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Musical Discussions
Topic: First Bruckner listening for Neanderthals.

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Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-24-2014
I have recently one of those "audio visits" where a g guy from far away lends with his morono-emblematic jazz interests spent an evening in my listening room. As usually we play some of my recording and spin some vinyl and as usually I was holding my vomiting reflex when he was overly spiritual over Miles's "Sketches of Spain". Anyhow, it is what it is and it is not a problem.
As usually I did not let him to go away from my visiting room without obligating him to listen some of my Bruckner. He admitted that he never heard Bruckner before. Well, it was late and I knew that I can play only one movement, so I asked myself: what single Bruckner movement might be played to a person to demonstrate the essence of Bruckner music if the person has no knowledge about Bruckner? It was interesting questing and it is not a first time I ask myself this question. I invite you to share your views, if you have any. What was your first Bruckner Bruckner movement what you first time "got it".
Wify feels that First movement of 7th is the most indicative to demonstrate what Bruckner is all about. I think it might be a bit difficult for new listener sand I think they need more like scherzo-like music.    

Romy the Cat

Posted by clarkjohnsen on 09-24-2014
Fast or slow?

I think maybe anyone who responds to Sketches of Spain would tolerate "slow". So: The Eighth's third movement.


Posted by rowuk on 09-24-2014
It took me, even as a classical trumpet player a long time to warm up to Bruckner. I really didn't have a specific event that let me get it-it was more like a labor of love with the score and letting the music play in my head. If I were to pick an introduction to Bruckner, it would be B4 first movement. It is spectacular enough to grab even those that otherwise think that movie scores are serious music.

Posted by steverino on 09-24-2014
I think a movement from  the B4 is probably the best quick intro in such situations. Either the first movement or the Scherzo has immediate appeal  I would think. If they prefer vocal music then the Te Deum.

Posted by Paul S on 09-24-2014
Probably 1st movement, B7 is a "make-or-break" situation. Even if someone does not "get it" there should be "lift off". I hear the opening "in my head" several times a week... Remarkable, IMO.

Paul S

Posted by yoshi on 09-26-2014
In my experience, for many people, "lyricism" is a key when introduced to new music, no matter what the gene is.  In that respect, I'd say 3rd movement of 8th.
OTOH, audio people can easily be impressed by dynamic presentation, especially through the system like yours.  Then a good recording of 2nd movement of 9th would do, although the experience would not necessarily be about Bruckner but more like about what audio can do with orchestral music.

In my own case, what introduced me to Bruckner was the first movement of 7th by Matacici.


Posted by Romy the Cat on 09-26-2014
The 3rd movement of 8th of cause is very much quintessential Bruckner and from my colored perspective probably then best adagio ever composed. Still might it be the first thing, the "easy Bruckner" that new people might need?
With the guy who visited me a few days ago I was debating between, the 3rd movements of 1st, the 1st movement of 6th, the 1st or 3rd movement of 7th, the 2nd movement of 8th. Then I decided to experiment and played the 1st movement of 9th. I was a bit afraid that the repetitive nature in the end might turn him off. They of cause are not recurring but slightly different takes but new listener might not get into nuances.  
Anyhow, the Bruckner was in the end of the listening session (what else one can play after that!!??) and wify went to sleep long before. On the morning she asked me what did I play and I said that I ended up with B9 first movement. She said that she knows and she heard it. I said that I am surprised and I thought she was sleeping. She said that not only her but the whole neighborhood hear my Bruckner last night. It make me almost horny….

Posted by mem916 on 10-14-2014
I am pretty sure I qualify as a Neanderthal when it comes to Bruckner but I'm listening to his 4th symphony now and find it quite enjoyable. Even my roommate who thought I was listening to movie soundtrack likes it. 
It's the Herbert von Karajan on DG (Berlin Philharmonic) - I'm not super critical of performances but would certainly welcome your thoughts on other recordings of the 4th I should seek out.

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