Bob Bickerton wrote:There will, of course, be potentially huge differences between interpretations of the same (classical) work, thus a listener may have a preference of one interpretation over another, probably regardless of recording quality or acoustics. This underlines the importance of the MUSIC as opposed to the sound and, I believe, the PERFORMANCE which so often in modern music appears to come second place to the requirement for perfect technical production.
I suspect we can all appreciate crappy General MIDI renditions of some baroque/classical/romantic music far better than later C19th & C20th music, which began to explore orchestral instrument colour combinations often as the
point of the music.
Much earlier music, such as organum and renaissance music (such as Allegri's Miserere) is also heavily reliant on reverb and performance practice that it really sounds like unfinished music without that (e.g. as MIDI).
Similarly, soundscape or 'ambient music' (as Brian Eno calls it) is extremely reliant on effects, in some cases they (e.g. Tangerine Dream) even cite specific digital reverb units. And so not all recorded music is necessarily 'performed' in that sense either. It's all music, just as Pollock, Picasso and Raphael all created art, it's just about exploring different aspects of it.
I know where people are coming from when they talk about performance, especially when you hear live acts sounding like 50's & 60's acts, but let's not forget they are playing instruments and through amps that are likely to be of the period anyway, or enough of it is. I don't think Randy Hanson would be that
convincingly Hendrix-like without using the same gear.
Bob Bickerton wrote:One of my favourite albums was tracked in around 3 hours and mixed the next day. The artists came in and performed well, really nailed it, and I used familiar (and yes hardware emulated plug-ins) to take the mix where I felt it should be. It flowed well, and because I didn’t get bogged down in endless plug-in searching and tweaking I remained fresh and creative.
I remember reading a quote by Albrecht Dürer, where he said a quick sketch can often have more charm about it than a painting he's worked on for years. So I suppose this is true in all the arts.