Yes that record has more "mud" than most people are used to today, but if you listen to Jaquire Kings discography its very clear that he knows how to deliver great mixes. I think in the case of Use Somebody he would have been aware exactly of what he was doing and deserves the respect that he was brave and did something different to everyone else. I believe theres no drum triggers or double tracked guitars which is so rare.
Im guessing this is where mixers divide.. some see it as a creative musical process that brings out the emotion of a track and the little technical errors become things you love where as others have mixes that are "perfectly equalised" and tidy. neither is wrong but the latter suits kings better. where as the tidy album would suit a band like Nickleback more
its all opinion really and certainly not something people should condemn
This track is extremely muddy indeed(except the vocals), It's a bit shocking how mixing engineers deliver awful mixed like this ... although the vibe is good, it's very muddy.
I discovered that it's easier to make things sound nice by covering it all up with reverb etc ... but when you make things clear ... then you really have to make sure that your tones are perfect, cause if something sounds crap ...it will be blatant.
Foster the people -pumped up kicks ... is full of reverb ... yet it's very very vibey, it has got soul and it is not as ugly beginner muddy like "KOL - use somebody".
I think Because Of The Times is by far KOL's best album, good production, songwriting and it rocks (by their standards). I can see why the two most recent albums could be interpreted as being muddy, but to me it's just an unchallenging commercial sound, meant to appeal.
Just read this thread and thought I should chime in.
Do check the s.o.s. interview, good stuff.
I believe Mr. King (as producer & engineer) chose a creative direction that 1. Set this record apart from the bands previous ones. 2. Set it apart from every other rock/pop record at the time. And 3. Sounded good to him and the client.
I hear depth, warmth, and sonic balance.
There used to be a vibe with older records where it wasn't separation and clarity that made them appealing, it was the way everything blended together to get a sound.
I've always been impressed by Aha Shake Heartbreak for the fact that if you listen to a song from it and then listen to the same song done on a radio session, the recordings sound pretty damn close, that's how raw the album is - but the melodies still come across.
You make quite the valid point! I understand what you're trying to get out there, but at the same time, I somewhat disagree. To me, it sounds like I'm getting over a cold, and my ears are muffled up from when I listen to KOL. In iTunes, I have each song EQ'd respectively for my personal listening preference to make it seem a little "cleaner" to me, and it makes it a bit more enjoyable. It just sounds strange to my ear, that's all. Once more, I love KOL, Coldplay, Tokyo Police Club, etc., but I guess you can't please everyone, right?