is it just me, new Steely Dan cd's too brite snare

I've had this debate on a Steely Dan webpage

several of the latest dan albums
Two Against Nature and Everything Must Go
and the new Donald Fagen album
seem to be recorded beautifully, all the nuances, close mixed horns, incredibly lush mix

everything perfect except for the snare drum which is way up in the mix and headache inducing

it isn't my sytem and it's worse on Two Against Nature
especially the title track and West of Hollywood
it's so bad I have to listen in the next room

EMG recorded in analog is a little less bright
and Don's new spectacular Morph the Cat (MtC) has some hot snare in the mix

the last two albums feature Keith Carlock who is an incredible drummer, but Don has him in tight snare timekeeping with little room for fills on most of MtC

has Fagen lost his upper frequency end of his hearing?
is he mixing things hot for jumpy mid fi reproduction?
or am I hallucinating?
They all sound fine to me, though in the case of Morph the Cat I've only listened to the DVD-A and not the CD.

Do you notice treble anomolies in any other recordings?

Two Against Nature CD sounded well balanced to me. I've not heard Everything Must Go CD.
To my ears, Two Against Nature, Everything Must Go and Donald Fagen's new "Morph the Cat" are three of the finest
recordings in my +250 CD collection. Frankly, I wish every new CD I bought sounded as well recorded as these three.
Maybe its time for tubes for your system
Have to join the chorus of those to whom these sound more than fine. Been listening to them a lot since catching Fagen's show.
Truth in advertising dude! The name of the band isn't "Rolled Off Dan".
As far as modern pop/rock recordings go, "Morph the Cat", "Everything Must Go" and "Two Against Nature" are real good sounding, but compared to "Nightfly" or even "11 Tracks of Whack" they pale. If you download a track from "Morph" into a waveform editing program you'll see that in order to get the high overall level they heavily compressed and/or limited the signal. I don't know exactly how or what signal processor they used, but the effect is to sharply round off the signal peaks, especially the snare drum hits. It's not the gross distortion you get from going over digital full signal, but it is noticeable.

Regardless of the sound, "Morph the Cat" is a marvelous album. It makes me want to go the an airport and have my luggage checked.
don't get me wrong, I love the sound except the hot snare at times

even Roger Nichols had some cd issues with mastering
On Two Against Nature the snare drum is forward and very thin sounding. Has almost no timbre. Sounds like a cheap drum. Rest of the recording mix is fine.

As a side note, I bought two of my favorite Steely Dan albums "Aja" and "Gaucho" remastered and they sound brither than the originals. By brighter I mean more digital souding. I guess that's normal since this isn't the first time I bought remasters that sound like this.
all the remastered steely dan recordings are brighter, but they are still great. the snare on morph could be an 'on purpose' effect......rock music isn't confined to convention.
I have EMG on vinyl and it sounds much better than the digital versions I have. TAN is a bit forward. Morph sounds perfect on my systems. I think Steve Hoffman is going to master the vinyl for Morph. I can't wait for that one.

Is it just me, too many new CDs suffer from this problem? Seems I'm fighting it all the time!
I agree with Rja that too many CDs suffer from this problem which is why I own an equalizer that I can choose to either use or bypass. Makes a wonderful difference, especially with Redbook cd items. I am able to program the way I prefer to hear the music instead of the weaknesses of the format that it comes on. I really don't have the same problem very often with the SACDs.

To bright, no.
To forward in the mix, yes
Not headache inducing but for my tastes the snares are over emphasised.
is it just me, old Kingsmen LP's too incomprehensible vocal
Onhwy61-Thanks for the heads up on NIGHTFLY!!. I must of been living in a cave to not have had this in my collection. Great sound, not good, GREAT! Really enjoyed listening to it today. Thanks Kevin
kevin - you didn't own NIGHTFLY

it's getting a remix soon for a 3 cd compilation with Morph and Kama

the dvd-a is nice too
Audiotomb-I did read a post here about the quality of NIGHTFLY on DVD-A and will have to try it.Loved the mix on this disc. Being a huge Dan Fan I'm sorry I missed DON at Westbury here in NY. I think I've been to almost every Dan show around NY in the past 10 years. The compilation sounds like a possibility. Any thoughts on Morph? Thanks for the Info-Kevin
One other thing - Becker and Fagan love tight rhythms and are big fans of drum machines (often augmented by human drummers). 2AN uses drum machines on almost every cut. Gaucho, Nightfly, and Kamakiriad also use them extensively. I need to listen to Morph again to see if this is the case here. Drum machine snares tend to be pretty bright and might account for your perception.
I am a lonnnngggg time Dan fan, and I haven't cared much for the recording of the past two. The snare is just the start.
Not to hijack, but I'll bet most of you would like Steve Winwood's recent "About Time" on SCI Fidelity. I have turned many Audiophile heads with this one!
ghostrider - the Dan don't use drum machines but they do sometimes sample the drum track and get it right on the millisecond (Gaucho had Werlin a prototype drum machine on in and so did Walt's solo, but not those you mentioned)

24phun - yes that Winwood album is killer, I saw him perform that and old traffic last year, great show
Audiotomb, I politely beg to differ. Automated drum tracks are all over the later Steely Dan works. One example that's really easy to hear is towards the end of the final vamp on "West of Hollywood" on 2AN. You can hear the unmistakable sound of an automated drum track playing solo for the last few bars after the musicians drop out.
In a recent issue of Recording magazine they had an interview with Keith Carlock about recording "Morph the Cat". He states that Fagen distributes a demo track for each song to the musicians a few days before the recording session. The demo is either a DAT or CDR with Fagen doing all the parts via computer software. Carlock says he's expected to humanize the computer generated drum parts. He also says that Fagen is open to the musicians' input, but that he has a strong sense of what he wants before the session starts and is quick to say what he doesn't like. In an article sidebar the recording engineering says that the drums were minimally processed during tracking to 2" analog tape which was then transferred to ProTools for mixing and song assembling.