Alan Wilder (ex Depeche Mode) has written a very interesting pulic letter on the state of the music industry that makes for some good reading for anyone who loves music:
We live in a world of technology – exponentially increasing breakthroughs in all things scientific. So fast that we can’t even keep up with it. So why is it that the audio quality of music is degenerating? Music ‘sounds’ worse. We have stopped listening, we don’t have time. We only have time to be smacked in the face by the loudest, most attention-grabbing blast of souped-up noise imaginable until ear fatigue sets in and the desire to ‘change the record’ takes over. Why are the adverts on TV twice the volume of the regular broadcasts? It’s the only way to get our attention in the VOLUME WAR.
In recent years, a revolution in processing technology has instigated a change in the way albums are mastered. In order to compete, A&R men, producers, even the artists are demanding that mastering engineers, via digital compression, crank up the level so high that all dynamic range is callously sacrificed.
You can read the rest of this here on the Sideline website.