Author Topic: The Crumb Cake Cafe  (Read 14345 times)

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snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake
« Reply #40 on: November 29, 2012, 12:47:42 PM »
I have the Makrokosmos set on Mute (on DVD), but to be honest I never explored it deeply, even though I have a feeling it would be worth it. And I got Vox Balenae last year, but haven't spun it yet.

You guys ::) ;D

I'm going to have to YT it.

Someone called Crumb 'anti-music', meaning, it was 'art' music, and NEEDED the visual element (the outside). I'd have to agree with much of Crumb, but, sometimes he also makes the visual 'audio' also.

snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #41 on: January 16, 2013, 06:22:27 PM »
http://www.amazon.com/Works-George-Crumb/dp/B0000030DZ/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1358389249&sr=1-1&keywords=crumb+vox+zizi


Well, I'm always skeptical when it concerns Crumb, but I thought Vox Balaene might hold promise. There's a few cds available, including the county library classic on NewWorld with Zizi Mueller on flute, and a newer Naxos, along with a whole lot of other recitals.

Vox Balaene actually fills up the spaces with music, keeping the silence and pianississimo at bay (unlike some Crumb, that you fear for your speakers' sake), and the music is of an arch, dramatic quality, not unlike an underwater Black Angels, but shorter. The vocalizations are limited to some cool flute effects, and, overall, the amplified sound structure presents Crumb in the best possible non-visual light; meaning, even though you can't see the cellist wearing a mask, you KNOW, you can HEAR that sooomething is going on,... all the sounds and noises work together for good here for me. Like I said, Crumb can disappoint me, so, I'm thankful the wait was not in vain.

An Idyll for the Misbegotten is a flute solo with three percussionists, that, unless you crank it up, sounds like virtually nothing, and would surely annoy Mirror Image! ;D The second go-round I did crank it up: distant thunder from the timpani holds down a good portion of the piece, and is quite effective if heard correctly. This might have also worked well on another NewWorld disc, 'None But the Lonely Flute', with similar works by Cage, Feldman, Babbitt, etc.,...

The difficulty in aural transmission (under-mic'd recordings) is what usually kills it for me with Crumb recordings. That, and the crazy vocalizings in the non-vocal works; so, even if one likes a particular Crumb piece, one has to HEAR it to like it. If the whoosings of the piano strings aren't caught well,... well, they're not caught, and the piece sounds like pocket pool. On the NewWorld cd I heard, the elements are fairly well caught, but,... wait...

HERE'S the problem: I was at a church hearing some Crumb,... very focused, concentrating,... niiice... when all of a sudden the furnace cranks up, and... well, it SUCKED. :'( That's the problem with Crumb: you need a hyperbaric chamber to hear everything sometimes. ???


This recording also had an early group of vocal setting from the '60s, the Madrigals, Books I-IV, starring Jan DeGaetani, with flute(s), contrabass, harp, and 2 percussions. This is by far the longest Crumb for me at over a half hour, broken into 12 sections. For me, it's rough going, even with DeGaetani's incomparable voice some EVERYTHING! :o,... here, the 'unfinished' quality comes to the fore for me,... the stuff I don't like about Crumb. The ensemble seems to be collectively shuffling their feet half the time, but I am unkind. To someone less jaded it may be a revelation (certainly to unsuspecting neighbors, haha!).

Well, if I can handle the Madrigals, I may venture on to Ancient Voices of Children, of course in the standard issue Nonesuch. But, the take away today is that MANY/MOST people CAN enjoy Vox Balaene: I'd say it may be a good piece to introduce someone to the extreme avant-garde. See it 'live'!

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #42 on: January 16, 2013, 06:50:09 PM »
An Idyll for the Misbegotten is a flute solo with three percussionists, that, unless you crank it up, sounds like virtually nothing, and would surely annoy Mirror Image! ;D The second go-round I did crank it up: distant thunder from the timpani holds down a good portion of the piece, and is quite effective if heard correctly. This might have also worked well on another NewWorld disc, 'None But the Lonely Flute', with similar works by Cage, Feldman, Babbitt, etc.,...

