The Loudness War in Modern Audio Mastering

A note by Thinman:

And if you are interested where recent CDs from our beloved composer’s work suffer from [the Loudness War], just listen to Buffalo or Trance-Fusion. I suffer physically when listening to productions of that kind.

See the rest of his entry for details and illustrations – and what Joe Travers had answered:

Well critics, here’s the deal. In the case of “Trance-Fusion”- we sent the album master to Bob Ludwig to do final tweeks, but the level on that title was already maxed out by Spence Chrislu. FZ was alive & authorized a final CD ref (I listened to it with him during his last days). So, in other words, FZ knew about it.
In the case of “Buffalo”, Frank Filipetti sent us a finished mix already mastered that way. That is how he works & so there was no additional mastering after the fact. If you don’t like how that sounds, blame it on him.

39 Responses to “The Loudness War in Modern Audio Mastering”

  1. Thinman says:

    I’m still confused by Joe Travers’ comment “If you don’t like how that sounds, blame it on him [Frank Filipetti]”.

    I blame it on the ZFT of course, because they released it.


  2. urbangraffito says:

    Excellent post, Balint. And Excellent thread, Thinman. The topic of audio mastering, particularly on posthumous Zappa releases isn’t nearly discussed enough in my opinion. Obviously, JT and the ZFT would rather point fingers “If you don’t like how that sounds, blame it on him [Frank Filipetti]“ than take responsibility for the quality of their releases. I know they are not Frank, but shouldn’t they at least attempt to adhere to a certain FZ standard with their posthumous releases, Buffalo and Trance-Fusion, in particular?

  3. epistrophy says: