Download The Rest Is Noise Listening to the Twentieth Century
This book could be subtitled Musicians who did stuff after Wagner with wildly varied results Wagner hovers like a ghost over this work the Great Father whose achievements couldn t be surpassed in toto only in miniature via crazier and crazier endeavours The composers range from deep genius Debussy
Sibelius to sterile fapping too many to name but whether one loves or hates their music is irrelevant to sterile fapping too many to name but whether one loves or hates their music is irrelevant this is primarily a work of social history The author describes classical music in the 2000s as a sunken cathedral ie an interregnum and who knows what comes next This isn t something I say lightly but pretty much everyone should consider reading Alex Ross The Rest Is Noise Why Because a it makes for a riveting work of political and cultural history and b it provides a layman s entry point into that most venerable of Western art forms classical musicI first became acuainted with this book in my late teens By that time I d already immersed myself ite heavily in free jazz noise and the like But classical music especially the 20th century variety had thus far eluded my The Winds of Winter understanding Like many otherwise adventurous young listeners I felt overwhelmed by the plethora of composers performers and recordings to choose from And in this regard avant jazz was comparatively speaking pretty This book is made so much enjoyable because of the Internet one of the few books you can say that about because of the availability of samples of the music on the book s web site I enjoyed the first chapters best because the author allowed me to imagine what a momentous event it must have been in an age before recorded music to be in the audience when a composer s music first premiered This book took me way too long to read which is a little strange because I found it very interesting andite inspiring I m tempted to give it five stars but I m too much of a dilettante when it comes to cough serious music to not necessarily take everything that the author is saying at face value I do have two complaints about the books though the first is that the author clearly dislikes the one of the few people I probably do count as an actual hero of mine I don t hold it strongly against him that he finds Adorno to what s the word not necessarily wrong but some kind of extremist snob for lack of a better word Every time Adorno makes an appearance on these pages he comes across like a Alex Ross is one of my must read New Yorker writers Whenever a new piece of his comes out I know I m going to be smarter than I was before To me he is the music critic The Rest Is Noise is often referred to
As The Book On the book on century classical music And I can only further perpetrate that sentiment Who says history is boring And who says classical music died with Wagner Well I have actually always liked history but was largely nfamiliar with 20c classical music ntil I read Ross excellent The Rest is Noise Alex Ross does an amazing job of writing the history of the 20c in classical music starting at the waning but overwhelming influence of Wagner on early 20c composers like Schoenberg and Stravinsky through the onset of atonal music and on through the wars and the crazy 60 s I had NO idea that classical music was so incredibly rich and interesting particularly in the previous century I don t want to spoil anything here because it is incredibly readable and you will learn on nearly every page I am still trying to get through all the recordings that he posted on his book s website which could serve as a fore taste of how great this book is Don t walk but run to and grab a copy I liked it so much that I bought the seuel Listen to Thishappy reading You know how you can watch a foreign language movie without subtitles and still enjoy the film You may not speak German but can still tell that Hitler s pissed. The Rest Is Noise Listening to the Twentieth Century is a voyage into the labyrinth of modern music which remains an obscure world for most people While paintings of Picasso and Jackson Pollock sell for a hundred million dollars or and lines from T S Eliot are oted on the yearbook pages of alienated teenagers across the land twentieth century classical music still sends ripples of nease through audiences At the same time its influence can be felt everywhere Atonal chords crop p in jazz Avant garde sounds populate the soundtracks of Hollywood thrill.
Alex Ross Í 3 free readOff You may not speak French but you can tell that Juliette Binoche has reached a point of existential doubt in a meretricious relationship This book was like that for me I may not even now be able to articulate a difference between atonality and twelve tone music is there one but I love being told that some stabbing single notes in a second movement are like a "knife in Stalin s heartThis book is Music in the Twentieth Century Or the Twentieth Century with music Crescendo pi " in Stalin s heartThis book is Music in the Twentieth Century Or the Twentieth Century with music Crescendo pi Silence It starts with Richard Strauss conducting Salome Puccini took the train north Mahler et x attended Schoenberg and Berg were there Hitler said he was And if you recall There was even a fictional character present Adrian Leverk hn the hero of Thomas Mann s Doctor Faustus the tale of a composer in league with the devilLeverk hn looms large in this history a twisting of Evil with Music and a twisting of Music and the human soul The notes I heard kept asking What s next and What s next In slow movements and fastThere s some tabloid stuff here that Alma Mahler what a tart that Pierre Boulez what a jerk But it s also a Music Appreciation course and Alex Ross clearly knows his material He attempts to make this inter active by offering a website wwwtherestisnoisecom with click and play excerpts I found that cumbersome and chose my own inter activity playing music from my collection or youtubing I ll annoy you in a bit with some linksRoss has an ear for humor too The joke went around that Webern had introduced the marking pensato Don t play the note only think itI didn t always hear what Ross heard There s Sibelius in Barber But then he didn t hear Gorecki in Barber or didn t say so That s part of the funLet me break into some dissonant chords now and give you fragments from the book things I learned Sibelius remains a big deal in his native land his face was on every coin ntil Finland converted to the Euro The annual Finnish expenditure on the arts is roughly 200 times per capita what the United States spends on the National Endowment of the Arts I m not saying that s wrong just sayin Ruth Crawford Seeger was Pete Seeger s stepmother She created some to my
