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Old 12-05-2004, 06:38 PM   #1
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Crumbs sound quality.

I really like this song, but I've got two big gripes.

1. The song is mixed really hot, even more so than the rest of the album. I have titanium based tweeters on my car stereo, home pc, and my surround system (and I also have an iPod) and OMG!!!!, the "s'es" on the song kill my ears badly. The rest of the song distorts really badly in places.

2. There is a very noticable popping or clipping noise at the beginning of the song 0:00-0:15. I thought it was the .mp3s I had, but I'm listening to the album and the same noise is there.

Lastly, I made a topic about this earlier, but no one responded. I swear that there is a harmonica (or something very similar) being played in this song. It's most noticable from 4:09 to 4:15 in the song. Does anyone hear this?

If anyone could listen closely and then address these topics, I would feel better.
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Old 12-05-2004, 07:21 PM   #2
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I listened for the things you mentioned through studio headphones and here's opinion.

1. I don't hear distortion other than from the instruments...the "s'es"....no problem there either IMO.

2. There is a popping--not that noticable as I didn't hear it till I knew where to listen for it. What it sounds like to me is possible some sort of metronome.

3. Harmonica? I listened to that section quite a few times and I didn't hear anything resembling a harmonica. There are some Achtung type effects at that point in the song and I think that's what your hearing. They're kinda background type noises that were put in on purpose.
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Old 12-05-2004, 07:25 PM   #3
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Yes, it sounds very much like harmonica. I don't know how else to explain it. It isn't up front in the mix, but the harmonica type sound is definitely there. I wish you could hear it along with me.

And here's what I mean by distortion and a hot mix.

http://server2.uploadit.org/files/wh...p_image002.jpg

No offense, but I don't know how you didn't hear the popping sound right away. It rings load and clear on my speakers. I guess it probably has a lot to do with the type of equipment that each listener is using.
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Old 12-05-2004, 07:34 PM   #4
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No, there's definitely a harmonica buried in there towards the end.
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Old 12-05-2004, 07:52 PM   #5
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I agree about the S'es --this tends to occur when using condenser mics, which pick up attacks really crisply. I have no idea why anyone would use a condenser mic on Bono's vox, but hey, maybe Flood knows something I don't. I've never used condenser mics on vox.

The clicking sounds like they didn't mix out the click track......and also, I think what you guys are mistaking for a harmonica is actually a synth, which Jacknife Lee gets credit for on the album.
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Old 12-05-2004, 07:58 PM   #6
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Crumbs is poorly produced and so is City Of Blinding Lights. Whoever out of U2 said that was the best mix for that song needs his ears syringing out. I thought we had stereo these days but that song is nearly in mono.
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Old 12-05-2004, 08:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by whackjester
Yes, it sounds very much like harmonica. I don't know how else to explain it. It isn't up front in the mix, but the harmonica type sound is definitely there. I wish you could hear it along with me.

And here's what I mean by distortion and a hot mix.

http://server2.uploadit.org/files/wh...p_image002.jpg

No offense, but I don't know how you didn't hear the popping sound right away. It rings load and clear on my speakers. I guess it probably has a lot to do with the type of equipment that each listener is using.
Well, that might just be how you have your levels set on your system because on mine there is no noticable, distracting distortion(and I've seriously cranked this album with my system); the "popping" is very quiet which is why I didn't take notice to it(and honestly I probably wasn't paying attention too much before you mentioned it), and I don't hear anything that sounds like a harmonica. The end of the song is layered so much that it'd be impossible to say definitively either way. After listening many many times to the sections you mentioned, all I can say right now is that I don't hear anything in the ending but layered guitar effects/layered vocal effects.
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Old 12-05-2004, 08:09 PM   #8
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I hear the popping, too, both on my laptop and in my stereo
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Old 12-05-2004, 08:44 PM   #9
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i loved love and peace on mp3, was my fav. then when i got the cd i turned it to 21 (volume) in my cd player and left it, when l&p came on it wasnt as dramatic. then last night i got high, turned it up to 24 and all was right again. they fucked this song up in production, for some reason it was mixed to a lower volume than the rest of the cd. and i can imagine how bright titanium tweets sound, im getting jarred by my silks.
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Old 12-05-2004, 09:08 PM   #10
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I've also noticed the same thing, whack- this CD is the absolute worst sounding CD U2 have ever released. The mastering is aweful. I would go so far as to say it is even one of the worst sounding CDs in production today. It's just so unbelievably shameful.

Yes, the CD is master very hot. EVERYTHING has been brought to the surface, and if you stretch out the timescale on your spectrum analyzer there, you will find areas of distortion where the waveform hits 0dB.

