Tautologic's approach to songwriting is a sort of programmatic stylistic
eclecticism. The band uses various musical and lyrical genres and forms -
emulating and/or mutating them - as necessary to bring out the text and
subtext of the lyric.
Tautologic takes its name from the word "tautology," which in modern logic
is defined as a logical
statement which is unconditionally true for all the truth-possibilities of
its elementary propositions and by virtue of its logical form.
Conventionally, a tautology is a repetition of the same idea or statement
in other words.
The idea of a musical tautology stems from Ethan's belief that music is a
meta-language - a concept like language, but not one single language and
that taken as a whole, most music is tautological. It consists of the
repetition of musical ideas and forms in different "words," but there is a
fundamental intrinsic aesthetic truth to good music irrespective of
whether or not it conveys new information. Elegance in construction makes
music true to itself.
Sellers' and Buzby's use of different styles of music to set their lyrics
plays with the tension between expected subject matter for various genres
of music and the subject of their songs, such that the composer/lyricists
are in essence repeating lyrical themes from time memorial "in other
words" - the words in this case being both the musical and lyrical text.
Whether or not any style or combination of styles has been "done" or
likewise any lyrical topic has been explored before does not concern the
songwriters in Tautologic. Originality is the accidental consequence of
the workings of an original mind. Their primary pursuit is to make music
that is true, and leave the rest up to chance, fate, history, or whatever
force acts on aesthetic matters over time.