Drone and Evil synced. One continuous track in flac and also split into three songs in ogg.
BUT WHY? Listen to both discs on separate sound sources or one at a time. Syncing the two discs is largely pointless because disc Drone is just drones - there’s no rhythmic content and subsequently no real way it can be ‘out of sync’… Flattening both discs into stereo just totally kills the atmosphere and the point of there being two discs though.
If you only have the digital files put one disc on an ipod/MP3 player and play it through external speakers, and the other disc through your computer or something (use the better speakers for disc Evil). That way you have the spacial delights of quadrophonic sound and the ability to control the volume of the two elements independently (which is cool because sometimes the drones seem so subtle you wanna turn them up). It becomes a much more involved and enjoyable experience. I recommend putting the drones behind you.
I can get why people have stereo mixdowns of Zaireeka because it’s SUCH a hassle to listen to as intended (setting up four different sound sources and getting all of them in sync is quite a challenge - though I totally recommend everyone experiences it at some point)… But this… No. It’s easy to listen to this from different two sources and synchronicity isn’t even an issue because unlike Zaireeka there are no issues with the discs being in time.
Some people lack access to two sources to play the music from that isn’t the atrocious quality of laptop speakers. That is arguably worse than putting them into stereo. It’s the same as why people listen to Eleh on headphones because they have inferior speakers.
Yes, in which case, one disc at a time is probably the way to go… The discs are mixed and mastered separately - for playback through separate units, not the same set of speakers. If you do a straight mixdown just layering the tracks on top of one another you get digital clipping straight away which is fucking horrible. If you reduce the levels of both tracks then you’re still adding frequencies which are going to be occupying the same places and muddying the whole thing up. There’s quite a difference to how sounds interact in the digital world to how they react when meeting acoustically. It’s quite a different case to using headphones vs speakers as you’re messing with the way the piece interacts with itself as well as how you interact with the piece…
I’ve listened to this album a LOT in a lot of different ways and combinations of speakers. Personally I’d rather listen to this with a less-than-great second pair of speakers than a mixdown because either way there’s a tradeoff in fidelity, but with the extra speakers you have more of a sense of space. If you’re playing both at the same time you get some degree of masking and that can do a fair bit to alleviate the issues of less than stellar audio equipment. Always disc drone on the inferior speakers though. There is a cutoff at which point crap speakers (crappy built in laptop speakers being the main culprit) just aren’t even worth it, but it’s more because of effort and the narrow stereo field than fidelity. But I’d still always recommend both discs separately over a mixdown…
I mean, people are free to do whatever, but man… This is a killer album and I think it deserves a little effort. Plus (and I’m generalising here) I think more people have more sources of decent enough sound than they even realise… DVD players, HiFi, computer, ipod docks / anything with an aux in…
I’d just recommend anything other than a mixdown though.
Out of curiosity - have you listened to it on multiple sound sources?
Unfortunately I’m limited to a crappy CD player and nice headphones, so I stick to the latter. While I agree with everything you’ve said, a mixdown is a decent way of getting a rough idea of what it sounds like when one doesn’t have the proper materials to listen to it (i.e. listening with two sources without moving loads of stuff around, poor quality speakers etc), which is what people often do with such multi-track albums.
As per my earlier post about Ikeda and co., my point is that even if one can’t experience such a thing as it’s meant to be, one may adapt and use alternate means to at least get a vague idea of how it should be.