Author Topic: Toch Talk  (Read 10416 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Szykneij

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2297
  • Tony from Massachusetts
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #20 on: September 16, 2008, 02:49:35 PM »
Ach! How could I forget?

It's my life. Don't you forget.

(Somewhat abstruse reference to thread title).
Men profess to be lovers of music, but for the most part they give no evidence in their opinions and lives that they have heard it.  ~ Henry David Thoreau

Don't pray when it rains if you don't pray when the sun shines. ~ Satchel Paige

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3599
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #21 on: September 16, 2008, 03:08:17 PM »
I REALLY don't want to be a killjoy but is this what the forum has come to :(

Surely a serious composer merits a serious discussion $:)

Subotnick

  • Guest
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #22 on: September 16, 2008, 03:09:42 PM »
This is what I like about GMG, stumbling across composers such as Ernst, who up until now has eluded me. He's being spoken about in such a manner which urges me to go listen. I've found the Naxos Cantata Of The Bitter Herbs / Jephta disc and am about to give it a listen. I'm very interested to hear this as it's part of the Milken Archive Of American Jewish Music, to me, an astonishing collection which I hope to own one day. 2 down (Gershon Kingsley and Marvin David Levy), 48 to go...

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3599
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #23 on: September 16, 2008, 03:18:42 PM »
This is what I like about GMG, stumbling across composers such as Ernst, who up until now has eluded me. He's being spoken about in such a manner which urges me to go listen. I've found the Naxos Cantata Of The Bitter Herbs / Jephta disc and am about to give it a listen. I'm very interested to hear this as it's part of the Milken Archive Of American Jewish Music, to me, an astonishing collection which I hope to own one day. 2 down (Gershon Kingsley and Marvin David Levy), 48 to go...

Thanks for restoring some sanity to the thread ;) :)

Kullervo

  • Guest
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #24 on: September 16, 2008, 03:23:00 PM »
I REALLY don't want to be a killjoy but is this what the forum has come to :(

Surely a serious composer merits a serious discussion $:)

Sorry Dundonnell, I admittedly have nothing to add, I was just responding to Szykniej's referential joke. I will say that I always enjoy reading your composer threads, even if I have nothing to say. I have been interested in hearing Toch for some time but just haven't gotten around to him so perhaps eventually I'll be able to contribute. :D

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3599
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #25 on: September 16, 2008, 03:28:56 PM »
Sorry Dundonnell, I admittedly have nothing to add, I was just responding to Szykniej's referential joke. I will say that I always enjoy reading your composer threads, even if I have nothing to say. I have been interested in hearing Toch for some time but just haven't gotten around to him so perhaps eventually I'll be able to contribute. :D

That's kind of you to say so :)

Don't worry....you have plenty of time ahead of you to explore all the interesting composers out there :) If/when you manage to get round to some Toch it will be interesting to hear what you think of him. Never quite know whether to count him as an Austrian or an American composer? He emigrated in his 40s. We don't think of Schoenberg as American, do we? Yet Toch is (briefly) discussed in the American chapter of 'A Companion to the Symphony'.

Offline Guido

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3318
  • 396 CCs
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #26 on: September 16, 2008, 03:36:02 PM »
I thought I would chime in with my expected post about the quality of the obscure composer under discussion's cello concerto, and no doubt opine about the need for more performances of the piece.

Toch's cello concerto is an interesting work - rather spiky but obviously well written for the soloist and tiny orchestra of 9 (even more economical than the orchestra that Hindemith uses in his Kammermusik). It's basically trying to be a romantic concerto with romantic gestures and themes, but it's also highly chromatic - Strauss comes to mind, but Toch is of course much more dissonant than him. There's lots of lovely ideas throughout though it is perhaps not memorable in a traditional sense, it impressed a strong impression on me from the first listen. I can understand why it's not played more often - it's a rather tough nut and there are certainly many better neglected works for the instrument but it's certainly worth a listen.
Geologist.

The large print giveth, and the small print taketh away

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3599
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #27 on: September 16, 2008, 03:44:34 PM »
Do you know the two Krenek Cello Concertos-coupled with a number of other Krenek cello pieces on a Koch CD?

I can't quite come to terms with Krenek's serial techniques :(

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #28 on: September 16, 2008, 04:10:14 PM »
I really enjoy Toch's idiom. Of course, I already had a decades-long fondness for Hindemith . . . .

Offline Guido

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3318
  • 396 CCs
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #29 on: September 16, 2008, 04:40:33 PM »
Do you know the two Krenek Cello Concertos-coupled with a number of other Krenek cello pieces on a Koch CD?

I can't quite come to terms with Krenek's serial techniques :(

I do indeed - they are good pieces in my estimation. How do you mean you can't come to terms with the serialism? In what sense?
Geologist.

The large print giveth, and the small print taketh away

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3599
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #30 on: September 17, 2008, 08:46:01 AM »
It was very late at night when I posted ::)

I simply meant that Krenek's style I find somewhat austere and not terribly sympathetic. The extension of chromaticism into atonal areas, the motoric rhythms, the suggestions of jazz influences-certainly in the earlier symphonies I find wearing and not overly interesting. In addition to Symphonies Nos. 1-3 and No.5(No.4 has not been recorded) and the cello disc I have tried the two Violin Concertos and the Organ Concerto No.2 but just cannot warm to the idiom.

