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Thread: Best 25 works of this century?

  1. #76
    Senior Member AfterHours's Avatar
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    @Phil

    Letting you know ahead of any response that I'm going to have to wrap this up. Lots of things to do and I just don't have time to keep discussing this with you, where I doubt an end is in sight, endlessly retorting, including points that weren't even made! I'm sure you'll disagree with the above, which is what it is...

    On all my responses I have been in a rush which also limits my patience in how much time/effort I'm willing or able to employ in the various points and discussion. Add to this that my interest level is pretty low, mainly due to past "discussions" (if they can even be called that! Lol)

    Not to mention we're high-jacking this thread on points now that are only vaguely reminiscent of the original topic...
    Last edited by AfterHours; Oct-04-2019 at 17:40.

  2. #77
    Senior Member Phil loves classical's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AfterHours View Post
    It's not impossible, it's what happened. Listen and directly compare to Ancerl, then Masur's, then Karajan's (each of those are successively longer from 23 to 26 to 28 min). Much clearer/symmetrical articulation, delineation of the lines/texture/counterpoint that Walter obfuscates (it's not just the sound quality of recording, he actually does smear/misalign the delineation/counterpoint which messes up the momentum, structure, ascending, inter-weaving development of the movement). Whether the tempo is technically okay or not, maybe there's a reason he himself thought it was a poor performance (in his words "deeply disappointing" if I remember correctly) and perhaps influencing his reconsideration where his 1961 version was in line with current performance practice (educated guess/speculation on my part; Im not a big fan of his 1961 rendition either but its much improved). I guess one has to look at whether the 1938 rendition aligns to Mahler's expressive goals. Personally I think it obviously doesnt -- including the liberal rubato that you mention, which clips it too much expressively in my view and (along with the rushed tempo) I personally think the work becomes glib, emotionally incoherent & mitigated (none in a compelling way) -- and I think Mahler suffers greatly if expressively mitigated much or too little vibrato.

    22 min was probably an exaggeration (re: "minimum") and I should re-phrase that to that's approx where the rendering seems to work most unanimously (22 on up to about 30). You're probably right in that it does seem plausible the work could be done at faster speeds; I just haven't heard it successfully. Walter's later 21.5 fourth (1961) is fine with no loss of anything structurally/texturally like 1938.
    Norrington's similar (to Walter/1938) 19.5 min 4th maybe works "structurally", but it's expressively awful (lacking in vibrato which is clearly needed to pull the piece off. The idea this is "HIP" for Mahler especially is very dubious imo) ... maybe just a better Mahler conductor needs to give it a go at those faster tempos to prove it can be pulled off -- but it's probably an indication of workability that the great Mahler conductors uniformly opt for 22+ min speeds ...

    RE: Rock Bottom ... Nope. Unfortunately, you still don't seem to know what I was talking about. I eventually just came to the conclusion that you must've never read what I said (in the analysis, nor when I kept replying: which was mainly about its multiplicity/ambiguity/fusing of emotion/expressive states, not "depression from his fall" or what-have-you).

    Here's a good symphony guide for Mahler's 9th that makes some interesting correlations:
    https://utahsymphony.org/explore/201...stening-guide/
    Come on, you're getting that from Hurwitz's review He is confused, it is not rushed to the point of "contrapuntal smearing" as I already proved. Also the bass line is clear, contrary to what he is saying (ok maybe because i have the EMI transfer and the sound might be better than the Naxos, still no excuse for faulting the interpretation). Walter was at first very happy with the results as the producer stated. It is the orchestra's fault for not so great ensemble at times, and definitely not even close to the point of "smearing". Unrelated to Walter's interpretation. Some reports say he had tears in his eyes or his face brightened up when he heard the recording (including the producer's).

    Hurwitz is always makes excuses against bad sound. He values it over interpretation. Some of his 10/10 reviews in sound/performance are undeserved compared to classic interpretations. Also he favours American recordings, loves Naxos recordings, hates Brit ones, and doesn't appreciate subtlety. As an aside, this is a guy who rates some no-name conductor over Chung who Messiaen personally approved (I heard the greatness of his version of the Symphony BEFORE reading anything about Messiaen's approval ).

    https://www.classicstoday.com/review/review-7827/
    Last edited by Phil loves classical; Oct-05-2019 at 05:53.
    "Forgive me, Majesty. I'm a vulgar man. But I assure you, my music is not.“ Mozart

  3. #78
    Senior Member AfterHours's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil loves classical View Post
    Come on, you're getting that from Hurwitz's review He is confused, it is not rushed to the point of "contrapuntal smearing" as I already proved. Also the bass line is clear, contrary to what he is saying (ok maybe because i have the EMI transfer and the sound might be better than the Naxos, still no excuse for faulting the interpretation). Walter was at first very happy with the results as the producer stated. It is the orchestra's fault for not so great ensemble at times, and definitely not even close to the point of "smearing". Unrelated to Walter's interpretation. Some reports say he had tears in his eyes or his face brightened up when he heard the recording (including the producer's).

