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Written by Tommi on 10.07.2008 12:25:01

Blog image for entry TURN ME UP! I just got an interesting email from Lorenz of XARC Mastering (who've done some work for us in the past, exceptionally well, may I add) about a new non-profit organization called Turn Me Up! and about the ever-increasing loudness-demands in music mastering in general.

Firstly, I'll have to admit that I'm definitely the wrong person to blog about this, since I sincerely and genuinely have noticed that I actually do enjoy the mega-compressed and loud-as-hell sound of modern day records. Not all of them obviously and as with all sound-aesthetic choises, it's always a matter of judgement to decide what solution fits the particular case.

Anyway, the point of Turn Me Up! is really good: loudness and over-compressing as a neverending race and industry standard in music is very damaging to the average listening experience. Check out the video "Loudness War - The Movie" at turnmeup.org for a quick and understandable explanation of the problem. However, I have to disagree with the choice of song in the video. That particular piece of music is pretty much the best possible example imaginable to support their cause, but replace that Paul McCartney-track with a modern dancefloor-oriented electronic music track and your findings might be a bit different. Also, the comment "wimpy loud sound" is a bit odd, since before the maximization, at least my comment would've been just "wimpy sound", so at least we've got the "loud" to kinda balance out the "wimpy".

But like I said, this is very much a matter of taste and context. I'm quite sure that Shellac won't be over-compressing their next record either or that Joose Keskitalo will be going for MAXIMUM VOLUME on his next 7", so I'm not really too worried, but I'll be damned if the next Daft Punk -album ain't full-on 0db 99% of the time! That's half the charm, man.

But there's one thing on the turnmeup.org-site I wholeheartedly agree on:
This all comes down to the moment a consumer hears a record, and the fear that if the record is more dynamic, the consumer won't know to just turn up the volume. This is an understandable concern, and one Turn Me Up! is working to resolve.

Music needs to be listened to LOUD. Turn that shit UP!!!

(I'm currently listening to a rather nice-sounding mix by fellow blogger Kenneth Falck. Check it out to hear some cool electronic sounds.)
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