Remastering past albums

I’ve currently started remastering my past film scores, to get them up on several streaming / online services including iTunes, Google Play and Spotify. It’s raised a number of questions about the changing nature of music production and creativity. When I originally created these albums, they were primarily mastered for CDs. Now when I’m revisiting these mixes, I’m thinking of them more as being played back from lossy sources. It’s not a new revelation that as technology has increased, our music libraries have actually gone down in quality. But what has been more significant is that I now have to think about these as individual tracks, rather than as an entire album experience.

Considering the kind of music that I produce, this ultimately means having to get rid of my much-loved continuous gapless playback. Sure, one of the reasons I was most attached to this is because it allowed me to try and emulate my favourite Vangelis albums, but in the new releases I’ve decided to strip this element out. And it’s not without regret, but with the knowledge that the tracks are most likely to be heard out of sequence.

It has also meant laying up the tracks differently, and combining short tracks together into single, longer tracks. This was already evident on the Insignia soundtrack, where the final two tracks have always been combined to form the unwieldly named “Retrospective/End Credits”, but going back to the earlier Inversion soundtrack has made me combine the final two tracks (Retrospective and Inversion End Titles) into a single longer track.

(I will update this post with examples once the Inversion soundtrack is live).

I will miss the way these two tracks used to silently combine on the CD version, but if this project is to truly remaster for current conditions, then I have to face facts.

Vale the concept album.

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