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Old 5th January 2011
  #21
Talking The Clash and so called 'crude' recording quality

After 25 years of critical listening of all genres of music, playing in numerous bands, writing original music, recording, obtaining a degree in music etc., I have very strong and opinionated ideas of what is good and what sounds cool. Certain albums have their own unique style and sound. Not all music needs or is asking for the most pristine sound quality. I'm by no means saying that that isn't something to shoot for if that is what the music is calling for. It's just that there are exceptions to all rules and we should break them if they are asking to be broken. For example, I can relate this particularily to the sound of the Clash's first album. At the time of its release in the UK in 77', the snobby and greedy U.S. music industry considered it much too crude recording quality wise for the U.S. consumer. They were right as even to this day 99% of the U.S. population doesn't get punk rock or want to listen to it. Good! Makes it that much more special for those of us that enjoy it.

The music industry has always and continues to be primarily concerned with maximizing profits. No, they were not really concerned with distributing one of the most classic rock n roll albums ever (e.g. The Clash's 1st album). Look it up yeah Rolling Stone rated it #77 out of the best 500 rock n roll albums ever and London Calling was #14. So yeah, the industry like any other profit machine in the capitalistic, market based economies that are reality really only consider the 99% of the population that can only digest and deal with pop music that is pristine and overproduced. Safe, soapy and easily forgotten for the most part. There's a humanity and essence to that Clash album that is hard to explain. It's raw sounding and that is one of its appeals as it compliments the lyrics, attack, drive and fury of the band. If you haven't critically listened to it, I urge you too. To me, that sound is awesome. I especially love the guitars. Probably used relatively cheap gear I suppose. I try to recreate that sound at home as best I can for my original punk songs. I know many will disagree and maybe laugh and shrug my opinion off. Oh well, to each his own. That's what makes us all unique, different and cool in our own way.

Thanks Ken for the posts and sharing your experiences, insights, and wisdom. Classic stuff Mate! Clash is my favorite, and Beatles is right behind them. The English always made/make the best music.