Best/Worst-produced rock albums/tracks?

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by The Mock Turtle Regulator, Oct 25, 2001.

  1. people seem to have differing opinions as to what constitutes good production, so I'm interested to hear what forumers choices of best and worst production on albums are.
    (I suspect that on here if there's a lack of bass then it would tend to automatically qualify as badly produced :) )

    here's a brief list of my faves/pet hates;

    Well produced
    Metallica- Black album,Master of Puppets
    XTC- Black Sea
    The Cure- Disintegration, The head on the door
    The Stranglers- La Folie
    King's X- Dogman
    Megadeth- Countdown to Extinction, The world needs a hero
    Black Sabbath-Paranoid
    The Cult- She sells sanctuary(track)
    Stone Temple Pilots-Core
    Public Image Limited-Rise(Bob Clearmountain remixed version)
    Van Halen- Fair warning (great bass sounds)
    The Beatles-Seargeant Pepper's....

    Badly produced
    Metallica- Kill'em all(muddy bass tone), And Justice for all(no bass-arrgghh!)
    Megadeth-rust in peace(too much reverb)
    Bodycount-Born dead (hardly any bass, too loud drums)
    Soundgarden- Badmotorfinger- tinny bass drum and bass
    Pantera- Vulgar Display of power- buried bass, tinny bass drum(s) (same producer as above)
    Van Halen-For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge- too much reverb
  2. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Well Produced Rock
    Anything produced by-
    George Martin(including Blow By Blow)
    Gary Katz(doesn't get much 'slicker' than Steely Dan, right?)
    Jim Guercio(Chicago's & BS&T's early producer; maybe not as 'polished'...everything just seems to sit "just right" in the mix).

    On a tangent-
    ...needless to say, everything outta Nashville is well-produced.
  3. GOOD -
    311, particularly Grassroots and Transistor: just all around good tone, perfect level balance for each instrument, nothing buried.

    Weezer - Pinkerton: i like this production because it sounds raw, but not sloppy. sometimes, there's something to be said for a boomy bass drum.

    Yo La Tengo - I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One: very interesting production, not in the traditional sense, but everything sounds just right for each particular song. sometimes the vocals are buried, for example, but it sounds right that way.

    BAD -
    the only thing that jumps to mind is Santana - Lotus. sure, Carlos is a great guitarist, but that doesn't mean he should be twice as loud as everything else.
  4. Good -
    Any Beatles album
    Pet Sounds - Beach Boys
    Any Pink Floyd album, especially DSOTM and the Wall.
    Nirvana - Nevermind
    Radiohead - OK Computer
    Californication - Chili Peppers
    Any Micheal Jackson album

    These have barely any production, but sound good that way:

    White Light / White Heat - The Velvet Underground
    Bleach - Nirvana
    To Record Only Water For Ten Days - John Frusciante
    Any Bob Dylan album

    Bad production:

    Saucerful Of Secrets - Pink Floyd (cant even hear vocals!)
    Some Beatles songs have vocals mixed too low.

    i'll think of more
  5. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I would agree that when I think of "Good Production" I think of Steely Dan, but to me it's an interesting example as I think "Katy Lied" sounds badly-produced in places - I really hate the production on "BlackFriday" and forward it on when it comes up. But every other album is a model for production - maybe they all just had a bad time with that album?

    I think another model is Todd Rundgren who does some amazing things with production effects on "A Wizard a True Star" and "Todd".

    A couple of mentions for Brit producers - so Tevor Horn makes anything sound amazing - Grace Jones "Slave to the Rhythm" has incredible production for example.

    But my all-time favourite rock producer is Martin Hannett - I like anything where he is the producer, but all time favourite albums for production are "Closer" by Joy Division and "The Correct Use of Soap" by Magazine.

    Worst production - first Clash album - drums sound like cardboard boxes and all the energy is sucked out of the band's sound!!
  6. red-hot-bassist


    Sep 18, 2001
    it's a shame that badmotorfinger by soundgarden dosent have a more audible bass, since in my opinion it is a vbery good album (outshined and jesus christ pose).

