The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Citizen
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The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by Citizen » Sun Apr 07, 2013 1:34 pm

I thought this might make a pretty interesting topic - since the majority of users on this forum are preoccupied with creating 'optimally' clear, full, clean and loud productions....as is genrally desirable for most electronic dance music genres.

Post some 'sub-optimal' fuzzed-out/quiet/lo-fi/just plain wrong productions that while may not be technically 'perfect' somehow manage to create their own atmosphere because of it (either by intent or accident). Maybe even comment on why the music falls short from a technical perspective, but why it works from a 'vibe' point of view

:D

Indeed, some of these artists would totally lose their vibe if their productions were all shiny and perfect. :cry:

Off the top of my head, some of the artists that fall into this field would include Burial (obviously), loads of old 90s hip hop, jungle, Boards of Canada, Ammoncontact, early Shadow etc etc...that Zomby 'where were you in '92' album...loads of stuff...

GO!

2be
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by 2be » Sun Apr 07, 2013 2:07 pm

Burial is technically poorly produced? Yeah, I'll just show myself out of here...

Citizen
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by Citizen » Sun Apr 07, 2013 2:23 pm

Ok, for better or worse, burials music has a distinctly different dynamic than even the more 'deep' end of more dancefloor-oriented material of the the same genre. It's an observation, not a criticism.

If you have ever directly juxtaposed his music with other music by means of djing, you will hear it.

Heck, even in several interviews, he has acknowledged that his own aesthetic is a by-product of attempting to replicate certain music (el-b, garage, certain DnB), but coming up short.

Citizen
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by Citizen » Sun Apr 07, 2013 2:34 pm

(For the record, I love all those artists I listed, by the way. I could just as easily name many more immaculately engineered productions that leave me cold)

I remember the first time I heard Teebee - I intially thought his sound (which is clean, crisp and tight, technically) sounded 'wrong' and 'cold' - because what I was used to hearing was fuzzier, sampled from vinyl hip hop, and raw jungle and earlier drum n bass.

It's all a matter of orientation. I guess the point of this thread is to suggest that making certain styles of dancefloor-oriented music tends to enforce certain notions of what is 'optimal' from a sonic standpoint. (For better or worse)

The fact that djs directly juxtapose music by means of beatmatching almost dictates this - if a track being mixed in doesn't punch, or have the same clarity than the one that precedes it - it will generally be perceived as being 'dull' 'flat' lifeless or weak.

SuburbanThug
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by SuburbanThug » Sun Apr 07, 2013 2:54 pm

Any of Daedelus' old stuff.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xw5sKrBADu0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vvDLN1DpO8g
DJ Scud
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uTOrHLgw2Jc
Wu-Tang Clan
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TkKCqcpAcVQ
DJ Cam (Mad Blunted Jazz era)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOqNi9QU ... 42F26F5301
Plenty of classic Detroit techno, X-101
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtqJdISU ... 1D364900C1
Any acid house, Bam Bam
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYhixCDMNPA

edit: Maybe some of these are bad examples, X-101, Bam Bam. For the time period they do sound pretty clean. But the breaking glass and baby crying samples are kind of hilarious in a modern context. Same thing with jungle. Some of it is really well produced considering the time they were made in.

esky
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by esky » Sun Apr 07, 2013 3:49 pm

I love to listen to Boards of Canada's very early stuff that was released on compact cassettes and don't care about sound quality at all. Their unofficial live stuff...totally crap quality from mobile recorders, but fun to listen to...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PRfCtc21NM

Tracks is called "Happy Cycling" ...

Angstrom
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by Angstrom » Sun Apr 07, 2013 4:12 pm

I always think of DJ Shadow - Endtroducing, the sound quality varies from passable to awful but the musical content of the album is excellent, or at least I thought so at the time. I've not listened to it for a long while.

slatepipe
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by slatepipe » Sun Apr 07, 2013 4:59 pm

really nice idea for a topic

'technically poorly produced' - maybe an area that can be discussed in itself? - like if an artist's aim was to produce an end result that sounded muffled, warped, low quality, or whatever lofi aesthetic then is it really poorly produced? if an end result was accidentally poor quality then that's something else? interesting though :? :)

off the top of my head i'd think of daniel johnston - well known for releasing his own stuff on cassettes
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Johnston
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ckqO2zjL5Wk

and from poorly produced you could maybe extrapolate to raw sounding, in which case you could mention pussy galore
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pr_gQU0iaic

or harry pussy - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oeTBGqImgI

and some recent solo stuff by their guitarist bill orcutt - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gv9usGhOK4

for me this short film has a great low quality aesthetic : one camera, maybe one microphone, you can hear stuff going on in the background, but it all adds to the piece

i'd also mention xinlisupreme for a great muffled guitar and vocal noise : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbnYPrXx8H8

alternatively i'd say just listen to some of my shit too :)

Machinesworking
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by Machinesworking » Sun Apr 07, 2013 5:57 pm

@slatepipe, excellant point.
Black Metal for example at times people would intentionally make a recording sound like something found in a burned out building.
Part of the aesthetic was for the music to sound like found recordings.

