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Thread: Weekly quartet. Just a music lover perspective.

  1. #826
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    Yesterday I listened to Klangschatten, which was written in the same year as Gran Torso, it’s very good. I also listened to an earlier piece, Notturno. All very good.


    There’s a works list here, one thing you see is that he revises stuff a lot.

    http://composers21.com/compdocs/lachenmh.htm

    Space, peace, interruption and silence, all seem to be important in this music.
    Last edited by Mandryka; Jun-18-2020 at 12:57.

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  3. #827
    Senior Member Allegro Con Brio's Avatar
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    Dropping in with the weekly reminder and to update the schedule of nominators - next week is 20centrfuge’s turn to choose a quartet. Nice to see we’ve had a couple more participants - we do have a couple folks on the upcoming order that have not participated in the thread for a long time so if they can’t be reached, we’ll move ahead a week and keep them on reserve for whenever they reappear. As of right now:

    06/21-06/28: 20centrfuge
    06/28-07/05: Euler
    07/05-07/12: Iota
    07/12-07/19: DTut
    07/19-07/26: MissKittysMom
    07/26-08/02: Malx
    "If we understood the world, we would realize that there is a logic of harmony underlying its manifold apparent dissonances." - Jean Sibelius

    "Art is an attempt to transport into a limited quantity of matter, modeled by man, an image of the infinite beauty of the entire universe." - Simone Weil

    "Ceaseless work, analysis, reflection, writing much, endless self-correction, that is my secret." - Johann Sebastian Bach

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  5. #828
    Senior Member 20centrfuge's Avatar
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    I was just thinking to have us listen to Pachelbel's Canon in D - the extended version for string quartet.


    but seriously, do you want me to list the piece I'm picking on 6/21?
    Last edited by 20centrfuge; Jun-19-2020 at 16:09.

  6. #829
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    I just listened to the Lachenmann while trying my best to imagine the sounds as normal and familiar musical sounds. It still sounded fairly radical and forward looking for the 1970s (I'm assuming that the 1988 revision we now know did not completely change the work). But of course the concrete sounds are a necessary part of the work. What remains striking is that the work can be so riveting and compelling. How is music that is "not easy to understand" - and where only the apparently random shifts in mood can be "followed" - so compelling?

    What in this context is "understanding". Programme music, opera, ballet, songs and so on have meaning that can be given in words and there can be wide agreement as to the meaning. But a lot of - perhaps most - classical music has no meaning in those terms. We can rarely go beyond "tragic", "happy", "joyful", "sad", "angry" and so on and the transitions between these. Which words might be applied to Gran Torso? Desolation - perhaps post-industrial, perhaps with strange small creatures scurrying about over and under broken concrete slabs and twisted metal! Danger (possible danger). Isn't it a picture like the right (hell) panel of Hieronymus Bosch's Garden of Earthly Delights? Or perhaps there are no creatures and it is more like Paul Nash's WW1 paintings like The Menin Road or Wire? Who knows? Perhaps it feeds different hallucinations to each of us. Is it music that is "stripped of meaning"? For us to find meaning for as we might with a Rorschach test?

    I've also listened to a few other Lachenmann pieces from early 1970s (Pression) and late 1980s (Allegro Sostenuto and his 2nd quartet, Reigen seliger Geister) as well as Grido (his third - and last? - string quartet). Not surprisingly, perhaps, the sound world of Gran Torso is similar to that of Pression. By the mid-1980s it seems that Lachenmann's ideas had developed but he is more content to have the instruments sound like the instruments they are! Grido (2002) is a really excellent quartet with quite a lot of space in it, perhaps necessitated by the slightly richer musical language, as well as plenty of true drama.
    Last edited by Enthusiast; Jun-19-2020 at 17:43.

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  8. #830
    Senior Member Allegro Con Brio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 20centrfuge View Post
    I was just thinking to have us listen to Pachelbel's Canon in D - the extended version for string quartet.


    but seriously, do you want me to list the piece I'm picking on 6/21?
    You can announce it whenever you’re ready, preferably before Sunday
    "If we understood the world, we would realize that there is a logic of harmony underlying its manifold apparent dissonances." - Jean Sibelius

    "Art is an attempt to transport into a limited quantity of matter, modeled by man, an image of the infinite beauty of the entire universe." - Simone Weil

    "Ceaseless work, analysis, reflection, writing much, endless self-correction, that is my secret." - Johann Sebastian Bach

  9. #831
    Senior Member 20centrfuge's Avatar
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    6/21 - 6/28 Gabriela Lena Frank: Quijotadas (2007)













    QUIJOTADAS

    Program Notes:
    https://www.wisemusicclassical.com/w...la-Lena-Frank/

    Quijotadas (2007) for string quartet is inspired by El Ingenioso Hidalgo don Quijote de la Mancha by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547-1616). Widely considered the first modern novel, this tale satirizes post-Conquest Spain by relating the tale of a middle-aged lesser nobleman who undertakes absurd adventures in pursuit of romantic — and seriously outdated — knightly ideals. Cervantes' brilliant and colorful resulting social commentary still reverberates for us today in the arts and popular culture at large. Quijotadas, which is the Spanish word for extravagant delusions wrought in the Quixotic spirit, is in five movements. They are:

    I. Alborada: Traditionally a Spanish song of welcome or beginnings, this is in the style of music for the chifro, a small high-pitched wooden panpipe played with one hand. It is often employed by a traveling guild worker to announce his services as he walks through the streets of town.

