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Detecting Click Tracks 329

Posted by kdawson
from the musical-sleuthing dept.
jamie found a blog entry by Paul Lamere, working for audio company Echo Nest, in which he experiments with detecting which songs use a click track. Lamere gives this background: "Sometime in the last 10 or 20 years, rock drumming has changed. Many drummers will now don headphones in the studio (and sometimes even for live performances) and synchronize their playing to an electronic metronome — the click track. ...some say that songs recorded against a click track sound sterile, that the missing tempo deviations added life to a song." Lamere's experiments can't be called "scientific," but he does manage to tease out some interesting conclusions about songs and artists past and present using Echo Nest's developer API.
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Detecting Click Tracks

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  • by spliffington (1130983) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @03:35AM (#27048631)
    It's required to make use of drum editing and multitrack syncing. If I were to record garage rock album i would throw everyone in the same room and just play the songs. However to leverage much of the flexibility and power of a digital recording you need a click.
    • by Technician (215283) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @03:47AM (#27048665)

      If I were to record garage rock album i would throw everyone in the same room and just play the songs. However to leverage much of the flexibility and power of a digital recording you need a click.

      I record garage bands. You don't need a click track for multi-track recording. Take a demo tape and use it to get the drummer to play his track. Use the drummer as the click track for the rest of the sessions. A click track is not needed for multi-track digital recording. I add the wet tracks last after recording all the dry tracks for final mixdown.

      The only click track used for this is just a tempo 1 measure lead in to get the drummer started on a new tempo.

    • by lkeagle (519176) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:12AM (#27048747) Homepage

      I'll have to respectfully disagree. The only reason most bands use a click track is if your drummer can't hold a tempo. There's nothing about digital recording that requires a click track, as evidenced by the enormous number of bands that popularized click tracks in the 70s and 80s.

      All a click track does is remove the need for band to practice with metronomes, which unfortunately is one of the most important thing that any musician can do to improve their playing.

      I'll admit, there is a case where using a click track is important, and that's if you have a sampler synchronized to it to play pre-recorded material that has to line up. You could consider this a form of 'multitrack syncing', if that's what you were referring to. This is quite common in live pop and hip hop concerts. Even more distressing is the number of 'live' acts where everything is prerecorded except for the vocals.

      • by lkeagle (519176) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:21AM (#27048777) Homepage
        I also forgot one other reason click tracks are popular in today's live pop and hip-hop concerts. Turns out it screws up the choreography if you have even minor tempo fluctuations. A slight shift in tempo can make already difficult dance moves even more so.
        • by Phroggy (441) <.moc.yggorhp. .ta. .3todhsals.> on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @05:16AM (#27048983) Homepage

          It's not just dance choreography. A lot of concerts have some sort of video display, which is synchronized to the music. Depending on the nature of the show, there may be some pre-recorded parts as well, mixed in with the live performance. Here's an example [youtube.com] of both: the lead vocal, keyboard and bass are live, but the drums aren't, the background vocals aren't, and there's a video on the screen.

      • by clickety6 (141178) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:47AM (#27048873)

        Even more distressing is the number of 'live' acts where everything is prerecorded except for the vocals.

        More distressing is the number of 'live' acts where everything is pre-recorded INCLUDING the vocals!

      • by Slugster (635830)

        Even more distressing is the number of 'live' acts where everything is prerecorded except for the vocals.

        ...You forgot the part about running the live mic through an Antares box.... :/
        ~

      • I'll admit, there is a case where using a click track is important, and that's if you have a sampler synchronized to it to play pre-recorded material that has to line up.

        Even then, it's possible (though not often done, for myriad reasons) to have the click track follow the drummer, instead of vice versa. It's not that complicated to put microphones or contact triggers on the drums and feed them into a computer to generate MIDI or SMPTE clock pulses.

      • All a click track does is remove the need for band to practice with metronomes, which unfortunately is one of the most important thing that any musician can do to improve their playing.

        A click track is a metronome.

        A click track is a series of audio cues used to synchronize sound recordings, often to a moving image.(1) [wikipedia.org]

        A metronome is any device that produces a regulated aural, visual or tactile pulse to establish a steady tempo in the performance of music.(2) [wikipedia.org]

        They're the same thing.

