GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => Composer Discussion => Topic started by: tjguitar on April 15, 2007, 04:18:53 PM

Title: EJ Moeran
Post by: tjguitar on April 15, 2007, 04:18:53 PM
In my quest of branching out to more of Vernon Handley's conducted recordings (after enjoying his Bax, Bliss and Stanford on Chandos, Bantock & Simpson on Hyperion, Arnold on Conifer/DECCA; and Vaughan Williams & Elgar on EMI)

Next up was EJ Moeran.

What does everyone think of Moeran?

I recently got these chandos CDs:


(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/P/B00013BOF6.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_V45605354_AA240_.jpg)(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/54/41/73d3eb6709a0afa995d21110._AA240_.L.jpg)(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/P/B0002NRRNS.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_V45156637_AA240_.jpg)


I think my favorite piece is the "Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra" on the CD with the symphony.

I also got this CD of chamber music, but have not had a chance to listen to it yet:
(http://ec2.images-amazon.com/images/P/B00013BOFQ.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_V47030133_AA240_.jpg)

I'm generally more a fan of big orchestral works than the chamber music, but I do like some of Bax's and Arnold's compositions for smaller ensembles.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Harry on April 15, 2007, 10:04:32 PM
Moeran is  a excellent composer, which I almost bought the moment these recordings you listed were released.
I was amazed by the powerful language Moeran is using, so different from his fellow composers, and yet so alike.
The violin concerto is awesome, and so is his Symphony in G minor. Some works are also recorded on Naxos but not that good as the Chandos recordings. Would like to see some more chamberworks recorded. For the chandos recording you have there is a fine example of his craft in this micro world of his.
Enjoy, and thank you for bringing him to the fore!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on April 16, 2007, 01:43:51 AM
The best ever Moeran record has just been released on CD by Lyrita.  It is Sir Adrian Boult conducting the Symphony and the Sinfonietta.  If you like the Symphony you have to hear this one. It is by far the best performance of this work, head and shoulders above all the others (although I like the historic Heward and EMI Dilkes versions too).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Catison on April 16, 2007, 06:45:35 AM
I like the Naxos CD.  In particular, I get a thrill out of the last movement of his Sinfonietta.  For some reason it reminds me of Carter's Holiday Overture, a favorite of mine.

But looking through his recordings, I can't help but think, "Did this guy only take one photo?"
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: tjguitar on April 16, 2007, 08:38:18 AM
I wonder why Chandos didn't include Del Mar's recording of the Sinfonietta in their reissues, I guess there just wasn't room.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Robert on April 16, 2007, 11:29:31 AM
I wonder why Chandos didn't include Del Mar's recording of the Sinfonietta in their reissues, I guess there just wasn't room.

Count me in on the sinfonietta but I also like his cello concerto.....
Title: E J Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 24, 2007, 07:13:06 AM
E J Moeran's great Symphony in G minor has just won the Gramophone Magazine Award for best historic reissue and I don't think that there has been a Moeran thread here yet:

http://www.lyrita.co.uk/

Moeran is one of my very favourite composers; especially the Symphony, Cello Concerto, Violin Sonata and Sinfonietta.  The Symphony, which I have never seen performed, should be up there with the much better known Walton Symphony 1 and Vaughan Williams Symphony 4, also from the 1930s.

He had quite a sad life, injured in the First World War, a piece of shrapnel lodged in his head may have encouraged a propensity for over-indulgence in alcohol (although I manage this perfectly well without any such historical trauma ;D) He was found dead (from heart failure) in the River Kenmare in 1950.

Any views on Moeran?
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Harry on October 24, 2007, 08:01:30 AM
Nonother than that I bought his recordings on Chandos when they were released on LP.
Later on I replaced them by cd's. Why?
Because I think his compositions marvelous, and whatever I bought all impressed me mightily, and still does.
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: head-case on October 24, 2007, 09:24:58 AM
Moeran is one of my very favourite composers; especially the Symphony, Cello Concerto, Violin Sonata and Sinfonietta. 

It is actually hard for me to believe that anyone could consider Moeran to be one of his or her favorite composers!  :o
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Harry on October 24, 2007, 09:27:15 AM
Well I am pleased to meet you.
I am a Moeran admirer thank you! :)
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Montpellier on October 24, 2007, 10:53:47 AM
I wouldn't claim that Moeran is my favourite but his music is certainly engaging and that Lyrita release is a winner.  About time I bought it.  I've got by with a transfer from the LP as, well, a couple years ago, I never believed it would see the light of day on CD while Richard Itter held that catalogue so close to his chest.
 
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 24, 2007, 11:32:53 AM
It is actually hard for me to believe that anyone could consider Moeran to be one of his or her favorite composers!  :o

Really? Why?
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Mark on October 24, 2007, 11:44:05 AM
vandermolen, you are the listener I want to be ... if I wasn't so obsessed with music of the Austro-German school, and much more willing to devote greater time to exploring British 20th century composers, that is. ;D
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 24, 2007, 11:59:50 AM
vandermolen, you are the listener I want to be ... if I wasn't so obsessed with music of the Austro-German school, and much more willing to devote greater time to exploring British 20th century composers, that is. ;D

Thanks Mark, but I am a great fan of Bruckner and Mahler too!

Now get back to that baby ;D
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Mark on October 24, 2007, 12:30:56 PM
Now get back to that baby ;D

Just been feeding her. ;D


Now, when can we expect a thread from you on Rutland Boughton?
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Dundonnell on October 24, 2007, 03:33:16 PM
Another Moeran admirer here too! I would not claim that Moeran was a great composer but he did write some extremely attractive music in a romantic style which was soon to be deemed 'out of date'. He was obviously influenced by Sibelius in the symphony and by the folk music he collected as a young man. I love the symphony and greatly like the violin concerto too. I do think that the cello concerto-while pleasant enough-is a weaker work.

Anyone who likes Bax or John Ireland would probably like Moeran too. I certainly don't think that Moeran is in any way a lesser composer than Ireland and I-infinitely-prefer him to Delius. (Oh no, I am doing it again...comparing composers to the detriment of one!)

I wish that I could afford to collect multiple copies of works! I do have the Moeran symphony on both Chandos(Handley) and Naxos(Lloyd-Jones). I really don't think that I should buy the Lyrita as well-great though the performance is. (Anyway-I've just remembered that I have the Boult version on LP!! Hurrah!)

Maybe someone could explain why certain people-of whom I am certainly one(and there are others on this site :) have such an interest in and love of 20th century British music? It certainly isn't in any way an overtly nationalist thing(I am Scottish anyway) but the quintessentially British/English music of the first half of the 20th century has an appeal which must in some way strike the correct receptive chords in evoking emotions linked to our perceptions of landscape, mood etc related to our native country.

Oh... I had better stop before I get in over my head and out of my depth! It is too late at night here for such cod philosophising!!
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Mark on October 24, 2007, 10:00:29 PM
Maybe someone could explain why certain people-of whom I am certainly one(and there are others on this site :) have such an interest in and love of 20th century British music? It certainly isn't in any way an overtly nationalist thing(I am Scottish anyway) but the quintessentially British/English music of the first half of the 20th century has an appeal which must in some way strike the correct receptive chords in evoking emotions linked to our perceptions of landscape, mood etc related to our native country.

My interest in British 20th century music has grown steadily since discovering Gerald Finzi about four years ago. I've since explored Boughton, Moeran, Bax, Bliss, Britten, Warlock and the wonderful Rebecca Clark, as well as the 'big guns' like Elgar, Holst and Vaughan Williams. It's really only the 'lack' (relatively speaking) of so much 'core repertoire' in my collection that currently keeps me from making a more in-depth exploration of the works of British composers from the last century.
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 25, 2007, 02:37:41 AM
Just been feeding her. ;D


Now, when can we expect a thread from you on Rutland Boughton?

I like "The Immortal Hour" very much and there is a charming Oboe Concerto (written for his daughter I think). However, I have been less impressed with RB's symphonies. On a recent Dutton CD I was disappointed with Boughton's "Cromwell Symphony" and much preferred its companion on disc; Edgar Bainton's valedictory Third Symphony. Maybe I'll do a Bainton thread instead!
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Mark on October 25, 2007, 02:40:31 AM
I like "The Immortal Hour" very much and there is a charming Oboe Concerto (written for his daughter I think). However, I have been less impressed with RB's symphonies. On a recent Dutton CD I was disappointed with Boughton's "Cromwell Symphony" and much preferred its companion on disc; Edgar Bainton's valedictory Third Symphony. Maybe I'll do a Bainton thread instead!

Try Boughton's String Quartet, 'From The Welsh Hills'. Terrific stuff. :)
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 25, 2007, 02:47:09 AM


Maybe someone could explain why certain people-of whom I am certainly one(and there are others on this site :) have such an interest in and love of 20th century British music? It certainly isn't in any way an overtly nationalist thing(I am Scottish anyway) but the quintessentially British/English music of the first half of the 20th century has an appeal which must in some way strike the correct receptive chords in evoking emotions linked to our perceptions of landscape, mood etc related to our native country.

Oh... I had better stop before I get in over my head and out of my depth! It is too late at night here for such cod philosophising!!