    Kill em All by metallica is by far my favioriite metallica album for bass, the licks are more inventive and have a more definate style rather than just playing under the guitar.


    Incesticide, by far the weakest Nirvana album has a lot of good bass but dosent quite capture the rawness of bleach...erm...any other suggestions, or should we just say any jaco album?
  7. good
    Hypocrissy - my final chapter
    Gorefest - Soul Survivor
    All Muse albums.
    Cradle of Filth - Vempire, or dark faerytaled in phallustein
    All Seputura & soulfly albums

    Immortal - Battles in the north...very little bass, but the sound fits the music-type ( black metal ) like a glove.

    Cradle of Filth - Dusk and her embrace ( too little volume )
    All KoRn albums ( not production wise, but bass-tone wise )
    Taproot - Gift ( too much guitar, too little bass)
    All Iron maiden albums ( too much mids, too little lows )
  8. barroso


    Aug 16, 2000
    too little lows in iron maiden albums... it's time to replace tour woofer, allodox!:D
  9. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    "tour woofer" - is that like a canine mascot? So which bands take a dog on the road with them? ;)
  10. The 'tour woofer' is the ugliest groupie. Which ever band member draws the short straw ends up with her.
  11. Jeffrey A-Bomb

    Jeffrey A-Bomb Drink Coffee & Destroy Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2000
    Silver Spring, MD
    I think that the chili pepper's 'californication' album is really badly produced. The sound levels are all screwed up and it's recorded too loud.
  12. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Eh! :confused: Haven't you got a volume control on your system? I would go the other way - the louder the better, you can alway turn it down! :D
  13. barroso


    Aug 16, 2000
  14. Great production:

    Spoon - Girls Can Tell (simply incredible)
    Modest Mouse - The Moon and Antarctica
    Archers of Loaf - White Trash Heroes
    Shellac - 1000 Hurts
    The Cure - Disintegration
    Jets To Brazil - Four Cornered Night
    Slint - Spiderland
    Joy Division - Closer


    The Stooges - Raw Power
    At The Drive In - In/Casino/Out
  15. Jeffrey A-Bomb

    Jeffrey A-Bomb Drink Coffee & Destroy Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2000
    Silver Spring, MD
    Heh, every song is almost to the point of clipping. If you make mp3s from the cds, the songs clip and distort ;)
  16. Maybe that was the idea?
  17. Californication
    yeah, I found that the level's too high on that album too- it clips on both my PC and home hifi.
    whoever mastered needs to be sacked.

    Martin Hannett - yeah, I like his production a lot too- he played bass, so the bass is always prominent in the mix (also he's said to have influenced Peter Hook's style- there's a Hannett tribute site )

    other well produced albums- Nirvana- Nevermind, Garbage- Garbage,Version 2.0 (Butch Vig on both)
    The Police- Ghost in the machine, Synchronicity
  18. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    There are many well produced, but I have one album that certainly sticks out as the WORST production: Scorpio Rising - "Pig Symphony". Very unpleasing mix, it's so HARSH! It penetrates like a 2-inch drill through your ear drums! I can stand so-so songs if they sound nice, but I can't listen to more than one minute at a time to this album without some drastic EQ scooping.
  19. Nate Dawg

    Nate Dawg

    Apr 8, 2000
    Denver, CO
    I agree that Shellac albums are very well produced. Most of the stuff that Steve Albini does sounds great.

    As for ATDI, I agree that "In/Casino/Out" isn't the greatest recording, but it only sounds that way when you compare it to "Relationship of Command." Personally, I think ROC is a little overproduced (thanks to Ross Robinson). Too much reverb and compression.
  20. KillsOn4String


    Jul 11, 2001
    What about R.A.T.M. I happen to like the sound and structure of the bass lines my self. Maybe it's just me.