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Best engineered / best sounding album


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Since you mention "I'm Not In Love"... The album Deceptive Bends is phenomenal in its recording quality and production. The songs are great too of course.

It's funny you mention this one because I was just going to go dig it up to brainstorm ideas for a band I'll be producing. Deceptive Bends!

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and I was RIVETED to the production. The song is nothing, but the PRODUCTION probably got me started at all this recording junk. slapped me across my cerebral cortex..

 

 

Oh YEAH- what he said! That song just got it for me when I was *ahem* a little older (13), with the cool delays and strings and all... that takes me back. Also- how about "I Hear You Knockin'", the Dave Edmunds version- was that a Rundgren-produced tune? Anyhoo, just cool as heck and it popped right out of the crappy speakers on the 'Palace of Sweets' jukebox... sweet...great mix.

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Another newer album that blew me away with sound is Zero 7 - When it Falls.

 

 

Good taste man--I almost mentioned Zero 7 also. I dig listening to that one. Best Electric Piano sound ever IMHO.

 

(Major props for the Lao Tzu quote in your sig also) - OT

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XTC - Apple Venus Volume 1. Great sounds.


And a vote for Prince in general for being able to dominate the volume wars and still maintain great tones. 3121 is probably the loudest album I have yet it has great sounds and a variety of color. Beck falls into this category as well.

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XTC:
Hugh Padham
on "English Settlement",
Steve Lillywhite
on "Black Sea"


 

 

+1 on these! I even like Todd Rundgren's Skylarking album from these guys. Cheesy in some ways, but so appropriate.

 

I'd also like to add Big Star's Radio City to the mix. Very underrated production. I love the drum sounds -- great rock tone!

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Harry Nilsson's Nilsson Schmilsson sounds pretty damn amazing. Particularly considering the 'primitive' technology: no drum replacement, no samplers, no digital FX, and no Auto-tune.

 

 

 

When kids say, Wow, the strings on In Rainbows sound amazing, I like to point them to Schmilsson.

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I've heard only 1,5 verse and a chorus of Morissettes' new album. THe song 'Underneath' and the sound of it just blows me away aswell as the production.

 

 

That's Guy Sigworth's handiwork on the production side. He uses a lot of physical modeling synthesis and self-recorded samples to construct songs, and it shows in everything he does. His engineering is very sharp.

 

He has a myspace you know: http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=54655590. Listen to the songs there and note the similarities.

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Shawn Calvin was already mentioned but I happen to like her first album - John Leventhal's work on these recording is unmistakable.

Chiaroscuro by Mike Marshall and Darol Anger - acoustic heaven.

15 Minutes by Nik Kershaw - put the headphones on and melt in power-pop sophistication - guitar and quirky synth mixed just right.

+1 to Pat Metheny Group - This Way Up. Just listened to it last night - it's astounding in every respect.

Step It by Bill Conners - the recording of Dave Weckl's drums is like nothing I've ever heard - close-miced, punchy and live like you're there.

Beyond The Missouri Sky by Charlie Haden - subtlety at it's best.

Most of the Radiohead recording amaze me for their uniqueness in sound.

The Odd Get Even by Shadowfax - it's a Windam Hill recording right?

As for something newer, how about David Gilmour's On an Island?

How did Genesis get the "wall of sound" on recording like Trick of the Tail & Wind & Wuthering?

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Here's some more modern ones I particularly like..

Radiohead - OK Computer

The Mars Volta - Deloused in the Comatorium

Jack Johnson - In Between Dreams

A lot of Steve Albini. Has anyone heard Don Caballero's American Don?

I love the Strokes' Room on Fire and Is This It, for what they are the production captures the essence of the band.

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I just sorted my iTunes library by year to see what I think is exceptional that was recorded somewhat recently. I love OK Computer too, but that album is 11 years old!

 

Air - Talkie Walkie (2004)

Timbaland presents Shock Value (2008)

Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga (2007)

Autolux - Future Perfect (2004)

 

For every gem, production wise, there is an awful lot of crap. There are many bands that I would enjoy if they didn't sound so bad:

 

The Killers

Times New Viking (must be heard to be believed!)

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

Wolf Parade

 

And finaly, how do they manage to get a decent band like Modest Mouse to sound so stunningly {censored}-tastic? That must take a mighty budget indeed.

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