Check out this interview I did with Nashville mastering engineer Chris Frasco

Dark East Hip Hop Bundle

Fade

I have a knife!
Administrator
*** illest o.g. ***
Battle Points: 1
LOL about the mic stand. It's too bad about that manager stealing money from him though, I hate hearing stuff like that. Ugh.

Overall, great interview. It's interesting how he mentioned that most of the time you don't even get to meet the band you're mastering for.

The one thing I would have gotten into with him though is about the state of mastering today. I saw a video not long ago where a guy was showing tweaks he does for mastering but he also mentioned about HOW things are done today and went into the whole compression/loudness issue. I just really have a hard time listening to most of the stuff out today purely for that fact. Everything's just too loud, period. It's like the engineer just wants to blast your ears as much as possible.

We all know the story of the whole today vs. old days of mastering, but it's true. I don't want to get into all that but anyway, it's something I would love to hear from today's engineers. Is it possible to still send him that question?
 

Fade

I have a knife!
Administrator
*** illest o.g. ***
Battle Points: 1
I can, whats the specific question? Like what has changed in the last decade with mastering? What do you think @Fade
Well basically that. And also the loudness wars. I remember that example of Michael Jackson's music from 1982 vs. 2005 vs. 2012 or something like that. The differences were insane.
 

thedreampolice

When chemists die, we barium.
*** ill o.g. ***
Battle Points: 21
ok @Fade I got your question answered and it is in the interview about half way. https://www.bleedingpeanutbutter.com/interviews/mastering-engineer-chris-frasco-interview

What he basically said is
"
I'd like to think that mastering overall is getting less loud, and allowing the music to breathe... but that's only true about 50% of the time. The other 50% of clients absolutely do want their tracks as loud as possible. This is sometimes genre related. I have done terrible things in the name of hip-hop, loudness that I'd flat out refuse to create in any other style of music.

As annoying as worrying about it is, I agree with YouTube and Spotify stepping in and imposing attenuation. Something has to calm the loud. It's not musical, it doesn't sound good, and it makes the listener's ears fatigue.

I know that Ryan Adams has become something of a controversial figure, so I apologize for using him as an example, but he's the first guy that comes to mind who gets it. I think Heartbreaker, Love Is Hell, and Ashes and Fire are great examples of responsible loudness. Musical loudness. A joy to listen to loudness.

I think mix engineers have gotten the picture too. When I listen to new mixes for the first time, my first point of reference is the input meter on my API 2500. That sucker should be bouncing around freely, not pinned to the right. And more and more, I see mix engineers using less compression overall. Even better, I think it's finally become an agreed upon rule that there should be no limiting on the mixbuss.

As a mastering engineer, the most annoying and difficult task is trying to breathe dynamics back into a mix that has been peak limited into oblivion.

My only comment about the loudness wars is that we need to evolve beyond these Neanderthal ways of determining what's "good." Louder is NOT better, maniacally bright and/or boomy is NOT better. Vivid, spacious, emanating music is not only more enjoyable, it's much more realistic. And I can't stress this enough, a great piece of music will always shine through. A crappy recording of a great song is better than a hyper-produced poorly written song. Some of my all-time favorite recordings are just my friend Liam (who I mentioned earlier,) demoing songs via a built-in laptop mic. Recorded music is more than just a commodity that we buy and sell, it's a performance and a moment in time captured forever. In my book, sincerity will always be king.

"

Hope that answers your question.
 

Fade

I have a knife!
Administrator
*** illest o.g. ***
Battle Points: 1
That's a great answer! I like the point of enjoying a crappy recording over something purposely made loud though.

The other day I was checking an old 90s mixtape and I remembered how this was the norm back then, of course. Straight to tape, hiss, low volume, loud volume, but it didn't matter at the time. I just enjoyed the music. I think we've also become spoiled in the sense that we want everything perfect instead of just making music.

Another good point though is how engineers seem to be using less compression and making it not as loud, but maybe that's because of HOW it's being recorded today? Like for example, when I listen to my older beats I made on Maschine they're way louder than the ones that come out of my MPC 2500 right now.

Anyway, I just hope the loudness wars end already!
 

OGBama

Greatest Woman Alive
Who @thedreampolice started the loudness wars and what allowed it to continue? I feel it's bad from a hearing standpoint and for enjoyment/appreciation of listening to music.
 

thedreampolice

When chemists die, we barium.
*** ill o.g. ***
Battle Points: 21
Oh man, I think we have to blame the record labels in the 90's for that. Once you could get past digital zero in a way you could not with analog gear you could just squash forever. So to stay competitive labels for louder and louder and things sound "better" for the first few seconds of a song but got very tiring quickly. I think that's why a lot of people have returned to classic vinyl even heavy music is so pleasant to listen to for a long period of time. You can put on a black sabbath record and relax because it doesn't wear you out at least from a dynamic range perspective. This is a great article on the topic http://prorec.com/2013/05/over-the-limit-the-loudness-war/
 

Members online

illmuzik on youtube

Warzone Beat Battle
Dark East Hip Hop Bundle
Top