ears really interesting avant garde music she stoppedreally interesting avant garde music She stopped when her Communist husband a formulator of dissonant counterpoint told her women can t compose symphonies Oh Artemisia Perhaps I would have nderstood Josef Skvorecky s The Engineer of Human Souls better if I knew that it was Stalin who once mused that writers should be engineers of human souls Musical luminaries descended on Paris in 1952 for the Masterpieces of the XXth Century festival It was thought to be funded by Julius Fleischmann the yeast and gin millionaire In reality the whole event was financed by the CIAThere is a
Bit Of The Emperor Sof The Emperor s Clothes to the excesses of art music included A century that started with Strauss Mahler and Sibelius ended with John Cage s 4 33 The original score was written out on conventional music paper tempo 60 in three movements David Tudor walked onstage sat down at the piano opened the piano lid and did nothing except to close the lid and open it again at the beginning of each subseuent movement The music was the sound of the surrounding space It was a piece that anyone could have written as skeptics never failed to point out but as Cage seldom failed to respond no one else did Luigi Nono s signature piece Il canto sospeso took texts from anti Fascist resistance fighters I am not afraid of death I will be calm and at peace facing the execution suad I go in the belief of a better life for you and broke them into syllables which he scattered throughout the various choral parts By making the words less accessible he believed they would matter David Tudor attacking a piano with boxing gloves Dieter Schnebel who in Ers Minimalism has had a huge effect on rock pop and dance music from the Velvet Underground onward The Rest Is Noise shows why twentieth century composers felt compelled to create a famously bewildering variety of sounds from the purest beauty to the purest noise It tells of a remarkable array of maverick personalities who resisted the cult of the classical past struggled against the indifference of a wide public and defied the will of dictators Whether they have charmed audiences with sweet sounds or battered them with dissonance composers have alwa. Is work Abf lle I1 invited audience members to contribute to the performance by conversing making noises of approval or disapproval coughing and moving chairs And Alvin Lucier who in Music for Solo Performer attached electrodes to his head and broadcast his brain s alpha waves to loudspeakers around the room the low freuency tones causing nearby percussion "INSTRUMENTS TO VIBRATEI M NOT KIDDINGAND YET ROSS OPENED " to vibrateI m not kiddingAnd yet Ross opened much of the new music to me This was sometimes accomplished just by my own perusal of works by a composer
That Ross Mentions HenryRoss mentions Henry for instance Yes elbows Some of Cowell s pieces are all inside the piano there are composers I d never heard of who intrigued after some exploration Ross notes six significant voices in contemporary music Franghiz Ali Zadeh of Azerbaijan Chen Yi of China Unsuk Chin of South Korea Sofia Gubaidulina of Russia Kaija Saariaho of Finland Pauline Oliveros of the United States late for Ruth Crawford Seeger or Artemisia for that matter but all six are womenThe Twentieth Century You may think of Rothko paintings Think of a musical piece written by Morton Feldman mourning his friend s death The Twentieth Century When classical music takes a drug and goes Rock That s right Take a walk on the wild sideThe Twentieth Century I ll let Steve Goodman sing Everyday Life in Early Soviet Russia us out I think this book is best read and listened to at the same time it really adds to it As such I created a Youtube playlist to go along with your read which you can find here you re looking for a listen with better soundality and don t mind finding them yourselves I can t blame you then here is the list of songs that I thought captured the bookRichard Strauss Also Sprach ZarathustraGustav Mahler Symphony No 8Claude Debussy Arabesue IClaude Debussy Prelude to the Afternoon of a FaunArnold Schoenberg Verkl rte NachtAnton Webern Six Pieces for OrchestraIgor Stravinsky Rite of SpringDarius Milhaud ScaramoucheWill Marion Cook Swing AlongCharles Ives The Unanswered The Affair of the Blue Pig uestionGeorge Gershwin Rhapsody in BlueJean Sibelius Symphony No 2 Paul Hindemith Sonate per viola e pianoforteLouis Armstrong Mack the KnifeArnold Schoenberg JakobsleiterAlban Berg Lulu SuiteDmitri Shostakovich Symphony No 5Aaron Copland Appalachian SpringJohn Cage Music of ChangesKarlheinz Stockhausen TelemusikBenjamin Britten Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes Olivier Messiaenartet for the End of TimeMorton Feldman Rothko ChapelJohn Adams Common Tones in Simple Time alex ross is one of the few remaining music critics for a major american periodical there Visual Group Theory (MAA Classroom Resource Materials) used to be many but it s a dwindling professionart in his case the new yorker he attends a concert than once if possible with the score and without in order to bothnderstand the music and feel it and he s young so his ears aren t burdened with decades of ear wax received wisdom archaic prejudice etchow rare is it to ever find anyon Alex Ross wonderful trip to the 20th Century via the world of classical music and it s composers As I mentioned I had Very Little Knowledge Of little knowledge of music especially modern I knew Glass Reich Satie but overall this is pretty much a new world music wiseSaying that this is also the history of cultural life in the 20th Century The best chapeters deal with Nazi Germany and Stalin s Russia and how they sed music and how it affected the composers of that place and timeIn a distant way the book reminds me of The City of Nets in that there are many stories being told because some of them are real characters but also for me there were some dry areas Not sure because of the text or the writer s focus or maybe it s just the subject matter But overall I think this book is pretty essential in not only music history but also how music interacts with societyculture of that time Ross is really good at giving the big picture. Ys been exuberantly of the present defying the stereotype of classical music as a dying art The narrative goes from Vienna before the First World War to Paris in the twenties from Hitler's Germany and Stalin's Russia to downtown New York in the sixties and seventies We follow the rise of mass culture and mass politics of dramatic new technologies of hot and cold wars of experiments revolutions riots and friendships forged and broken The end result is not so much a history of twentieth century music as a history of the twentieth century through its mus. ,