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Loudness/Mastering (Mark Waldrep)
post Nov 16 2012, 10:39
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Recording Magazine, December 2012, FadeOut column, To Master, Or Not To Master, That Is The Question

Ex-Mastering Engineer writes a editorial... Here are some excerpts:
Back in 1989 I started my own mastering business...

...working on the CD & DVD of Bad Company's Merchant's of Cool... We crafted a great sounding record and then sent it to the record company for approval. It was rejected 5 times because they claimed it wasn't loud enough. After repeated applications of increasingly harsh dynamics compression, they were happy. That's when I stopped being a mastering engineer.

...In 2000 I started AIX records... Our Tracks are recorded during a single session in a live reverberant hall... and left unprocessed... no overdubs, no EQ, no compressed dynamics and no artificial reverb.

... Recently... When I listened to... CD tracks as mastered by a "Grammy-nominated" mastering engineer, I was shocked... lifeless, flat, and completely sterile... I called the manager and offered to remix the stereo tracks... I would only send an invoice if the client chose to replace the original tracks with mine... When the artist and manager heard the tracks I had remixed and didn't master, their jaws dropped. "How could we have spent so much money on a 'Grammy-nominated' engineer and gotten such harsh sound."

Mark Waldrep's company is aixrecords.com and iTrax.com. (AFAIK, the article is only NOT available free online.)

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post Nov 17 2012, 22:25
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From my perspective you appear to assume that different mastering/mixing/versions must sound different, rejecting the possibility that there may only be subtle changes between them which may not be perceptible to all people under all circumstances.

Your eyes cannot hear.
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