Chad and Ted
It's really all about the music isn't it? Listen first before you read on. Or, if you're into multi-tasking, listen and read simultaneously. (Makes my brain hurt just thinking about it.)
Wenceslas (1.7MB MP3 128kbps)
We Three Kings (1.9MB MP3 128kbps) - The demo that started it all.
Jingle Bells (youtube) - Somebody put this up for us. Not really a video.
In previous years, Ted had found that putting together a collection of poorly performed Christmas tunes in his home studio was a really cheap way to solve the "What should I get everybody for Xmas THIS year?" problem. His early recordings were mostly Easy Listening/Avant Garde with the help of Super-Drummer Tom Moran.
The Archdiocese idea was inspired by the Beavis and Butthead Christmas special where B&B point out that Tchaikovsky's Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy "sounds like Ozzy". Ted felt that B&B would probably think "Archdiocese" was a cool name for a band. Especially since they would have no idea what it really means. Butthead: "Huh huh huh, yeah, it sounds really evil." Beavis: "Yeah yeah yeah!"
So, Ted and Chad headed into the studio to try out the idea. Ted had heard about Amy Grant and Vanessa Williams' producer making them eat lots of Potato Chips before singing to get that sparkling vocal quality (I guess the Aphex Aural ExciterTM was in the shop). He decided he would do something similar and made Chad eat lots of Keebler Chocolate Fudge Cookies and Milk before singing to get that "extra-gooky" vocal quality. After a short few hours in the studio, they emerged with a demo of We Three Kings that they played for a select test audience. One of their pregnant co-workers who heard the tape laughed so hard, she almost had her baby right on the spot.
This was enough to convince Ted and Chad that they had a winner. They went back into the studio and toiled away at the masterpiece that you have before you.
Archdiocese' latest effort entitled "Showtunes" has come to a screeching halt due to a breakdown in licensing talks with the Rodgers and Hammerstein Organization. Apparently, no one there thinks Archdiocese would be good for their public image. They do have a point....
Ted is pretty depressed over the whole thing, and hopes that one day Archdiocese can go back into the studio and record what they do best: Public Domain Christmas music.
Barney the Dinosaur, Bob Singleton, Sesame Street, Mister Roger's Neighborhood, Arthur and Friends, They Might Be Giants, Spinal Tap, Beavis and Butthead, Ozzy Osbourne, Last Supper
Ted and Chad
Click on these photos for larger versions.
Ted and Chad
Chad and Ted
performing at the future site of
Ted Team Studios, Adamstown
Chad preparing to overdub
a single word.
Chad learning a melody.
Ted preparing to punch
Ted, possessed by the spirit
of J.J.Jammer, cuts a temporary
|Recorded:||June 1994 - December 1994|
|Location:||Ted Team Studios, Montgomery Village|
|Songs:||We Three Kings, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, Jingle Bells, Wenceslas, Rufro, Deck the Halls, Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy. (Bonus track: Slippery Snow)|
|Format:||Unfinished Magnum Opus|
|Recorded:||June 1998, September 2007|
|Released:||Unreleased due to copyright issues|
|Location:||Ted Team Studios, Adamstown|
|Songs:||Oklahoma, Tomorrow, Goatherd|
"Heavy Metal's contribution to the family spirit of
Christmas is often undervalued. And frankly, is that a
surprise? Apart from Slade's classic "Merry Christmas
Everybody" and the Spinal Tap rarity "Christmas with the
Devil", headbangers haven't had much to work with. But
that's all changed now, with the advent of the extraordinary
"Archdiocese Christmas" by the Maryland rockers Archdiocese.
While the 'Cese have been around for a few years, this marks
their first official release - and what a release it is; a
release for the eardrums, and certainly a release for my
overly tense bowels. But I digress. After two minor
scene-setting songs ("Slippery Snow" and "Dance of the Sugar
Plum Fairies"), Archdiocese reach their rampant best across
the Xmas soundscapes of "Jingle Bells" (clearly recorded in
homage to Master of Horror and former Maryland resident E.A.
Poe's "the Bells"), "Wenceslas" (no doubt in tribute to
Czech president and Metal fan Vaclev Havel), "God Rest ye
Merry Gentlemen" (the ultimate in up-beat feel-good
Christmas metal), "Deck the Halls" (a surrealist ode to a
woman named Holly who apparently bows a lot - although I
haven't worked out who to), and the 'Cese Uber-metal
masterpiece "We Three Kings", a riveting deconstruction of
the failure of the republican ideal in the Western
Hemisphere, a monarchist call to arms, a siren sound of
alienation amidst the rubble of the American Dream. All I
can say is: Wow. Archdiocese have reached out and grapped a
much-needed musical void by the jugular and made it their
- Alasdair Brooks, University Radio York (12/9/1999)
"Archdiocese Xmas- A scintillating mix of traditional Xmas songs with a truly modern reinterpretation which lends an air of modern angst to what may otherwise be considered trite, charming drivel. Killer tunes. It went over well with everyone I let listen to it (luckily I am qualified at CPR). It is a guaranteed show stopper. Rufro was a bit sketchy, a more mix-it-up approach would have been more festive, as it was, it just seemed spliced. DOTSPF was quite festive. The guitar lends that certain jenesaisquoi. Oh yeah, nice mix. If you need a cover for this years issuance, lemme know."
- John Starmer of Starm Troopers
Ok, John, here's the concept for the cover art. Wenceslas. It's late evening. So late, even the snow on the mountain looks dark. The light has long since faded and left the world colorless. Two figures are walking toward a campfire in the distance. One figure is taller than the other and wears a crown. Both figures are shrouded in long dark cloaks. Neither appears to be carrying anything. The campfire has obviously burned out a while ago leaving only a slender stream of smoke drifting into the sky. Sitting next to the campfire is a skeleton. A dead pine tree covered in snow balances out the composition. (John's been pretty busy lately, so if any artist fans out there want to provide an interpretation of this concept (or any other for that matter), I'd be very happy to put it up on the site.)
"Well, I cranked up the old Altec Lansing PC speakers and hit play. Caroline [our two-year-old] started crying, the dogs started howling, and the cat couldn't make it out the cat door fast enough. I'd say Goatherd is a keeper!!!!!"
- Darrin Danner of Absolute Value
"What a righteous skankin' pickle break in the middle. Nice grooves mon. Yos play sweet for'n da white boy!"
- Keith Richmond
"What a comeback! You should definitely continue with the showtunes, but really make it your own."
- Tom Moran of Natural Log
"Love that singer. You guys could open for
- Sean Conneally
"The longer you listen, the more ridiculous it is."
"Mr. Mynhier is truly a gifted individual."
- Dave Chelsea-Seifert of Absolute Value
"If I were a pregnant lady, I'd go into labor hearing this!"
- Shauna Skye
If you really love Archdiocese, and you read all the way to the end of this, you might find something interesting here. Enjoy.