Yuck. Yeah, I don't like works like this and I also don't like the notion of hearing a work correctly. I either respond to it or I don't. Proper listening for me is going through my stereo system. ;) The work either has meat in it and something to hold onto or I'll never listen to it again. I get tired of these 'intellectual' composers who don't think about their audience. I don't know if Crumb cares about his audience or even who listens to his music, but music is meant to be heard, so he's got to have some kind of care. With that said, I did hear a work by Crumb I enjoyed not too long ago. I believe it was was called Haunted Landscape (correct title?). An eerie piece for sure.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2013, 06:53:05 PM by Mirror Image »
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Offline springrite

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #43 on: January 16, 2013, 06:53:19 PM »
John, never mind the analysis. You will like some Crumb for sure. I like all of them with no wanting for visuals or what-have-you. Pay up to find out. (hehee...)
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #44 on: January 16, 2013, 06:54:26 PM »
John, never mind the analysis. You will like some Crumb for sure. I like all of them with no wanting for visuals or what-have-you. Pay up to find out. (hehee...)

Thanks, Paul. Yeah, I already like Haunted Landscape, so that's a start. :)
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snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #45 on: January 17, 2013, 08:41:45 AM »
Yuck. Yeah, I don't like works like this and I also don't like the notion of hearing a work correctly. I either respond to it or I don't. Proper listening for me is going through my stereo system. ;) The work either has meat in it and something to hold onto or I'll never listen to it again. I get tired of these 'intellectual' composers who don't think about their audience. I don't know if Crumb cares about his audience or even who listens to his music, but music is meant to be heard, so he's got to have some kind of care. With that said, I did hear a work by Crumb I enjoyed not too long ago. I believe it was was called Haunted Landscape (correct title?). An eerie piece for sure.

Haha, heared 'correctly' simply meant 'heard' at ALL, haha. But, yea, I agree that Composers who use 'pppppp' as an IRONIC thing should be kicked! Ow!! That said, the Vox Balaene, though the same kind of thing, totally works,... there is even some Schubertian beauty htere.

Haunted Landscape WANTS to be annoying, but succeeds because the forces involved preclude super super quietness. I think Crumb did well here, and, it may be the one piece to make converts (BUT, will the converted REMAIN converted, haha?!?!)


John, never mind the analysis. You will like some Crumb for sure. I like all of them with no wanting for visuals or what-have-you. Pay up to find out. (hehee...)

Which of these piano works do you like best?

Makrokosmos I

Makrokosmos II

Makrokosmos III: Music for a Summer Evening

Makrokosmos IV(?): Celestial Mechanics

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Otherworldly Resonances



I DO have problems with the vocalizing (unless, of course, they sound GOOD (which I haven't heard yet)).

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #46 on: January 17, 2013, 09:03:27 AM »
Haha, heared 'correctly' simply meant 'heard' at ALL, haha. But, yea, I agree that Composers who use 'pppppp' as an IRONIC thing should be kicked! Ow!! That said, the Vox Balaene, though the same kind of thing, totally works,... there is even some Schubertian beauty htere.

Haunted Landscape WANTS to be annoying, but succeeds because the forces involved preclude super super quietness. I think Crumb did well here, and, it may be the one piece to make converts (BUT, will the converted REMAIN converted, haha?!?!)

I see what you mean, snyprrr. A lot of Crumb's music, or at least what I sampled from NML, sounded really quiet. It's almost like he's hiding something. Like the dead body in the trunk of his car.  :D
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Offline lescamil

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #47 on: January 17, 2013, 11:01:10 AM »
Makrokosmos I

Makrokosmos II

Makrokosmos III: Music for a Summer Evening

Makrokosmos IV(?): Celestial Mechanics

Zeitgeist

Otherworldly Resonances

In my opinion, Makrokosmos III and IV are some of the greatest works Crumb has composed. I've seen Makrokosmos III performed live, and it was great. I saw it performed in an outside venue, with the sounds of nature and all, and everything still worked out great. Some of the sounds of the insects went quite well with some of the special effects!
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snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #48 on: January 17, 2013, 08:27:43 PM »
I see what you mean, snyprrr. A lot of Crumb's music, or at least what I sampled from NML, sounded really quiet. It's almost like he's hiding something. Like the dead body in the trunk of his car.  :D

Haha, that's wonderful Crumb imagery!

