Author Topic: The Coates' Rack  (Read 2058 times)

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snyprrr

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The Coates' Rack
« on: November 09, 2009, 07:22:37 PM »
Haha,... I had to,... before anyone else did! ;D

ok, sooo...



Can this be the Eric & Gloria Coates DeLuxe Combination Thread? Haha, how's that for a party starter?

It's just that I heard an Eric Coates piece on the radio the other day, sounding a bit Finzian, just as I was ordering my first cd of Gloria Coates' SQs (Naxos). All I know about Eric is that he is a British Composer of Light Music; the piece (?) I heard the other day was quite typically beautifully (I likey).

Gloria Coates is a composer I'm sure to have been destined with from the beginning. I can't believe it has taken me this long to finally check her out, but, I suspect it is that her reputation precedes her, what with all that glissandomania. I'm sure I have imagined her music in my head often. Let's see if it delivers. I have a feeling it will; I think it's gonna be groovy! SQ No.4 was the only thing she wrote in 1976. oo-oo-oo-oo-oo (oo, as in scary shost sound) Can't wait.



So, anyone?.. Eric, Gloria,... Gloria, Eric. :)

Offline Guido

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Re: The Coates' Rack
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2009, 02:57:22 AM »
I saw Gloria Coates' paintings once and that somewhat put me off trying her music... bad I know... maybe I should give her a try.
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Offline J.Z. Herrenberg

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Re: The Coates' Rack
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2009, 03:44:40 AM »
I love his Saxo-Rhapsody...

http://www.mediafire.com/file/u5zynmmumto/1-04 Saxo-Rhapsody.mp3

Sir Charles Groves, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Jack Brymer soloist.
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything. -- Plato

Offline UB

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Re: The Coates' Rack
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2009, 07:40:41 AM »
Eric wrote a lot of nice light music but I do not think I have listened to any for 20 years.

My favorite Gloria works include the 15th symphony - especially the first movement, Spring Morning in Couperin's Garden, Fragment from Leonardo's Notebooks,Time Frozen, and Homage to Van Gogh.

I can not say that any of her string quartets are among my favorites but the 7th with the added organ is certainly worth getting to know.

One night a number of years ago I was playing one of Gloria's symphonies - I can not remember which - and my lovely wife who has put up with me playing mostly late 20th century classical music for the last 35 years or so of our 49 years of marriage with few complaints, yelled out that Coates music sounded like a space ship taking off. My cat - who only put up with it for about 8 years actually got up and left the room. It seems everyone or thing is a critic.
I am not in the entertainment business. Harrison Birtwistle 2010

snyprrr

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Re: The Coates' Rack
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2009, 08:50:42 AM »
I saw Gloria Coates' paintings once and that somewhat put me off trying her music... bad I know... maybe I should give her a try.

Don't her paintings adorn the covers of her Naxos releases? In that case, I can understand, though, I do like the "radiation" type color pulses.

I can not say that any of her string quartets are among my favorites but the 7th with the added organ is certainly worth getting to know.

One night a number of years ago I was playing one of Gloria's symphonies - I can not remember which - and my lovely wife who has put up with me playing mostly late 20th century classical music for the last 35 years or so of our 49 years of marriage with few complaints, yelled out that Coates music sounded like a space ship taking off. My cat - who only put up with it for about 8 years actually got up and left the room. It seems everyone or thing is a critic.

The SQs with the 7th is the one I got. Looking forward.

However, your story is hysterical. And, apparently, the status quo for guys like us who just happen- just happen- to get one of the fairer sex to domicile with us. I think there's a thread on here covering it, haha! I can totally see this- like a British sit-com!!!

Offline UB

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Re: The Coates' Rack
« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2009, 12:16:29 PM »
Thanks for making a home for Gloria - I just listened to her 5th SQ and I had forgotten that the second movement uses the hymn - "I heard the bells on Christmas Day" in some very strange but recognizable ways.
I am not in the entertainment business. Harrison Birtwistle 2010

snyprrr

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Cosmic, Dude...
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2009, 09:07:00 AM »
Thanks to UB for your pm...