I think that you have explained the appeal of much early/mid 20th century music above. Like you, I am no nationalist but the music of VW, Moeran, Bax, Finzi, Ireland, Rubbra etc has a unique appeal for me. I think that it has something to do with the English (sorry British!) landscape. I love walking in the countryside and invariably have some music by those composers running through my head.  Being interested in history also has something to do with it and I wonder what those Henry Wood Proms were like in the inter-war period when the music of those composers featured regularly. I guess it's a bit of a wistful nostalgia trip but VW, Bax etc do provide something of an antidote to a society whose heroes are the likes of "Ant and Dec" and Chantelle from "Big Brother" (not that I watch such tripe you understand!)

I have rambled incoherently, so enough for now ;D




Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Mark on October 25, 2007, 02:48:47 AM
I think that you have explained the appeal of much early/mid 20th century music above. Like you, I am no nationalist but the music of VW, Moeran, Bax, Finzi, Ireland, Rubbra etc has a unique appeal for me. I think that it has something to do with the English (sorry British!) landscape. I love walking in the countryside and invariably have some music by those composers running through my head.  Being interested in history also has something to do with it and I wonder what those Henry Wood Proms were like in the inter-war period when the music of those composers featured regularly. I guess it's a bit of a wistful nostalgia trip but VW, Bax etc do provide something of an antidote to a society whose heroes are the likes of "Ant and Dec" and Chantelle from "Big Brother" (not that I watch such tripe you understand!)

With you all the way on this. :)
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 25, 2007, 02:49:56 AM
Try Boughton's String Quartet, 'From The Welsh Hills'. Terrific stuff. :)

Guess what. I have that CD (Hyperion), someone gave it to me as a present but I have not listed to it properly. I shall do so. Thanks Mark.

Jeffrey
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Hector on October 25, 2007, 02:53:12 AM
The Beeb were forever airing the Sinfonietta, at one time, usually a in-house performance from one of their regional orchestras or the Heward recording, which must sound dated, now.

It just sort of went through me without touching the sides but I still went out and bought David Lloyd-Jones Naxos disc and became enthralled.

I suspect that he is as good as Bax, perhaps better, in some respects, because, to my ear, Moeran's musical argument is tighter.

Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Montpellier on October 25, 2007, 03:37:02 AM
....and I-infinitely-prefer him to Delius. (Oh no, I am doing it again...comparing composers to the detriment of one!)
I have no doubt about who was the more original but they're both fine!  It's a "fact" that people either like or dislike Delius with no ground between, so they say!

Quote
Maybe someone could explain why certain people-of whom I am certainly one(and there are others on this site :) have such an interest in and love of 20th century British music? It certainly isn't in any way an overtly nationalist thing(I am Scottish anyway) but the quintessentially British/English music of the first half of the 20th century has an appeal which must in some way strike the correct receptive chords in evoking emotions linked to our perceptions of landscape, mood etc related to our native country.
Because it's listenable and gently adventurous? ...which is more than can be said for most music composed in the first half of the 20th C.   I'm not saying there was no nice music elsewhere but it has to be sought out.

:) 



Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Dundonnell on October 25, 2007, 03:58:47 AM
I like "The Immortal Hour" very much and there is a charming Oboe Concerto (written for his daughter I think). However, I have been less impressed with RB's symphonies. On a recent Dutton CD I was disappointed with Boughton's "Cromwell Symphony" and much preferred its companion on disc; Edgar Bainton's valedictory Third Symphony. Maybe I'll do a Bainton thread instead!

We are getting off the subject of the thread but since it doesn't look we are getting a Rutland Boughton thread-do you know the 2nd and 3rd symphonies?
I suspect that you may know the 3rd since Hyperion coupled it with the Oboe Concerto. However there is a BBC Radio Classics CD with Symphony No.2 "Deirde"-(A Celtic Symphony) and Symphony No.3 with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Sir Edward Downes. Both symphonies are attractive and tuneful, if no masterpieces, and much better worked out than the early Cromwell Symphony, which I admit was disappointing.

I wonder why the BBC gave up on that series? I managed to collect the Boughton, the Bliss Violin Concerto played by Alfredo Campoli coupled with the Ballet "The Lady of Shalott", the Rubbra 4th symphony(Handley) coupled with the marvellous Piano Concerto(why no modern recording?) and cello Soliloquy(Malcolm Binns and Raphael Sommer respectively), Robert Simpson's Piano Concerto-played by John Ogden no less, coupled with Rawsthorne's 2nd Piano Concerto and double piano concerto in which Ogden is joined by his wife Brenda Lucas, and the Rawsthorne Violin Concerti played by Theo Olof and Manoug Parikian.

The series was issued by Carlton Classics and promised to make available lost treasures from the BBC archives. The BBC Legends series is fantastic but does focus on much more mainstream repertoire in classic performances.

Anyway, sorry to have strayed so far from Moeran!!
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 25, 2007, 04:14:59 AM
We are getting off the subject of the thread but since it doesn't look we are getting a Rutland Boughton thread-do you know the 2nd and 3rd symphonies?
I suspect that you may know the 3rd since Hyperion coupled it with the Oboe Concerto. However there is a BBC Radio Classics CD with Symphony No.2 "Deirde"-(A Celtic Symphony) and Symphony No.3 with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Sir Edward Downes. Both symphonies are attractive and tuneful, if no masterpieces, and much better worked out than the early Cromwell Symphony, which I admit was disappointing.

I wonder why the BBC gave up on that series? I managed to collect the Boughton, the Bliss Violin Concerto played by Alfredo Campoli coupled with the Ballet "The Lady of Shalott", the Rubbra 4th symphony(Handley) coupled with the marvellous Piano Concerto(why no modern recording?) and cello Soliloquy(Malcolm Binns and Raphael Sommer respectively), Robert Simpson's Piano Concerto-played by John Ogden no less, coupled with Rawsthorne's 2nd Piano Concerto and double piano concerto in which Ogden is joined by his wife Brenda Lucas, and the Rawsthorne Violin Concerti played by Theo Olof and Manoug Parikian.

The series was issued by Carlton Classics and promised to make available lost treasures from the BBC archives. The BBC Legends series is fantastic but does focus on much more mainstream repertoire in classic performances.

Anyway, sorry to have strayed so far from Moeran!!

I do know the Boughton No 3 but not No 2.  BBC Radio Classics got generally very poor reviews. I think that they often deserved better. Like you I collected the Rubbra No 4, Bliss Violin Concerto but also a very good Hymnus Paradisi from Gloucester Cathedral, Morning Heroes with Richard Baker, VW's Pilgrim's Progress adapted for radio, Bantock's Pagan Symphony with Bax Northern Ballads and a v interesting Vaughan Williams Sancta Civitas (a masterpiece) with Symphony 5 (BBC SO Rozhdestvensky)+ Boult conducting Bliss's Music for Strings and Moeran's Sinfonietta (which brings us back to Moeran!!) I think that they now fetch very high prices as they are so rare.
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Mark on October 25, 2007, 07:37:10 AM
Guess what. I have that CD (Hyperion), someone gave it to me as a present but I have not listed to it properly. I shall do so. Thanks Mark.

Jeffrey

Yep, that's the one. Only, I got it dirt cheap as a Helios reissue. ;)

What say we just open a single, British 20th century composers thread? Think we had one on the old forum. :)
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Guido on October 25, 2007, 10:21:31 AM
Mark, You would probably like the Moeran cello concerto - the only available recording is Wallfish, but he does a really decent job of this one. IMO its not as good as the Finzi, but its still great. I assume you have heard the Bliss cello concerto...?
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: Mark on October 25, 2007, 11:03:52 AM
Mark, You would probably like the Moeran cello concerto - the only available recording is Wallfish, but he does a really decent job of this one. IMO its not as good as the Finzi, but its still great. I assume you have heard the Bliss cello concerto...?

I've heard neither cello concerto, sadly. The Bliss Piano Concerto, however, I am familiar with. :)
Title: Re: E J Moeran
Post by: tjguitar on November 10, 2007, 09:32:16 PM
Quote
Maybe someone could explain why certain people-of whom I am certainly one(and there are others on this site Smiley have such an interest in and love of 20th century British music? It certainly isn't in any way an overtly nationalist thing(I am Scottish anyway) but the quintessentially British/English music of the first half of the 20th century has an appeal which must in some way strike the correct receptive chords in evoking emotions linked to our perceptions of landscape, mood etc related to our native country.

I couldn't really tell you what appeals to me about the music....I'm a 22 year old American, I've been to England a few times, but never had the urge to move their or anything. :) I loved the FILM music from Bax, Arnold, Vaughan Williams, Bliss etc that the late David Wishart produced for his Cloud Nine label, later reissued on Silva America. Since I liked those compositions, I then decided to check out their "classical" compositions.  Rest is history....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: jowcol on October 09, 2008, 04:14:59 AM
I know that I'm coming late into this thread, but I just want to chime in and say that the G Minor Symphony, for me, is one of the great 20th Century symphonies, and one that I'll never tire of. 

I'd also rank the Handley  over the David Lloyd Jones version on Naxos, but I've not heard the Boult version. 

