Stadium Arcadium

Discussion in 'Music' started by DustinTaj, May 9, 2006.

  1. DustinTaj

    DustinTaj Stunt Coordinator

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    Has anyone purchased and listened to this yet? Best Buy has it on sale this week for $11.99, but I'm hesitant to buy it for 2 reasons:

    1.) Red Hot Chili Peppers history of a NOTORIOUSLY bad sound quality / production value. Overly compressed, "louder is better" production techniques have ruined the last couple of albums for me. I can't even really listen to them. I did sign this petition hoping the word would get out: http://www.petitiononline.com/RHCPWBCD/petition.html Even wikipedia mentions the bad quality of their recordings. So, if it's mastered in the same way, I have little use for it because I'll listen to it for a week and then shelf it.

    2.) I can't hear any samples to know what the music is like. I've found no where with samples up yet.

    So, I wanted to ask if anyone here has tried it out and would care to comment on the sound quality and music.

    -DD
     
  2. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    Samples are up at iTunes.

    There performance on SNL last week inspired me to dig out my RHCP CD's. I listened to BSSM and Another Hot Minute. Neither sound bad at all.

    Actually, BSSM is a stellar recording. AHM was a bit hot, but again, not as bad as it could have been.

    I have not listened to Mother's Milk or Californication yet, but have read all the comments about Californication's audio quality being the sonic equivalent of Satan's Spawn. Haven't played it for a long time, and never on a really good system.

    Brian

    EDIT: A quick run through several samples has led me to this conclusion: Its a RHCP album. Nothing more. Nothing less. Funk Rock. Period. I like what I have heard.

    No comments on the sound, but someone at Hoffmans claims it is the most compressed CD they have heard in a while.
     
  3. Ron Reda

    Ron Reda Cinematographer

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    Strangely enough, I recently listened to Blood Sugar Sex Magik, Californication and By The Way and didn’t find anything at all wrong with them in terms of sound quality. In fact, I specifically remember “Don’t Stop” sounding pretty damn good to my ears! Hmm…

    Anyway, I picked up SA today. While I haven't listened to the CD yet, every song that I've heard so far on the radio (a local station has been playing a tune a day for the past 18 days or so) has been good. www.Allmusic.com seemed to be a little rough on the Chilis this time around (and also mentioned the sound), but gave it 3.5 stars in the end.
     
  4. DustinTaj

    DustinTaj Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks, Brian L.

    BSSM is their best sounding recording, without a doubt. In fact, I think it's their only good sounding album. Everything since has been horrific.

    The news about someone from "Hoffman's" (whatever that is) saying it's the most compressed album ever worries me. I would bet that it honestly is.

    I'd love to hear from others though...

    *Edit* I think "Hoffmans" is stevehoffman.com, right?
     
  5. Matthew Will

    Matthew Will Stunt Coordinator

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    I say it's worth it if you buy cd's. I've listened to all the tracks and the music is top notch. Another great album by RHCP if you ask me. Matt
     
  6. DustinTaj

    DustinTaj Stunt Coordinator

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    Ron, the sound quality issue is one of being compressed to be overly loud. The dynamics are all screwed up. Drum punches don't "punch" because everything has been mastered at the same loud level. It's like a big square wave. It makes listening tiresome and painful - to me at least.

    check out this article: http://www.prorec.com/prorec/article...256C2E005DAF1C

    It's not on RHCP, but the same thing is happening. I always could hear something wasn't right and it wasn't until sometime last year that I saw a petition about fixing the compression issues. I then realized what was so annoying about those albums. It's a shame too, because I LOVE their music. RHCP is an awesome band. Their music should be heard correctly, though.

    -DD
     
  7. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    Unfortunately, this problem is not confined to RHCP discs -- it's a trend, or I should more accurately say an epidemic. [​IMG]
     
  8. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Overcompressed??!?!?!???!? No way...
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    and this is one of the quiet tracks from the CD!
     
  9. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    Dustin,

    Yes, "Hoffman's" is the Steve Hoffman forums. If you want to find a group of people that will analyze a recording to a far-the-well, that's the place.

    There is also news from that site that Steve himself will be mastering a version of this album on vinyl. That should be very interesting. The sound of that record should tell us wether or not this reported problems on this CD (which I have not heard yet) happened during recording, or during mastering.

