For our readers, where can they get a copy of your new album and other merchandise?

We're signed to Lifeforce Records Worldwide and they have great distribution. You can find it anywhere online and if you have a CD store near you they can always order it for you if they don't have it in stock. We'll have shirts up very soon at our website www.abnormalthoughtpatterns.com and on our Facebook page.

Are you planning shows in Europe any time soon?

We very much want to cross the Atlantic and play some dates. Once we finish up our tour with INTO ENTERNITY here in the States we'll chat it up with Lifeforce and see what we can put together. We'd love to do some festivals and shows out in Europe.

What are your hopes for the future of the band?

It's always great playing music with Troy and Mikey and we look forward to writing the next album in early 2014. Jason Montero is the second guitarist in Abnormal Thought Patterns. He's an amazing player and really good guy. Our goal is to keep writing and performing music we love and the band really wants to tour in Europe.

Thank you very much for this interview, and we at Metal-Temple wish you a lot of success. No doubt you deserve it! We hope to catch you in concert some time. Any last words for the readers?

Thank you for spreading the word about us and hope to be performing your way in the near future.



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