Philip Glass: Symphony No. 8, Duos Nos. 1-5, Harpsichord Concerto
Open iTunes to preview, buy, and download music.
After stretching the symphonic form in earlier works, Philip Glass returned to a more Romantic conceptual format with his eighth opus for orchestra. Its first movement introduces a series of darkly gorgeous themes that Glass braids into a rich contrapuntal finale. The neoclassical format suits him well and helps underscore his skill as a melodist. Dennis Russell Davies, the composer’s foremost symphonic interpreter, leads a performance full of rhythmic vitality. Glass’ string duos and Harpsichord Concerto round out this prime late-period program.
Philip Glass: Symphony No 8, Duos 1-5
BUY THIS!! You will love it! Take my word for it. It is AWESOME!
Fantastic Collection of Glass' classical side
In regard to the previous reviewer, I can sympathize with the small minded idea that Western Culture faltered and then collapsed circa 1900. Certainly our regular notions of progress were challenge.
Enter Schoenberg and his disciples and the real decline we saw was in art music's influence, relevance, stature, and after 50 years of damaging dogma and crappy music we finally got a breathe of fresh air with the minimalists.
Glass himself declared that minimalism was dead in 1975. What we have with these pieces is an artist who started way out on the fringes writing radically difficult music using the most elementary materials coming ever so slowly to the main stream and classical tradition.
Take any movement of any of these pieces and if you can get over the idea of repetition, then you will hear remarkable things. Take the second movement of the harpsichord concerto for example: Glass lays out introductory material, builds up tension using somewhat annoying trills as whole notes, then relaxes into this lilting main theme. Then the common Glass technique of taking section A and using it as the harmony of section B, etc. the result is "layering" true, but it requires remarkable contrapuntal ability to generate and manage. Plus you get that beautiful melody, plus you have interesting harmony, and in the end you get a modernist entry into the Harpsichord concerto canon.
The merits of the eighth symphony are beyond reproach. It's a masterpiece in every way. I won get into its quality here. Suffice it to say that time will bear all this out and I'm confident these prices will survive not from novelty but from quality. The naysayers will just have to deal.
This is a Philip Glass Disc
Itunes wanted to find a disc of Philip Glass for you to buy for their "Must Have" collection. Out of all of the discs they could have chosen, this is the one they decided to promote. -Bz