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View Full Version : Hyper-Modern vs. Modern


euphony131
02-27-2001, 11:50 PM
Ok, ok, I think many of us are reaching the saturation point regarding the whole Period vs. Modern debate. So how's about a new topic? How about Hyper-Modern vs. Modern? Yep, that's right...

An orchestra of electric strings, electric woodwinds, electric percussion, electric bass, a sound-mixing board plus behemoth speakers for the ALL-OUT BLAST EFFECT. It'll make any rock/rap/pop band minuscle and obsolete forever!

The way I understand it is that sound-mixing already takes place in studios that prepare CM CDs. And many symphony halls and theatres are already outfitted with sound-enhancing speakers -- so it's already happening, albeit on a smaller scaler.

Sound studios routinely add bass or treble here and there to bring out the "best" in a recording, so how about just going all out for the Hyper-Modern Sound? You can have extra "reverb" or resonance for that echoing sound, you can smooth out even roughest of passages into liquid perfection, you can make an orchestra of 100 sound like 1,000! And on and on...

Ok, I know I may be sounding sacrilegous here and personally I prefer the PURE sound of unenhanced instruments. But I'm suggesting all this as one way to put CM on the world map again. To make people wake up and see this isn't some "museum piece." It ought to definitely bring in the young people that's for sure!

Look at it this way -- if the integrity and message of a Beethoven sonata can be transferred to a modern Steinway (I know you disagree Rod, so please sit down http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/smile.gif) then what's to stop us from going further? I mean the strings we use (as Rod has pointed out repeatedly) are not even the same as those in B's time, yet they can still impart the "Message." So, it's really not much more of a jump to using an eletric string is it?

Please understand I am not referring to synthesizers here! I ain't talkin' Techno Beethoven! NO WAY. (I heard B's Nineth synthesized and it SUCKED!) The players will still have to be talented professionals. But now those same players will have the extra "umph" of electric power! Hey! AC/DC's been doing it for years. Why should they have all the fun? Right, Rod? http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/smile.gif

Ok, I've laid it out -- the new hot topic:

HYPER-MODERN VS. MODERN

Let it go, let it roll, bring it on, c'mon!!! http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/biggrin.gif



[This message has been edited by euphony131 (edited 02-27-2001).]

PDG
02-28-2001, 12:32 AM
Euphony by name, cacophony by nature........ http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/wink.gif

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Peter (PDG)

euphony131
02-28-2001, 01:48 AM
Originally posted by PDG:
Euphony by name, cacophony by nature........ http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/wink.gif


I'll take that as a compliment as I believe it was that very adj. "cacophonous" that was used by one critic to describe B's Nineth Symphony back in 1824. Cacophonous today...Immortal tommorrow. Thanks! http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/wink.gif

Besides, such a show (coupled with lights, laser, dancers, etc.) might be the one thing that can save CM's derriere. You gotta admit that as CM fans we ain't exactly the most popular people around. And don't tell me teenagers wouldn't want to go to a show like that! You'll have fans coming out of the woodwork! For once in our lifetimes, CM might be considered "cool."

Look -- it's either extinction or rebirth. Which course shall we take?

Ahh...but this is good. Controversy is good. Let it ALLLLLL out. Scream. Shout. Get it OUT THERE.

Chris
02-28-2001, 01:50 AM
That's like the exact opposite of period instruments. Rod should love it http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/smile.gif

Peter
02-28-2001, 10:04 AM
Originally posted by euphony131:

Besides, such a show (coupled with lights, laser, dancers, etc.) might be the one thing that can save CM's derriere. You gotta admit that as CM fans we ain't exactly the most popular people around. And don't tell me teenagers wouldn't want to go to a show like that! You'll have fans coming out of the woodwork! For once in our lifetimes, CM might be considered "cool."

Look -- it's either extinction or rebirth. Which course shall we take?

Ahh...but this is good. Controversy is good. Let it ALLLLLL out. Scream. Shout. Get it OUT THERE.



Sounds like a nightmare to me - why should we go down this tacky road ? I don't think C.M is as dead as you make out - it always has had limited appeal, but I certainly don't want to see the 9th choreographed to topless dancers with the audience screaming in a wild drug crazed frenzy - Fortunately it will never happen!