Early hardcore on the other hand was played by kids with no money, so the entire record would be mixed and produced on an 8 track in a single day.
Mostly it would be the energy that the group brought to the recording that saved the recording.

Front 242 Official Version was recorded on an 8 track. It sounds good because they did what they could with what they had.

Same with Wu Tang Clans 36 Chambers.

slatepipe
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by slatepipe » Sun Apr 07, 2013 6:59 pm

Machinesworking wrote: Same with Wu Tang Clans 36 Chambers.
cheers, i've often wondered about them. my only experience of their stuff has been the rza ghost dog soundtrack but now you've encouraged me to check out that album

...and more low quality aesthetic stuff :

halim el dabh's wire recorder piece made in 1944 (!) recorded on wire. a classic
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_kbNSdRvgo
amazing that this came out of egypt when english people were all listening to vera lynn :D

more stuff springs to mind - early cabaret voltaire?

slatepipe
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by slatepipe » Sun Apr 07, 2013 7:39 pm

i guess if the final musical product ends up sounding how the artist initially envisaged it then it's open to debate if it is actually technically poorly produced. especially if those apparent poor production values are in fact a desired quality - like tape hiss, warble, scratches, murky vocals etc

then also you can open up another area for debate: music that people are attracted to for exactly the reason that it is poorly constructed, composed, produced, etc. in the conventional sense anyway. outsider music

the shaggs - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XR9d4ESlpHY
(i dont like this btw, though i am a bit drawn to it, mainly because i find it quite funny)

aioffermann
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by aioffermann » Sun Apr 07, 2013 7:50 pm

Angstrom wrote:I always think of DJ Shadow - Endtroducing, the sound quality varies from passable to awful but the musical content of the album is excellent, or at least I thought so at the time. I've not listened to it for a long while.
I disagree whole-heartedly. The sound is dope on that album. Pretty much everything about that album is excellent.

SuburbanThug
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by SuburbanThug » Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:54 pm

aioffermann wrote:
Angstrom wrote:I always think of DJ Shadow - Endtroducing, the sound quality varies from passable to awful but the musical content of the album is excellent, or at least I thought so at the time. I've not listened to it for a long while.
I disagree whole-heartedly. The sound is dope on that album. Pretty much everything about that album is excellent.
I kind of agree here. It's not all super compressed and what-not like todays sample based music but it came out a year after Liquid Swords by GZA and was produced in pretty much exactly the same way (on samplers, from records, at home.) It's not nearly as muddy and hacked together, though. It also sounds like it got a decent master. For a bedroom DJ record it's the best produced thing I've ever heard. Compare it to DJ Cam's tracks from the same era. No comparison in production skills, comparable in vibe factor.

Approach
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by Approach » Sun Apr 07, 2013 10:11 pm

Not electronic but Queens of the the Stone Age albums all sound quite muddy and I wouldn't want it any other way.

Citizen
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Re: The technically poorly produced, but GREAT music thread!

Post by Citizen » Sun Apr 07, 2013 11:19 pm

SuburbanThug wrote:
aioffermann wrote:
Angstrom wrote:I always think of DJ Shadow - Endtroducing, the sound quality varies from passable to awful but the musical content of the album is excellent, or at least I thought so at the time. I've not listened to it for a long while.
I disagree whole-heartedly. The sound is dope on that album. Pretty much everything about that album is excellent.
I kind of agree here. It's not all super compressed and what-not like todays sample based music but it came out a year after Liquid Swords by GZA and was produced in pretty much exactly the same way (on samplers, from records, at home.) It's not nearly as muddy and hacked together, though. It also sounds like it got a decent master. For a bedroom DJ record it's the best produced thing I've ever heard. Compare it to DJ Cam's tracks from the same era. No comparison in production skills, comparable in vibe factor.
Hey - I wouldn't want those albums to sound any different than what they sound like! I certainly didn't think there was any shortcomings with Endtroducing when I listened to it pretty much non-stop 96-97. :)

Not sure what you mean about no comparison between Cam and Shadow. Creativity aside, to my ears I think both their music from that era has a similar sonic imprint, and engineering values.

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