It seems like bands have stopped making timeless, great rock albums like they did back in the day.
–Jonathan Davis (Korn)
The most common way to produce an album is to simply write a number of songs, to book a studio and to record them (today you may even do most or all of this at home), to mix them, to decide in which order the tracks should appear on the record, and to finally master everything. That’s it!
Some great albums have been created that way – and if you’re really lucky, then you may be able to produce a great album that way too.
But chances that your album will be mediocre and that it will a never have any real impact are immense. 99.9% of all amateur albums suck, and you can’t allow that to happen to your own record. It’s like playing the lottery again, and that’s a risk you cannot take.
YOU HAVE TO MAKE SURE THAT YOUR RECORD WILL BE A SUCCESS, AND THEREFORE YOUR ALBUM WILL HAVE TO BE INCREDIBLY GREAT.
That's the reason why you will have to design your album. Or do a concept album right away. Anyway:
YOU WILL NEED SOME KIND OF A PLAN, A STRATEGY.
Maybe you already have some ideas for songs floating around in your head – but before digging any deeper into the songwriting, you should think about what your album should look, feel, and sound like. Which means that you will have to think about what kind of music shall be on your record before you will write or even record everything.
YOU CAN’T JUST WRITE AND RECORD A BUNCH OF RANDOM SONGS AND HOPE THAT THE RESULTING PRODUCT WILL MAGICALLY TURN INTO A KILLER ALBUM.
Most of the greatest albums of all time had been planned and designed, and great artists often collaborated with great producers in order to create insanely great records.
Only unsuccessful amateurs simply record some random stuff written in their rehearsal rooms.
In chapter 6 you will learn about the all-important role of the producer, and you'll learn how most of the greatest artists wrote and recorded their music, and all of this will help you to understand how the Masters Of The Past managed to produce such insanely great records. For the moment you should just remember that producing a killer album will usually not be possible without having a plan or a strategy.