For those of you who are interested in another take on this symphony, you might want to check out this live recording with the Shrewsbury Symphony Orchestra conducted by Andrew Rose.  It is not a professional recording, but I found it listenable enough, and it was my first introduction to this work.  It is also free for download as mp3, as long as you don't try to make money on it.

http://www.moeran.com/Audio/Symphony.html
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 09, 2008, 05:48:14 AM
I know that I'm coming late into this thread, but I just want to chime in and say that the G Minor Symphony, for me, is one of the great 20th Century symphonies, and one that I'll never tire of. 

I'd also rank the Handley  over the David Lloyd Jones version on Naxos, but I've not heard the Boult version. 

For those of you who are interested in another take on this symphony, you might want to check out this live recording with the Shrewsbury Symphony Orchestra conducted by Andrew Rose.  It is not a professional recording, but I found it listenable enough, and it was my first introduction to this work.  It is also free for download as mp3, as long as you don't try to make money on it.

http://www.moeran.com/Audio/Symphony.html

I agree with you about the Symphony and my next favourite work is the Cello Concerto (Boult/Coetmore on Lyrita). I like the newish Chandos reissue with the Cello Concerto and Violin Concerto coupled together (pictured above, with the flock of birds on the cover).

The Moeran website is worth a visit:

http://www.moeran.com/index2.html

CD below is must buy for Moeran fans.



Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on October 09, 2008, 06:07:30 AM
I love Moeran. Yes, that Symphony is one of the great poetic masterpieces of the 20th century and among the most moving responses to the First World War, the consequences of which, mentally and physically, Moeran had to live with for the rest of his short life.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 09, 2008, 03:56:32 PM
I love Moeran. Yes, that Symphony is one of the great poetic masterpieces of the 20th century and among the most moving responses to the First World War, the consequences of which, mentally and physically, Moeran had to live with for the rest of his short life.

Yes, absolutely true. The climax of the Cello Concerto is, I believe, Moeran's final statement of the musical ideas which were so dear to him. Very moving, especially in the performance by Peers Coetmore with Boult on Lyrita. Her playing might not be so polished as on the Chandos recording but it is more deeply felt (Coetmore was Moeran's wife).

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: drogulus on October 09, 2008, 04:56:54 PM


For those of you who are interested in another take on this symphony, you might want to check out this live recording with the Shrewsbury Symphony Orchestra conducted by Andrew Rose.  It is not a professional recording, but I found it listenable enough, and it was my first introduction to this work.  It is also free for download as mp3, as long as you don't try to make money on it.

http://www.moeran.com/Audio/Symphony.html

     Thanks, jowcol. I'm downloading now. This composer gets mentioned so often I wonder why I haven't investigated him before now.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Moldyoldie on June 30, 2009, 07:26:39 AM
[Pasted from "What Are You Listening To?"]
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41EXCM74QTL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Moeran: Violin Concerto; Lonely Waters; Whythorne's Shadow
Lydia Mordkovitch, violin (in concerto)
Ulster Orchestra
Vernon Handley, cond.

Moeran: Cello Concerto
Raphael Wallfisch, cello
Bouremouth Sinfonietta
Norman Del Mar, cond.
CHANDOS


This is my introduction to E. J. Moeran (1894-1950) whom I first read about recently and whose music was described as being firmly entrenched in the "cowpat" school of twentieth century British music, a term derogatorally coined by English serialist composer Elisabeth Lutyens to describe the more idyllically inclined music of Ralph Vaughan Williams, Gerald Finzi, Hubert Parry, and the like.  Yes, the music here is nothing if not evocative of British and Irish vistas abetted by frequent none-too-subtle allusions to inherently familiar folk melodies and rhythms.  One can choose to either love this music for its simple summonings or be aloof to its seeming ubiquity and triteness; there's certainly nothing threatening nor overtly challenging to be heard.

The Violin Concerto of 1937 is probably the most attractive and substantive work here -- three varying movements traversing both a soberly Romantic and homespun musical landscape.  Soloist Lydia Mordkovitch produces a somewhat roughhewn sonority, especially in the lower register, but still displays an appropriately sweet-sounding rumination bookending the folksy jauntiness found in the middle movement.  In painting this beautiful and amiable picture, she's very well-balanced with the vividly recorded Ulster Orchestra led by Vernon Handley.

Handley and the Ulster also perform the near contemporaneous Lonely Waters and Whythorne's Shadow, the latter's namesake being an Elizabethan-era composer -- together representing about fifteen minutes of flowing, lovely, and mostly innocuous musical buffer.

The program ends with the Cello Concerto, a later work from around the end of World War II.  Soloist Raphael Wallfisch is accompanied by the Bournemouth Sinfonietta led by Norman Del Mar in a recording originally released a few years previous to the above in the mid-1980s and compellingly appended here to make for this chock-full 2004 re-release.  It's perhaps too easy to say this is musically more of the same as its earlier violin counterpart -- a beautiful and pastorally inspired rumination sandwiching and infused with some lilting Irish folk stylings, this time featuring the deeply rich sonority of Wallfisch's instrument.  If, perchance, there's an actual "expression" to be heard in this score, it's mostly latent in this performance, but it melds well with this uniformly peaceable and amiable program -- one, with small effort, I happened to take delight in this particular morning.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: schweitzeralan on June 30, 2009, 07:48:37 AM
In my quest of branching out to more of Vernon Handley's conducted recordings (after enjoying his Bax, Bliss and Stanford on Chandos, Bantock & Simpson on Hyperion, Arnold on Conifer/DECCA; and Vaughan Williams & Elgar on EMI)

Next up was EJ Moeran.

What does everyone think of Moeran?

I recently got these chandos CDs:


(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/P/B00013BOF6.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_V45605354_AA240_.jpg)(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/54/41/73d3eb6709a0afa995d21110._AA240_.L.jpg)(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/P/B0002NRRNS.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_V45156637_AA240_.jpg)


I think my favorite piece is the "Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra" on the CD with the symphony.

I also got this CD of chamber music, but have not had a chance to listen to it yet:
(http://ec2.images-amazon.com/images/P/B00013BOFQ.01._SCLZZZZZZZ_V47030133_AA240_.jpg)

I'm generally more a fan of big orchestral works than the chamber music, but I do like some of Bax's and Arnold's compositions for smaller ensembles.

Good thread with interesting, informed comments.  I simply wish to add my name on the list of those who recognize Moeran as a significant English composer.  Many similarities to Bax, Ireland, Bridge, et. al., which has been acknowledged on the thread.  Moeran follows essentially the Delian line more than the Elgarian.  Many good works; however, it is the "Symphony In G" which is his masterpiece.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Lethevich on June 30, 2009, 09:33:54 AM
Thanks for the review, Moldyoldie. I have heard almost no Moeran, and can't particularly remember the famous symphony, which for a 20th century tonal music fan is almost heretical. Must investigate further...

Those Chandos discs are unusually well presented - even better than their recent Bax. I hope that this continues, as classical music doesn't need crappy cover art - it simply requires labels who hire professional rather than amateur graphic designers.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 30, 2009, 11:16:35 AM
The Symphony is being performed at the London Proms this year.

Here's the link:

http://www.royalalberthall.com/tickets/bbc-proms/prom09/default.aspx
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: tjguitar on June 30, 2009, 02:29:46 PM
Thanks for the review, Moldyoldie. I have heard almost no Moeran, and can't particularly remember the famous symphony, which for a 20th century tonal music fan is almost heretical. Must investigate further...

Those Chandos discs are unusually well presented - even better than their recent Bax. I hope that this continues, as classical music doesn't need crappy cover art - it simply requires labels who hire professional rather than amateur graphic designers.

I'm really disapppointed with the NAXOS cover art for most of the classical CDs that I have.


I may have said this years ago, but its unfortunate that Chandos didnt include the Del Mar Sinfonietta in those reissues....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Dundonnell on July 01, 2009, 02:29:21 AM
The Symphony is being performed at the London Proms this year.

Here's the link:

http://www.royalalberthall.com/tickets/bbc-proms/prom09/default.aspx

A programme of British music conducted by Vassily Sinaisky? Extraordinary! Never thought of him as a conductor interested in British music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 11, 2009, 01:14:40 PM
A programme of British music conducted by Vassily Sinaisky? Extraordinary! Never thought of him as a conductor interested in British music.

Have just booked up for the Prom on 23rd July - Moeran's Symphony, first (and probably last!) time I shall hear this in concert-with Finzi and Elgar's Second Symphony it should be a great concert.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Brian on July 11, 2009, 07:48:57 PM
Have just booked up for the Prom on 23rd July - Moeran's Symphony, first (and probably last!) time I shall hear this in concert-with Finzi and Elgar's Second Symphony it should be a great concert.
Wow; wish I could be there. On my recent road trip I partook in Moeran's Sinfonietta - very favorably impressed, though I thought the last two movements did not rise to the level of the first.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 11, 2009, 11:58:07 PM
Wow; wish I could be there. On my recent road trip I partook in Moeran's Sinfonietta - very favorably impressed, though I thought the last two movements did not rise to the level of the first.

