Author Topic: Allan Pettersson for Newbies  (Read 24517 times)

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Offline Est.1965

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Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« on: July 04, 2009, 05:00:13 PM »
 ;D

Allan Pettersson for Newbies

Have you ever heard Allans music?  Well, for me, it's a little like this...I insert the disc and the music autoplays. On this occassion I'm listening to his last Symphony, number 15, but it really doesn't matter which one I'm listening to.  Why?  Because there is no other composer out there who does this to me...

Just before the music starts, I am greeted by the grey bearded Pettersson who puts his hand on my shoulder and says "Please, listen to this John, it's all about life."  The music starts and that's it. I am sitting in a room alone with only a Pettersson Symphony for company. The Pettersson Symphony reveals unto me all manner of machinations, internal and external textures, a rolling series of events which paint a life of conflict and uncertainty (but underpinned with a power which Pettersson promises between the notes is already mine.)
Bizzare.  Pettersson has to be heard alone, in a room!

Anyway, I have a great reverence for this composer because he says so much and teaches so much in a style that is ALWAYS moving forward to resolution which is achieved more often than not through the synthesis of the whole work. Damn, his music is so often difficult to understand, but pay attention en voyage...his roads are as simple as a clear Motorway but as rich and complex as a busy spaghetti junction.  His music is very much 'in the moment', so you can't really contrast a passage with what comes later because...well...because his passages are like compressed statements and...er...action packed whirlygigs. :-[

Recommendation:  Lock yourself in a room and allow Pettersson to talk to you through his music.  Start with Symphony Number 15.  In a few short seconds you will come to know that he's not messing about.  And in five minuites he will have taken you through the colourful matrix of two minds (his and yours) trying to come to terms with what the World is is all about by living through it.  By the end of the whole single movement 15th Symphony, the horrors of living will have been revealed, and you must proceed post-haste to peel yourself off the cieling whilst the last symphonic note draws out.   ;D

Hmm.  I'm nuts.   I wrote this whilst listening to 15th.
« Last Edit: July 04, 2009, 05:02:16 PM by John »
Dear Hans Rott
In the 1980s there was a creative punk group called "Big Audio Dynamite".  I have decided to apply the term to you, my man.  And I still haven't properly finished your Screenplay yet.  Too bad.  Take care anyway old chum, I'm off to listen to Brahms!
Kind regards, John

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2009, 10:49:13 PM »
By the end of the whole single movement 15th Symphony, the horrors of living will have been revealed,

Definitely a composer who wrote the same symphony 16 times. Did he have any subject besides "the horrors of living"?
formerly VELIMIR (before that, Spitvalve)

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Offline The new erato

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2009, 11:29:42 PM »
Definitely a composer who wrote the same symphony 16 times. Did he have any subject besides "the horrors of living"?
Yes. The consolation of surviving.

Offline The new erato

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2009, 11:38:55 PM »
 Pettersson has to be heard alone, in a room!

Not necessarily. I've often shared Pettersson. But he HAS to be played reasonably loud, and with the extreme dynamics this means that all present have to be atuned to Pettersson. And I wouldn't start with no 15.

But otherwise extremely nicely put.

Offline Lethevich

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2009, 11:56:08 PM »
Definitely a composer who wrote the same symphony 16 times. Did he have any subject besides "the horrors of living"?

I haven't heard it for a while, but I found the 16th to be quite perky.
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Offline 71 dB

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2009, 12:43:31 AM »
Have you ever heard Allans music?

No.
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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2009, 10:49:06 AM »
His Violin Concerto No 2 is IMHO the greatest violin concerto of all time (I am not joking) - the last few minutes are unbearably moving. Some of the symphonies I find rather dense (but not nos 6-8), but he was a great composer.

ps Great post John  :)
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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2009, 11:14:49 AM »
I have been known to win hot babes over to the cause with Sym. No.8.

Offline Keemun

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2009, 12:18:53 PM »
Excellent thread, John.  My introduction to Pettersson was his 7th Symphony, which is my favorite (so far).  I've also listened to Symphonies Nos. 8 and 15 and Mesto for String Orchestra.  But Pettersson is not a composer I listen to frequently, or in large doses. 
Music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life. ~ Ludwig van Beethoven

Offline Est.1965

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Re: The Pettersson Paradigm
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2009, 03:14:20 PM »
...Pettersson is not a composer I listen to frequently, or in large doses. 

lol   :)  Regardless, you have an appreciation for his music and he's in your collection.  I would hate to meet the person who overplays Pettersson.  I don't think they would be well.

(in response to "Have you heard Allans Music?"  I really laughed at this.  Nothing like brief honesty...

No.

By suggesting a listening of the 15th, it fits the Pettersson paradigm I'm promoting... :-\... :-\... :D ;D :-*

Dear Hans Rott
In the 1980s there was a creative punk group called "Big Audio Dynamite".  I have decided to apply the term to you, my man.  And I still haven't properly finished your Screenplay yet.  Too bad.  Take care anyway old chum, I'm off to listen to Brahms!
Kind regards, John

Offline Grazioso

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2009, 03:25:49 AM »
No.

