[…..] The cake is just an analogy to get people thinking about why and how they are doing what they are doing. I hear about a lot of illogical, suboptimal, inefficient, bad-sounding approaches that this simple analogy remedies. So it’s not a perfect description of all things related to sound 😉
Having said that, the reliance on very heavy mix/master buss compression is like this;
Imagine you have a cake mix but it has too much liquid, and isn’t very good, it’s very runny etc. Now you put that mix in the oven at a very high temperature to bake it.
What you end up with is a hard (maybe even burned) crust, and when you cut into the cake it all falls apart and is wet, soggy and awful. That’s what this is like. You’re relying on the baking to make up for the fact the mixture isn’t very good.
At least with this track, I have an ‘unbaked’ version – I can probably add/subtract some stuff to make the mixture better before I bake it. This way you’ll have a better consistency, better and more solid structure, and the overall flavour will be greatly improved. It will (if all goes well!) be almost like the mixture was better.
But it still isn’t as good as if all the ingredients were right, from the start.