Mogwai - As the Love Continues SQ

I like Mogwai, a lot. However the production values in the new album make my ears bleed. It just sounds horribly compressedand distorted with very limited dynamic range. The track called Ritchie Sacramento is especially awful.
I’ve tried it on a Qobuz 24 bit stream and a Tidal CD quality stream and they are both terrible.
Any other Mogwai fans feel the same or I’d be just as interested to hear alternative opinions.
Do I just need a better system than a ND5 XS2 with Nait XS2 to really appreciate it?

Just had a quick listen on my office system and it does sound like it’s a bit of a ‘hot’ recording. Never listened to Mogwai before but rather liked what I heard so will have an explore of their catalogue later.

First Mogwai album I have passed on - it pains the collector in me but at some stage you have to say I’m just not enjoying this and call it a day.

Same thing with the new Tindersticks album.

Standards seem to be slipping - maybe it’s the fact they are recording all this stuff in their back bedroom at the moment or just not using a producer to call them out.

Funny I was only listening to the Tindersticks album yesterday on Qobuz - had to switch it off unfortunately, likewise heard a Mogwai track on RP recently, not sure what album it was off but again unlistenable. You’d think with the overall increase in audio reproduction capabilities in recent times that producers and mastering engineers would come up with something of a higher standard, people aren’t listening on cheap trannys anymore.

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HI @elverdiblanco, Although I’ve seen them live a few times not a band I listen to recording wise. Checked out the album, in particular the track you mention, you are correct, it’s awful, nothing wrong with your system.
I will check them out though liked the refrain parts, when things heat up it was dreadful sound quality.

Re Tindersticks - I think there is a great album in there somewhere- for me it’s just that cheap drum machine beat box plastered all over it that makes it unlistenable. Someone should have said Stuart NO!

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Bought the CD; ripped it and it’s fine. Certainly the online streams are not great but then the steaming algorithms can produce some horrible outcomes. Can’t say it’s their finest album but level wise the CD is great.

So your CD rip sounds different / better than the version on the streaming services? Interesting…

Yes absolutely. It sounds fine. Not hot at all. As people mentioned it here I had a quick look at in Audacity and it’s fine. Tried it on Tidal via the 15 year olds QB1 and I can see why people might be concerned.

It was good sound wise on some tracks, the track mentioned by @elverdiblanco just started to break up and get really distorted. That was on Qobuz.

Funny you should mention it. I felt the same about it too. Sounds too compressed. Got my copy on pre order from amazon(:roll_eyes:) so got the autorip to stream beforehand. Thought then that it sounded fuzzy and phased out but being a poor quality download i expected to hear a marked improvement but not so. Started to think my cartridge was on its way out until i put another record on. Maybe we got bad pressings.

I now have a CD rip and you’re right, it does sound a lot better. I can actually listen to it now. What have Qobuz done to it to get it to sound so dreadful?

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I listened on tidal hifi the other day and could only manage the first 2 tracks. Interesting but very strange to read that the cd sounds fine. I wonder what happened- some sort of error or deliberate?

New albums are mastered for streaming in an entirely different way than for other formats. The FLAC download is fine. The CD is fine. Streaming for newer albums is entirely hit and miss. Generally Qobuz is a tad more pleasant than Tidal but I tend to find little in it and after a little experimenting I concluded that downloads/rips are generally superior for new recordings.

When I was running Bubble as the Proxy I found streaming was pretty much identical to local. For 16/44 material both Tidal and Qobuz were the same (checking release dates and track lengths matched).

How would you “master” for streaming?

The internet is your friend. Three word search. “Mastering for streaming”. All will quickly be revealed.

There are a number of scenarios where streaming can equal local but they get less by the day. If local doesn’t sound better by a small margin there’s generally something off.

I’ve done as you have suggested and can’t find anything that would suggest Tidal or Qobuz are any different to downloads from the same master. This is also what I find with my own listening.

I can believe that Spotify mess about with things but I’d rather use San Izal than Spotify.

Maybe I should listen to the album (or track) in the subject title and see if I can hear an issue. :thinking:

I have a 24/96 FLAC downloaded copy that registers 5 on the DR scale and 11.5dB DR according to Audirvana + analysis. Yes, it’s hot and compressed but it’s far from unlistenable to these lugs, it’s rock music in the modern era after all.

I’ve compared a ‘borrowed’ copy (16/44) to Tidal and sampled a few tracks with no standout differences.