    Brian
     
  10. DustinTaj

    DustinTaj Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks, Brian. I've been looking for such a site.

    I think this is the thread you referenced:
    http://www.stevehoffman.tv/forums/sh...0&page=1&pp=20

    I wonder what it will cost? Maybe I'll wait. I love the sound of good vinyl, but it's so inconvenient. Some tracks you just want to skip - especially if there are 28 of them!

    -DD
     
  11. DustinTaj

    DustinTaj Stunt Coordinator

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    WOW. No, I won't be buying this. That looks like it would sound painful...

    -DD
     
  12. Tim Hoover

    Tim Hoover Screenwriter

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    By The Way is one of the most painful listening experiences I've ever had. It's not the excessive limiting that really bothers me, though - it's the resultant high-frequency noise in the vocals that results from this. I can't stand more than about 10 seconds of this album in my main music rig. It's perfectly listenable in my car, however, since it's not exactly a good hifi rig.
     
  13. Ron Reda

    Ron Reda Cinematographer

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    Wow, that is crazy! I'll have to listen again. While they're not "golden" by any means, I've always thought my ears we're at least copper or silver-ish! [​IMG]
     
  14. Bill GrandPre

    Bill GrandPre Cinematographer

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    Sorry, I have to do this but it's "One Hot Minute" and "Can't Stop".

    I don't mind getting "OHM"'s name wrong (big Frusciante fan/Navarro hater here) but getting the name of "Can't Stop" wrong is blasphemous!
     
  15. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    No problem here, Bill. I am at best a casual RHCP fan, so I will take my medicine like a good boy!

    One Hot Minute
    One Hot Minute
    One Hot Minute
    One Hot Minute
    One Hot Minute

    In spite of the apparently bad mastering of Stadium, I threw down the cash at lunch time. Hopefully I will be able to listen through that to hear the songs, which based on the samples I have heard, sound good.

    Brian
     
  16. questrider

    questrider Second Unit
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  17. Bill GrandPre

    Bill GrandPre Cinematographer

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    I didn't know what to think of this album at first just because it's sort of overwhelming to form an opinion of 28 songs all at once but now that I've had a few days with it I think it's a really amazing album. It's rare to find a single-disc collection that can be played through without skipping the weaker tracks and "Stadium Arcadium" achieves that with two hours of music. It's just amazing and solid all the way through.

    As I said earlier in this thread, I'm a big Frusciante fan and I greatly prefer his solo work, and though I've always enjoyed RHCP I've always seen them as sort of a step down for him. Their albums with Frusciante are significantly better than the ones without him and I think "Stadium Arcadium" is a comparable leap over his previous albums with RHCP.

    A comparison I've heard more than once when it comes to Frusciante is Brian Wilson, and if you watch the commentary on the DVD that comes with the black box you'll see just how much control Frusciante has over the songwriting process. There's little doubt by this point that he's the main creative driving force in the band.

    This album is already getting a lot of "Album of the Year" buzz and I wholeheartedly agree that it deserves all the praise.
     
  18. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    I have not been able to get through both CD's in a single sitting, but everything I have heard thus far has been brilliant.

    And the sonics are nowhere near as bad as some would think given the clipped/compressed waveforms some have posted. It amazes me that a band that has been making music for well over 20 years can put out a collection of songs that are this solid.

    If anyone reading this is on the fence about a purchase because of the bad buzz relating to the sound quality, you ae doing yourself a huge disservice to NOT buy this CD.

    Again....it is an absolutely brilliant piece of music and will be in heavy rotation at my place for some time to come.

    Brian

    PS: A couple random observations:

    1. Chad Smith/Will Ferrell - Separated at birth????

    2. Do all of the Peppers have a freakin' portrait in the attic? These guys have to be on pushing 50, right? How is it possible that they all look like they are 25? On SNL, Flea jumped off of his amps like Ted Nugent in his prime.
     
  19. Doug Miller

    Doug Miller Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the listening link, Brian. I was listening to a free link of the new Pearl Jam and was really, really, bored. I will listen to this instead!

    Doug
     
  20. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    I was just about to say the same thing.

    Too bad Farrell's no longer on SNL as the Peppers were the guest performers just a couple of weeks ago. Would have been funny to see them in a skit together.

    Or is that the secret???

    You never actually see Farrell and Smith in the same room together...[​IMG]
     

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