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Old 03-14-2014, 11:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Why is new/modern music so much louder?

I've noticed that all of the modern albums I have sound a lot louder. Sometimes so much that it makes listening to the album annoying after a while, but some others seem to do it right.

For this reason listening to an old 80's hardcore punk or thrash metal song can actually sound..not all that ''heavy''(for lack of better word) You can turn it on in the background, and it's not all that distractig to me. But than I listen to a newer album, and it's not the case. It's a lot louder, or ''heavier''

Sometimes the modern louder production makes it better to me, like, I know a feel ska/reggae albums that I like more because of the modern sound.
hey give me a certian ''feeling'' that the older sound doesn't give me.

what is it that makes some of the modern ''loud'' albums so annoying to me after listening to them for too long(even if I like the album), while others I don't mind.
Take System of a Down, Alternative metal. I like the band, but after a while the sound of the album just gets on my nerves.
System Of A Down - Cigaro #04 - YouTube (2005)
Most Nu Metal and Alternative Metal bands are like this.

But this modern Thrash Metal album has distortion guitars that don't annoy me, yet it's still as ''loud'' with the modern sound:

Sacrifice-The Ones I Condemn - YouTube (2009)

Now let's make a comparison to an old thrash metal album and a newer one.
Testament's first album from 1987:

Testament - Over The Wall - YouTube

Testament's 2012 album:

Testament - Rise Up - YouTube

Same band, newer album. They're the same type of music(although the newer once are quite groovier, since they're ususally mid tempo instead of fast). Yet, the newer one ''feels'' heavier to me. I guess it's just a lot louder. I prefer the older one in this case.

So why are modern albums so much louder? What happened there? And why am I put off by this in some modern albums, but not with others?
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Old 03-14-2014, 11:24 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Are you talking volume loud? Because that's to do with better production technology available today. If you're talking louder musically, I think that's just because the market is craving heavier music, so bands like Testament is catering to them. Then again, there are just as many, if not more bands that don't use the loud approach but mix rock/metal with acoustic interludes and stuff like that.
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Old 03-14-2014, 11:39 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Maybe it's the leftovers by 90s grunge.
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Old 03-14-2014, 11:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I think you're probably talking about The Loudness War.
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Old 03-14-2014, 12:30 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Janszoon View Post
I think you're probably talking about The Loudness War.
There's an actual wikipedia article on this? 0.o.
Definitely gonna read this..

edit: funny how it mentions metallica's Death Magnetic. Modern metallica also annoys me with it's production. Ever since the black self titled album.

Last edited by Dylstew; 03-14-2014 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 03-14-2014, 01:18 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I understand what you're saying here, and I've noticed this too (especially with SOAD), but it seems to me like this thread is yet another attempt to bash modern music–and I don't want to hear anymore of that fallacy of composition bull****.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dylstew View Post
edit: funny how it mentions metallica's Death Magnetic. Modern metallica also annoys me with it's production. Ever since the black self titled album.
This right here is basically the kind of **** I can't stand. wtf do you even mean here with this statement about the production??
The simplest explanation for why it sounds weird to you, is that you simply don't like modern Metallica...


Anyway, as far as the loudness, I don't see what the problem is, I always have soundcheck enabled anyways. I am displeased to hear that some bands artificially increase the volume of a CD at the loss of sound quality.

If that's really true, it's majorly f'd up, and I'm with you in that that needs to stop.
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Old 03-14-2014, 01:20 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Wpnfire View Post

Anyway, as far as the loudness, I don't see what the problem is, I always have soundcheck enabled anyways. I am displeased to hear that some bands artificially increase the volume of a CD at the loss of sound quality.

If that's really true, it's majorly f'd up, and I'm with you in that that needs to stop.
It is really true and it's not just some bands, it's an industry-wide phenomenon.
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Old 03-14-2014, 01:27 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wpnfire View Post
I understand what you're saying here, and I've noticed this too (especially with SOAD), but it seems to me like this thread is yet another attempt to bash modern music–and I don't want to hear anymore of that fallacy of composition bull****.



This right here is basically the kind of **** I can't stand. wtf do you even mean here with this statement about the production??
The simplest explanation for why it sounds weird to you, is that you simply don't like modern Metallica...


Anyway, as far as the loudness, I don't see what the problem is, I always have soundcheck enabled anyways. I am displeased to hear that some bands artificially increase the volume of a CD at the loss of sound quality.

If that's really true, it's majorly f'd up, and I'm with you in that that needs to stop.
I'm in no way bashing modern music, there's plenty of modern music that I love, I'm 17 years old.(Even if I was older, I wouldn't limit myself to just older music, that would make no sense) But it's just that I noticed the loudness, and with some albums the loudness got on my nerves after a while, while with others it didn't. You're right, I don't like modern metallica in general(I don't hate it though, I think it's okay). But I actually like SOAD.
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Old 03-14-2014, 01:43 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Yeah this is noticeable. Whenever I play an older album right after playing a newer album with the volume the same, the older one is noticeably softer.

I've also got mixed feelings about other aspects of modern production. It's sharp and clear, but at the same time it often sounds sterile. IMO the best-sounding albums (sound quality-wise) are from the early 70's. A lot of stuff I listen to from that era sound like they were recorded in a wood-panelled studio with heavy carpeting and mics muffled just right. It's got a nice, soft, warm sound which is also clear but doesn't have the tinny/lo-fi sound you hear in a lot of mid-60's and earlier music.

Even when I listen to a modern album that was recorded, say, in someone's house, it still has a bit of a sterile vibe to it. I note this is regardless of the quality of the music itself.
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Old 03-14-2014, 01:50 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Here's what I'm talking about. Both these are mellow, acoustic songs. The Grizzly Bear tune is noticeably louder and clearer, which is OK in one respect, but the production on the Carole King song is very nice 'n soft and gives it more "atmosphere" IMO.

2006:
http://grooveshark.com/s/Easier/4HcWWX?src=5

1972:
http://grooveshark.com/s/Been+To+Canaan/6yHVYK?src=5
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Last edited by DriveYourCarDownToTheSea; 03-14-2014 at 01:56 PM.
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