Krenek was-obviously-a serious figure in 20th century music and I respect his long career both as composer and musicologist but he would never be a composer to whose music I could return with great enthusiasm.

I feel the same way about another composer whose music I have collected but cannot embrace-the Greek composer, Nikos Skalkottas.

However, simply because I personally cannot come to terms with a composer will never mean that I dismiss that composer's works.
Sadly(for me!) I am not and will never be a fan of Frederick Delius. I just plain don't respond to Delian meanderings along all those rivers in spring etc. or want to join him in summer gardens. But that is my loss-I know that :( And I fully respect that others react totally differently to the music. Apologies to the Delians on the site :)

Offline Guido

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3318
  • 396 CCs
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #31 on: September 17, 2008, 09:11:50 AM »
I see - well yes Krenek's music is really tough harmonically and I must admit to not returning to it very often. But there is undeniable quality there - the cello concertos are well written if horrendously virtuosic, imaginative colours and ideas... But I guess he's not going to be for everyone. Most people I meet don't like Hindemith because he's "too academic and dry" but I love it. Delius seems to be a marmitish composer. I do like the cello concerto however.
Geologist.

The large print giveth, and the small print taketh away

Offline J.Z. Herrenberg

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 8630
  • William Havergal Brian, symphonist (1876-1972)
    • JZH Text Services
  • Location: Delft, Netherlands
  • Currently Listening to:
    Bruckner, Wagner, Brian, Bax, Dyson, Delius...
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #32 on: September 17, 2008, 09:23:57 AM »
Sadly(for me!) I am not and will never be a fan of Frederick Delius. I just plain don't respond to Delian meanderings along all those rivers in spring etc. or want to join him in summer gardens. But that is my loss-I know that :( And I fully respect that others react totally differently to the music. Apologies to the Delians on the site :)

Apologies accepted, Colin. But why not give the Requiem another try, a beautiful and concentrated piece - I know you have it...  ;) That isn't 'marmitish' (the Venerable Guido) at all.
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything. -- Plato

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3599
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #33 on: September 17, 2008, 09:51:20 AM »
Apologies accepted, Colin. But why not give the Requiem another try, a beautiful and concentrated piece - I know you have it...  ;) That isn't 'marmitish' (the Venerable Guido) at all.

I certainly shall :)

I do have 15 CDs of music by Delius so I cannot be accused of not trying ;D

Offline Guido

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3318
  • 396 CCs
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #34 on: September 17, 2008, 09:53:01 AM »
I certainly shall :)

I do have 15 CDs of music by Delius so I cannot be accused of not trying ;D

Jesus, that is dedication! I don'y even have fifteen CDs of the composers I love!
Geologist.

The large print giveth, and the small print taketh away

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #35 on: September 17, 2008, 09:56:16 AM »
. . . Most people I meet don't like Hindemith because he's "too academic and dry" but I love it.

I haven't figured out that critique of Hindemith, either.

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #36 on: September 17, 2008, 10:05:04 AM »
The Hymn which concludes the Cantata of the Bitter Herbs is very well done, could be easily adapted for general sacred use (I mean the strophic hymn itself, not the arioso solo interlude).

Offline Dundonnell

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3599
  • Edmund Rubbra(1901-86)
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #37 on: September 17, 2008, 10:14:22 AM »
Jesus, that is dedication! I don'y even have fifteen CDs of the composers I love!

Tell me about it :-[ Just don't remind my bank manager ;D

Delius is a British composer and I have always felt under some kind of moral obligation to listen to/try to appreciate the music of British composers of the 20th century (with only a few exceptions where I have to draw the line-sorry, Sir Harrison Birtwistle!)

Alternative explanation........I am a slightly insane completist who just has to be able to pick any piece of orchestral music of the last 150 years off his shelves :) :) :)

karlhenning

  • Guest
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #38 on: September 17, 2008, 10:22:23 AM »
This is what I like about GMG, stumbling across composers such as Ernst, who up until now has eluded me. He's being spoken about in such a manner which urges me to go listen. I've found the Naxos Cantata Of The Bitter Herbs / Jephta disc and am about to give it a listen. . . .

And?

I'm revisiting this disc today, too;  I find Jephtha ravishing.

In fact, I might almost say that . . . that I worship its gentle revolution . . . . ; )

Offline Guido

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3318
  • 396 CCs
Re: Toch Talk
« Reply #39 on: September 17, 2008, 10:24:59 AM »
And?

I'm revisiting this disc today, too;  I find Jephtha ravishing.

In fact, I might almost say that . . . that I worship its gentle revolution . . . . ; )

Cheeky one Karl.
Geologist.

The large print giveth, and the small print taketh away

Buying Music From Amazon?
Please consider using these links. A small percentage of every sale using these links is passed on to GMG and helps keep this forum online.
Amazon US
Amazon Canada
Amazon UK