    • I don't get it (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mcgrew (92797) *

      to leverage much of the flexibility and power of a digital recording you need a click

      A "click track" is pretty much the same as a metronome. If you need a metronome IMO you're a poor musician indeed.

      If the musicians are in different rooms, that is one reason for much of the sterility of today's music. Back in the analog days, they'd use carefully placed sound absorbtion sheets to get the exact sound (drummers were often in a different room, but everyone used headphones).

      And as to the "flexibility and power"

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Hatta (162192)

      So in other words, it's required to cover up a lack of talent on the part of the performers.

  • The Crickets (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Techman83 (949264) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @03:48AM (#27048673)
    Around here... I wonder if they are using a click track?

    On a serious note, I do like the warmth of older music, and my listening tastes tend to meander around the times between 5 + 30 years before I was born. (Child of the 80's).

    As much as a tech nut I am, I still believe there are certain area's in life where it should be left at the door.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Around here... I wonder if they are using a click track?

      No. The Crickets had Buddy Holly. They also had talent.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Techman83 (949264)
        It must have been a sad day the day the music died. Buddy Holy, Richie Valens and the Big Bopper were all amazing artists, taken well before their time :(
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Tx (96709)

      Yeah, although I mostly listen to recent rock, a lot of the stuff where I love the drumming in particular is older stuff. Mitch Mitchell for example, especially on "Are You Experienced?". I don't think it's just the use of click tracks, I have a suspicion that I just like the way drums sounded through the less sophisticated recording technology used back then, or maybe the drums themselves. But I bet Mitch would be turning in his grave at the thought of using a click track.

  • some say that songs recorded against a click track sound sterile

    I'd say 90% of whatever is recorded nowadays already sound like crap, so at least it's rythmically correct crap.

    Don't worry about click tracks, real musicians with real talent probably don't have any need for them.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      the drummer from linkin park spent 8hrs a day for 3 months practiciing to click track before the recording sessions started...and this was for their 2nd album...not the 1st...

      what is making things sound sterile is simply crap pop music that is also waaaaay over produced. not being rhythmically correct.

    • by IANAAC (692242) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:35AM (#27048833)

      Don't worry about click tracks, real musicians with real talent probably don't have any need for them.

      Actually, yes, most musicians need some sort of "click track" if they're playing in any sort of ensemble. It's just that in an orchestra or band setting, they're called conductors. In modern rock/pop bands, they're called drummers.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by tepples (727027)

        Actually, yes, most musicians need some sort of "click track" if they're playing in any sort of ensemble. It's just that in an orchestra or band setting, they're called conductors. In modern rock/pop bands, they're called drummers.

        I see your philosophical angle. But what click track does the conductor or drummer use? That's what the article is about: detecting click tracks that the conductor or drummer uses.

  • by atraintocry (1183485) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:29AM (#27048811)

    Sometimes there's an obvious speed up or slow down on a song, and in those cases you don't need software to figure out if there's a click track. A quick way to check is to compare the very end of the song and the very beginning. It's similar to acapella singing, sometimes there's a slight change in pitch. If it's not so much that you notice in the middle of the song, then it's not worth worrying about.

    There are great albums that used click tracks, and great albums that didn't. Obviously a metronomic sense of tempo is a good asset for a drummer to have, especially if they're looking for session work. But a sense of dynamics and texture is, in my opinion, more important. I'd take an interesting drummer over one that just subdivides everything any day.

    Then again, some songs benefit from the drum machine sound. It's all about the vision.

    I don't consider a click track on a studio album to be cheating any more than a photographer using a light meter. In a live setting, however, it's a different matter. Not that I've seen anyone actually use a click track live (except for people attempting to sync up with some other prerecorded track and did it out of sheer necessity).

    • Good points. It should also be noted that speedups and slowdowns aren't incompatible with click tracks. The author of TFA doesn't seem to take this into account, and assumes that if there are speedups and slowdowns, there is no click track.

      In Steinberg's popular Cubase multitrack recording software, for example, you can use a pencil tool to draw a "tempo map" which is like a graph of the tempo of the song over time (similar to the graphs in TFA) and the click track will speed up and slow down as you reco
      • by Gordonjcp (186804)

        Even in the 1970s, the producer could speed up and slow down the metronome manually as the song was recorded.

