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 Posted:   Jul 2, 2014 - 9:13 PM   
 By:   Jason LeBlanc   (Member)

What do you think?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uSeBexXaNo4

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 2, 2014 - 9:28 PM   
 By:   bobbengan   (Member)

To my ear this is uninteresting, typical and tepid "modern" concert music; the kind of stuff that made the symphony orchestra fall wildly out of popularity with the mainstream all those decades ago when it became all "academic and intellectual and virtuosic" (barfs).

Just random plucked notes and agitated, schizophrenic-sounding dissonance that goes nowhere, does nothing interesting, doesn't move me, or impress me, or evoke anything whatsoever, nor paint any mental pictures, etc.

Penederecki and Ligeti's music, at least, evoked an emotion (for me, that being cosmic terror more often than not of a Lovecraftian variety) but this just makes me want to punch a cat or something, or take Ambien in the hopes of making the ear-pain go away.

Boring crap like this is being written all over the world right now by wild-haired, pseudo-intellectual, pimply, pretentious music students (and their stuffy professors) and you could substitute this piece with any one of theirs and not hear a damn note of difference.

Bbbbbooooorrrrrriiiiinnnnnnggggggg.

I take solace in knowing this kind of ugly and ineffectual NOISE will NOT survive the test of time that Strauss, Tchaikovsky, etc. or some of our most-beloved symphonic film composers' will, including much of the wonderful film music written by Williams himself elsewhere in his career...

When it comes to "film composers doing concert music", gimme more stuff like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5h4iIY0_iE

or

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIvgXLQghOM

.... I have spoken!

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 2, 2014 - 10:19 PM   
 By:   thommy   (Member)

Love it !
Great to hear now Williams, If you told me this was written for Twilight Zone i'd believe it.

Emotional, excting and complex in a transparent way ( for lack of better words to describe my feelings. ) Here's hoping for many more Williams compositions.

Wonderfull that music can evoke very different feelings within listeners.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 2, 2014 - 11:16 PM   
 By:   bobbengan   (Member)

Love it ! Wonderfull that music can evoke very different feelings within listeners.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMF5MjzgJrM&feature=kp

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 2, 2014 - 11:17 PM   
 By:   RM Eastman   (Member)

Sounds like a bunch of crap to me, the only decent music Williams can write is some of his film scores. The only primary "film composers" that wrote good concert music; Rozsa, and Korngold. Any other examples come to mind??

 
 Posted:   Jul 2, 2014 - 11:24 PM   
 By:   Yavar Moradi   (Member)

Waxman, Goldenthal, Bernstein, and Broughton have all written fantastic concert music...and I guess you don't care for Goldsmith's?

Yavar

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 12:39 AM   
 By:   RM Eastman   (Member)

Waxman, Goldenthal, Bernstein, and Broughton have all written fantastic concert music...and I guess you don't care for Goldsmith's?

Yavar


I agree with Waxman, Bernstein(Guitar concerto, gorgeous) and Goldsmith's "Fireworks"

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 1:56 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

People have the right to their opinions, of course, but when they are expressed as unconstructive as a couple of the ones in this thread, it's hard to take them seriously.

I quite like what I hear. It actually sounds more accesible than some the other Williams concert pieces, like the flute concerto. While I will always veer towards the melodic if given a choice, I'm often fascinated by the dissonant, especially when it's structured as well as Williams does.

Bring on a proper, official recording!

 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 2:12 AM   
 By:   EvilDead   (Member)

I like the orchestral parts, but the piano parts are NOT my taste of music... at all. Way too "avant garde", I think. Thank god Williams does movie scores as well smile

I'm not familar with Lang Lang's work, but he managed to ruin a Metallica classic too ("One") when they performed at this year's Grammys. So maybe it's just HIS fault that I don't like the John Williams piece? big grin

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 2:48 AM   
 By:   Graham Watt   (Member)

Interesting and very diverse opinions here. Speaking for myself, I was VERY impressed with this. And curiously (or perhaps not), the reason I like it so much is that it reminds me of the kind of spikey, avant garde FILM MUSIC that I've always cherished. Some of the piano-percussion sections could be right out of an early-'60s Goldsmith thriller for example.

I wonder if some of us would have a different appreciation of this if it had actually been written for a film...

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 3:06 AM   
 By:   Clark Wayne   (Member)

Sounds like a bunch of crap to me, the only decent music Williams can write is some of his film scores. The only primary "film composers" that wrote good concert music; Rozsa, and Korngold. Any other examples come to mind??

Seeing as you troll anything Williams related why don't I come over and piss on your Goldsmith worship sometime?

