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Thread: Anton Bruckner

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    Default Anton Bruckner

    He sounded so serious. Even when dancing. And who dedicates a symphony to God?

    But seriously, some of the most glorious symphonic themes. The first theme in the first movement of the 7th. The great, if overplayed, first movement of the 4th. The total absolute metaphysical "beyondness" of the 8th.

    Plus, its just fun to crank the stereo and blast it at deafening levels. Even more fun than doing the same with Ozzy, Metallica, or Judas Priest.

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    i like his stuff. why not dedicate a symphony to God, if you've got what it takes?

    dj

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    i like his stuff. why not dedicate a symphony to God, if you've got what it takes?
    Agreed. WHynot dedicate a symphony to the teacup on the dark side of the moon?

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    Senior Member David C Coleman's Avatar
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    Yes. Fascinating man and music. One of my favourite composers. But not everybodies of course!! His music can sound rather stodgy and inflexible if you don't "prepare" yourself before listening to one of his symphonies. But yes, glorious stirring music and the best coda writer ever I think..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yagan Kiely View Post
    Agreed. WHynot dedicate a symphony to the teacup on the dark side of the moon?
    probably easier for him to see God.

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    Somehow, this brings to mind a recent thread that ended in a rather vehement argument... but, for now:

    Bruckner's one of my favorite Romantic-era composers, purely because his scale is so large and his symphonies, for their length, never bore me. Great themes, horn calls, and finales.
    Take a look at the Bandit's blog, Americana Avenue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BuddhaBandit View Post
    Somehow, this brings to mind a recent thread that ended in a rather vehement argument... but, for now:
    really? What made you think of that? I certainly can't make any connection between this fresh new thread to any old threads!

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    ( :ahem: )... yeah. AND, to help keep things fresh, to try to make sure that "age cannot wither, nor custom stale..." etc. etc.- let me break some new ground and give a shout-out to the Motets, works that I favor even more than the Te Deum. Bruckner's Motets are among my very favorite religious musical compositions.

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    Really, I need to re-listen to the motets then! But, since you brought up Te Deum, I like it very much, not that i am religious or anything, it's just a well-written "tight" choral/orchestral piece. I especially like the what i call the "Siegfried Idyll" motif, which coincidentally also appears in the second movement of the 7th symphony. Of which many people make the assumption that it was a piece paying tribute to Wagner's death.

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    Shout out to the String Quintet, too, which features some fine but albeit smaller-scale orchestration.. One of my favorite quintets, after Schubert's "Trout" and a couple others.
    Take a look at the Bandit's blog, Americana Avenue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BuddhaBandit View Post
    Shout out to the String Quintet, too, which features some fine but albeit smaller-scale orchestration.. One of my favorite quintets, after Schubert's "Trout" and a couple others.
    I don't get Bruckner's chamber works, not that they aren't interesting or anything, i just don't "get" them. To me, the string quartets sounded like late Beethoven, so it was not very special.

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    Very true, especially considering Bruckner in general was very inspired by Beethoven. To me, though, it seems like his chamber works have an expansiveness to them that Beethoven's never had (due, probably, to Beethoven being a Classical/ROmantic transition figure and Bruckner being a full Romantic).
    Take a look at the Bandit's blog, Americana Avenue.

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    Default Cathedrals in sound

    A critic called Bruckner's symphonies as 'Cathedrals in sound.' I think this description is very apt, if you can compare architecture with music. I think Brahms (or one of his adherents) dismissed Bruckner's symphonies as 'gigantic boa constrictors.' Probably a fair enough comment, if you compare them to the more concise statements of Mozart, Brahms or say, Mendelssohn and Schumann. But to be more objective, Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 is a massive work compared to everything written before it, and the same applies to Brahm's own Piano Concertos. So it's unwise to dismiss a piece of music solely due to its length.

    I don't know all of the Bruckner symphonies and I wouldn't even care to get to know them all. In a way, if you've heard one, you've heard them all. He always includes a gripping slow movement, which seems to lift you up into the clouds, and an earthy scherzo to get you firmly back onto the ground. Compared to Mahler's cycle, there is much less variety in Bruckner. But all of the symphonies I've heard - even, and perhaps especially, the unfinished ninth - present pretty compelling symphonic arguments. They are tightly structured, despite their length and encompass a wide range of emotions and moods.

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    My favourite Bruckner symphony is the 9th. Although it is an unfinished torso, it aptly sums up all that went before, not only his symphonies, but also his work in other genres. Like the other symphonies, the themes develop organically and are repeated periodically, especially in the hellish first movement. I'm not a big fan of his scherzos, I find them somewhat repetitive and predictable (eg. a main dance theme framed by a trio). But his adagios are sublime, especially in the 9th. It has so many emotions, gravitating from uncertainty of impending death to hope in the afterlife (the wonderful passage for brass is very memorable).

    I used to have Haitink's and Walter's recordings. They were excellent, but so is the Mavrinsky I now have, on the obscure Point label, which is a live recording made in Leningrad in 1980.

    This is my favourite symphony by him, but I also like No. 0. So, in a way, I like the two bookends...

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    I see no problem in a composer dedicating his works to God or anyone he wants. Many forget that religion is still a main part of billions of peoples lives.

    His religious fervor and dedication makes him special in the world of classical music history in my opinion.Granted there are many who composed for the church. But he (and Liszt) seem to be a bit more "pious" than others. Just my thoughts.
    I love his symphonies.

    Jim

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