Gloria Coates SQs 2,3,4,7,8 (Naxos):



I had mentioned about my preconceived notions about this music before hearing it, and, well, it does quite well live up to it's reputation, but thanks to God for letting Coates be just a little more original than I had anticipated.

This is certainly the most consistantly alien/other-worlds sounding music I have ever heard (in the conservative sense). Basically, and this I presume is a high compliment, but Coates sounds like Xenakis' good natured wife!; though, her glissandi simply don't remind me of Xenakis at all, it's just that he's the only other one who utilizes them in the same sort of way. Maybe Pendereck + Feldman (for the "tranqulity") + NASA + the '60s + ... well, suffice to say that Coates has one of the most original and recognizable soundworlds ever.

Describing this music will give me a headache, but it really sounds like what REAL aliens might be composing. Considering that this stems from the '60s, I find its' space-age-ishness... I don't know,...disturbing?,...creepy?... it's just pretty perfectly laid out for what it is.

I think the single mvmt. is the key to Coates. Even in pieces with multiple mvmts., some are more successful than others, I thought. There are usually contrasts between mvmts., but not within mvmts. So, SQ No.8 (2002), in 3 mvmts., had two fairly amorphous mvmts. with one super-BladeRunner alien-chorale that just creeped me out no end (Groovy!).

She comes into her own in the mid-'60s, and by 1972's SQ No.2 she shows herself to have quite a unique voice in the kaliedoscopic(?) early '70s (Crumb,... well, you know the rest). No.2 is a 6min, one mvmt. distillation, with the most variety of any single mvmt. on this disc. I think it's my favorite so far, simply for its' straighforward show: it's just like one of Penderecki's SQs, but, as if there were an alien intelligence behind the whole thing, as if the sounds actually had meaning, perhaps.

Nos. 3-4 (1975-76) form a nice pair, and it is fun to compare them. They are both 3 mvmts., with each mvmt. treating a particular muse. Honestly, I'm listening right now, and I just can't come up with the words... it's just so... so... literally, if Xenakis wrote music in kindergarten, and that's NOT a cut, it's just that Coates exhibits a certain idiot-savant/primitive quality I like, very naive and innocent and pure. Yes, Coates is one of the purest, that's for sure. Nothing stands in the way of her vision.

I do enjoy those alien/Klingon rhythmns!

Nos. 7-8 are both 9/11 inflected. No.7 is a single, 15min SQ with,... organ!!! It comes the closest to sounding like Xenakis (by default). Christmas tunes make their way through the... I'll just say that this one I had the most difficulty with just because of the whack factor, but I'm sure I'll warm to it. Still, it sounds like Xenakis + Feldman + serious bout of cocaine withdrawl. Much of Coates' music can sound like sea-sickness in space ???
It's ultimately very tranquil, yet very draining at the same time.



Oy! All these cross-glissandi do not make for a very focused writing mind! I can barely type this out! :-\ (love/hate the new smilies!)



I get the feeling I'm going to want to hear the other disc (1.5.6). Look, what can I say, it's some of the boinkiest music I've ever heard. Will you love it? Will you hate it? Will you care? I can't say. I'm having a very strange reaction to this music, as if it were an embarassing impulse within me all along, and now it has been revealed, and I don't know whether to be proud or embarassed. I get the feeling her symphonies would be cataclysmic, neighbor inhibiting affairs!

The thing is, every now and then, a beautiful sad melody floats by, and then all bets are off...



Either way, kudos to Naxos for yet another "must have" out-of-the-blue five star endeavour. The Kreutzer Qrt. is known for championing rare rep (Gerhard, Finnissy), and this is quite a coup for them. This could've been the Kronos' finest hour, perhaps.



As for Coates being a woman, all I can say is that the avant-garde has been very good to women (Gubaidulina, Saariaho). These three have some of the most unique voices of all. You go gurl!

Basically, if Coates has been on your radar, don't hesitate! Wacky cosmic stuff!






Offline Benji

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Re: The Coates' Rack
« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2009, 09:19:46 AM »
Well i'm sold.  ;D

Any music that requires the invention of new sci-fi-like words to describe it (boinkiest?!) demands my attention.

I like the idea of string quartet with organ so i'll start there.

And I love the idea of aliens composing, but one small step at a time.