Author Topic: Johann Gottfried Müthel's Mansion  (Read 1490 times)

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jlaurson

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Johann Gottfried Müthel's Mansion
« on: May 27, 2016, 11:03:24 AM »
Listened to him in these works below... a day later I read his name in the liner notes of Egarr's new Bach. Reason enough to give Johann Gottfried Müthel his own thread, no?


Latest on Forbes.com:
Classical CD Of The Week: Post-Baroque Sluggard Demi-Genius

After a master-class tour of the Who’s-Who of late-baroque/post-baroque composers – Johann Sebastian Bach, Johann Adolph Hasse, C.P.E. Bach, and Georg Philipp Telemann – the aspiring composer Johann Gottfried Müthel settled in Riga with his new-won skills and composed. But, in his own words, only when he was in the mood. He didn’t think much of working for work’s sake or whenever anything but fully inspired and convivial. Sounds as prototypical romantic as impractical an attitude to have. J.S. Bach and P.G. Wodehouse would certainly have disapproved and look where steady hard work has got them!...


http://www.forbes.com/sites/jenslaurson/2016/05/26/classical-cd-of-the-week-classical-cd-of-the-week-post-baroque-sluggard-demi-genius/

Offline Florestan

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Re: Johann Gottfried Müthel's Mansion
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2016, 06:10:27 AM »
Himmelherrgott, Jens! Your post reminded me that I had three Müthel recordings in my library but had never listened to any single one of them. So I picked up exactly the one you commented upon and listened to CD 1 (and that explains the Goddamit part, because I inadvertently broke my vow not to listen to any Austrian or German music for a whole month, starting almost two weeks ago...  :laugh:).

Galant style, you say? Certainly not true of CD 1, which is as empfindsamer Stil as it gets and then some. Not even CPE himself has ever penned such disconnected tutti and solo parts, as if the soloist were from Mars and the orchestra were from Pluto. I have at long last finally found out the predecessor to Beethoven´s Andante con Moto from the Fourth Piano Concerto, which I used to think it was one of his most original compositions. I urge anyone who might be disinclined (and understandably so) to believe it to listen to the first movement, Andante, of Müthel´s C minor keyboard concerto.

And even more: I think Müthel came up with the single simplest way to solve this most difficult dilemma of balancing the harpsichord and the orchestral tutti: let both of them go their way without overlapping. It is obvious to my ears (yours might of course disagree) that the harpsichord was never ever meant to blend harmoniously with, and/or compete against, a full orchestra the way the fortepiano (tentatively) or the piano (fully) were. It was both a solo instrument and (as part of basso continuo) an accompanying instrument --- but a concertante instrument it was not.  That might explain why concertos for keyboards, as opposed to concertos for strings or winds, were the exception rather the norm during the Baroque Era: except for JS Bach I can think of no Baroque influential composer who wrote keyboard concertos (and even JS Bach´s were rather transcriptions than original works... )

So, without going into futher details about why I think, believe and am convinced the harpsichord was doomed to be replaced by the pianoforte and ultimately by the piano, I would just like, following your footsteps, to point to Müthel as an important one in a distinguished historical series of composers who most probably felt it was pressingly needed, and eventually brought about, the demise of the harpsichord and the advent of the (forte)piano.

PS 1 My kudos to Bartolomeo Cristofori as well, but that´s quite another topic!

PS 2 The other two Müthel recordings I have, but not listened to, are:












"Beauty must appeal to the senses, must provide us with immediate enjoyment, must impress us or insinuate itself into us without any effort on our part."

 --- Claude Debussy

jlaurson

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Re: Johann Gottfried Müthel's Mansion
« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2016, 08:00:22 AM »
Himmelherrgott, Jens! Your post reminded me that I had three Müthel recordings in my library but had never listened to any single one of them. So I picked up exactly the one you commented upon and listened to CD 1 (and that explains the Goddamit part, because I inadvertently broke my vow not to listen to any Austrian or German music for a whole month, starting almost two weeks ago...  :laugh:).

Galant style, you say? Certainly not true of CD 1, which is as empfindsamer Stil as it gets and then some. Not even CPE himself has ever penned such disconnected tutti and solo parts, as if the soloist were from Mars and the orchestra were from Pluto. I have at long last finally found out the predecessor to Beethoven´s Andante con Moto from the Fourth Piano Concerto, which I used to think it was one of his most original compositions. I urge anyone who might be disinclined (and understandably so) to believe it to listen to the first movement, Andante, of Müthel´s C minor keyboard concerto.

And even more: I think Müthel came up with the single simplest way to solve this most difficult dilemma of balancing the harpsichord and the orchestral tutti: let both of them go their way without overlapping. It is obvious to my ears (yours might of course disagree) that the harpsichord was never ever meant to blend harmoniously with, and/or compete against, a full orchestra the way the fortepiano (tentatively) or the piano (fully) were. It was both a solo instrument and (as part of basso continuo) an accompanying instrument --- but a concertante instrument it was not.  That might explain why concertos for keyboards, as opposed to concertos for strings or winds, were the exception rather the norm during the Baroque Era: except for JS Bach I can think of no Baroque influential composer who wrote keyboard concertos (and even JS Bach´s were rather transcriptions than original works... )

So, without going into futher details about why I think, believe and am convinced the harpsichord was doomed to be replaced by the pianoforte and ultimately by the piano, I would just like, following your footsteps, to point to Müthel as an important one in a distinguished historical series of composers who most probably felt it was pressingly needed, and eventually brought about, the demise of the harpsichord and the advent of the (forte)piano.

PS 1 My kudos to Bartolomeo Cristofori as well, but that´s quite another topic!

PS 2 The other two Müthel recordings I have, but not listened to, are:





That sounds like I'm absolutely zero regretful of making you break your (strange) vow!  :) Interesting re: Beethoven. Will have to re-listen to that concerto again, asap.