The Sinfonietta is good - first Moeran I heard. Boult's Lyrita performance is the one to have. Do you know the Cello Concerto? This and the Symphony are his masterpieces I think. The Violin Concerto is better known but I find the Cello Concerto to be the greater work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 24, 2009, 11:23:41 PM
It was a great experience to attend the Prom concert in London last Thursday and hear the Moeran Symphony live for the first (and possibly last time - it was last performed at the Proms in 1938!) Vassily Sinaisky and the BBC Philharmonic gave a wonderfully cogent performance which even my 21 year old daughter (attending her first classical concert) enjoyed, despite announcing, on leaving home for the concert, that she was bringing her ear-plugs with her.

It was a really good concert, which also featured Finzi's Grand Fantasia and Toccata and a fine performance of Symphony No 2 by Elgar.  Yes, it was really interesting to hear a Russian conductor in these works - I have an interesting CD of Svetlanov conducting Symphony No 2 by Elgar with the USSR Symphony Orchestra - a fine, if rather unidiomatic performance.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 25, 2009, 12:03:51 AM
It was a great experience to attend the Prom concert in London last Thursday and hear the Moeran Symphony live for the first (and possibly last time - it was last performed at the Proms in 1938!) Vassily Sinaisky and the BBC Philharmonic gave a wonderfully cogent performance which even my 21 year old daughter (attending her first classical concert) enjoyed, despite announcing, on leaving home for the concert, that she was bringing her ear-plugs with her.

It was a really good concert, which also featured Finzi's Grand Fantasia and Toccata and a fine performance of Symphony No 2 by Elgar.  Yes, it was really interesting to hear a Russian conductor in these works - I have an interesting CD of Svetlanov conducting Symphony No 2 by Elgar with the USSR Symphony Orchestra - a fine, if rather unidiomatic performance.

Thanks, Jeffrey! I am slightly envious... But I am going to use the BBC iPlayer NOW! The concert can still be heard for a few days.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007v097/episodes/player
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 25, 2009, 12:35:38 AM
Thanks, Jeffrey! I am slightly envious... But I am going to use the BBC iPlayer NOW! The concert can still be heard for a few days.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007v097/episodes/player
Thanks Johan!

I am trying to see if any newspapers review the concert today.  I was very moved to finally hear the Moeran live, especially in a great performance (I was more aware than before of the influence of Vaughan Williams Symphony No 4 in this work) - one of my very favourite works. Now bring on Miaskovsky (Festival Hall London April 2010) and Braga Santos (?!!!)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 25, 2009, 12:50:40 AM
Thanks Johan!

I am trying to see if any newspapers review the concert today.  I was very moved to finally hear the Moeran live, especially in a great performance (I was more aware than before of the influence of Vaughan Williams Symphony No 4 in this work) - one of my very favourite works. Now bring on Miaskovsky (Festival Hall London April 2010) and Braga Santos (?!!!)

I am in the final few minutes of the Moeran. Yes, a great performance. Sinaisky accentuates both the beauty and the harshness very tellingly, I think. I was reminded of RVW too, more strongly than before, especially in the first movement (though not the 4th in particular).

Next year - Brian, Myaskovsky and Braga Santos, in ONE concert. Yes!

Addition: according to the presenter: 1) Sinaisky loves the Moeran symphony for its 'drama' and 'sincerity' and 2) the BBC Philharmonic will be performing the work again next season at their home base in Manchester (Bridgewater Hall).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 25, 2009, 01:53:26 AM
I am in the final few minutes of the Moeran. Yes, a great performance. Sinaisky accentuates both the beauty and the harshness very tellingly, I think. I was reminded of RVW too, more strongly than before, especially in the first movement (though not the 4th in particular).

Next year - Brian, Myaskovsky and Braga Santos, in ONE concert. Yes!

Addition: according to the presenter: 1) Sinaisky loves the Moeran symphony for its 'drama' and 'sincerity' and 2) the BBC Philharmonic will be performing the work again next season at their home base in Manchester (Bridgewater Hall).

That's really interesting Johan - it would be great if they could record the Symphony - but maybe that is hoping for too much.  In fact we were sitting right next to the BBC 4 (TV) announcer and crew. Just before the end of each piece there was considerable clattering as the cameras were moved about and the TV announcer got back in his place  ::)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Guido on July 26, 2009, 04:01:16 AM
I really wanted to go to this but couldn't... When will it be on BBC4 TV?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on June 10, 2012, 03:57:34 AM
I thought there had to be a Moeran thread, yes of course I love his work, I find it very vital and well argued, and very, very beautiful.

I know most of his orchestral works and some of his chamber works, and thoroughly recommend the Chandos recordings.

One thing which I find very interesting about Moeran is that he seemed to write in the same style and at the same level of inspiration throughout his career. For example it is thought that one string quartet dates from early in his career (1920s) and the other from later (1940s), and yet they sound pretty much the same stylistically. Only in the late orchestral works like the Sinfonietta or the Serenade, does he seem to be moving to a more neoclassical style.

Finally does anyone here know the sonata for two violins? There's a free mp3 on the web somewhere, do a search. It's a great work too!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 10, 2012, 06:43:35 AM
I thought there had to be a Moeran thread, yes of course I love his work, I find it very vital and well argued, and very, very beautiful.

I know most of his orchestral works and some of his chamber works, and thoroughly recommend the Chandos recordings.

One thing which I find very interesting about Moeran is that he seemed to write in the same style and at the same level of inspiration throughout his career. For example it is thought that one string quartet dates from early in his career (1920s) and the other from later (1940s), and yet they sound pretty much the same stylistically. Only in the late orchestral works like the Sinfonietta or the Serenade, does he seem to be moving to a more neoclassical style.

Finally does anyone here know the sonata for two violins? There's a free mp3 on the web somewhere, do a search. It's a great work too!

Interesting point about Moeran's style.  I don't know the sonata you mention. My favourites are the great Symphony and the wonderful Cello Concerto. I prefer the Coetmore/Boult performance on Lyrita to the Chandos.  The cello playing in the Chandos is more polished, but there is something very special about the Lyrita, performed by Moeran's widow - the marriage was not very happy by the sound of it (I don't mean by the sound of the recording!) but there is something very moving and heartfelt about Coetmore's playing, even though she was not a regular performer by 1969 when the recording was made.  Boult's accompaniment is wonderful.  I find the climax of the work to be overwhelming.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on July 12, 2012, 02:34:07 PM
Anyone caught up with Martin Yates' 'realisation of fragments of the Second Symphony' yet?

I've just listened to the first BBC broadcast and I was blown away, it's a great work, it has all the brio and vim of the Sinfonietta, coupled with the large-scale design and depth of the 1st Symphony. Yates has done very well to construct something as connected as this from what were quite sketchy sketches (500 out of 1200 bars are in the sketches, the rest is either Yates using these to make further music, or Yates composing in the style of Moeran).

I was particularly impressed with the development of the 1st movement, a sort of Celtic fairyland seascape created by beautiful liquid textures and intricate cross-rhythms, but unlike the seascape of the slow movement of No.1, this is underwater. If I remember rightly Lir was the Irish god of of the sea, so this is Lir's palace or whatever :-) The interesting thing is that Yates says in his BBC 3 talk that he had to develop the material of the 1st movement more fully than the sketches did, so I wonder if this passage is in the sketches, or is Yates composing.

The other particularly impressive part of this work is the finale, where Yates only had a few bars to go on. It works amazingly well and sounds very authentic.

I might write to Yates to thank him for it and suggest he start composing in his own right!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 13, 2012, 12:57:24 AM
Thanks for reminding me - I'll see if I can squeeze in a first listen...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on April 05, 2013, 08:29:43 AM
Super new CD in all respects.  Would be an ideal introduction to his lyrical, soulful music if you don't know it. The Cello Concerto is, along with the Symphony, Moeran's finest work IMHO and worthy to stand alongside those of Elgar and Miaskovsky.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Brian on April 05, 2013, 12:42:02 PM
Super new CD in all respects.  Would be an ideal introduction to his lyrical, soulful music if you don't know it. The Cello Concerto is, along with the Symphony, Moeran's finest work IMHO and worthy to stand alongside those of Elgar and Miaskovsky.
and don't forget Weinberg


I greatly enjoyed the Cello Concerto on first listen and will probably try it again next week. I don't know if the emotional stakes are quite as high as in Elgar and Weinberg, but the lyrical writing is superb.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on April 05, 2013, 10:55:19 PM
and don't forget Weinberg


I greatly enjoyed the Cello Concerto on first listen and will probably try it again next week. I don't know if the emotional stakes are quite as high as in Elgar and Weinberg, but the lyrical writing is superb.

Thank you. I am a great admirer of Weinberg but don't know his Cello Concerto - clearly I need to rectify this! The new Naxos of Moeran's Cello Concerto is beautifully played and recorded. It is better played than the Coetmore/Boult recording but the climax of the last movement - a very moving love song, is not as overwhelming in the new recording (after all Coetmore was Moeran's wife, although the marriage was not a happy one). I would not be without the Boult/Coetmore Lyrita recording which is the most deeply fely of the three now available. Another fine thing about the Naxos CD is the fine couplings - I had not realised that there was an (optional) vocal section to 'Lonely Waters' (c. 1931) and was surprised when the Soprano came in with the folk song!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on December 31, 2013, 05:25:07 PM
Looks interesting - forthcoming release.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on December 31, 2013, 06:29:39 PM
Looks interesting - forthcoming release.