Read lescamil's Last Post. I think that's the essence of Crumb, being there when all the extra musical aspects take the already wonderful aural element and add it to all the other senses,... no farting, please! Perhaps even the smells/fragrances need to be proscribed (or banned) by the Composer to ensure the type of reaction they're seeking?? haha

That's sounds kinda Stockhausen? Scriabin?

But, I think a lot of Modern Music is written for the perfect performance under the stars with the insects as part of the programme,... surely they wouldn't want a jet to suddenly fly by,... or one person's offensive cologne to distract,... or what have you.

That's funny! ;D


Here's my Crumb:

Sonata for Solo Cello (Haimovitz/DG): Doesn't everyone have that cd?

Night Music (Mutter/DG)


Eleven Echoes of Autumn (Caprice?) A nice Chamber Work.


Idyll/Vox/Madrigals (NewWorld)


Black Angels (Brodsky SQ/Teldec) Wonderful recording.
Black Angels (VoxBox) I'd like to hear the Zukofsky SQ on CRIrcd.
Black Angels (Kronos SQ/Nonesuch) Who hasn't heard this? If you really like the piece, you have another.

Haunted Landscape (NewWorld) The best of the 3 Orchestral Works, imo.

Ancient Voices/Makro III (Nonesuch) I guess I'll have to get this now?


Yes, that's about what I like from Crumb. Everything after Haunted Landscape I just can't really see me getting into. But, frankly, Crumb should be thankful, right?


The one work I'd like to hear is the '70s Chamber Work Dream Sequence, with the off-stage singing glasses. Anyone have this, and which version?

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #49 on: January 17, 2013, 08:35:10 PM »
Thanks for the feedback, snyprrr. I like the name of this thread: The Crumb Cake Cafe. On a related note, has anyone ever tried some crumb cake? Where does one acquire some good crumb cake? At a fresh bakery? In your mom's kitchen? At the local 711? At the mortuary? Oops...wrong thread. :D
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snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #50 on: January 17, 2013, 09:25:22 PM »
Thanks for the feedback, snyprrr. I like the name of this thread: The Crumb Cake Cafe. On a related note, has anyone ever tried some crumb cake? Where does one acquire some good crumb cake? At a fresh bakery? In your mom's kitchen? At the local 711? At the mortuary? Oops...wrong thread. :D

thanks ..I like that coffee cake with the crumblies on top, yum! Entemann's?

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #51 on: January 17, 2013, 09:35:59 PM »
thanks ..I like that coffee cake with the crumblies on top, yum! Entemann's?

I like homemade coffee cake and, yes, with the crumbles on top. Goes good with hot tea. Oh, and I guess coffee would go with it too. ::) :D
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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #52 on: January 18, 2013, 08:19:20 AM »



Which of these piano works do you like best?

Makrokosmos I

Makrokosmos II

Makrokosmos III: Music for a Summer Evening

Makrokosmos IV(?): Celestial Mechanics

Zeitgeist

Otherworldly Resonances




My favorite among these works: Music for a Summer Evening, hands down.
My favorite Crumb overall? The Cello Sonata and the Madrigals.
Do what I must do, and let what must happen happen.

snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #53 on: January 18, 2013, 08:28:13 AM »
My favorite among these works: Music for a Summer Evening, hands down.
My favorite Crumb overall? The Cello Sonata and the Madrigals.

mm, those Madrigals are pretty...uh...wacky!

Do you like Lux Aeterna or Frederico's Little Songs for Children?

Offline springrite

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #54 on: January 18, 2013, 08:30:19 AM »
mm, those Madrigals are pretty...uh...wacky!

Do you like Lux Aeterna or Frederico's Little Songs for Children?

Not at all. Not wacky enough for me, maybe?
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snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #55 on: January 18, 2013, 08:38:36 AM »
Not at all. Not wacky enough for me, maybe?

Well, that settles it! ;) After the classic Nonesuch, it's bedtime for Lorca!! thanks

snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe CRUMB WARNING LISTEN!!
« Reply #56 on: September 01, 2016, 08:25:09 AM »
Anyone care to join a Crumbcussion?


I have two/three recordings of the much maligned 'Black Angels' (Brodsky:Excellent. Concord/Premiere?, Kronos/Eh), and the Nonesuch recital with:

An Idyll for the Misbegotten
Vox Balaenae
Madrigals


and the NewWorld disc with 'Haunted Landscape'.




