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Madmartigan JC

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  1. You are right in that it's not as terrible as in Gathering of Friends, but still I find it inexcusable how they could screw up like this. I find the compression creates such an 'unnatural' sound all throughout the album. But let's agree that can be a subjective appreciation. But to me those louder clippings are unbelievable. Like designing a beautiful state-of-the-art car and screwing the paint job. Who QCs these albums? Listen to Rounds from 8:05 on. Is it absolutely terrible? Maybe not. But if I did as bad a job at my work (not sound related BTW) I wouldn't last long. I'm sorry If I tire you all with my ongoing rants on this subject, but the quality of the sound is integral to the quality of an album, and its houldn't be something to worry about for new, high-profile recordings in 2022. I just find it ironic how the labels (Sony Classical, DG) are pushing Super Ultra High Resolution, vinyls and whatnot, yet it all sounds like s**t to me. This is not something I have experienced so markedly in other releases of the same labels. I have been thinking wether they migh asume the average consumer for these albums is not the traditional classical music consumer, and therefore the mastering should be made to sound more aking to pop, or something. But well, the work itself is glorious, I adore the new arrangements and love the performance. It's just sad I'm already dreaming of the remastered edition for the 20th anniversary.
  2. Regarding MQA, little does it matter in this case. Sadly, the mastering will still sound as awfully compressed as the regular CD and UHD versions.
  3. You're absolutely right. I didn't remember the cue quoting it so overtly, yet there it is, at 0:59. Thank you!
  4. Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier is quoted in AI. Please explain...
  5. Could these recordings have something to do with avoiding certain reproduction rights for the originals? Seems weird, but I can't quite understand the need to rerecord them. Not that I'm complaining, (the more recorded versions out there, the more to choose from). BTW, is that an edit at 3:23 of Harry's Wondrous World? PS: Happy to hear a different approach, but count me Team Ritardando.
  6. I'm sorry if it's been discussed previously in this thread, but I found the compression of the regular CD so excessive it is incomprehensible to me that DG could issue the album as it is. Just 27 seconds into the first track (Olympic fanfare...) were enough to notice something was off. I felt so confused by the muddy loud parts that I had to rip it to look at the sound wave. As you can see, it shows abundant compression, while maintaining a wide dynamic range (this is the Imperial March). But doesn't seem too bad from afar. However, on closer inspection, the flat summits and valleys are all around in the louder moments. That extreme compression can be found in every track. It's such a shame, because it's an extraordinary album, I love the performance, and of course such a meaningful historic event. I have experienced compression with DG releases before, but never at this level. I am very dissapointed. Those of you who have listened to the other versions (DVD, vinyl) have experienced this too?
  7. A quite irrelevant detail that made me laugh is that, for some reason, people kept congratulating Williams on his 90th birthday throughout his performance. And one of the presenters even said his birthday had been yesterday (here it is, together with some Williams anecdotes from Ian McDiarmid):
  8. Another Image. Source: https://twitter.com/StarWarsNewsNet/status/1529905840819298304/photo/1
  9. I feel that too. Can anyone knowledgeable on the technical aspects of mastering explain why that is? Is it a matter of compression, mixing, both?
  10. Agreed! I think you're right on. Also, I really enjoyed that book. Ross is one of the very few music writers on classical music savvy about popular genres and willing to judge each music on its own terms. I think it's not a coincidence his interview with John Williams from last year was one of the most interesting ones, going beyond the tired usual questions.
  11. When considering these dogmatic views of film music I thinks it's relevant to consider film itself as a medium has suffered this. Not only is it relatively recent (barely over 100 years old), but film as an art form didn't have a proper critical theory that could analize it as an artistic unit Auteur Theory came up in the early 50's. Therefore it is still rarely regarded as highly as the traditional arts (literature, painting, sculpture, music, theater, etc.). Not that I agree with this, at all. But I have repeadtly noticed that films critically considered more 'artistic' often have some form of validation through a one of the traditional arts beign directly referenced. Be it a nod to a classic painting/work of literature, the use of classical music, etc. As if the cinematographic art wasn't enough to substantiate the film's own artistic merit. If views on the artistic merits of Cinema are so biased, what chance does music composed specifically for this medium have of beign considered 'artistic' by these people? Add on top of that, that music often requires little more that simple craftmanship to fit the basic standards required to accompany the film; and (at least in the case of Hollywood) is produced within an industry with technical restrictions and very palpable economic goals. On top of it all, Williams is directly referenced with some of the most popular and highest grossing franchises in Hollywood history. Morricone, coming from the more 'artistic' european cinema, has often been more kindly regarded in that respect. And the discussions on the recent release of JW's Images, also reflect how his most un-Hollywoodesque work has often received praise from the same critics who defaced his more accesible scores. I don't endorse or agree with any of this, but it's the current reality. It doesn't really bother me, since I can enjoy all works for what they are, regardless of classification.
  12. I understand your truthful interest in asking this question, but I believe it's apples & oranges territory and cannot be fruitful, beyond expressing personnal tastes. The answers your sincere post got in that forum are ignorant garbage, but I truly wonder what's the interest in comparing Williams to Bach, Beethoven or Shostakovich? Such different worlds! Some classical musicians often enjoy opening up to music outside the classical repertoire, and I'm sure Yo-Yo Ma or ASM are sincere in their praise of JW. But I doubt even they would compare Williams in that regard. JW is a creative genius in his own right, but his film works were never meant as "classical" (for lack of a better term). While his language shares so many things with the classical world (it's history/techniques/grammar), its form and purpose are completely different. So to me the comparison is pointless. To elitist snobs who won't even consider listening to something other than 'classical' and look down on more popular art forms because they're incapable of appreciating them in their own terms, I say it's their loss.
  13. Biker Hounds had always felt a little odd to me. Not only for the huge departure from style, but for many other reasons I cannot put down. I remember upon release it was unknown that it was Joseph who had actually written it, and many reviewers at the time praised JW for trying new ground outside of his usual style for that little piece of music (I think it may have even been mentioned in some of the cast & crew promotional interviews). Such collaborations are not uncommon or anything to be hidden, and I often wish they were more openly communicated (and properly credited in the albums). I confess I felt somehow relieved to find that it was Joseph's composition; it finally made sense. In any case, in no way does it detract from the masterpiece that is A.I. Additionally, I have never seen this mentioned anywhere else, but the vocal part is sampled! I ignore the original source, but I remember being rather confused when I first heard it in Stewart Copeland's score for "Gridlock'd". I don't think that score has been released, but the sample can be clearly heard here (at 3:39): For comparison:
  14. I have plenty of space, and I'd be glad to help you in case you're getting rid of more CDs.
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