Rhythm Creation - Music Production and Sound Reocording

As you may be aware I have started a project where I make an album completely from scratch and you can follow me as I make my album as I am blogging here on Rhythm Creation about it every step of the way. So far I have announced my project and improved my work area. Today I am going to look at what makes a great album before I actually start work on mine, hopefully I will be able to take some thoughts about what makes them great and carry them through to set myself tasks that my final album should be able to achieve.

CD Cases - Image from Stock Xchng (www.sxc.hu) User:Meow Everybody's idea of the perfect album is different and based upon their taste in music and many other factors. Their idea of the perfect album now may not be their perfect album in a few years or even a months time. Many people's perfect album probably doesn't even exist. Rather than looking at specific albums and why they are great, I feel that it is maybe better to look at the reason why any album could be classed as great. Here is my 10 things which I think make a great album.

  • 1. Ground Breaking - At the time that the album is released there should be something that sets it apart from all the other albums currently available. It doesn't have to be a completely new style of music but it could be a new fusion of things that no one has yet thought to bring together or have a certain new take on something done before.
  • 2. Listeners Want To Listen Again - The album should make listeners want to re-listen again and again. To do this there should be sounds and instruments in the background that upon a second listening they hear but they may not have heard the first time. There should be sections which make listeners want to quickly rewind and re-listen to a section again.
  • 3. No Skipping Through Tracks - A great album makes you want to listen through it without skipping a track, each track should add something to the album. The saying "quality over quantity" should be used here as many would agree that having a 40 minute album of quality is better than a 80 minute album of bad tracks. When the album is sold on iTunes this means that people will want the whole album, not just a couple of the tracks.
  • 4. A Flow Throughout - There should be a certain flow throughout, like a cohesiveness between the tracks that make them sound a part of the collection. They should sound like they have been produced by the same person(s) and have a kind of feel like they belong there.
  • 5. Longevity - The greatest albums will still be a part of peoples collections in 10 years or even 20 years from now. This comes down to good music, good sound production and also individuality of the album.
  • 6. Generate Feelings - Music stirs certain emotions, a good album should generate lots of different emotions throughout whether it is happiness, sadness, memories, etc. This is usually done through the lyrics which could be linked in to do with current events, a lot of people say that good music is written during hard times. A album which comes out about the right thing at the right time can make it greater than if it came out at the wrong time.
  • 7. Artwork - The albums artwork should complement the music and should also be artistically creative and as much of a talking point as the music. People remember album covers quite well, sometimes even more so than the actual music.
  • 8. A Good Ordering of Tracks - The album tracks should be in a order where the next track complements the previous track. The starting track should be either an intro or a track which gets the album off to a good start and the ending track should be one that sums up the album as a whole.
  • 9. Memorable - The album should be easily remembered, this could be the lyrics, melodies or anything else that will mean that people will be singing or humming different tracks to themselves after listening.
  • 10. General Appeal - A good album is one that you will want to share with your friends, therefore it should have general appeal and greatl enough to make most people want to listen to it.
These are what I think make a good album. It doesn't mean that an album has to have all of these 10 things but a great album will at least have many of them as a feature. For my album project I will need to find ways to make my album excel in some of these areas if it is to stand out from the crowd of other music makers.

Anything that I have left out that you think makes a good album and should be added? Please write them in the comments!

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