        For an extreme example of this (admittedly from the late 80s), listen to Lil' Louis - "French Kiss" ;-)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:42AM (#27048847)

    I do some recording/mixing and have had the privilege of working under a Grammy winning recording engineer (and phenominal musician in his own right).

    Great comments here- yes, click-tracks have been around since the 70s (maybe 60s). Tempo throughout a song can change too much without some kind of metronome. It doesn't have to be an actual click track, just something to guide the musician laying down the first tracks. Just because a drummer or other musician listens to a perfect tempo click track doesn't mean the timing will be "sterile". We're still human! However I know some drummers who are scarily close to perfect timing- without metronome.

    Most better click track generators have the ability to randomize the timing a few percent (adjustable). One major midi-based recording program that I use (MOTU Digital Performer) calls it "humanize". You can "quantize" a track to get timing, then "humanize" it.

    • by localman (111171) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @07:40AM (#27049579) Homepage

      Yeah, but "randomizing" is not really "humanizing". A good drummer doesn't vary the tempo randomly, tiny tempo changes would go with what feels right for the song. There are many reasons why a particular section of a song might feel better with a slight tempo change. There may be some randomizing going on as well, but that is certainly not the whole picture, or in my estimation the most important part.

      Even if you program in slight tempo changes for different sections of the song (which I've done on occasion) there's still an interplay between the different performers trying to stay in sync that causes slight leads and hesitations between different instrument that add to the depth of the music. If everything is quantized that is lost too, and randomizing doesn't bring it back.

      I've recorded with and without click tracks for various reasons, and quantized or not for various reasons. Neither is right or wrong, it just depends on what you're trying to create. But there is a lot of depth that comes out of having people playing live together that is nearly impossible to replicate when the recording is highly controlled.

      Cheers.

  • by whichpaul (733708) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:45AM (#27048867) Journal
    I'm an experienced drummer and I play regularly with, and without, click tracks; I can tell you that the assumption that "feel" or "groove" is only present when a drummer's time varies is not accurate.

    There are at least two types of variation that matter in a drummer's performance: the overall sense of time and the moment by moment variations. The ability of a drummer to play a complete number and keep to a set tempo is really important, particularly in this day and age of digital editing. But it is a common feature of "click track performances" for the drummer to sway ahead of and fall behind of the beat (faster and slower). If done correctly this variance in tempo will add significant life to a performance and such a skill takes a lot of practice to perfect.

    The subtle qualities of a drummer's performance go far beyond whether or not they stick to a given tempo for the duration of a number; this is just one variable that effects the quality of a performance. Some genres require a rigid sense (metal/electronica) of time whilst others benefit greatly from its absence (fusion/jazz).

    Interesting software however ... I'm tempted to have a play with it.
  • by Nate4D (813246) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @04:55AM (#27048905) Homepage Journal

    I play keyboards for two different worship bands at my church, and I discovered a pretty amazing trait that our drummer/leader in the morning service has:

    He doesn't change tempo unless he wants to.

    At all.

    To elaborate, as that sounds sketchy unless you know how I learned it:

    I'm a pretty rhythmic keyboard player, and one of my favored techniques (especially if I need to fill in empty space from, say, a missing electric guitarist in addition to the other textural stuff I was doing) is to use multi-tap delay and really accurate timing to build rhythms and and evolving chords. It can be a really fun effect.

    I don't use it much, though, because even with a tap-tempo delay, which I have in my rig, it's really awkward to stay synced up with the rest of the band. My delay is pretty accurate (built-in effect on the Nord Stage, which is rather high-end. I'm pretty confident it's got sub-millisecond accuracy), and I can stay tight with it, but even decent drummers can have a hard time with that (let's hear it for teachers that make you practice with metronomes, eh?), so I usually have to adjust the tempo a few times throughout a song, and that can make things get ugly fast. A less-than-decent drummer, which is all too common, can't stay consistent enough for me to even try it. Thus, I don't (or didn't, I should say) do this much at all, despite my fondness for it.

