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Just got a new CD...
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Author:  Wildabeast [ Thu Feb 27, 2003 1:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Just got a new CD...

Stephen Melillo's Stormworks...Chapter Zero: A Walk on the Water

Just came in the mail. So far, so nice.

Author:  Hostrauser [ Mon Mar 10, 2003 12:30 am ]
Post subject: 

I just got FIVE CDs from the West Coast Music Service.

Two CDs are of marches. So far, no new-found gems. Listening to these CDs I've been rudely reminded that some marches are obscure and unheard of for a reason. :roll:

Another CD is the London Symphony Orchestra's recording of De Meij's "Symphony #1" (Lord of the Rings). Yes, that's right, the LSO. Yes, that's right, De Meij's great band piece. A concert band piece arranged for orchestra! How outstanding is that? :D

CD #4 is all Percy Grainger music. Personally, I've never been a huge fan of Grainger's stuff. His rambling compositional style with its (relative) absence of recapitulation or development just doesn't work for me. Usually. I love Marching Song of Democracy, and that's the whole reason I got the CD. Although The Immovable Do isn't too bad. Kinda interesting, with that incessant drone note on the high C.

CD #5 is called "Wind Currents" and is music performed by the U. of MA-Amherst Wind Ensemble. Allow me to provide a brief critique of each track for you (with accompanying emoticon).

Track 1 - Ultima Fantasia by Robert Stern. Did not impress me in the slightest, good or bad. Actually I thought it was fairly dull.

Track 2 - Romantic Serenade by Joseph Turrin. A fairly nice piece. Didn't blow my socks off, but it's a worthwhile composition.

Track 3 - Motown Metal by Michael Daugherty. Utter crap. A disappointment of Biblical proportions. I love Daugherty's other works (Niagara Falls, Desi, Red Cape Tango, etc.) and I'm a brass man, so I thought: "Wow, a Daugherty piece for all brass and metallic percussion, I should love it!" Wrong. The piece is garbage. It's a never ending fusillade of trombone smears, brass runs, power chords, and rhythmically uninspired banging in the percussion (straight 8th/16th notes... complete devoid of syncopation, off-beats, accents, power hits... you know, interesting stuff). There was no discernable melody that I could catch, just a whole lot of noise.

Track 4 - Morning Star by David Maslanka. I can't say that I've ever been a huge David Maslanka fan, but this was a pretty good piece. It has a solid, cheerful theme that is developed throughout.

Track 5 - Symphony #4 by David Maslanka. Outstanding. This piece blew me out of the water, and the ending is terrific. However, I'm sure the fact that it is a single movement nearly 30 minutes long dissuades many ensembles from attempting it. Too bad, it's a terrific work.
:D :bow:

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