You're missing one of the greats of the 20th century. You might want to start with the 7th and 8th symphonies, two of his most accessible and beautiful. Some of his other symphonies can be very dense, thorny, and hard to follow at first. And all his music is extremely intense and personal, as John describes. You have to be ready to receive it.
There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact. --Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: The Pettersson Paradigm
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2009, 06:50:02 AM »
I would hate to meet the person who overplays Pettersson.

You missed paulb then? Lucky you.

Quote
I don't think they would be well.

He wasn't.  :D

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Offline Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich

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Re: The Pettersson Paradigm
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2009, 07:15:19 PM »
I would hate to meet the person who overplays Pettersson.  I don't think they would be well.
Cause or implication or both?
My wife (birds, whistles, music for the moment, no dark valleys, please) is thinking the same about late romantic period listeners in general. Morbid souls. Taking a different point of view, e.g. African music, I would agree :D. The old story "we europeans had all the ups and downs, and wars and peace, the real depth, which is reflected by the european music"

Anyway, I like some Pettersson output. Syms 6,7,8,9. To me, the 6th is at least as accessible as 7 and 8. The ninth is harder to crack.

BTW.. As a composer of often dark and negative themes, he didn't make use of low/dark timpani noises, did he? Frrom what I remember.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2009, 07:22:44 PM by Wurstwasser »

Offline Grazioso

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Re: The Pettersson Paradigm
« Reply #13 on: August 20, 2009, 03:15:15 AM »
BTW.. As a composer of often dark and negative themes, he didn't make use of low/dark timpani noises, did he? Frrom what I remember.

He probably uses snare drum rolls more than any 20 composers combined.
There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact. --Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Dr. Dread

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #14 on: August 20, 2009, 04:16:36 AM »
Okay, I'll bite. Which recording of the 15th? Oh, and V Cto #2?

snyprrr

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #15 on: August 20, 2009, 07:42:58 AM »
Okay, I'll bite. Which recording of the 15th? Oh, and V Cto #2?

BIS 3/15 (why the 15th? I'd rather drift you to No.14 (Commissiona), though, of course, there's nothing wrong with the 15th)

Caprice /Vln Cto 2 w/Ida Haendel (Sym No.16, the saxophone symphony, is also cool)

or... sym No.5 and the Viola Cto on BIS...

NO ONE has mentioned the super hot mess, Sym No.13, the longest single mvmt sym in history! Super complex and messy, this has to be Pettersson's whatever-you-call-it. Roger Sessions, eat your heart out!

Offline 71 dB

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #16 on: August 20, 2009, 08:44:46 AM »
You're missing one of the greats of the 20th century. You might want to start with the 7th and 8th symphonies, two of his most accessible and beautiful. Some of his other symphonies can be very dense, thorny, and hard to follow at first. And all his music is extremely intense and personal, as John describes. You have to be ready to receive it.

I did listen to the 7th (BIS) on Spotify some time ago. I did like it.  0:)
Spatial distortion is a serious problem deteriorating headphone listening.
Crossfeeders reduce spatial distortion and make the sound more natural
and less tiresome in headphone listening.

My Sound Cloud page

Offline Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #17 on: August 20, 2009, 07:02:32 PM »
NO ONE has mentioned the super hot mess, Sym No.13, the longest single mvmt sym in history! Super complex and messy, this has to be Pettersson's whatever-you-call-it. Roger Sessions, eat your heart out!

I never understood No. 13. One day I'll try again... Here's a review from the old forum:
http://www.good-music-guide.com/forum/index.php?topic=605.msg57793#msg57793

jlaurson

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Re: Allan Pettersson for Newbies
« Reply #18 on: October 05, 2009, 09:02:43 AM »
The latest piece on WETA is about Pettersson--and about a recording that would strike me as rather suitable to a Pettersson Newbie.

http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=780

Offline Sef

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Re: The Pettersson Paradigm
« Reply #19 on: October 16, 2009, 10:35:27 AM »
Anyway, I like some Pettersson output. Syms 6,7,8,9. To me, the 6th is at least as accessible as 7 and 8. The ninth is harder to crack.
I've been wanting to listen to the 9th for a while now, but I've never seen it anywhere except to buy on CD,  and call me old fashioned but I'd rather know what I'm buying before I cough up much cash. In that tradition, #7 cost $1.99 from eclassical, 8 was from a link on the Pettersson thread if I remember correctly, and there is an mp3 recording of the Kamu 6th floating about somewhere that I snatched.

Anyway, found this a couple of days ago

http://www.sendspace.com/file/ixmh9x

The first 70 minutes of which is the 9th (complete with tiny annoying blips at each of the CD track changes!). I've only played it twice so far, and yes, I agree that it is a tougher nut to crack. Once I do I may be in the market for the box set.
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