    Hurwitz is always makes excuses against bad sound. He values it over interpretation. Some of his 10/10 reviews in sound/performance are undeserved compared to classic interpretations. Also he favours American recordings, loves Naxos recordings, hates Brit ones, and doesn't appreciate subtlety. As an aside, this is a guy who rates some no-name conductor over Chung who Messiaen personally approved (I heard the greatness of his version of the Symphony BEFORE reading anything about Messiaen's approval ).

    https://www.classicstoday.com/review/review-7827/
    Okay man, thanks for your perspective.

  4. #79
    Senior Member Phil loves classical's Avatar
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    ^^ You're welcome, I just like exposing the ACTUAL sources of certain perspectives and analyzing them.

    To get this thread back on track, this quartet is dubbed the most difficult to play ever. Written in 1984 (technically a 20th century piece) took decades to find performers and 14 years of practice to finally perform it! This world premiere recording is in 2016.

    Last edited by Phil loves classical; Oct-05-2019 at 16:05.
    "Forgive me, Majesty. I'm a vulgar man. But I assure you, my music is not.“ Mozart

  5. #80
    Senior Member Enthusiast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil loves classical View Post
    Check out his cello concerto 2 violin concerto 2, piano concerto.
    OK. I have now listened to the piano concerto. I do quite like Lindberg but nowhere near as much as some of the items on the Guardian list. His music is attractive but I have always found it palls after a few hearings. I don't know if this will be the same. Thanks for the recommendations.
    Last edited by Enthusiast; Oct-05-2019 at 16:27.

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  7. #81
    Senior Member AfterHours's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil loves classical View Post
    ^^ You're welcome, I just like exposing the ACTUAL sources of certain perspectives and analyzing them.
    And quite an exposure it was!

    Not everyone can be so original as to express acclaim for Walter's Mahler, such as yourself.

    In terms of recordings, Hurwitz is among those I agree with most often, along with Jed Distler (I also find classicstoday to be very reliable in general such as Victor Carr, Vernier, etc ... though those first two most closely align with what I look for when selecting recordings). Second to that, I would say Scaruffi & Musicweb. I like Peter Gutmann for surveys of more historical recordings and a user on RYM called "lesbianwalrus" (dont let the name fool you from how seriously he's taken the task!).
    Sources like Penguin and Gramophone are okay, but have too many biases, so with a grain of salt. And then the reviewers of Allmusic (Classical only) are actually pretty reliable (or at least more than I anticipated). Thats the general order I listen to when searching for and comparing recordings for a particular work and more often than not find that one of the reviewers from classicstoday, Scaruffi, or Musicweb matches my tastes. I only turn to those others if those fail to satisfy, or to fill out my own survey of recordings if still needed, or if I have a hunch there are still better renditions to be sorted out.

    There are also plenty of users on this site I find to be very worthwhile for certain composers/repertoire/insights, such as Woodduck (especially Wagner but pretty much anything he provides insights for), millionrainbows, EdwardBast, and many others ... and recordings, users such as realdealblues and Trout tend to align closely to my tastes.
    Last edited by AfterHours; Oct-05-2019 at 22:30.

  8. #82
    Senior Member Phil loves classical's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AfterHours View Post
    And quite an exposure it was!

    Not everyone can be so original as to express acclaim for Walter's Mahler, such as yourself.

    In terms of recordings, Hurwitz is among those I agree with most often, along with Jed Distler (I also find classicstoday to be very reliable in general such as Victor Carr, Vernier, etc ... though those first two most closely align with what I look for when selecting recordings). Second to that, I would say Scaruffi & Musicweb. I like Peter Gutmann for surveys of more historical recordings and a user on RYM called "lesbianwalrus" (dont let the name fool you from how seriously he's taken the task!).
    Sources like Penguin and Gramophone are okay, but have too many biases, so with a grain of salt. And then the reviewers of Allmusic (Classical only) are actually pretty reliable (or at least more than I anticipated). Thats the general order I listen to when searching for and comparing recordings for a particular work and more often than not find that one of the reviewers from classicstoday, Scaruffi, or Musicweb matches my tastes. I only turn to those others if those fail to satisfy, to fill out my own survey of recordings if still needed, or if I have a hunch there are still better renditions to be sorted out.