 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 3:09 AM   
 By:   JohnnyG   (Member)

I'd buy a recording of this!
(Even with Lang Lang as a soloist... wink )

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 4:44 AM   
 By:   Tall Guy   (Member)

To my ear this is uninteresting, typical and tepid "modern" concert music; the kind of stuff that made the symphony orchestra fall wildly out of popularity with the mainstream all those decades ago when it became all "academic and intellectual and virtuosic" (barfs).

Just random plucked notes and agitated, schizophrenic-sounding dissonance that goes nowhere, does nothing interesting, doesn't move me, or impress me, or evoke anything whatsoever, nor paint any mental pictures, etc.

Penederecki and Ligeti's music, at least, evoked an emotion (for me, that being cosmic terror more often than not of a Lovecraftian variety) but this just makes me want to punch a cat or something, or take Ambien in the hopes of making the ear-pain go away.

Boring crap like this is being written all over the world right now by wild-haired, pseudo-intellectual, pimply, pretentious music students (and their stuffy professors) and you could substitute this piece with any one of theirs and not hear a damn note of difference.

Bbbbbooooorrrrrriiiiinnnnnnggggggg.

I take solace in knowing this kind of ugly and ineffectual NOISE will NOT survive the test of time that Strauss, Tchaikovsky, etc. or some of our most-beloved symphonic film composers' will, including much of the wonderful film music written by Williams himself elsewhere in his career...



Bob (sorry, I'm assuming here) - the only thing that distresses me about the stance you've taken on this is that you'll never be able to retreat from it, not even when you've listened to it a few times and realised how good it actually is!

Don't get me wrong, I bow to nobody in my distaste for pretentious modern concert hall music, and have heard (much more than) my fair share of it at London Proms concerts down the years. But the Williams piece doesn't approach the contumeliousness of some of that nonsense. The orchestral parts were surprisingly Williamsy in places, particularly having read your description, and the piano parts struck me as living in the same space as Prokofiev's piano concerti. Not that I'm an expert on the latter, but have seen and heard them all at various times. I'm not comparing the degree of difficulty in playing them, by the way, that would be fatuous, but in the feel I get from both.

As for some of the other dismissive and negative comments, to be honest I'd be more concerned if the particular people involved said anything else!

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 5:24 AM   
 By:   That Bloke   (Member)

You really have to admire someone for using the word "contumeliousness".

Oh, and I like the piece too - John Williams is one of the few composers who to me can write in the "modern" idiom and have such music communicate to me. Good to see him push himself creatively. At times I felt that some parts would not sound out of place in War of the Worlds or Minority Report (that's a compliment) and -hey!- a theme!! Now that's something you don't get too often these days in these modern composed concert pieces - or even a modern film score smile

 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 5:35 AM   
 By:   Sean Nethery   (Member)

I love it for most of the reasons others note here - particularly that he is featuring the piano as a percussion instrument in much the way Bartok did in his piano concertos. While there are some almost old-fashioned avant-garde moments, they have shape and direction, which is tough to do in this idiom.

I'm particularly struck by how much more consistent this is with his rougher hewn film music than most of his concert music. It has real direction and drive, whereas much of his concert music is more amorphous in shape and can feel almost timeless.

But then, it's a scherzo, and Williams loves writing scherzos!

 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 5:39 AM   
 By:   Sean Nethery   (Member)

By the way, calling any of these notes "random" is dicey territory. In fact, not a single note is random or even arbitrary (any more than any piece of music is).

It's fine to say it SOUNDS random, but it ain't.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 6:00 AM   
 By:   barryfan   (Member)

Bob is right. That was pure crap. I LOVE Williams, I appreciate dissonance, but that was just random noise.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 6:00 AM   
 By:   barryfan   (Member)

Bob is right. That was pure crap. I LOVE Williams, I appreciate dissonance, but that was just random noise.

 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 6:10 AM   
 By:   Sean Nethery   (Member)

Wow. It's funny how some people who say they love Williams also love to say some very nasty things about a piece of music of his they don't care for. Weird kind of love.

Reminds me of an exchange in Alex Cox's Straight to Hell. A lady shoots a guy. And as he's dying he says: "I thought you loved me!"

And she says, "I don't know what love is."

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 3, 2014 - 6:15 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

Well said, Sean.

If people hate this, I'd love to read what they think of Williams' flute concerto -- which IMO is far more challenging than this. The rhytmical orchestral passages of this piece actually has a distinct film music quality to them.

Or God Forbid -- something by the Polish avantgarde.

 
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