Dave Lombardo: 'In 100 Years Everyone Will Still Be Trying to Figure Out How Zeppelin Achieved Such Raw Sound'

Ditching computers is our ticket to reviving the old magic, the drummer explains.

Dave Lombardo: 'In 100 Years Everyone Will Still Be Trying to Figure Out How Zeppelin Achieved Such Raw Sound'
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Former Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo recently shared an interesting prognosis regarding the music industry, adding that the only was to revive that old magic is to ditch the computers from the formula.

Asked by Music Legends on where the music will be in 100 years, Lombardo replied, "Everyone will likely still be trying to figure out how Zeppelin (for example) achieved such a raw sound. If they lose the computers and get back to natural talent I think we just might have chance to bring back the magic that inspired us all in the first place."

During the rest of the chat, Dave noted getting into the funk domain lately, as well as returning to his all-time favorite punk records. "Lately I've been really into all aspects of funk," he said. "The Budos Band etc. I've always been into James Brown, but I've been listening to him a lot more lately. I've also been reaching into my vinyl collection and listening to some of my favorite punk albums. Dead Kennedys, Circle Jerks, Black Flag."

Focusing on his current musical endeavors, Lombardo detailed the upcoming Philm album. "As I mentioned we have a new album coming out," he said. "We don't have a definite release date but we are hoping before June. We already have six songs toward our third album."

Do you think the answer to our musical prayers comes in getting rid of the computers? Let us know in the comments.

