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Most modern music has no dynamic contrast

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Davidoc, Oct 24, 2005.

  1. Modern rock/pop music needs dynamic contrast. I havn't heard any remotely modern rock song that has any significant dynamic contrast, which is not good.
  2. arbitrary

    arbitrary Supporting Member

    Oct 24, 2005
    Boston, MA
    Which modern music are you generalizing? Who are you listening to?
  3. For example, anything played on an FM radio station. (Yes, I am making a very big generalization.)
  4. arbitrary

    arbitrary Supporting Member

    Oct 24, 2005
    Boston, MA
    89.1 FM is a jazz station here.
    101.1 is a hard rock station.
    94.7 is an alternative station.
    105.9 is a pop/hip hip/ r&b station.
    91.5 FM is public broadcasting as well.
    I'm sure there mst be a less vague way of saying what you are trying to say.
    About 3 months ago I installed a cd player in my car, so I'm completely against pop radio, w/some exeptions.
  5. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    Um, isn't this more a byproduct of heavy and specific compression used on radio broadcasts rather than of the production of the music?
  6. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Most records today (even jazz) are crushed with distortion and autotuners until there's no dynamics whatsoever. Very aggravating.
    Damn, suddenly I sound like Mixerman.
  7. could music still be dynamic even if it's the same volume all the time?

    I mean, in a song where the bass and drums drop out, but the sax and guitar still play, is that dynamic, even though it's not the TRUE definition?

    Speaking of compression, I've offen have ripped an mp3 to audacity or something and find little blue lines to indicate clipping. Makes me annoyed.
  8. Er... that is quite a broad generalization, initial poster.
  9. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Yeah brick wall limiters aren't uncommon these days when it comes to mixing.
    I can't think of a single recent record with airy, classy and dynamic mix.
  10. FenderHotRod


    Sep 1, 2004
    I know what he is talking about and yes I agree. I just don't know how to explain it. If I did explain it my post would be to long and nobody would read it.
  11. arbitrary

    arbitrary Supporting Member

    Oct 24, 2005
    Boston, MA
    If this is about the volume levels in regards then that makes complete sense w/compression/limiters. Don't radio stations adjust eq different from the album?
  12. I think I'll bring this old thread back from the dead, as I still notice this issue. Forget my earlier radio example. Right now I am listening to a playlist of music files from assorted bands and artists including The Offspring, Rancid, Sublime, Joe Satriani, AC/DC/Joan Jett/GnR, RHCP etc. Within each of these songs, there was little-no significant dynamic contrast. If I had to guess, I would say that some of this problem has to do with compression abuse.

    I recently bought a new computer games (Age of Empires 3), and was blown away by the end-game music. Why? Because the music (synthed orchestra) exhibited great dynamic contrast- something I'm not used to hearing from music coming from my computer speakers.

    Now, I understand that there are some practical advantages to dynamic consistency in audio. Movies tend not to have this issue. They'll have very quiet parts and very loud parts. Often times I will be watching a movie at an acceptable volume to hear the dialogue, but not loud enough to upset my family. When a loud action scene happens, my father will often yell at me to turn it down. I am personally glad that movies often have great dynamic contrast, but having a controlled, compressed level can have some advantages along the lines of this example. This can apply to music as well.

    I know, but I still stand by the statement.
  13. FireBug


    Sep 18, 2005
    I love it when movie theaters use JBL. The most crystal clear sound at immense volume. Beats the hell out of those Sony speakers that AMC theaters use.
  14. It is a broad generalization, but it's so widespread that its pretty accurate.
  15. Take a listen to Lateralus by Tool. The album was recorded and mastered with very minimal compression in order to preserve the often dramatic dynamics of the songs. On first listen, I was a little thrown by the fact that the album seemed "quieter" than most other rock albums for much of it, but then, when the louder, heavier parts kicked in... let's just say you can see where they were going with it, and it's all the better for it.
  16. It's hard to be dynamic and Pile Drivingly Heavy at the same time. Such is the confusion of modern life.
  17. I don't agree. When a recording preserves dynamics the music can hit you even harder than it would otherwise. You just have to set the volume higher for listening. Most stuff that's supposed to be heavy these days just comes out sounding like static rather than a chainsaw by your head.