"New" artists and surround

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I've always wondered. Why don't you think new artists mix their material for surround and release it?

I guess Taylor Swift doesn't "need" it, but wouldn't it expand their marketing and influence?

Lizzo, Charlie Puth, Miley Cyrus, The Weeknd, Luke Combs, Drake, Ed Sheeran, Post Malone, Harry Styles, David Guetta (who is actually a producer!), Morgan Wallen (who has the #1 song on both the pop and country charts this week), ....the list is nearly endless.

Or when ABBA released their first album in 20 years, why not do it in surround, too, to create more buzz? Everything But the Girl did it right with Fuse. They had zero surround in the past and released Fuse in Atmos.

When they re-released Thriller in a high quality version, would it have killed them to also do it in surround for more sales?

Is it that much more expensive to produce something in surround? Does it cost rights money to encode in Atmos, Dolby or some other system?

Inquiring minds......
In ABBA's case, they were firmly against any sort of surround being used
 
I have that surround mix, it has 19 tracks from Waterloo to Money Money etc... So I guess they were not that much against it. By the way, it was released in DTS.
The album was 'gold'.
 
We have to admit that we are a minority.

The widely spread stereo from past decades has perhaps survived due to the low production costs compared to Dolby Atmos/MCH. But who really enjoyed proper stereo in the sweet spot? Sitting on the couch in a perfect equilateral triangle?. For the vast majority of people, mono is sufficient. Even with headphones, I think few people can distinguish and prefer stereo over mono. Most people don't care about any of this, just like the majority is hardly excited by a stamp collection, and want to start its own.

My old house in Madrid is now occupied by my children who are renovating it.

My daughter asked me to remove those two big speakers hanging on the wall because they were unaesthetic. She didn't need the stereo amplifier or the CD player either. She has an Amazon Echo Dot and she says that's all the music device she needs in the living room. Why more?

My son, who has inherited my taste for Progressive Rock (I managed to do it...), listens to music with his mobile phone. And if he's sitting in his room, then he uses his laptop.

When I invite them to Segovia to listen to Dolby Atmos in my Home Cinema, they say it's interesting, but after 30 seconds of listening, they ask to do something else and where we are going today...


So... if the artists/producers/industry have to optimize for that kind of market (would my sons be representative of the majority of new generations?), what are Dolby and Apple playing?

I hope I'm wrong... :unsure:
 
I have that surround mix, it has 19 tracks from Waterloo to Money Money etc... So I guess they were not that much against it. By the way, it was released in DTS.
The album was 'gold'.
I would certainly like to hear that mix! I have the ABBA "Gold" CD, which is stereo, so are you referring to a DVD, or BD-A, of the album? It was a few years ago that I had the exchange with Michael Tretow. Anything could have happened since.
Edit: I just found that mix on Amazon, and ordered it. This should prove interesting.
 
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For new artists, record labels may be reluctant to invest more money into an album for an artist with an unproven sales record or captive audience. The more mixes created, the more money it costs. Maybe someone with knowledge can provide a cost estimate to create an additional multichannel or Atmos mix.

I don’t follow new artists, but maybe the advent of “spatial audio” has changed the dynamic because I see plenty of artists I haven’t heard of with Atmos and 360RA tracks or albums.

By the way, ABBA did release an Atmos mix of their 2021 album “Voyage.” Not on physical disc AFAIK but on streaming services.
I understand why record companies wouldn't spend the finances on "new" artists, but many that I mentioned are far from new. They are huge hitmakers.

I understand that most listening us streaming, but that doesn't seem to stop them pressing vinyl records and CDs. Just look in any Walmart today. That section keeps getting bigger and bigger.

I also read an article that said 50% of people who buy vinyl don't have a way to play records. 🤷 Dunno.
 
Just a reminder that we are not normal. The vast majority just want music on in the background as they do other things. They aren’t paying attention to the mix, they don’t care about fidelity and they want to spend as little money as possible.
 
I have a musician friend in SoCal who self-financed a CD. I’ve linked to www.catharinebeck.com a few times. I think she’s pretty darn good, and at one time, I suggested she get in touch with AIX, who was making MCH DVD-As at the time, I’m not sure why it didn’t happen, and the album came out in stereo.
 
Yeah it's a bummer. I think the reason behind that is a combination of things; music played in dance halls/clubs prefer more mono-centric mixes due to wanting people on opposite sides of the dance floor to have the same musical experience but I think the biggest reason is that so many people these days don't listen to music they way they probably should, with nice speakers separated by enough physical space. They listen to music on laptops, on small blue-tooth speakers, share ear-buds with another person, etc. ....people who mix & master pop music know this & in order for their mixes to sound more balanced & acceptable when played back in all these different scenarios, oftentimes they will end up releasing lackluster stereo mixes.
Yup. And I don't put all the blame on the individual. It's hard these days to have the time and peace of mind to just sit and listen. And the marketing of hi-fi equipment basically ended some 20 years ago, displaced in the public consciousness by garbage snake oil companies like Bose, Monster Cable and Beats.

A good pair of speakers and a decent amp are more attainable than ever, as are high-quality sources, legit or 🏴‍☠️. But more people are stuck sharing living spaces for longer in their lives, a place where you can crank speakers is a luxury. And there's good reasons of utility that gaming headsets outsell audiophile headphones.