63 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    Kornholic
    I don't think ditching the computers from the process is the right way to go. In my opinion, finding the right balance between raw sound and overproducing is the key.
    Velcro Man
    What everyone seems to forget is that music is SUBJECTIVE. But another problem with musicians is this massive fear of technology. It's easy to replicate that "raw" sound, but guitarists are some of the most conservative people when it comes to traditions. You can keep your tubes and outdated bullshit, but don't criticize other people for not doing what you WANT them to do. Besides, that raw sound came from the musicians, not the equipment. No one seems to want to bring up the fact that Zeppelin extensively used synths and theremins and I'm sure stupid old people were bitching about it back then. tl;dr stop being grumpy old people and realize it's all about personal preference, there is no right or wrong, so shut the **** up and play what you want and listen to what you want.
    Way Cool JR.
    You shouldn't insult the older generation because one day (if you live long enough) you will be one of them. And the funny thing is, I can guarantee your views are going to collide just the same with the new younger generation. And just from this post I can tell you're going to be a very opinionated grumpy old geezer irritating the young people someday. I don't remember anyone bitching about Zeppelin back then. And the raw sound came from both the musician and the equipment thy used, way more from the equipment tho.
    vichorio
    I believe the real issue here isn't the computers or the analog sound, and whatever pros and cons each of these methods have. Is the fact that much of the music that appeared in recent years was manufactured. Artificially created, by computers or not, to please certain crowd. And I'm not getting all "uga uga led zeppelin grrr stones" on you guys, it's just that I feel really sad that my favorite form of artistic expression isn't art anymore...
    lemmyisgod97
    Black Sabbath were a better, more creative and more innovative band. There I said it.
    Hungry_Hameds
    Did you say it because you mean it or are you just trying to stir shit up?
    lemmyisgod97
    Both, and because it's true, I can name about ten bands from that era that sound like Led Zeppelin even before Led Zeppelin even came out but there's only one Sabbath.
    brian.schmidt.3
    Name 10 then. We are waiting. I only know 1 band that sounds like Zeppelin and it is Zeppelin.
    lemmyisgod97
    You can't have listened to many 60's blues rock bands then, Zeppelin's first album was pretty much a rip off of The Jeff Beck Group's album "Truth" and Jimmy Page is known for ripping off unknown blues songs, "Babe I'm Gonna Leave You" was an old folk song that they passed off as their own until the original writer found out in the 90's,he's even admitted ripping songs off himself, "As far as my end of it goes, I always tried to bring something fresh to anything that I used. I always made sure to come up with some variation. In fact, I think in most cases, you would never know what the original source could be. Maybe not in every case — but in most cases. So most of the comparisons rest on the lyrics. And Robert was supposed to change the lyrics, and he didn’t always do that — which is what brought on most of the grief. They couldn’t get us on the guitar parts of the music, but they nailed us on the lyrics. We did, however, take some liberties, I must say [laughs]. But never mind; we did try to do the right thing.”
    Velcro Man
    Covering songs =/= complete copies. The issues with Zeppelin ripping people off is that they took credit for writing all the songs without giving any to the original composers, but they still didn't play them like they were originally intended. Zeppelin sounds like Zeppelin, simple as that. Jeff Beck doesn't sound anything like Zeppelin...unless Zeppelin released a jazz album I wasn't aware of. Now let's see that list of 10 bands that sound like Zeppelin.
    ne14t
    Where is the ten bands man? You said you could name ten and you were called out, present your ten or your a ****ing liar. We don't care about plagiarism that was not the original question and you only brought it up to backpedal because you can't name them. Arrogance goes hand in hand with ignorance.
    Thunfer
    There is no need to get aggressive. He already proved his point on why he thinks Zep gets too much credit. Whether he can list ten bands or if that was hyperbole is largely irrelevant to his actual point, I feel.
    kthxbi
    this! led zep... I used to love them and grew up on them, but anyone pretending they stand alone as a unique band... well, probably is only a year or two past their whole "slash is god" phase
    HighVoltageMT
    Jeff Beck Group sounds NOTHING like Led Zeppelin. Some of the fundamentals are the same, but the overall sound is very different. Zeppelin, love or hate em, changed the game.
    axld
    Black Sabbath created a genre, heavy metal. Led Zeppelin perfected (hard)rock. Jimmy Page was an incredible innovater in the studio e.g lots of guitar overdubs, boosting the drum volume etc. I think that Zeppelin had a greater influence on music, because they didn't just limit themselves to one genre (rock, blues, folk). Black Sabbath did what they did best: creating heavy songs using Iommi's mighty riffs. To me Zeppelin is the best band.
    Unf
    In terms of metal, maybe.But don't forget downstroke riff from Communication Breakdown, plus the fact that Bonham influenced countless metal drummers.
    untilwecollapse
    To me, it just sounds like another old guy complaining about the new generation. Just like how your grandpa thinks cell phones are silly and his grandpa probably thought television was pointless and his grandpa probably thought we should stick to riding horses.
    seance
    Yeah, when the Beatles came out people criticized it as "electronic noise" because their guitars were electric.
    Witt1975
    I understand, to a point what he's saying. It's so much easier to tweak and fix mistakes in the modern era and you'll never get that same sound that you used to get on computers. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for technology when used correctly, but he does have a point. I still think that the old Steely Dan albums are some of the best produced and best sounding albums out there. (yeah yeah I know, some people think Steely Dan sucks lol, they wrote some great tunes...)
    danny.kopij
    To an extent- yeah. Pro Tools does have certain advantages that you'd never in a million years get with analog But in terms of just the right sound and the purity- if done right- analog slays digital.
    Dynamight
    This. Not to mention, by 100 years from now, technology will have been able to reproduce that "raw sound" to perfection.
    MrWeatherHead
    Guys look at Nine Inch Nails, the bottom line is musicians shouldn't ever NEED computers and software to sound good but if you can use it as a tool instead of a crotch then why not take advantage of that?
    fistofTHEAXIS
    ...I'm sure you meant crutch.
    JOHNSTONE6
    use that tool as a crotch
    sambalici
    I think it is more related to attitude, not equipment. Pro-tools gives you power to record and change every single second, and people use it that way. With analog you work more in blocks for example. If Led Zeppelin used Pro-tools for recording with same recording method and same analog recording attitude I don't think result would be that much different. Personally I think having that "analog" attitude makes the real difference rather than using vintage equipment for the sake of being "analog". Mentality should be change, not equipment.
    Shavyi
    I'm at the moment more struggling to get a cool modern sound : for an old school sound, you just have to plug the guitar into the amp. For the modern one, you have to touch a lot of plugins, preamps, mods, stuff...
    mattjamesrenn
    yeah I agree, I can get and older rock n roll sound and bluesy tone but when it comes to all the bits and pieces that you plug in etc I get lost. It seems to be an art in itself that people like the edge and johnny Greenwood excel at.
    mr.greggolden
    Zeppelin had credit on probably 80% of the covers. There were some that were more abstract that got called out later. Like it or not, their covers were better arranged and sounding then the originals. And people keep thinking analog is better sounding than digital; if you take the stems of two different tracks, one analog and one digital they will sound literally the exact same. We like to try that on our SSL Analog Console/Digital Controller. People seem to think that they're so different, but all their getting is the natural track processed through outboard gear vs. 30 years of digital upgrading. You can get the exact same warm analog sound if you just use the plugin models and rack gear that was used back then
    Anjohl
    Time to get back to recording analog on old amps, vintage gear, and NO MORE LOUDNESS WARS! I hate how every band just passively moves along with "technology". I would KILL for a Judas Priest album with the production of "Sad Wings" again, and it is COMPLETELY DOABLE, so WHY don't bands do it?
    JelloCrust
    How did Zeppelin get such a raw sound? By stealing from black people, of course.
    Jevandrix
    Yet another credit for the most overrated cover band... Raw, heavy, innovative = Hendrix..
    risingsaint
    It seems like its all the older musicians, ones that peaked during the 80's and early 90's that all have huge personal issues with computerized technology and the internet. Slayer, Metallica, etc. They don't want to accept that- god forbid - music evolves with the rest of the entire world. The world is constantly evolving and new technologies arise, there is no reason to fight them, embrace them and use them to your benefit. No matter what aspect of life you apply it to, fighting change is never going to stop change from happening. Get with it or get over it you older musicians...
    KerNeL_KLuTcH
    Pro Tools is the bane of rock music's existence.
    DisarmGoliath
    Nope, people using computers to make up for lack of skills perhaps, but digital recording has made the recording process far better both in terms of cost, time taken and, ultimately, quality of the audio. Besides, good luck to anybody who tries to persuade all the sound engineers in the world to switch back to analogue tape machines.
    Kornholic
    Korn went "back to basics" on their Korn III -album, recorded it with analogue tape machines. They managed to sound worse than on their 1994 debut album. To be clear, I'm not talking about the song quality, but the actual sound quality of the record. Basically, it is more complicated than just: - pro tools = bad - raw sound = good
    Danjo's Guitar
    Chili Peppers record on tape still. I think they might take it into the computer after that, but still. And many people doing digital recording use plugins that emulate tape recorded sounds.
    DisarmGoliath
    I think this was a response to what I said, so I'll attempt to reply but not really sure what to say... I am a sound engineer myself, and I also have tape emulation (and analogue console simulation) plug-ins, but that isn't really the same thing... there are reasons people love(d) tape, reasons people think they love(d) tape, and reasons to hate it etc. Digitally emulating the effects of recording to tape has no impact on the talent factor or the performance of the artist so it's not really relevant to the idea of going back to analogue recording or not. As for RHCP recording to tape - maybe, I'm not so sure, but regardless of what they record the music on they are responsible for a well-known early example of over-compression and limiting in the mastering stage of the production, with 'Californication', so I wouldn't really commend their albums for being of an extreme audiophile standard