WHAT’S COMPRESSION AND WHY IS IT RUINING MUSIC?
When you listen to my recordings you may notice that it doesn’t sound as loud as the mainstream stuff. Why? Don’t my engineers know how to turn the volume knob?
They do and they don’t do it, because it turns the music into a loud mush. That’s what compression does in the mainstream music, where all the bigger stars use it. Indies like myself don’t because we know better.
Compression is when you digitally force all the parts of the music to the highest volume. So you get a dynamic music for sure – but it never can get louder and never softer.
Musicians like me who like to start slow and quiet , build to a peak, and either end high or bring it back down, are considered outside the mainstream.
When one of my songs was included in a compilation Landmark Theaters’ promotional CD with a lot of other musicians, I was ecstatic ! But when I heard it, my song sounded so quiet, so out of place. I thought it was my fault – now I know it was compression on all the others that made the striking difference. It was their fault, not mine.
The mainstream music you hear on major releases is compressed to give a full sound on every note – but it’s also a generic sound that soon sounds like a loud wall of noise with no where to go – can’t get louder, and can’t get softer.
The links below, explain it better than I can, (or just google ‘compression in modern recording’ and see a lot of articles on this.)
Thanks Corporate Music (the Big 3: Warners/Universal/Sony) for making music even more generic , robotic, and phony.
(Hear how the Nirvana classic would sound with compression.)
(see the graph for changes from 1985 – 2007)
(The Loudness War – wikipedia)