The Sad State of Music
I am all libraried out for the day. Today sucked, but sucked in a typical Murphy’s Law workday kind of way, with no humor… Just one pain in the balls after another, all day long.
Instead, I’d like to draw your attention to an interesting article that I read in Rolling Stone entitled, “The Death of High Fidelity.” I was aware of the practice of audio engineers compressing tracks to boost overall perceived volume levels, but this article (along with the video below) does a great job of illustrating what happens to a recording that is compressed vs. a recording that is left to breathe. The compressed tracks sacrifice the nuanced subtleties of dynamic range in order to compete for the typical consumer’s short attention span.
Although this might make sense from a marketing perspective, it really short shrifts music as an art form, and we the consumers miss out in the end. This is a relatively new phenomenon in the industry, say 15 years, and represents a disturbing trend of noise over quality. Some artists and labels do their best to keep compression at a minimum, but it’s becoming harder and harder for them to make their mark this way in what has become a very noisy world.
I like all kinds of music from Mozart to Black Sabbath, and I sincerely hope that record producers reconsider the mess they’re making each time they compress a track that would otherwise be an amazing piece of ear candy. There is often much beauty to discern in subtle things… Thanks for “listening.”