I can no longer actually recommend any of my friends or family to purchase the album. And, I think ultimately the album as a whole will suffer for it. Already I keep hearing comments like "well, the new songs are alright, but they all sound one-dimensional" or "it just doesn't have the same class as JT" or "its too bombastic" and it goes on and on. But the thing is I really think people are starting to subconsciously pick up on the audio quality of the album and not the actual song quality. They are mistaking poor, one dimensional audio for poor one-dimenional song-writing which it is not.

I can only hope and dream that one day the CD will be remastered and remixed from source and we will get to hear the songs truly come to life and breath the way it was meant to be heard.
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Old 12-05-2004, 11:59 PM   #11
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Or they just have poor one dimensional taste and wouldnt have liked this album anyways. Joshua Tree wasnt the best sounding CD in the world infact in my mind it was the worst as far as pure sound quality goes. In recent history....POP certainly had a lot more flaws in the production then this album. I like how everybody thinks they are somehow a sound expert here, maybe U2 should hire you people to produce the next album and it might come out to your satisfaction, put some calls in....
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Old 12-06-2004, 01:47 AM   #12
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I've heard some popping in some songs, but I just assumed my CD had errors on it ...

Otherwise, sound quality sounds fine to me.
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Old 12-06-2004, 03:42 AM   #13
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it's diffinetly a harmonica towards the end, thought so from the first time I heard the song.
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Old 12-06-2004, 03:45 AM   #14
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The entire album is wayyyy too noisy - in a bad way I mean. You think they could have mixed/mastered it a bit better, I regularly play Bomb with the bass frequencies lowered as well as the high ones.
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Old 12-06-2004, 06:23 AM   #15
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definitely too much high end on this album......that seems to be a trend lately though, at least in stuff i've been hearing. and i might add, not a good one, i think engineers should be giving us more of the mid frequencies and letting overtones ring out, rather than trying to assault us with the upper frequencies.

while we're talking about recording problems, i really despise the drum sound on this album....what were they thinking!? ....too migh high end, again.

perhaps i'll write bono a letter: "dear bono. your current recording engineers suck balls. hire me for the next album. love, tennispunk"
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Old 12-06-2004, 06:45 AM   #16
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I asked my brother if he hears the hard 's's but he said no. I can't stand it sometimes. It hurts my ears too! I though I was the only one who thought this.
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Old 12-06-2004, 08:12 AM   #17
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I'm really glad to see this thread -- and I'm not talking about hunting down a few clicks or a harmonica in "Crumbs."

The sound quality of this CD is so bafflingly poor that I thought I must have a defective copy or that my stereo was on the blink. Where I particularly notice it is "City of Blinding Lights." The moment when Edge's slide guitar comes in should be transcendent; instead it's just muddy, as is the chorus -- god, just awful.

You can hardly say they were rushed on this album, so I wonder how this could happen? Sure, albums may be mixed "hotter" these days, but this goes beyond "hot." It's just bad.
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Old 12-06-2004, 11:29 AM   #18
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I'm so glad other people are hearing the 'popping' noises at the start of Crumbs, i was gettting paranoid that it was a fault in my CD. There definately is a sound around 4:09 in Crumbs but i dont think its a harmonica.

Do people perhaps think that these 'popping' noises throughout the CD were left in on purpose? Perhaps they were trying to keep these noises in to add a more unclean rock n roll effect to the CD, a bit like Nirvana's In Utero, which was a great CD but had strange noises the odd time as it wasnt meant to be a clean cut album. Remember Bono said this is meant to be their 1st album & 1st albums dont usually have the best sound quality.
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Old 12-06-2004, 12:11 PM   #19
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If that's what they were going for, U2's producers need to put down their collective crack pipe. Nirvana played much harder rocking stuff...and by the way, Steve Albini's original mix for "In Utero" was much rougher than the one that was released.

This just feels downright sloppy to me. I wouldn't listen to anything Bono says about this being their first album, he shoots his mouth off a lot when he should probably keep it closed. Bad production is bad production. The songs are great--I can't wait until their remixed and remastered!



Quote:
Originally posted by achtungbaby16

Do people perhaps think that these 'popping' noises throughout the CD were left in on purpose? Perhaps they were trying to keep these noises in to add a more unclean rock n roll effect to the CD, a bit like Nirvana's In Utero, which was a great CD but had strange noises the odd time as it wasnt meant to be a clean cut album. Remember Bono said this is meant to be their 1st album & 1st albums dont usually have the best sound quality.
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Old 12-06-2004, 12:28 PM   #20
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I have no complaints about the production on this album. My complaint in the past is how shitty the production was! When a U2 song would come on the radio, it was just quieter than everything else on there...it always annoyed me how my friends have always said U2 puts them to sleep(UF-ATYCLB). Beautiful Day could have been a much better radio song if it were produced a little hotter. Vertigo is the first post War Era U2 rocker that sounds decent on the radio.
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