    There are also plenty of users on this site I find to be very worthwhile for certain composers/repertoire/insights, such as Wooduck (especially Wagner but pretty much anything he provides insights for), millionrainbows, EdwardBast, and many others ... and recordings, users such as realdealblues and Trout tend to align closely to my tastes.
    I thought you said you were giving up? Original? I just read after I wrote that, some article or something also noting his use of rubato, there is no doubt about it (and I didn't have to look it up before writing ). It's Hurwitz and regurgitations of his review () who had to be so original (and wrong) to suggest Walter's tempo is what led to "contrapuntal smearing" and such (at 25 bpm, it's not exactly Flight of the Bumblebee). It's not even my favourite version, which is Klemperer's. But flawed or not, (ok, Walter admitted there were flaws) there is no doubt it has certain insight few other recordings have, I don't care how well played, as many others also do (I'm finally appealing to others' opinions I know).

    You should get your review of the Golijov published by Fanfare magazine. That was original, if not concise nor convincing (just my opinion).
    Last edited by Phil loves classical; Oct-05-2019 at 18:50.
    "Forgive me, Majesty. I'm a vulgar man. But I assure you, my music is not.“ Mozart

  9. #83
    Senior Member AfterHours's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil loves classical View Post
    I thought you said you were giving up? Original? I just read after I wrote that, some article or something noting his use of rubato, there is no doubt about it (and I didn't have to look it up before writing ). It's not even my favourite version, which is Klemperer's. But flawed or not, (ok, Walter admitted there were flaws) there is no doubt it has insight few other recordings have, I don't care how well played, as many others also do.
    My favorites are (1) Karajan live 1982; (2) Masur live 1994; (3) Bernstein/NYP; (4) Ancerl/CPO; (5) Ozawa

    I go back and forth on Chailly as to whether or not he should join those (which is extremely dedicated and very well played) but I'm mixed on his tempos which are maybe too much on the slow side and may be overly contemplative/lack enough momentum.

    I remember thinking Levine's was among the best, though it's been too long since Ive heard it so can't include it (yet?) with those at this time even if I suspect from memory that it could join them.

    It's been a long time since I listened to Klemperer's but I do remember it as being superb and one of the recordings I need to revisit.
    Last edited by AfterHours; Oct-05-2019 at 18:50.

  10. #84
    Member MrMeatScience's Avatar
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    I've just been to a performance of Mark-Anthony Turnage's Massarosa for bassoon and string quartet. I don't know if it's one of the "best" works of this century, but I was captivated by it and it would certainly be on my own subjective list. I believe there's a recording of the premiere in New York -- it's well worth hearing. Very lyrical, enigmatic music.

  11. #85
    Senior Member AfterHours's Avatar
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    I am looking for other recorded performances of Golijov's amazing Cello Concerto "Azul" if anyone is familiar with any.

    Of course I am familiar with the following, which I believe is the only "official" release so far: https://www.amazon.com/Golijov-Stock...0562991&sr=8-1

    But if there are others you're aware of or come across such as live recordings on Youtube or on similar video sites, I would appreciate any recommendations/notifications.
    "We must not cease from exploration. And the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we began and to know the place for the first time." -- T.S. Eliot

  12. #86
    Senior Member Art Rock's Avatar
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    Allüberall und ewig blauen licht die Fernen! Ewig ... ewig ...

  13. #87
    Senior Member AfterHours's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art Rock View Post
    Much appreciated, will give it a listen :-)

  14. #88
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    We all know the best work of this century will be when some young lad or lass adapts Twin Peaks into a new Operatic Ring Cycle.

  15. #89
    Senior Member Selby's Avatar
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    I enjoyed reading the Guardian list. I was so excited about the release of Kurtág's Fin de Partie but still haven't gotten around to watch/listen to it.

    What I would be eager to add is Stephen Hough's first 3 piano sonatas. There is a fourth that has been published but I have not heard/found a recording of it.
    "I propose to create a heroic, monumental style of composition simple enough to inspire all people; completely free from fads, artificial mannerisms and false sophistications; direct, forceful, sincere, always original but never unnatural." -Alan Hovhaness

  16. #90
    Senior Member Art Rock's Avatar
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    For those interested, a game on this theme has started (taking nominations now). Link.
    Last edited by Art Rock; Oct-13-2019 at 19:47.
    Allüberall und ewig blauen licht die Fernen! Ewig ... ewig ...

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