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  • Writer's pictureMichael Lenzi

(Re)Collection: Resplendent: Am I Free?/I Am Free

Updated: Jun 13

In 2004, I started and finished this record. It felt like a big accomplishment at the time. I had a lot of help from my friend Derek Cullimore on guitar. Normally, guitar was not a feature of Resplendent songs. Most songs in the past were written with drum samplers and keyboard samplers. So it was a change.

I played my only show as Resplendent in 2005 with Patrick O'Connell on guitar and Joe Adamik on drums. We played at the Hideout and shared the bill with my friends John Klos and Patrick O'Connell. The show is a blur. I don't know if we were even any good. I attempted to play guitar live. Somewhere I have a recording of the show to which I have never listened. Maybe some day I will post the show.

You can find the music here on my website in my Music section:


In My Quiet Car

Summer Breeze

Destiny Afterbirth

Stately & Graceful

I Am Free

Dust of Luck

Drink Deep

Beer Muscles

A Tourist No More


Sometimes my earnestness and attempts at sincerity embarrass me. But embarrassment is how I know I have said something I wanted to express but was scared to say.

A poignant example is this song, Beer Muscles.

Liner Notes:

This music was recorded on a Tascam TSR-8 analog 1/2" tape machine over the course of the calendar year 2004 at the Plastic Skull Studio. No computers were used in the recording or mixing. All tracks were mixed on an ancient and rickety Soundcraft 200B 16 channel board.

Each song began as a set of sample sequences made from scratch on a Roland DJ-70 MKII sampling workstation and Akai MPC60 and MPX2000XL sampling drum machines. Every sound and sample was created by Resplendent.

The notable and awesome exception is the bombastic guitar, drum and bass loop on Hope which was taken from a song written and performed by The Fast Times Rock and Roll Band. Thanks to my friend Sean Sullivan for allowing me to use it.

Derek Cullimore wrote and played almost all of the guitar parts. He is largely responsible for the guitar-oriented direction songs took. Brent Larson (of Scary Monsters) played the wicked guitar solo on Hope and Patrick O'Connell did the guitar bits at the end of the track. Patrick also played the chorus guitar part on In My Quiet Car and the bass part on A Tourist No More. Flute parts on In My Quiet Car and Hope were written and performed by Chris Neal. Guitar at the very end of In My Quiet Car was played by Tim Rutili.

Drink Deep is a cover. Rites of Spring recorded it in February of '85 and it stands as one of the most beautiful and crushing songs ever. My version is more of a tribute than an exact cover. It stands close to the flame but is not trying to be the flame.

All songs were written, recorded, mixed and manufactured by Resplendent. Hope was pre-mastered by my longtime friend and former Gold Medal bandmate Tony Rolando in a dusty loft somewhere in Brooklyn in November 2004. Mike Hagler masters the recording at Kingsize Sound Lab. Steve Walters screen printed the covers and cases.

John Kendelhardt, my friend and creator of the website, did the design and layout of the liner notes. He is responsible for moving a lot of my thoughts and ideas forward. Thanks for the inspiration.

It would be wrong not to mention how much the following 6 albums really influenced my thoughts this past year when I was writing the material for this record (it would be truthful if I said they haunted me): Neil Young "After the Gold Rush", Notorious B.I.G. "Ready to Die", Talking Heads "More Songs About Buildings and Food", Swervedriver "Mezcal Head", Bruce Springsteen "Nebraska" and "The Wild, The Innocent, The E Street Shuffle." A million thanks to the people who made these records. It's impossible for me to be cynical when such amazing songs exist.

Thanks and love to everyone who assisted me.

Peace and Hope,

Michael Lenzi

Note: the lyrics to all the songs appear on the flip sides of the pages below.

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