Originally Posted by T_Schmidt
Wow, DaveBSC...no kidding. I remember hearing that the Guitar Hero version of the tracks were much better, but that picture says more than a thousand words. I honestly thought that since Lars is the uber-piracy-police they purposely leaked terrible versions of the tracks to the online masses as a temporary kick in the pants, and then would have a great sounding physical album, but nope... not even close.
The QUALITY of the music produced is what I base my music purchases on now, which is unfortunate. The quality of a professional mix shouldn't even have to be considered.
There are very few artists and fewer labels whom realize that an attack transient is not a pissed off hobo.
End of Rant.
Ironically, pretty much the exact opposite happened. The CD version is fine I guess for people who listen with Apple earbuds, but for the people who were demanding a decent sounding record, pirates pulled the GH version of the album out of the game using the Xbox 360's digital output and released it as a FLAC download.
The loudness war is somewhat similar to the way new TVs are set up out of the factory. TV manufacturers set the default brightness and contrast to max and crank the colors up to ridiculous levels so that when their TV is placed on a store shelf next to a competitor, hopefully its super brightness and cartoon colors grab your eye.
Artists and music labels are doing the same thing, trying to make their record louder than the next guy's. The difference is you can recalibrate a TV so that it has accurate grayscale and color levels. You can't fix a bad sounding album though. You just stop listening to it, and probably end up selling it.
My hope is that this madness ends. Albums like Californication and Death Magnetic got a lot of bad publicity for their atrocious
production, and hopefully it will shame producers into actually doing their jobs again, rather than just turning everything up to eleven.
Here's a YouTube video that further demonstrates the issue with Death Magnetic. Notice how in the CD version, all of the high frequency detail has essentially been destroyed.