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Recommendations for well recorded/mastered rock music

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#1
Hello, I'm just starting to look at the quality of my albums having gotten a more decent set of headphones and dac/amp. I've read some of the threads on good albums, but I find they're not entirely in my target area. I'm looking for a few choices that are both recorded and mastered cleanly. Since I'm mainly into rock I'd appreciate it any hidden gems in this area. Some of the bands/music that I listen to:
Pearl Jam/Eddie Vedder
Dire Straits
Green Day
Soundgarden/Audioslave/any Chris Cornell really
Black Sabath
Led Zeppelin
Nirvana
Queen
Smashing Pumpkins
The Police
The Who
Tom Petty/Heartbreakers
White Stripes

I realize that most of their studio albums are released with low DR due to genre (excluding Dire Straits, Petty, Who) which is partly why I'm asking.

Also looking mainly for CD (used or new)/mp3/FLAC.

Thank you in advance!
 

Soniclife

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#4
Thanks, but not really just obsessing over high DR. That might be just one of the indicators. Is this also a good recording?
It is. They seemed to real care about what they were putting out, I'm sure there is stuff on YouTube to check out.
 

MediumRare

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#6
Jack White’s stuff seems to be better than a lot of older artists. The better my system is the more I notice poor mixes/mastering. Smeared HF and weak bass in The Rolling Stones and Zep can be really disappointing. Pink Floyd has been excellent. Agree on RATM being very good. ZZ Top is all over the place.

SQ does vary by edition. I’m looking forward to reading other responses.
 

MRC01

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#7
It's hard to find well recorded rock music. Most of it is compressed, EQed or otherwise processed to death.

That said, Pink Floyd - The Final Cut has always been among the best sounding rock albums. Big dynamics and excellent recording. Many of PF's studio albums were well recorded but this sonically is one of their best. Also Steven Wilson's remix of the first 5 Yes albums is excellent. I have his remixes of ELP's first 2 albums and they are better than the originals but the sonics aren't as good as the Yes albums. Steven Wilson has also remixed others I haven't listened to, like Crimson and Jethro Tull.

Others that are good but short of excellent include Rush and Kansas albums from the mid 70s to early 80s. Later albums were more heavily processed and dynamically compressed.

If you branch into blues, Audioquest recordings from the 1990s were excellent: Bruce Katz, Sam McClain, Ronnie Earl.
 

dkinric

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#9
Not exactly your flavor, but AC/DC Back in Black is recognized as one of the better sounding rock albums (check out Rock and Roll Ain't Noise Pollution). Recently read a whole article on an audiophile site about it.
 
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#10
Not exactly your flavor, but AC/DC Back in Black is recognized as one of the better sounding rock albums (check out Rock and Roll Ain't Noise Pollution). Recently read a whole article on an audiophile site about it.
I actually do have that album and enjoy listening to it once in a while (AC/DC sound is good in small doses but gets repetitive to me :)
 
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#11
SQ does vary by edition. I’m looking forward to reading other responses.
One thing that I find annoying is that re-releases/re-masterings will sometimes clean up the recording but mess up the dynamic range. Or maybe it's just narrow DR, but not really messed up, and I don't know until I get it. Loudness war site is an indicator but again won't really pinpoint if it's just more compressed/loud vs messed up compressed except for really obvious examples. I usually end up buying the used CDs from the Goodwills, but it can be a crapshoot as to what you end up with.
 

MRC01

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#12
Yep. The original CDs from the 1980s usually sound better than the remasters. Studios want to re-release it to get everyone to buy it again, and they have to make it sound different to justify that, even if the difference is that it sounds worse. It might sound better on in your car or on cheap earbuds, but almost always worse on a good sterero system. Steven Wilson's remixes are one of the rare exceptions to that rule - remixes that have more dynamic range and better sound quality than the originals.
 

q3cpma

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#14
Yep. The original CDs from the 1980s usually sound better than the remasters. Studios want to re-release it to get everyone to buy it again, and they have to make it sound different to justify that, even if the difference is that it sounds worse. It might sound better on in your car or on cheap earbuds, but almost always worse on a good sterero system. Steven Wilson's remixes are one of the rare exceptions to that rule - remixes that have more dynamic range and better sound quality than the originals.
Want a good remaster? Try Comus' First Utterance.
 
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#15
Rage Against The Machine are well recorded and mastered as well.
The Renegades album doesn't sound that great to me, at least the one I have (some tracks like Maggie's Farm have an avg DR of 3, which even for hard rock seems rock bottom :) Rage Against the Machine and Evil Empire seem much better.
 
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#16
Yep. The original CDs from the 1980s usually sound better than the remasters. Studios want to re-release it to get everyone to buy it again, and they have to make it sound different to justify that, even if the difference is that it sounds worse. It might sound better on in your car or on cheap earbuds, but almost always worse on a good sterero system. Steven Wilson's remixes are one of the rare exceptions to that rule - remixes that have more dynamic range and better sound quality than the originals.
Could get hold of the Steven Wilson remaster of Tears for Fears you are in for a shock if you compare the original. Basicly the whole low part is not louder but way more dynamic an more precies. It realy sounds now more like a band. I already had the remaster of Chicago II of Steven Wilson if you listen to the intro from 01 25 Or 6 To 4 you can't hear on the original record/CD the fingers from Terry Kath going over the guitar strings in Steven Wilson remaster you can also way more dynamic. The whole stereo image is changed considerbly imo for the better.

Have a listen to Chicago Intro 01 25 Or 6 To 4:
 

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raif71

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#17
U2 - The Joshua Tree
Def Leppard - Hysteria
Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet
Van Halen - 5150

As you can see from my choice of albums, I pretty much stopped listening to pop/rock albums after the 80s :facepalm: . Don't get me wrong... I still listen to music just not whole albums...bits and pieces here and there
 

MediumRare

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#18
U2 - The Joshua Tree
Def Leppard - Hysteria
Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet
Van Halen - 5150

As you can see from my choice of albums, I pretty much stopped listening to pop/rock albums after the 80s :facepalm: . Don't get me wrong... I still listen to music just not whole albums...bits and pieces here and there
I love 60s, 70s & 80s rock (not the Foreigner commercial crap but...) Nevertheless I would be sooooooo bored if I stuck to that. You need to stretch a little!
 
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#20
I always look for the original non remastered CD's.... not 100% but usually the best version. Here are some that I have found sound good

Heart - first several albums
Steve Miller - Fly like an Eagle
Eagles - Early albums
Traffic - pick up an old 2 CD compilation "Smiling Phases"
Ry Cooder - early albums
Tom Waits - early albums
Linda Rhonstadt
Lyle Lovett - mix of rock, blues, country but his first 4 CD's are some of the best sounding CD's in my collection
 
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