Nice. I still have yet to acquire the earlier Falletta recording, but I have bought Little's new recording of his Violin Concerto, so it will be interesting to hear this work with some new ears and Little as the soloist certainly won't hinder the performance! 8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 12, 2014, 01:22:05 AM
The JoAnn Falletta Naxos CD is wonderful in all respects. I was especially struck by her version of Overture to a Masque, played with much more urgency than in other recordings and oddly moving in its wartime context - reminding me of Lilburn's Aotearoa Overture. The Rhapsodies and In the Mountain Country are also given very fine performances and a terrific recording. A must for Moeran fans and a great introduction to his soulful, moving and atmospheric music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2014, 01:29:59 AM
That all sounds very appealing, Jeffrey. The 'Overture for a Masque' has always been a favourite of mine. If this new performance is better than Handley's, it really must be something. (Boult's (on Lyrita) is far too slow and ponderous, in my opinion.)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 12, 2014, 07:11:14 AM
That all sounds very appealing, Jeffrey. The 'Overture for a Masque' has always been a favourite of mine. If this new performance is better than Handley's, it really must be something. (Boult's (on Lyrita) is far too slow and ponderous, in my opinion.)

Hi Johan, I am sure that you will love the new version of the Overture - much greater urgency than the Boult and all I can say is that I did not really appreciate how good this work is until JoAnn Falletta's performance, but the excellent recording helps too. The Overture is seen as a 'light' jolly work to cheer people up in the war - but it has much greater depth than I appreciated - the whole CD is very involving.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2014, 07:14:33 AM
The nice thing about the Overture is that it seems to encapsulate the whole of Moeran in only a few minutes - the melancholy and the joy.


P.S. I'm going to buy this later tonight (download).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 12, 2014, 11:23:58 AM
The nice thing about the Overture is that it seems to encapsulate the whole of Moeran in only a few minutes - the melancholy and the joy.


P.S. I'm going to buy this later tonight (download).

Yes, you are right about it encapsulating the essence of Moeran - as with Lilburn and the Aotearoa Overture.

Let us know what you think. Hope it lives up to expectations.  :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2014, 01:10:07 PM
Listening to this as I write... The 'Overture to a Masque' is, indeed, done very well, Jeffrey. Falletta is energetic, but doesn't rush the lyricism.


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61HhZb0J-dL._SS500_.jpg)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 12, 2014, 01:40:05 PM
Listening to this as I write... The 'Overture to a Masque' is, indeed, done very well, Jeffrey. Falletta is energetic, but doesn't rush the lyricism.


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61HhZb0J-dL._SS500_.jpg)

Let us know what you make of the rest of the programme Johan. I have just got to the 1943 Rhapsody for the umpteenth time. I am especially fond of the short Rhapsody No. 1 from 1922, which also seems to encapsulate the essence of Moeran. Oops, I think I meant the 1924/41 Rhapsody No. 2 - they are all good!




Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on January 12, 2014, 04:51:53 PM
Funny thing is, I have listened to most of Moeran's work, inc hard to find pieces like the piano works and the folk-song settings, and the Two Violin Sonata

[http://www.moeran.net/Audio/Sonata_for_Two_Violins.html]

But I've never heard The Overture to a Masque.

I better download it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2014, 04:54:14 PM
Here's the Handley:



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JudvDOjCqss (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JudvDOjCqss)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 12, 2014, 04:58:37 PM
Moeran is a bit hard for me to get into. I own all of Handley's recordings on Chandos. Could any of you guys who really enjoy his music point out some characteristics of his music that make him unique?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2014, 05:05:23 PM
I'm going to bed, as it is already late here (2am).


A few things about Moeran. He's a Delian, and a Sibelian, (though not as strongly, in my opinion). His harmonies resemble those of Delius, but with a twist - Moeran is much more melancholy and bittersweet. And there is no eroticism in his music. His music has gusto, pain, ebullience, and a strong sense of landscape (which connects him to both Delius and RVW). There is also the influence of folksong in his work (more Irish than English).


And now - sleep!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 12, 2014, 05:06:49 PM
I'm going to bed, as it is already late here (2am).


A few things about Moeran. He's a Delian, and a Sibelian, (though not as strongly, in my opinion). His harmonies resemble those of Delius, but with a twist - Moeran is much more melchancoly and bittersweet. And there is no eroticism in his music. His music has gusto, pain, ebullience, and a strong sense of landscape (which connects him to both Delius and RVW). There is also the influence of folksong in his work (more Irish than English).


And now - sleep!

Thanks, Johan! Goodnight my fellow Delian! 8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on January 12, 2014, 06:27:56 PM
Moeran is a bit hard for me to get into. I own all of Handley's recordings on Chandos. Could any of you guys who really enjoy his music point out some characteristics of his music that make him unique?

What I like about him him is his consistently high quality, almost everyting he wrote is worth listening to, and what make it worth listening to is the very strong sense you get of musical movement: at the end of a Moeran piece you really get a sense of a musical journey, an emotional narrative, not just a whole lot of notes that happened one after the other.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 12, 2014, 06:46:56 PM
What I like about him him is his consistently high quality, almost everyting he wrote is worth listening to, and what make it worth listening to is the very strong sense you get of musical movement: at the end of a Moeran piece you really get a sense of a musical journey, an emotional narrative, not just a whole lot of notes that happened one after the other.

Which is exactly how I felt about Brenton Broadstock's symphonies, but do not feel from Moeran's music. Strange stuff.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on January 12, 2014, 08:13:04 PM
And I had the opposite reaction!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 12, 2014, 08:32:38 PM
And I had the opposite reaction!

I know that's why I brought it up. ;) 8) But, seriously, I'm going to listen to some of Moeran's music tomorrow.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 12, 2014, 08:42:45 PM
Any works I should try first? How about the Violin Concerto? I have Little's performance with A. Davis that was just released a few weeks ago.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 13, 2014, 04:37:27 AM
Any works I should try first? How about the Violin Concerto? I have Little's performance with A. Davis that was just released a few weeks ago.

Agree with Johan about the appeal of Moeran. There is an underlying sadness and nostalgic regret in much of the music, which I find appealing as is the synthesis of Bax, Walton, Sibelius and Delius.

Personally I prefer the Cello Concerto but it is perhaps less immediately approachable. I think that the new Naxos CD is a good place to start. The Symphony is wonderful as is the Sinfonietta (coupled together on Naxos and Lyrita). CD below is nice.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 13, 2014, 04:51:25 AM
That's certainly a 'nice' CD! "Lonely Waters" is among Moeran's most haunting pieces and gets a wonderful performance.


Btw, I have now listened to the whole Naxos CD. It's good. The outstanding works are, in my opinion, the Overture and the Second Rhapsody. The unnumbered, concertante Rhapsody in F sharp major is a very curious thing, in which Moeran foreshadows the peroration of the "Overture for a Masque", whilst at the same time 'channeling' Ravel in Spanish-cum-Valse mode...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 13, 2014, 06:52:12 AM
Thanks, Jeffrey. I'll check out the Cello Concerto at some point.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on January 13, 2014, 12:30:39 PM
Yep, the Overture is vintage Moeran

 :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 13, 2014, 12:35:25 PM
I listened to the Symphony again, Boult's performance. What a moving work! Those moments where the 'veil is lifted', so to speak, and you can hear utter loneliness. Deeply touching.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 13, 2014, 01:49:39 PM
I listened to the Symphony again, Boult's performance. What a moving work! Those moments where the 'veil is lifted', so to speak, and you can hear utter loneliness. Deeply touching.

Totally agree Johan and also about the new Naxos. Boult gets the 'Tapiola-like' section in the finale just right in a more integrated performance than any other. I also have a soft spot for the Dilkes and the fine old Leslie Heward version, recently reissued on Dutton. I especially like the end of the second movement of the Symphony, which is very moving.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 14, 2014, 01:48:22 AM
My three favourite moments of the symphony are 1) the lyrical passage just before the close of the first movement (with that high horn), 2) the string passage just after the opening of the final movement and 3) the passionate descending sigh of the strings just before the coda.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 14, 2014, 02:57:22 AM
My three favourite moments of the symphony are 1) the lyrical passage just before the close of the first movement (with that high horn), 2) the string passage just after the opening of the final movement and 3) the passionate descending sigh of the strings just before the coda.

Yes, that lyrical passage is very good indeed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on May 21, 2014, 10:50:23 PM
I've just been through the works of Moeran listening chronologically and I maintain my very high regard for all his works. The most notable thing I noticed going through this time was how good the Cello Concerto was, I'm now thinking that this is his masterpiece jointly with the Symphony in G minor.

Particularly the first movement is very profound; it is at a moderate tempo but the listener can't quite decide whether it is allegro moderato or Andante (as sometimes in Sibelius). The themes and their treatment are likewise Sibelian stoical, so that themes that appear initially neutral can seem either rhapsodic and lyrical, or elegiac, or even threatening when they appear again without much actual change to them. The ending is bleak with a shiver of musical sleet out of Elgar's Second Symphony... and then the real slow movement begins.