I can't take too much Crumb. This may be the best overall Discography to have?

The worst of Cage+Stockhausen,... or the best?... or what????




Can't stand pretentiously quiet music that explodes and then goes quiet, then explodes, etc etc....



Am enjoying DeGaetani in 'Madrigals' right now.

snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #57 on: September 01, 2016, 06:41:26 PM »
Just as I thought! :laugh:

snyprrr

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe
« Reply #58 on: September 01, 2016, 07:16:36 PM »
I sampled a bunch of stuff on YT today and came away shaking my head over Crumb. I realized I've tread this path before and come to the same conclusion. 'Black Angels', as much as you may love or loathe it, seems to be his absolute best piece... here are some findings:

1) We've all heard about "prehistoric" Crumb, usually embodied by the seemingly ubiquitous Solo Cello Sonata of the '50s. Besides that, there's not much to see here.

2) I liked the 'Four Nocturnes (Night Music II)' for violin and piano, Mutter/Orkis, though, the reviewer much prefers the Jecklin disc. 'Night Music I', for ensemble with soprano, I liked until I heard that typically pretentious sounding Lorca-like Spanish declamations,- that seems to be the one lingering qualm I have about all the vocal works, except for maybe 'Lux Aeterna'.

'11 Echoes of Autumn' also in his early mature style...

3) Then you've got the main corpus of mature Chamber Works (besides BA), 'Vox Balaenae', 'Lux Aeterna', 'Dream Sequence', and 'An Idyll for the Misbegotten'. These can be "groovy", and I was enjoying all but 'Dream sequence', which I just couldn't hear, maybe retry. The original LPs have been reissued by that new SONY label? I have the NewWorld "Vox/Idyll", with the vocal 'Madrigals', and that might best the best overall try here. There is also a Jecklin'HatHut disc that is supposed to be excellent, with all the pieces, I think.

I'm not interested in anything after the mid-'80s 'Idyll', and the cool orchestral piece 'A Haunted Landscape'.


4) 'Black Angels'

Couldn't stand this the moment I heard the Kronos so long ago. Today I sampled all available recordings I think:

a) First Recordings: The Concord String Quartet (VoxBox) vs The New York Quartet (Zukofsky et al;CRI LP (not on CD))

Zukovsky's SQ really captures the evil sound of the the cascading, ghostly glissandi, probably more so than anyone on record- it's very controlled and creepy. Besides this, a few other raw touches (and a slightly closer microphone) edge this one out, though the Concord really is quite good (though the sound quality is just a wee bit thin).

b) Kronos just gets dismissed....

c) that leaves the modern recordings, and there is a lot of ballyhoo:

Brodsky SQ 1992 Teldec
Cikada SQ            Cala
Miro SQ                Bridge
Diotima SQ 2011? Auvidis-Montaigne

Just from a cursory survey I found the Cikada to be the most difficult to hear, in terms of dynamics. The Diotima seemed to have a few ideas; I'm not sure if I liked their aural positioning. The Miro seemed very well recorded, but for me it was the Brodsky that pulled it all together. The Teldec sound captures every nuance, the players play everything just right, and the positioning in the auditorium is, as with Teldec, perfectly judged.Nothing is "too quiet".





Listening now to 'Songs, Drones, and Refrains of Death', one of the 'Vietnam' pieces, for baritone and ensemble (with lots of electric guitar!), but it's just too much for me ,really...Pierrot on LSD? But it's kind of pretentious sounding... I don't like it... 'Time and the River', eh...




HAD A REEEALLY HARD TIME WITH THE PIANO MUSIC- HELP


Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: The Crumb Cake Cafe CRUMB WARNING LISTEN!!
« Reply #59 on: September 03, 2016, 09:57:17 AM »
Anyone care to join a Crumbcussion?

I heard "Ancient Voices of Children" some years ago at a CSO concert, conducted by Mehta. I was impressed by the piece, partly because of the spatial elements which don't come off too well in recording.

The second half of the program was Bruckner's 4th Symphony. It was one of the most strangely put-together concert programs I have seen. First half, handful of musicians wandering about the stage, making funny noises. Second half, big romantic symphony.

I also have the Nonesuch recording of it, and the one of "Music for a Summer Evening." I enjoy the latter as a piece of mood music but don't come back to it too often.
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