Muse - Origin of Symmetry new mix

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stickyfiddlestickyfiddle Frets: 17275
Just released for the 20th anniversary (I feel old...). This is absolutely the reason I loved the band and well before they ran out of songs... 

I'm listening now - so far I'm a couple of minutes into Bliss and everything sounds just a little bit clearer all round. I'm guessing a little less of the early-00s hyper-compression. First impression is that's a good thing but we'll see once I've gone right round once or twice. 

Anyone else? 



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Comments

  • stickyfiddlestickyfiddle Frets: 17275
    edited June 23
    Crikey there's some heavy strings half-way through Space Dementia. Not sure they were always there...!?! 

    They've also changed some vocals (presumably alt takes from the original sessions). Not sure it's overall better than the original.
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  • euaneuan Frets: 112
    I listened to OoS for the first time in a long time after going off Muse due to them being Muse. I was amazed how flat it all sounded so going to listen to this with interest. 
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  • stickyfiddlestickyfiddle Frets: 17275
    Yeah, overall impression is the new mix is generally an improvement in clarity, but I don't like the more artistic decisions they have made. 
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  • duotoneduotone Frets: 596
    Yeah, overall impression is the new mix is generally an improvement in clarity, but I don't like the more artistic decisions they have made. 
    I think it’s hard to beat what we know & grew up listening to.
    I didn’t expect to see it on Spotify. Link if anyone’s interested—> https://open.spotify.com/album/5EIVoKtfgnSc0nPzJS6lzy?si=pkNBIxwjQhC0rq4dZP-ZFg&dl_branch=1
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  • thecolourboxthecolourbox Frets: 6698
    I think of the ones I listened to, Space Dementia and whatever the final track with the church organ is called seem to be the most different. I wasn't sure about the strings in Space Dementia, didn't mind the changes to the organ one. I felt that whilst generally things sounded a bit clearer or had nicer reverb, it basically sounded like more like Muse sound now but with his vocals as they were back then. I like that album the best from theirs but I always felt the vocals were not great from the start, the really loud breathing that sounds like he's being submerged every other line, the wobble is not quite as controlled as he has managed to get it since.

    I also think the drummer has got better at fitting in the songs since then, when I listen to that album note there's loads of occasions where there doesn't really need to be drums as it would sound straight away more expressive without them, but he's there changing a cymbal every other bar and tapping the beat on s boat. I know nothing about playing drums but I tend to like drummers who keep out of the way when not needed. Either he's got better at it over time or the songs they write now expose it less
    I want to be forgotten, and I don't want to be reminded
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  • DiscoStuDiscoStu Frets: 4232
    edited June 25
    Well I thought it sounded amazing when I had it on last week.
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  • merlinmerlin Frets: 4157
    the really loud breathing that sounds like he's being submerged every other line
    Over use of compression is Matt Bellamy's worst enemy. 
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  • CirrusCirrus Frets: 6396
    merlin said:
    the really loud breathing that sounds like he's being submerged every other line
    Over use of compression is Matt Bellamy's worst enemy. 
    My 19 year old ears didn't think so.
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  • merlinmerlin Frets: 4157
    Cirrus said:
    merlin said:
    the really loud breathing that sounds like he's being submerged every other line
    Over use of compression is Matt Bellamy's worst enemy. 
    My 19 year old ears didn't think so.
    What do your 39 year old ears think now? 
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  • CirrusCirrus Frets: 6396
    I think it's a production aesthetic that's perfectly valid. It's definitely of its era, but I remember how exciting an album it was at the time. The hyper compression in my opinion enhances the vibe and emotional intent of the songs and the production, so I don't think it's a production decision that was purely about following a trend to the detriment of the music.

