It's not enough to record clean signals, avoid hum and noise and make it technically flawless. Not at all. The last thing the world needs are more perfect but boring records. Making something really impactful requires bold moves, committing to stuff early on in the process and - a producer. Because the most important hing is:
A clear vision of the thing you want to create.
And this is especially hard to do if you record your own music. Because you have to be aware of the fact that you are the artist, the engineer AND the producer in one person (or as a group of people, your band).
The differences between a producer and engineer are the following:
The producer is the one who has the creative vision, who guides everyone involved through the project. He/she never loses sight of the goal and he/she's always looking at the bigger picture, the 10000 foot view on the project. Think of this role as the role a movie director has. He/she doesn't operate the camera, but is in charge of the creative decisions and knows exactly how everything will work together in the end. In a traditional recording studio situation there was this producer and then there was one or more engineers. The engineers are the people who actually turn the knobs and set up the microphones. They know exactly how to bring this vision to life, how to capture the sound that the producer and artist are going for.
If you have to combine all of this in one person, it's VERY difficult to stay objective and to not get lost in the details, but instead focus on the big picture.
That's why you need a "producer", someone in your band who can take on that role and who is responsible for the big picture, the songs and the vision (creatively and sonically). Ideally, that person or group of people is also responsible for the project management, timeline and making sure everyone is working towards that common goal. So that the engineer can focus on the details and making sure that everything is captured perfectly. And so that the musicians can perform freely and can completely be in the zone while doing so.
Listen to the episode and learn more about why this is so important, how to go about it and how to actually avoid the common mistakes we've seen so many self-recording bands make.