Magical stuff.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on March 03, 2015, 07:34:36 PM
I've recently been getting back into Moeran, which resulted in quite a little CDCDCD splurge, and right now I'm revisiting his Violin Concerto (Little/A. Davis). Really beautiful music. In some respects, it reminds of a cross between Delius (in the slower passagework) and RVW and even a little Barber in the faster parts (esp. the middle movement). Are these fair comparisons? Anyway, I'm definitely going to be listening to more of his music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 03, 2015, 09:34:09 PM
I've just been through the works of Moeran listening chronologically and I maintain my very high regard for all his works. The most notable thing I noticed going through this time was how good the Cello Concerto was, I'm now thinking that this is his masterpiece jointly with the Symphony in G minor.

Particularly the first movement is very profound; it is at a moderate tempo but the listener can't quite decide whether it is allegro moderato or Andante (as sometimes in Sibelius). The themes and their treatment are likewise Sibelian stoical, so that themes that appear initially neutral can seem either rhapsodic and lyrical, or elegiac, or even threatening when they appear again without much actual change to them. The ending is bleak with a shiver of musical sleet out of Elgar's Second Symphony... and then the real slow movement begins.

Magical stuff.

Agree about the Cello Concerto - his greatest work alongside the Symphony. I find the climax of the last movement, especially in the Boult/Coetmore performance, to be overwhelming. She was Moeran's wife after all and even though the playing is not perfect it is by far the most heartfelt performance. I think that John is right about the Barber connection too.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on March 03, 2015, 09:39:01 PM
Agree about the Cello Concerto - his greatest work alongside the Symphony. I find the climax of the last movement, especially in the Boult/Coetmore performance, to be overwhelming. She was Moeran's wife after all and even though the playing is not perfect it is by far the most heartfelt performance. I think that John is right about the Barber connection too.

Really excited about listening to the Cello Concerto again. I already own the Wallfisch/Handley performance, but I'm going to wait and listen to the Johnston/Falletta performance first once it arrives. I thought I might had been making a bit of a stretch with the slight Barber connection. Good to see I wasn't too far off the mark. :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Rons_talking on March 08, 2015, 05:18:24 PM
Really excited about listening to the Cello Concerto again. I already own the Wallfisch/Handley performance, but I'm going to wait and listen to the Johnston/Falletta performance first once it arrives. I thought I might had been making a bit of a stretch with the slight Barber connection. Good to see I wasn't too far off the mark. :)

I just downloaded three of Moeran's albums and I'm in agreement with most everything about the Cello Concerto. Part of it's strength is the fact that many of the most lyrical moments are in its natural tessitura rather than ranging in upper octaves when a statement is to be made. The Adagio is beautiful and progresses in such a natural organic way. No abrupt tempo changes nor are any modulations discontiouous with the phrasing and harmonic development. It affects me the way Barber's Piano Concerto's slow movement does; you fall in love and only want change if it's for the better, and that's precisely what happens (not that the composers use the same diction!). He seems at his best when a bit rhapsodic...not hemmed in by the form (I also like the three rhapsodies I've heard). A nice discovery for me that I owe to you guys!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on March 08, 2015, 07:54:47 PM
I just downloaded three of Moeran's albums and I'm in agreement with most everything about the Cello Concerto. Part of it's strength is the fact that many of the most lyrical moments are in its natural tessitura rather than ranging in upper octaves when a statement is to be made. The Adagio is beautiful and progresses in such a natural organic way. No abrupt tempo changes nor are any modulations discontiouous with the phrasing and harmonic development. It affects me the way Barber's Piano Concerto's slow movement does; you fall in love and only want change if it's for the better, and that's precisely what happens (not that the composers use the same diction!). He seems at his best when a bit rhapsodic...not hemmed in by the form (I also like the three rhapsodies I've heard). A nice discovery for me that I owe to you guys!

Great to read this, Rons_talking. You should definitely check out the Violin Concerto with Tasmin Little/Andrew Davis on Chandos. Quite frankly, Little owns this concerto right now. I prefer her performance to the earlier Mordkovitch recording. Happy listening!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on March 09, 2015, 02:30:18 PM
My appreciation for the Violin Concerto has just skyrocketed. It's always hard for me to describe how a piece of music makes me feel but I have a strong emotional connection with this work. It's almost as if Moeran was writing directly to me. The last movement Lento had me in tears a few days ago as there seems to be some kind of loss or letting go of something in the music. Tasmin Little's performance is the best I've heard of the three I own. She really does tell a wonderful story here. Andrew Davis is with her every step of the way. As I've said many times, this is a true musical partnership. I really hope people discover this performance.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on March 09, 2015, 02:51:59 PM
Re: The Cello Concerto on Naxos with Johnston/Falletta

I have to say I wasn't particularly taken with the performance. It sounded quite nice at first but then I started missing the lushness of the Wallfisch/Handley performance. I don't think Johnston/Falletta are at fault so much but I do think the audio quality isn't as full as could have been and this kind of turned me off to the performance. I also didn't feel that Adagio like I felt in the Wallfisch/Handley. I don't think there was much in the way of a musical narrative either in this Johnston/Falletta recording. Anyway, that's just my two cents. I'm certainly glad I heard it but it doesn't displace the Wallfisch/Handley IMHO.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Scion7 on October 13, 2015, 12:47:43 AM
The Grove considers Moeran's technique to be superior to all his British contemporaries.  Listening to his music one might be surprised that a man with a severe head injury form WWI can be such a master-craftsman.  In this regard, you might call him the British Brahms.   :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on October 13, 2015, 01:27:36 AM
Who wrote the entry? That's quite a claim. Though I admit, I cannot find fault with Moeran's technique, either.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Scion7 on October 13, 2015, 02:10:36 AM
Craftsmanship is not everything, though - he won't be replacing his fellow Brits Vaughan Williams or Bowen any time soon.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on October 13, 2015, 02:43:50 AM
Nope. Agreed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 13, 2015, 06:36:35 AM
Craftsmanship is not everything, though - he won't be replacing his fellow Brits Vaughan Williams or Bowen any time soon.
Agree about VW but Bowen has been a complete blind-spot for me.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on October 13, 2015, 06:50:37 AM
Craftsmanship is not everything, though - he won't be replacing his fellow Brits Vaughan Williams or Bowen any time soon.

Bowen? In my view, he's hardly on the same level as Vaughan Williams. I've heard around four or five Bowen works and I've got to say that I remain rather underwhelmed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Scion7 on October 13, 2015, 07:27:13 AM
Vaughan Williams is the superior orchestral works composer,
but Bowen is the superior chamber works composer.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Klaatu on October 13, 2015, 07:40:14 AM
Moeran has the distinction of being one of:

"Six Magnificent Classical-Music-Composing Bastards (You’ve Probably Never Heard Of)"

http://www.mrdankelly.com/blog/?p=1343

Others so honoured include Havergal Brian and Peter Warlock. Who knew that Classical Music could be so badass?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on October 13, 2015, 07:41:11 AM
Vaughan Williams is the superior orchestral works composer,
but Bowen is the superior chamber works composer.

But RVW made major contributions in almost every genre including opera. His symphonies remain a milestone in symphonic writing and, thus, propelling him way into the top-tier of British composers. I'm not saying that Bowen doesn't deserve attention, I'm saying that I don't really see, or hear rather, why you rate him so highly, but we're all different and hear things in completely different ways. As much as I'd like to see Rubbra, for example, get as much recognition as RVW, I have to accept the reality that this isn't going to happen and I can certainly hear why RVW is such a revered composer internationally ---- he simply has a unique musical persona that only he possesses and this musical language of his is universal.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on October 13, 2015, 07:59:55 AM
Moeran has the distinction of being one of:

"Six Magnificent Classical-Music-Composing Bastards (You’ve Probably Never Heard Of)"

http://www.mrdankelly.com/blog/?p=1343

Others so honoured include Havergal Brian and Peter Warlock. Who knew that Classical Music could be so badass?

Very funny article. Thanks!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Scion7 on October 13, 2015, 05:26:58 PM
I don't know of any "major" chamber work recognized by Vaughan Williams.
Nice stuff, but "major"??
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on October 13, 2015, 06:23:35 PM
I don't know of any "major" chamber work recognized by Vaughan Williams.
Nice stuff, but "major"??

Certainly the Phantasy Quintet and Violin Sonata count as major contributions to chamber music? For me, even if RVW didn't compose one piece of chamber music, his star would still shine much brighter than Bowen's and this is in part due to the strength of the orchestral music and, yes, I would count The Pilgrim's Progress as a major addition to the genre of opera. Also, let's not forget his choral music, which surely also helped put him ahead of the pack. He had such a singular approach and once you've heard heard a note from him, you can't mistake him for anyone else. But if the music itself wasn't any good, then that would be a different story, but, alas, it's incredible and anyone looking to get into British composers will most definitely run across RVW before they did Bowen or at least that's how I feel. Not that this is a popularity contest but merely pointing out that one composer has had a greater influence over the other.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Scion7 on October 13, 2015, 06:31:58 PM
They count as great compositions.  SIGNIFICANT, no.  "Major" and "significant" have meanings along the lines of Bartok's string quartets - these were major innovative works that shook the world of chamber music - many, if not most, musicologists consider them the most important since Beethoven's.  That's the point I'm making.