But, the vinyl bubble is also part of some revival of hi-fi, and social media has led to bands like Toto, Fleetwood Mac and Yes to whole new audiences. I hang out on /r/BudgetAudiophile and there are a lot of teens/twenty-somethings taking interest in getting good sound quality, and compact disc collecting has come up a lot recently.

Boomers starting to lose their hearing in middle-age killed hi-fi, their grandkids having legal weed will bring it back? Maybe?
 
I read often about modern pop releases being more mono than stereo, but I haven’t really experienced it. Granted, I don’t listen to Top 40, but many of the pop artists and their producers that comes across my streaming discoveries seem pretty creative. That creativity can translate to a pretty stunning experience in front of my full range stereo speakers. And because they aren’t afraid to play with phasing, it can translate to a blast when turning on DPLIIx. Some have ATMOS mixes available. I don’t doubt that there are some modern pop that is pretty flat, but really, it seems to have always been like that through the years.

Here are a few modern pop artists I listen to that are not regressing to mono:

Aurora
Lump
Lorde
Caroline Polachek
Chairlift
Marias
Amber Mark
Tanishe
Allison Goldfrapp
Fever Ray
Deena Abdelwahed
Sampa the Great
Loma
James Blake
Monica Martin
Soley
 
I read often about modern pop releases being more mono than stereo, but I haven’t really experienced it. Granted, I don’t listen to Top 40, but many of the pop artists and their producers that comes across my streaming discoveries seem pretty creative. That creativity can translate to a pretty stunning experience in front of my full range stereo speakers. And because they aren’t afraid to play with phasing, it can translate to a blast when turning on DPLIIx. Some have ATMOS mixes available. I don’t doubt that there are some modern pop that is pretty flat, but really, it seems to have always been like that through the years.

Here are a few modern pop artists I listen to that are not regressing to mono:

Aurora
Lump
Lorde
Caroline Polachek
Chairlift
Marias
Amber Mark
Tanishe
Allison Goldfrapp
Fever Ray
Deena Abdelwahed
Sampa the Great
Loma
James Blake
Monica Martin
Soley
Lorde is the only one of those I've ever heard of.
 
Just a reminder that we are not normal. The vast majority just want music on in the background as they do other things. They aren’t paying attention to the mix, they don’t care about fidelity and they want to spend as little money as possible.
Yeah, but there was definitely a lot more awareness of hi-fi 50 years ago. A good stereo setup was a mark of class, used for hosting parties and genuinely engaged listening. You could be a straight-laced corporate ladder climber or a rebellious teen and you both wanted a good stereo experience. Whereas since the 1980s, you probably would have more people than not say "I think I heard Bose makes good speakers?" when asked about hi-fi.
 
I read often about modern pop releases being more mono than stereo, but I haven’t really experienced it. Granted, I don’t listen to Top 40, but many of the pop artists and their producers that comes across my streaming discoveries seem pretty creative. That creativity can translate to a pretty stunning experience in front of my full range stereo speakers. And because they aren’t afraid to play with phasing, it can translate to a blast when turning on DPLIIx. Some have ATMOS mixes available. I don’t doubt that there are some modern pop that is pretty flat, but really, it seems to have always been like that through the years.

Here are a few modern pop artists I listen to that are not regressing to mono:

Aurora
Lump
Lorde
Caroline Polachek
Chairlift
Marias
Amber Mark
Tanishe
Allison Goldfrapp
Fever Ray
Deena Abdelwahed
Sampa the Great
Loma
James Blake
Monica Martin
Soley
There is a lot of pop music right now. And thankfully it seems to be pretty diverse.
 
As for mixing in multi channel, and I am not new (nor known), I have considered doing it often, but it is expensive to have a suited monitoring set up in a home studio, and then to consider on what format to release, without paying too much for proprietary format/codecs. Releasing a CD is easy. Releasing anything multichannel is less so.
 
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Yeah, but there was definitely a lot more awareness of hi-fi 50 years ago...

For sure, but look what other forms of entertainment were available at home; maybe 10 broadcast TV channels, radio, lp records, books, games, .... come to think of it, what the hell did people do before the 1980s for entertainment at home? LOL I lived through the 60s and 70s and it didn't seem like we were always bored but music was definitely more important. People actually did sit down in a proper sweet spot and listened to music alone or in groups. We were brought up when music was really valued and important in our daily lives.

I'd actually peg the downturn in the late 1990's and not the 1980's. By then there were a hundred cable TV stations (a lot more sports being televised daily), very good video games that were relatively affordable, a few years later the internet. During this period people also got used to listening to relatively low quality listening methods. The walkman, boom boxes and, by the early 2000's music on the iPod using shitty earbuds. A whole generation (or two) grew up happy enough with these low fidelity devices and never felt the need for anything better. Maybe they never even heard music on a proper stereo system to even know there might be something they were missing. By the time computers, mp3 compression, the internet and smart phones came around, it further devalued the importance of music as most people just listen passively while their main attention is on something else.
 
I surely remember reading in details liner notes, we would get to discover records also on the basis of the producer, or of the sound engineer, or who sang the backing vocals, or who arranged the track etc.
I remember that too, although many of my peers couldn’t care less. And all that information can still be accessed and explored. It is now accessible via hyperlink. 😊
 

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