By overproduced I mean an album that sounds "too polished" or has an excessively digital sound or makes use of autotune or something similar. For me, it certainly does.
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I agree with you on how it started, but I don't think albums during the 80s were nearly as bad as they are today. Autotune is even worse, and really it's almost like cheating. At least it's obvious, though.
I can agree with you on hair metal, although that stuff is rough in production compared to what we get on the radio these days. Thrash is ridiculous sounding with a smooth production job.
Yes, Napalm Death would sound absolutely hilarious that way!
I wouldn't know... I don't listen to what's on the radio these days. Haha.
Let's just say that the production of modern pop makes Def Leppard style production look extremely heavy. I don't really listen to the radio either, but when there's a lot of hype about an artist I do tend to look up a couple of their songs.
Good call there on Death Magnetic and the loudness wars. There's an increasing number of new albums that follow this trend. In fact, the Eluveitie album (song) I posted in reply to Omnivium plays noticeably louder than 90% of the stuff on my iPod.
I would consider 97% of modern pop albums to be overproduced. Same with rap and a lot of nu metal and rock.
Some metal (not extreme metal, though) examples:
The metal examples didn't bother me too much. At first I was only thinking about metal, but now that you mention it, I do think most pop songs are way overproduced and they sound horrible.
Well, both of those songs are listenable. However, both could have benefited from a rawer approach. Both of those bands had albums that were much heavier and dirtier from a production standpoint, and they all sounded a little better to me.
Hopefully the single hit artists stop making albums soon, because they flood the charts on account of hit singles
Well, yes if the product is extremely good then overproduction cannot really ruin it. I just feel that there are great albums that could have benefited from a rawer production job. I agree with you about the lack of effort put into new pop.
That's a good point of view. I completely agree with you on live albums. I personally just don't really care for a super-glossy sound on studio albums either.
There are definitely good things about smooth production, such as how audible the instruments can be with such control. But it can certainly be used to mask mistakes and, like you say, it can lead people to falsley belie some musicians are excellent