Why not LANDR?

You’ll probably expect a big and loud “NOOO” from me. I have to disappoint you. LANDR is good.

BOOM, there I dropped it: it’s good.

You get reasonable results for an unbeatable price. Fast, easy, very affordable. There are few good reasons not to use LANDR. But decisive, for example: it’s only good, not more, just good.

There is no human experienced audio engineer who brings his many years of experience and his sense of music and musicality into play. Nobody tells you if and how you can improve your mix, so that eventually the master gets better. Special requests are not considered by LANDR, corrections — of any kind — do not exist. You can not talk to anyone about the process and that’s why you do not learn anything, there is no feedback or commentary.

I claim that a master of LANDR will never sound as good as any of mine or my colleagues in the same category of our business. But…

If you do not have high standards but just want a “good” sounding song then LANDR is for you. You only pay a fraction and get decent results that you do not have to be ashamed of.

I say all of this with a healthy dose of self-confidence because I know I’m better. But I do not need to bash services like LANDR either because I can acknowledge that they do a good job for what it is. Nothing more, nothing less. Also, I’m not religious about anything but always open for new technology and new ways of doing things.

It all depends on you and your needs. There are just things you cannot replace with an algorithm. I’m very much into all things A.I. and automation, but I also think I know where its limitations are.

An Analysis of 80's Music

I recently did an analysis about 80’s music for a client (yes, I do stuff like that). It’s actually a very detailed and vast analysis that took me quite some time for research and putting the results together, but I decided to take out some of the things that I thought would be most interesting for you (and me).

Also, I limit this version of the analysis here to the US American Billboard charts, as the US has by far the biggest market for music on the planet, almost 10 times bigger than the #2 in the game, which would be China. That fact alone is stunning, if you ask me.

Here’s some results:

3 Most Charting Artists (in the Top 100)

1: Madonna (1.6%)

madonna

Most successful song: “Like A Virgin” (Keynote: E-Flat minor / Tempo: 120 BPM / high energy)

2: Hall & Oates (1.5%)

hall_oates

Most successful song: “Maneater” (Keynote: B minor / Tempo: 89 BPM / normal energy)

3: Michael Jackson (1.4%)

michael_jackson

Most successful song: “Billie Jean” (Keynote: F-Sharp minor / Tempo: 117 BPM / normal energy)

Personal note:

“Billie Jean” is one of the very few songs by Michael Jackson I really like. In fact, I love this one only. It has a perfect groove, perfect songwriting and arrangement. No surprise it was so successful.

I knew Madonna and Michael Jackson would be in the Top 3, but Hall & Oates?? And even higher than MJ, who had the most #1 hits in the Billboard charts in history, by the way? I must have been sleeping under a rock … really surprising.

Energy

Calm music (ballads, downtempo etc.): 20.8%
Typical/normal energy level music: 46.2%
High energy music (dense sound layers, uptempo): 33%

3 Most Used Keynotes

1: A major (8.3%)
2: G major (8%)
3: A minor (7.7%)

That didn’t surprise me really, although I saw G minor on top. Top selling rock acts like Pink Floyd or Dire Straits wrote most of their most successful songs in G major. In the basic Pop music field, it seems like A major dominated.

3 Most Used Words in Titles

1: you (18%)
2: love (14.7%)
3: me (13.7%)

Put that together and you have “You Love Me”. Nice. Yeah, the 80’s were — still — dominated by “love” in combination with “you” and (logically) “me”. I haven’t done research on that now, but I’m sure the most used words don’t look very much different today, apart from “love”. The 80’s were definitely pretty cheesy.

  • Average tempo: 116.5 BPM
  • Average track length 80’s: exactly 4:00 minutes
  • Average track length today: 3:58 minutes

There was a peak in duration in 1992 (4:15 minutes) and a low in 1959 (2:22 minutes). From 1969 on, the duration of songs was steadily rising, until 1992. From there it went down towards 4 minutes again.

Poll