    I think it's in the same category as bright sounds and big reverb on Snares in the '80s, ultra-dry recordings in the '70s, or softer compression-artefact reducing treble in the streaming era. Sonic norms are all relative and shift over time, and since the norms and expectations of the day are often baked into the artistic intent of the composers and producers from the moment of a song's inception it's hard to just say "they should have put less compression on the voice" because honestly, I don't think that would have made it a better record; give the vocal more dynamics and you need to reduce the density of other parts of the arrangement too, and you might end up unpicking so much that it loses what made it magical to so many people.

    Also I'm only 36, I was late to the Muse party haha!
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  • stickyfiddlestickyfiddle Frets: 17275
    edited June 25
    Yeah, the heavy compression was part of what made Muse sound so new and aggressive, particularly on OOS. I do like a lot about the new mix, I just think a halfway house between the two would have been better

    Hopefully they’ll do Absolution next 
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  • DefaultMDefaultM Frets: 3949
    Muse were so good up to and including Absolution. One of those bands that were one of my favourites and then I just lost complete interest. Why do so many songs of theirs I hear on the radio now sound like Queen and his guitar solos Brian May? 
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  • VJIvesVJIves Frets: 458
    Definitely going to check this out, I think this album & the In Your World/Dead Star double A-side that led to it is the era of Muse I connected with the strongest. I doubt I'd ever heard a Fuzz Factory before Plug In Baby but I was sold from the first squall of feedback. The aforementioned double single had a good b side - 'Futurism' - which has been given a remaster too:
    Bass line sounds a bit like a dry run for Hysteria!
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  • GrunfeldGrunfeld Frets: 3631
    I'm up for this.  I like Muse but I couldn't listen to a whole album without my ears feeling fatigued.  This album was quite the offender.  Some great songs on it though.

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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 6134
    I think heavy compression on vocals is still mega prevalent but people just edit out the breaths a lot of the time. tbn you cant really fit massively dynamic vocals into a dense rock mix any other way. 
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  • Jonathanthomas83Jonathanthomas83 Frets: 3067
    Wow, Space Dementia is really quite different. After hearing a song for 20 years, you really notice the differences. I loved this album growing up. Sound of my youth, without a doubt. Love it.
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  • SleepyscholarSleepyscholar Frets: 134
    Cirrus said:
    I think it's a production aesthetic that's perfectly valid. It's definitely of its era, but I remember how exciting an album it was at the time. The hyper compression in my opinion enhances the vibe and emotional intent of the songs and the production, so I don't think it's a production decision that was purely about following a trend to the detriment of the music.

    I think it's in the same category as bright sounds and big reverb on Snares in the '80s, ultra-dry recordings in the '70s, or softer compression-artefact reducing treble in the streaming era. Sonic norms are all relative and shift over time, and since the norms and expectations of the day are often baked into the artistic intent of the composers and producers from the moment of a song's inception it's hard to just say "they should have put less compression on the voice" because honestly, I don't think that would have made it a better record; give the vocal more dynamics and you need to reduce the density of other parts of the arrangement too, and you might end up unpicking so much that it loses what made it magical to so many people.

    Also I'm only 36, I was late to the Muse party haha!
    I'm 57, but I know an intelligent and perceptive analysis when I see one.
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  • monquixotemonquixote Frets: 13598
    A great big nope from me.

    It sounds much bigger and has way more separation, but it's stopped sounding like a band in a room and the mix is very fatiguing after a few minutes.
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  • merlinmerlin Frets: 4157
    edited July 4
    Cirrus said:
    give the vocal more dynamics and you need to reduce the density of other parts of the arrangement too, and you might end up unpicking so much that it loses what made it magical to so many people.
    Don't get me wrong. I listened to Showbiz and Origin of Symmetry until I wore the mp3s out. 

    And I fully understand the reasons why Bellamy's vocals are so compressed on the original recordings, however if you're going into that Muse level of arrangement then maybe it "might" have worked better from a deeper artistic level if they had worked it around the song (ie the voice) rather than the other way round. 

    Can't really say because it was (and still is) such a seminal work in so many ways. 
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