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'Man know thyself'

euphony131
02-28-2001, 03:13 PM
Originally posted by Peter:
Sounds like a nightmare to me -


Yeah, I pretty much knew it'd be frowned on especially by CM musicians, but can you honestly say it would SOUND terrible? I myself have never heard an orchestra of this kind ever. Have you?

How do we even know what it would sound like if it's never even been done? And you can't deny that many symphony halls today ALREADY use sound-enhancing devices of some kind. Here in San Diego, they use bass enhancers for certain areas of the hall. Add to this the fact that sound studios do cosmetic jobs on recordings all the time -- yes, that's right -- that means CM recordings too.

Believe me, I wanta' hear all sides on this, but if you want to refute this idea, at least bring more substance into the fray. Besides how can you so summarily dismiss something you've never even HEARD before?

Peter
02-28-2001, 04:50 PM
Originally posted by euphony131:
Yeah, I pretty much knew it'd be frowned on especially by CM musicians, but can you honestly say it would SOUND terrible? I myself have never heard an orchestra of this kind ever. Have you?




Gimmicks are not the answer! - let me give you an example. My piano tuner recently told me of a School where a few years back they purchased a lot of electric pianos for the students. At first the novelty value was great, but gradually the students lost interest and said they preferred the real thing! They have now replaced their electric pianos with traditional pianos.

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'Man know thyself'

euphony131
02-28-2001, 05:46 PM
Originally posted by Peter:
-- gradually the students lost interest and said they preferred the real thing! They have now replaced their electric pianos with traditional pianos.




Can't argue with you there Peter. I absolutely agree -- there's nothing like the sound of REAL hammers hitting REAL strings.

But the piano aside (which very few symphonic works use anyway), why would electric strings be necessarily BAD? Or electric percussion for that? Have you heard of the Cronos Quartet? I've sampled some their stuff (all on electric strings) and actually found the sound rather interesting.

The Pop World -- for all their "ills" --HAVE developed some interesting innovations, not always successfully, but still ya gotta admit there are shades of POTENTIAL. POTENTIAL FOR US, THE CM WORLD TO USE.

Peter, you're a musician right? Don't tell me you've never performed in a hall that was equipped with sound-enhancing speakers or other "augmenting" tools. And I think we all know that many of the CM CDS that we treasure have been previously "mixed" by a studio in some way or another. So I think this pursuit of utter, complete and absolute PURITY of sound is a paradox for all CM fans. I mean you can't really have PURITY of sound without some "enhancements" to bring out the PURITY -- right? Sorry to sound confusing, but I think you know what I mean.

Beethoven himself was not above using innovations. Look at the panharmonicon of the Battle Symphony or even his use of the "highly innovative" metronome! Imagine if the Master were so resistant to new devices! We'd have no metronome markings!

I don't want to be so presumptuous as to say what the Master would or would not do if he were alive today; I just want us to look at POSSIBILITIES...

Imagine -- the POWER of Beethoven, coupled with the MIGHT of ultra-modern technology. Would it be a "nightmare?" Or could it actually bring out more in the music?

Whose to say? I know I can't. I've never seen or heard it before. Let's not gauge it by standards in the Pop World, let's gauge it by our Imagination...the POTENTIAL... http://www.gyrix.com/~cgraye/ubb/smile.gif

Peter
02-28-2001, 06:13 PM
I certainly admire your enthusiasm and desire to spread CM to young people. I also agree that CM has a terrific image problem. These days all sorts of visual effects are possible, and I recall a particularly satisfying performance of Holst's The Planets with Ice skaters ! This was of course on tv, and the effect was stunning. Haydn's 'Creation' was also performed with a spectacular visual background , with scenes of volcanoes erupting etc.. There is also a film version of Don Giovani by Joseph Losey set in the beautiful Italian Tuscan countryside, which I have never been able to get hold of. I think this visual road maybe an avenue to go down if it is tasteful and artistically done. I see no need for electronic instruments as a Symphony orchestra is quite capable of blasting decibels into orbit as it is !

It would be nice to see more Young people in Orchestras - I was in the first Youth Orchestra to tour Portugal from the UK back in 1979 (giving my age away!) and I can tell you that we were mobbed by the students after the concerts !

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'Man know thyself'