    But, when I first tried it with Bob (the aforementioned drummer), I was shocked, because it just worked. I tapped in a tempo on his first measure or two, and it stayed tight the whole way through. I really hadn't expected that result - hadn't occurred to me humans could be that accurate.

    Naturally, I started trying this in various places where it fit, and so far, I can't remember a single attempt where it didn't stay synced. Granted, I haven't tried it with really dragged out delay times (nothing above about two beats of delay at maybe 100 BPM), but even so...

    This is the best of both worlds, because when you need him to be rock-solid, he is, but when the situation calls for it, he can (and does) manipulate tempo intentionally.

    I've told him (and others) that playing with him is like having an expressive human metronome, and I mean it. It is amazingly blissful - I can wander out into strange netherworlds of syncopation and/or ethereal tempolessness (yay for pads!) and the foundation never wavers.

    I'm sure that at times, he has small amounts of drift, but given that my delay stays tightly synced with him for whole songs at a single tempo, it can't get as large as even a single beat per minute very often.

    We haven't tried it yet, but someday I'd like to try him out against some sequenced stuff - I'm pretty sure that if I could handle it (which I don't think I can, yet), he'd be unphased by it, even if it got pretty thick. Live band + sequenced riffs/textures/effects could result in some pretty cool stuff.

    So, all that to say:

    The guy who wrote TFA is actually just providing a measurement of how consistent the drummers for these bands are. Maybe they used a click track to achieve that consistency, but as a semi-pro living in central PA (not exactly renowned for its music scene), I've found one who doesn't need the click.

    • by u38cg (607297)
      Nice to have a drummer that listens to you, isn't it? Two more drummers that do that incredibly well belong to the Stones and Dylan.
    • by Sycraft-fu (314770)

      Different people hear pitch to different degrees. Some are tone deaf, things can be completely out of tune and they really don't notice, they can't hear it. Others have excellent relative pitch. They can hear if two instruments playing in unison or harmony are in or out of tune to a high degree of accuracy and what the interval is. However they can't tell the tuning of a single pitch on a single instrument played solo. Well there are still others with perfect pitch, that is the ability to tell tuning of a s

      • by slash.duncan (1103465) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @08:28AM (#27049797) Homepage

        People do indeed have different skills... or are sensitive to different torture, that being a different way to put it. Like many thousands or tens of thousands of folks, I volunteer to run soundboards for various local organizations, but don't claim to be anywhere near pro, but perhaps because of the substandard equipment and layouts I've worked with over the years, I've apparently a rather developed sensitivity to overdrive/clipping, threshold feedback loops, and "tape on the dashboard" effect.

        One that gets me regularly is overdriven/clipping distortion. The other nite, someone at work was playing "music" on their cellphone. "It's pretty loud for a cellphone" she said, while it was about all I could do to stop from running away yelling with my fingers in my ears. The poor 1/2 watt or whatever speaker was distorting so much it was worse than fingernails on a chalkboard! Momentarily I had the opportunity to reach for the thing and turn it down perhaps 30 percent or so, without much loss in volume, but a HUGE improvement in quality due to the fact that it wasn't over-driving/clip-distorting any more! MUCH better!

        I used to work across from a church, with speakers shaped like bells hung in the "bell" tower. They'd play recorded bells. I guess they finally upgraded to CDs, but before that... Have you ever heard the effect of stretched tape on a bell recording? It was actually funny sometimes, watching people smile and turn to listen to the "bells"... then hear the draaagg and pitch-bend, and realize it was only a (very streeeaaaatttched) recording... or worse yet, not realize it, commenting how nice the bells were, while I and others stood there gritting our teeth.

        Sitting in the audience at anything "live" can be most discomforting on occasion too, hearing the threshold telltales that say the system's /this/ close from going into the dreaded feedback squeal, yet being bound by politeness from jumping dozens of rows of chairs and half way across the hall to turn the thing down a notch NOW, then notch the resonating frequency out of the EQ after the immediate threat is passed. I end up just sitting there, ready for the fingers in the ears if the squeal actually does hit, but otherwise outwardly calm and of proper decorum, whatever internal struggle to resist that leap might be going on.