    II. Seguidilla: This free interpretation of the spirited dance rhythms of Don Quijote's homeland of La Mancha also evokes two typical instruments — the six-stringed guitar, and its older cousin, the bandurria, which finds its origins in Renaissance Spain.

    III. Moto Perpetuo: La Locura de Quijote: This movement is inspired by an early chapter in the novel that describes Don Quixote sequestering himself in his hacienda, reading nothing but novels of chivalry, the pulp fiction of his time. The teasing promises of grandeur make him dizzy and he eventually goes mad.

    IV. Asturianada: La Cueva: The style of this traditional mountain song (whereby a young male singer issues forth calls that rise and fall with great emotion and strength) is used to paint a portrait of the Cave of Montesinos. In an important episode of the novel, Don Quijote fantasizes about the legendary hero Montesinos trapped under enchantment in a highland cave.

    V. La Danza de los Arrieros: Throughout the tale, Don Quijote is constantly rubbing up against arrieros (muleteers) who, for Cervantes, are the embodiment of reality in contrast to Don Quijote's fantasy world. The encounters with these roughnecks are always abrupt and physical, usually resulting in a sound thrashing for Quijote. Each beating brings him closer to reality, and in the end, he must poignantly reconcile himself to the fact that his noble ideals do not find a hospitable home in the contemporary world.


    — Gabriela Lena Frank
    Last edited by 20centrfuge; Jun-19-2020 at 23:22.

  10. #832
    Senior Member sbmonty's Avatar
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    Another interesting choice. Thanks for the opportunity! I haven't heard this work or of the composer. Only one recording on Naxos. I'll give this one a listen tonight.
    Might be an opportunity to reread the novel as well!
    Last edited by sbmonty; Jun-20-2020 at 07:14.

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  12. #833
    Senior Member Simplicissimus's Avatar
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    Gabriela Lena Frank - Quijotadas (2007)

    THIS.

    Listened on Youtube to the recordings posted by 20centrfuge. Absolutely love it! I read that Frank says her major influences are Bartók and Ginastera, and I certainly hear that in this piece. If we want to talk about contemporary CM that can draw audiences, I think this is a prime example. Simply marvelous.

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  14. #834
    Senior Member Merl's Avatar
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    What an interesting piece. Another one out of my comfort zone but unlike Lachenmann I really enjoyed this short work, particularly the 2nd movement (I'm a sucker for pizzicato - gets me every time). I felt transported to rural Spain but maybe that's because I'm still wondering if our holiday there will go ahead in 3 weeks' time. Whatever, this is a nice work and one I'll be playing again this week (if I ever get through all this Scriabin). Thanks 20centrfuge for this one.

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  16. #835
    Senior Member Bwv 1080's Avatar
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    Getting caught up here on both the Lachenmann and Frank.

    The only Lachenmann piece I am familiar with (and like) is the guitar duo Salut fur Caudwell, which happens to also be on the Berner SQ 2000 recording. I think the whole acoustic music concrete thing is cool and he does it well, but ultimately I think he exhausted its possibilities over his career.

    Was not familiar at all with Gabriela Frank. Its a nice piece and well crafted
    Found this short interview
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a6WNYFHN36M

  17. #836
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bwv 1080 View Post
    I think the whole acoustic music concrete thing is cool and he does it well, but ultimately I think he exhausted its possibilities over his career.

    Well, I don't see why. Instrumental music concrete just gives the composer some new sounds to work with. It's a liberation from the limited range of instrumental effects which is taught in conservative conservatoires. Composers will make of it what they will.

    The problem is to find a distinctive voice, but that's always a problem, whether you use electronic sound, non standard acoustic techniques or acoustic instruments played traditionally. . .


    (Salut fur Caudwell is very good -- but I like all Lachenmann very much apart from his most recent work.)
    Last edited by Mandryka; Jun-22-2020 at 21:18.

  18. #837
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    ^ I guess the concreteness of Gran Torso is fairly extreme - or do I mean crude? - compared to later Lachenmann. In general Lachenmann was ahead of his time and continues to be influential.

    The Frank piece (Quijotadas) is immediately attractive and seems filled with interesting and evocative music. Is there an element of novelty to it that could pall with familiarity? A week is not long enough for me to know. But I am enjoying listening to it for now.

  19. #838
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enthusiast View Post
    ^ I guess the concreteness of Gran Torso is fairly extreme - or do I mean crude? - compared to later Lachenmann. .
    You mean bold.


    Inspired by recent listening to both Rihm and Lachenmann I've just bought this

    51OXtYdEv6L._SX348_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg
    Last edited by Mandryka; Jun-23-2020 at 13:36.

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  21. #839
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    ^ No, not really. I do feel his music became more refined as he aged.

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    The G.L.Frank quartet is obviously quite programmatic and I think it succeeds very well at evoking events as described in 20centrfuge's #831. I found it very easy to imagine the music being danced to as I listened, it seems a piece that would naturally offer itself to such treatment.
    I enjoyed most the movements depicting Don Quijote's mental states (III - V) Frank seems an adept 'painter' particularly at these moments.

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