29 years later, Queensrÿche’s “Empire” (1990) still impresses me with its deft audio engineering. It’s a cornerstone in the wall of sound.
James Barton (engineer) and Bob Ludwig (mastering) did a bang-up job on the album’s sound with the band’s source material.
It’s still fuckin’ loud with minimal compressor pumping, and the soundstage is still clean across ears. It’s as if they were first experimenting with multiband compression and discovered its secrets before there was a rackmount box to do it easily.
I remember remarking, after first listen on 105.1 KMJX’s “Side Show”, that this album was “busy” — there’s sound coming from everywhere, and that makes me extremely happy.
Sometimes, I just have to go back to the classics and drink them in.