        Yet most folks don't notice a thing. What's especially "interesting" is when the guys with the "phat" car stereos or the like ask what I think about their system... yeah, it's loud enough, but the bass is all rattling (apparently to some, this is the mark of "good bass" ) or the tweeters are whining in your ears.

        But, like I said, I don't claim to be pro. I do like to think I at least know enough about it to recognize a decent one tho. I've always held that a great audio engineer can often make a bad performance at least tolerable, but one stroke of a fat finger at the sound board can well ruin the performance of the best, and a sound guy that doesn't know what to do to stop the squeal (or rolllingg bbooom), or knows what to do but has such underpowered equipment (and/or poor positioning) he must choose between lack of volume and constantly running at feedback threshold (maybe not even an EQ to notch out)... forget it.

    • by Paul Lamere (21149) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @06:26AM (#27049279) Homepage Journal
      Nate4D - I'd love to run the analysis on your church band to see if we tell the difference from your drummer and a click track. Send me a URL to a recording and I'll generate the plot. Paul at echonest.com.
    • by Spit (23158)

      I guess some drummers practise with metronomes too.

  • I am just wondering... What would happen to classcal music if they started to use Auto-tune. the whole point of music and excellence would simply disappear on the first occasion of live performance.
    What has already happened in case of "popular music". Decades ago.

    Just imagine a opera singer going out of sync with others... but wait... that is what live performance is all about, to make avery performance a bit different but not wrong.

    It has been proved that holding an beat perfectly makes a music boring, whi

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by 87C751 (205250)

      I am just wondering... What would happen to classcal music if they started to use Auto-tune.

      I'd expect it would sound pretty horrid. The classical instruments have a much looser model of the individual notes' exact frequencies. This is essential to harmonic construction, which is all about ratios. I once read a very good article about this where the author went through a series of calculations for a C chord that produced four different frequencies for the E note above the root C.

      Symphonic players have t

  • by Atario (673917) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @05:42AM (#27049089) Homepage

    From TFA:

    One final plot ... the venerable stairway to heaven is noted for its gradual increase in intensity - part of that is from the volume and part comes from in increase in tempo. Jimmy Page stated that the song "speeds up like an adrenaline flow". Let's see if we can see this:

    [graph]

    The steady downward slope shows shorter beat durations over the course of the song (meaning a faster song). That's something you just can't do with a click track.

    Um...really? You can't make a click track gradually change rate over time? Or follow whatever kind of variation you program it to? That's news to me. I thought computers wuz like all smart 'n' stuff.

  • Funniest thing on the article is even wondering if there was ever a human drummer within a million miles of Britney's "Hit Me Baby", click track or not. Like a large percentage of recent pop music it's clearly 100% sequenced from the bottom up. Not so much recorded against a "click track", but is entirely "click track".

    That's not a criticism by the way. Music has room for all methods of recording, and sequencing is a good a method as any. It's the end product that counts.

  • One thing TFA suggests (and a comment or two here) is that click tracks are necessary to allow digital editing. That's not really the case and isn't the reason people use clicks. You can sync an editor to a live track and in any event, if you need to push or pull an off-timed beat you can just adjust manually or snap to grids with accuracy in the hundredths of a beat in Protools or whatever. And its not drummer tempo consistency. The vast majority of pro drummers are perfectly tight and the human ear en
  • Classic Hollywood cartoons were synched precisely to the animation, and Carl Stalling (famous for doing the orchestration during the Golden Age of Looney Tunes/Merry Melodies), had a giant clicker for the sessions. So what do the charts look like on one of his pieces?
  • One approach I use quite a lot is to record the band live then produce a sync track by getting the drummer to overdub a click track using a MIDI drum pad (i.e. they just hit the pad on the start of each beat). Any half decent sequencer should then be able to use this track to create a "Tempo Map" so the timing will slightly fluctuate as required by the dictates of the song. (I use an old version of Logic on Windows and it works a treat)

    You then get the best of both worlds as you can add your MIDI tracks w

  • Can't they? Why not? He starts out with the hypothesis that music recorded with a preset click track might give a flatter graph that one recorded without. He tests his theory with known examples. He tests his theory with unknown examples and notes that the graphs fall into two pretty distinct sets: ones with small deviations from a straight, flat line, and ones that wander about. There are some examples where a tune is flatlining, and then wanders off for a bit, then drops back again, suggesting that it is

  • Since the original page is slashdotted, here is the google code project page: http://code.google.com/p/echo-nest-remix/ [google.com].

