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How to make a successful double album?


geek_usa

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So far I've released two albums independently, and I'm ready to take on a bigger, better project - a double album. I'm just curious though of what I can do to make it the best it can be. Is there any corners I can cut, strategies I can use, etc? Obviously stay minimal on any filler material and keep it interesting. If anyone can help, I appreciate it. Thanks!

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No such thing as a great double album?

 

The Rolling Stones - Exile On Main Street

Bob Dylan - Blonde On Blonde

The Beatles - The Beatles (White album)

Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention...Freak Out!

The Byrds - Untitled

Stephen Stills/Manassas - Manassas (check it out!!!)

The Clash - London Calling

Grateful Dead - Europe '72

Stevie Wonder - Songs In The Key Of Life

Primal Scream - Screamadelica

 

not ALL perfect by any means, but all more than a single album could offer. And I like most of them all the way through. Zappa gets a bit much sometimes. And Stevie goes to the cheese factory occasionally by the third key change/choir chorus.

 

The secret to doing a double album though? I'd say do it when you feel extremely fertile in the songwriting area, extremely well-drilled in the rehearsal space, and extremely confident in your own abilities.

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No such thing as a great double album?


The Rolling Stones - Exile On Main Street

Bob Dylan - Blonde On Blonde

The Beatles - The Beatles (White album)

Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention...Freak Out!

The Byrds - Untitled

Stephen Stills/Manassas - Manassas (check it out!!!)

The Clash - London Calling

Grateful Dead - Europe '72

Stevie Wonder - Songs In The Key Of Life

Primal Scream - Screamadelica


 

 

I'm not familiar with the last one, but the rest are vinyl doubles, and most could be (even if they aren't) fit onto a single compact disc.

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Ah...I meant vinyl doubles. I thought that's what a double album was. Double CDs is just craziness. No-one wants to be subjected to 140 odd minutes of somebody! I did quite like the Outkast double CD but that was two solo albums and even then I usually get bored before the end of one of them...

 

So my advice is: if you're intent on releasing a double album, I'd pretend it's a vinyl one even if it's not being pressed on vinyl, and use that as your time/song/flow guideline.

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Is it a concept album?

Or just straight-forward music without clinging to anything in particular?

 

For example, there's a band called The Early November (a bunch of young guys) that made a 3-CD album not long ago. It's not really that bad but they had enough material to keep you interested and the songs are not half bad (still I believe they could have made just one kickass CD).

One of the CDs is mellow, one is harder and one contains the story, narrated and all.

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