    After installing the proper libraries and tweaking the source code to get it to work, I had to discover that the 'api' sends the music *to the echonest server over http* to analyze the audio track. Which is unreachable, obviously.

  • by advocate_one (662832) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @09:35AM (#27050203)

    it's the recording engineers who drag notes around to fit against the rigid timeline, or else just cut and paste a good take of one verse and make it into all of the verses... The software they have now is just too powerful and they don't know when not to use a fancy feature like dragging individual notes around to "quantize" them

    I've had it done to me... my bass notes were dragged around to make them exactly on the beat... and this sounded horrible... took all the feeling out of it... he might have well just used a disc of sampled bass notes and plonked them onto the track

  • Hey, finally, a conversation that I can feel truly involved in (other that the occasional arguments over tech in education).

    I am a drummer and I've made TONS of money playing live gigs. I was in a band for three years that played to a click track, but not just for tempo--we played with a sequencer too. The click is practically required to ensure the entire band kicks off together.

    The sterile argument is BS. Sterile drumming comes from sterile drummers--click or no. The click doesn't keep you constra

  • Click tracks, bah. Sucking the life out of music. Music is just not organic anymore.
    While we're at it, I think the clock in a CPU is just a useless crutch too. A decent processor should be able to handle the subtle emotional variations in timing of a pissed-off windows user!

    Q: How do you know there's a drummer at your door?
    A: Because the knocking speeds up.
  • you're morons who have never played music in your life.

    The drummer's job is to keep time. That's what he's there for. Not all drummers are good at it.

    If they need a metronome to help keep time, let them. It's incredibly ignorant to say it sounds sterile.

  • by 7Prime (871679) on Tuesday March 03, 2009 @03:03PM (#27054625) Homepage Journal

    It has to do with editing and modern-day DAW track editing. If all you're doing is laying down bass, guitar, drums and vocals in a garage or folk band, then you don't really need a click track. But if you're doing a high amount of production with multi-layered guitar tracks, synth lines, and orchestral mockups (midi), you HAVETO have a click track. Many times, recording a complex rock arrangement isn't that much different from doing a film score, you have to have events coming in and out along a very precise timeframe. You can pre-determine tempo variations, but they MUST be pre-determined.

    This strikes me as not so much an arguement about drummer quality or production level, but an arguement about how much rock music should be pre-determined. I know folk and punk rockers will say that it is heretical to have too much determinism in rock music, but there's another side of things. I play in and produce a progressive rock band. I had over 12 years of training in piano and composition before I did 5 years of undergrad work in composition and studio production. For what I do, I want EVERYTHING to be planned out. Usually, the more planning that goes into a tune, the more unique it can be, because everyone knows what their roll is. That's why most folk and punk bands usually sound the same.

    Basically, "the click track" is one of a number of tools offered by an institution of music construction that allows for a lot of flexibility and creativity within a certain framework. Click tracks free up producers, composers, and musicians to be able to have a lot more leeway in other areas. It's not a question of "my drummer can play without a click track". The reality is, no matter HOW good a drummer is, if they don't have a click, the music isn't going to line up on the grid in Pro Tools, Digital Performer, or whatever DAW your using. If that doesn't happen, then you've just killed about 50% of the production and creative possibilities you have at your disposal... including orchestra and midi (which is much more prevolent than most would like to admit) additions.

    Orchestras have a click-track: it's called a conductor. They spend hours maticulously figuring out exactly how to control the tempo of the orchestra, to the point that when they finally do it live, it's going to be the same each time. When orchestras record for film scores, the conductor wears headphones and conducts to a click-track. Recording an epic-sounding rock track is pretty much the same deal.

    Ask any metal or prog band to record without a click track, and they'll probably laugh in your face. Dream Theater (for instance) maps out their entire works out on Digital Performer before they even begin the recording process. Certain types of music just require it, others don't. You want detailed, highly-controlled sound the posibility of adding a lot of post-production stuff later... you HAVE TO use a click track.

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