Ol' Rafe was significant for his songs and his orchestral writing, musically.

By the way, until you come to terms with Bach, Beethoven, etc., we're going to continue to look at you as a "work in progress" or "person in therapy."    :P   There is still hope!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kishnevi on October 13, 2015, 06:32:33 PM
RVW wrote "big" music, Bowen did not.  But Bowen's chamber music  is at least as good as anything by RVW, and his piano music is exceptional.
Did RVW write anything for piano? I don't remember any.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on October 13, 2015, 06:42:17 PM
They count as great compositions.  SIGNIFICANT, no.  "Major" and "significant" have meanings along the lines of Bartok's string quartets - these were major innovative works that shook the world of chamber music - many, if not most, musicologists consider them the most important since Beethoven's.  That's the point I'm making.

Ol' Rafe was significant for his songs and his orchestral writing, musically.

By the way, until you come to terms with Bach, Beethoven, etc., we're going to continue to look at you as a "work in progress" or "person in therapy."    :P   There is still hope!

But my point is this: how many classical listeners, if interested in British music, can dodge RVW's influence? RVW's influence can be heard in the music of Moeran, Finzi, Howells, Rubbra, some Britten, some Tippett, Holst (though I'm sure Holst influenced some of RVW's music), Gordon Jacob, and several others whose names I'm forgetting right now. I'm not saying that Bowen isn't a good composer or of any significance in his own right, I'm just saying that when it comes to British music (leave Germanic music out of this please and Bartok for that matter), RVW is a giant.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Scion7 on October 13, 2015, 06:52:29 PM
... RVW is a giant.
  Yes, he is - remember, I grew up in listening to him in school ad nauseam, much more than you native-born Americans will ever understand!   :-)

But he isn't remembered for his chamber pieces. 

To get back on topic, has anyone ever attended a concert that a piece by Moeran was performed?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 14, 2015, 01:14:26 AM
  Yes, he is - remember, I grew up in listening to him in school ad nauseam, much more than you native-born Americans will ever understand!   :-)

But he isn't remembered for his chamber pieces. 

To get back on topic, has anyone ever attended a concert that a piece by Moeran was performed?

I attended Moeran's Symphony at the Proms in London (2009). I was really thrilled to see it live. I hope that BBC Music Magazine will release it as their accompanying CD one day - their choices are getting a bit more adventurous (Stenhammar's Second Symphony recently).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: revdrdave on October 14, 2015, 05:31:01 AM
Did RVW write anything for piano? I don't remember any.

Yes, he did, about three-quarters of a CD worth but piano music was never a large part of his output.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 14, 2015, 05:58:33 AM
Yes, he did, about three-quarters of a CD worth but piano music was never a large part of his output.
'The Lake in the Mountains' is worth hearing in its piano version:


Back on topic:

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 21, 2017, 12:13:28 PM
I love this symphony. This was the first recording I heard. I had the Lp when I was a youngster. I love that photo. I used to prop it up in front of me while I was listening. Their Bax cycle had wonderful photos too.

(http://i1362.photobucket.com/albums/r688/dinasman/51n1xeBU5BL_zps0sk2guex.jpg)

I also have the Boult recording and the Neville Dilkes recording which I got after reading that vandermolen likes it. The HMV release fills out the cd playing time with Barbirolli's wonderful recordings of Ireland's London Overture and Bax's Tintagel,which makes a very satisfying concert. I also have a cd-r of Heward's recording. I filled out the cd-r playing time with recordings of Barbirolli's recordings of Ireland's The Forgotten Rite and Mai Dun.


Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 21, 2017, 02:23:13 PM
I love this symphony. This was the first recording I heard. I had the Lp when I was a youngster. I love that photo. I used to prop it up in front of me while I was listening. Their Bax cycle had wonderful photos too.

(http://i1362.photobucket.com/albums/r688/dinasman/51n1xeBU5BL_zps0sk2guex.jpg)

I also have the Boult recording and the Neville Dilkes recording which I got after reading that vandermolen likes it. The HMV release fills out the cd playing time with Barbirolli's wonderful recordings of Ireland's London Overture and Bax's Tintagel,which makes a very satisfying concert. I also have a cd-r of Heward's recording. I filled out the cd-r playing time with recordings of Barbirolli's recordings of Ireland's The Forgotten Rite and Mai Dun.
The Moeran and Ireland works are a great programme - three of my favourite works. I loved the 'Ring of Kerry' photo on the cover of the original Dilkes LP release which was a wonderful discovery. I was working in Harrods as a student and invariably spent my lunch hour in the record dept. I impulse bought the Moeran Symphony and always loved it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 21, 2017, 03:47:02 PM
Yes,I really enjoy that performance. I've got it lined up now,actually. I have a fondness for the Handley though,because it's the first one I heard. There must be a photo of the original Dilkes Lp somewhere. I must admit I got rid of the 'enchant' Chandos reissue of the Handley recording because it didn't have that photo! The other one has some rocks on it!!
I was just looking at the Moeran Dilkes Lp you refer to on ebay, Yes,I can see why you wanted that. The emi studio release,which I hadn't seen before,does appear to have it on the front,albeit in a shrunken,butchered form! ??? :(  The Hmv release has the Ireland & Bax,though,as compensation!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 21, 2017, 11:53:50 PM
Yes,I really enjoy that performance. I've got it lined up now,actually. I have a fondness for the Handley though,because it's the first one I heard. There must be a photo of the original Dilkes Lp somewhere. I must admit I got rid of the 'enchant' Chandos reissue of the Handley recording because it didn't have that photo! The other one has some rocks on it!!
I was just looking at the Moeran Dilkes Lp you refer to on ebay, Yes,I can see why you wanted that. The emi studio release,which I hadn't seen before,does appear to have it on the front,albeit in a shrunken,butchered form! ??? :(  The Hmv release has the Ireland & Bax,though,as compensation!
I did exactly the same as you with the 'enchant' CD for the same reason. Yes, the EMI Studio release has my favourite CD cover image as it, sort of, reproduces the LP photo. I liked the Chandos budget release Cello Concerto/Violin Concerto release with its flock of birds cover. As a performance of the Cello Concerto, however, I much prefer the Boult/Coetmore release which is deeply moving. The Cello Concerto is my next favourite work by Moeran:

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 22, 2017, 03:07:36 AM
Of course the cd artwork shouldn't really be that important......but I kept looking at it......and it played on my mind! In the end I just had to buy it!! ::) ;D The HMV label's artwork for the Dilkes Moeran is allright. It looks like one of those old painting by numbers efforts. I remember when I was a youngster,an elderly aunt knowing I liked painting,bought me a painting by numbers set. I remember my being mortified when I opened my present.  ??? >:( You don't buy a budding little Picasso Jr a painting by numbers kit! The ego!! ;D Lenny the Lion went down allot better the following year!!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 23, 2017, 01:37:35 PM
Of course the cd artwork shouldn't really be that important......but I kept looking at it......and it played on my mind! In the end I just had to buy it!! ::) ;D The HMV label's artwork for the Dilkes Moeran is allright. It looks like one of those old painting by numbers efforts. I remember when I was a youngster,an elderly aunt knowing I liked painting,bought me a painting by numbers set. I remember my being mortified when I opened my present.  ??? >:( You don't buy a budding little Picasso Jr a painting by numbers kit! The ego!! ;D Lenny the Lion went down allot better the following year!!
Personally I preferred Sparky's Magic Piano. Sorting out my CDs today (as instructed) I came across that fine original Chandos release of Vernon Handley with the Ulster Orchestra with the fine cover image of 'Purple and Tomies Mountains/Lough Leane. Co. Kerry' by Derek Forss FRPS. It is indeed a fine performance I also like the photo of Moeran and his pipe at the back of the booklet, looking slightly less troubled than usual. I like having photos of composers in the booklet. It annoyed me when Bernstein's great Sony CD of William Schuman symphonies contained loads of photos of Lennie but none of the composer. Likewise when DGG issued their CD of Honegger's Second and 'Liturgique' symphonies replacing the fine line drawing of Honegger from the original LP with yet another photo of Herbert Von Karajan. Don't worry this will all be resolved in my psychotherapy sessions.  8)
PS I enjoyed your 'Painting by Numbers' anecdote. Your comment about the HMV image looking like Painting by Numbers made me laugh - it will never seem the same again.
PPS the end of the slow movement of Moeran's Symphony is a most beautiful section of the score - I find it very moving.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 23, 2017, 04:04:35 PM
I did exactly the same as you with the 'enchant' CD for the same reason. Yes, the EMI Studio release has my favourite CD cover image as it, sort of, reproduces the LP photo. I liked the Chandos budget release Cello Concerto/Violin Concerto release with its flock of birds cover. As a performance of the Cello Concerto, however, I much prefer the Boult/Coetmore release which is deeply moving. The Cello Concerto is my next favourite work by Moeran:



I'll have to seek out this Coetmore/Boult recording, Jeffrey. Thanks for the heads-up. I take it this performance in question is on the Lyrita label?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 24, 2017, 01:50:14 AM
I'll have to seek out this Coetmore/Boult recording, Jeffrey. Thanks for the heads-up. I take it this performance in question is on the Lyrita label?
Be aware John that the soloist on this Lyrita release is Moeran's widow. By the time she made the recording she was no longer performing regularly in concert and therefore her playing is not as polished as the recordings on Chandos and Naxos. Having said that there is a humanity about this performance which, in my eyes, elevates it above all those version. You might be interested in my review of the CD on Amazon UK and the comment by Peter Gage below it. This is, along with the symphony, Moeran's greatest work:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/E-Moeran-Cello-Concerto-Sonata-x/dp/B00165QOSK/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1485246164&sr=1-1&keywords=Moeran+coetmore

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 24, 2017, 07:05:01 AM
I've added the cover image to the Lyrita CD (above).
I find the picture very poignant. Moeran was a troubled man probably due to having shrapnel in his head from the First World War. His friendship with  the composer Peter Warlock didn't do him any good either. He married late in life to the cellist Piers Coetmore, the soloist on the Lyrita recording. The relationship was also troubled and the marriage was not especially happy - they spent long periods apart as she was touring frequently. I find the photo moving because although they are holding hands you get a sense, I think, that all is not well from the body language and facial expressions - like they are close but not close. The fact that it is a black and white photo in a bleak moorland landscape ( where I suspect Moeran felt most at home) only adds to it. Maybe I'm retrospectively reading things into it which were not there. Anyway, I love the CD - greatest, though least polished performance of the Cello Concerto and find the climax of the last movement to be overwhelming. Boult's accompaniment is also wonderful - a truly great disc.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 24, 2017, 07:17:29 AM
I'm currently enjoying this cd. Another great cover photo,too!

(http://i1362.photobucket.com/albums/r688/dinasman/51Npr9pFcJL_zps5wrbtk29.jpg)
It's interesting to be reminded that I was enjoying listening to a cd of a mewing kitten!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 24, 2017, 07:30:27 AM
Be aware John that the soloist on this Lyrita release is Moeran's widow. By the time she made the recording she was no longer performing regularly in concert and therefore her playing is not as polished as the recordings on Chandos and Naxos. Having said that there is a humanity about this performance which, in my eyes, elevates it above all those version. You might be interested in my review of the CD on Amazon UK and the comment by Peter Gage below it. This is, along with the symphony, Moeran's greatest work:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/E-Moeran-Cello-Concerto-Sonata-x/dp/B00165QOSK/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1485246164&sr=1-1&keywords=Moeran+coetmore



I've added the cover image to the Lyrita CD (above).
I find the picture very poignant. Moeran was a troubled man probably due to having shrapnel in his head from the First World War. His friendship with  the composer Peter Warlock didn't do him any good either. He married late in life to the cellist Piers Coetmore, the soloist on the Lyrita recording. The relationship was also troubled and the marriage was not especially happy - they spent long periods apart as she was touring frequently. I find the photo moving because although they are holding hands you get a sense, I think, that all is not well from the body language and facial expressions - like they are close but not close. The fact that it is a black and white photo in a bleak moorland landscape ( where I suspect Moeran felt most at home) only adds to it. Maybe I'm retrospectively reading things into it which were not there. Anyway, I love the CD - greatest, though least polished performance of the Cello Concerto and find the climax of the last movement to be overwhelming. Boult's accompaniment is also wonderful - a truly great disc.

Thanks for the information and feedback, Jeffrey. I'm not too worried about a performance being that polished whenever the emotional commitment from the soloist is much more attention-grabbing. I didn't know Coetmore was his wife. Interesting.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 24, 2017, 07:37:05 AM
Thanks for the information and feedback, Jeffrey. I'm not too worried about a performance being that polished whenever the emotional commitment from the soloist is much more attention-grabbing. I didn't know Coetmore was his wife. Interesting.
Both the other works on the CD are very good too John. Moeran regarded the Cello Sonata as the final statement of his musical beliefs
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 24, 2017, 07:37:44 AM
I'm currently enjoying this cd. Another great cover photo,too!

(http://i1362.photobucket.com/albums/r688/dinasman/51Npr9pFcJL_zps5wrbtk29.jpg)
A great CD in all respects. I especially like 'In the Mountain Country'.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 16, 2018, 08:06:16 AM
Enjoying Moeran's life-affirming 'Sinfonietta' from this splendid collection. Really, he should have called it Symphony 2:

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: SymphonicAddict on May 16, 2018, 10:47:47 AM
Enjoying Moeran's life-affirming 'Sinfonietta' from this splendid collection. Really, he should have called it Symphony 2:



Count me as another fan of that sparkling work. The only recording I have is this one:

(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/t_900/747313583720.jpg?1471125817)

My favorite movement is the 2nd (the variations). There is an unforgettable melody which delights me over and over again.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 16, 2018, 11:11:04 AM
Count me as another fan of that sparkling work. The only recording I have is this one:

(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/t_900/747313583720.jpg?1471125817)

My favorite movement is the 2nd (the variations). There is an unforgettable melody which delights me over and over again.

I love the whole work Cesar and have every recording I think  ::)

Let me see:

Boult Lyrita (the best I think)
BBC Radio Classics (Boult)
Naxos (Lloyd Jones)
Somm (Beecham)
Del Mar (Chandos)
Hickox (EMI)

They are all good in different ways.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: SymphonicAddict on May 16, 2018, 12:37:14 PM
I love the whole work Cesar and have every recording I think  ::)

Let me see:

Boult Lyrita (the best I think)
BBC Radio Classics (Boult)
Naxos (Lloyd Jones)
Somm (Beecham)
Del Mar (Chandos)
Hickox (EMI)

They are all good in different ways.

Please, don't get me wrong. I do also love the whole work. It's just that melody is really special to me  ;)

In fact, I'm thinking in getting the Boult one. It is paired with the Symphony, isn't it?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Baron Scarpia on May 16, 2018, 12:41:57 PM
I think I have the Sinfonietta by Hickox and the Symphony by Handley. Don't recall having listened.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: SymphonicAddict on May 16, 2018, 12:45:25 PM
I think I have the Sinfonietta by Hickox and the Symphony by Handley. Don't recall having listened.

It would be good you give them a spin. Those works are wonderful.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 16, 2018, 08:52:50 PM
Please, don't get me wrong. I do also love the whole work. It's just that melody is really special to me  ;)

In fact, I'm thinking in getting the Boult one. It is paired with the Symphony, isn't it?

I realised that you liked it all Cesar. My post didn't come out as I intended. Yes, on Lyrita - a wonderful CD.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Oates on May 17, 2018, 05:10:43 AM
I realised that you liked it all Cesar. My post didn't come out as I intended. Yes, on Lyrita - a wonderful CD.

Much as I value Boult's brilliant version of the symphony, I don't think the Lyrita releases capture the 3 rhapsodies as well as Vernon Handley does on Chandos.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2018, 05:50:16 AM
Much as I value Boult's brilliant version of the symphony, I don't think the Lyrita releases capture the 3 rhapsodies as well as Vernon Handley does on Chandos.
Interesting point although I much prefer Boult's version of the symphony to Handley's, strong as that is. Actually the version by Neville Dilkes is my favourite recording of the symphony (also Heward).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on May 17, 2018, 06:50:42 AM
Moeran has become a real favorite of mine recently. Particularly the epic Symphony in G minor and the hauntingly lyrical Cello Concerto, but also the invogorating Sinfonietta, colorful Rhapsodies, and folksy String Quartet no. 1. Not unlike RVW, Moeran’s music has an immensely appealing combination of Sibelian power and atmosphere, English folk influences, and emotional pathos.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2018, 08:47:51 AM
Moeran has become a real favorite of mine recently. Particularly the epic Symphony in G minor and the hauntingly lyrical Cello Concerto, but also the invogorating Sinfonietta, colorful Rhapsodies, and folksy String Quartet no. 1. Not unlike RVW, Moeran’s music has an immensely appealing combination of Sibelian power and atmosphere, English folk influences, and emotional pathos.

There's a really nice Cello Sonata as well Kyle.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: SymphonicAddict on May 17, 2018, 10:51:36 AM
I realised that you liked it all Cesar. My post didn't come out as I intended. Yes, on Lyrita - a wonderful CD.

No problem  :)

Thank you Jeffrey. I'm gonna acquire it, perhaps next month.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: SymphonicAddict on May 17, 2018, 11:01:38 AM
I share your tastes about those works. Additionally, I like the Violin sonata, the Violin concerto, the 2 string quartets, the piano trio, the string trio, Nocturne for baritone, chorus and orchestra and the completed 2nd Symphony in E flat major. There definitely are more works to discover yet. Regarding the Cello sonata, I find it a bit dry. I suppose I need to appreciate it better.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 17, 2018, 11:38:40 AM
No problem  :)

Thank you Jeffrey. I'm gonna acquire it, perhaps next month.

I'm sure that you wont regret it Cesar.
 :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on May 17, 2018, 06:25:09 PM
I only just found out that Moeran's solo songs had been recorded (on Chandos). Have ordered them. Has anyone else had a listen?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on June 18, 2018, 09:41:53 PM
Ok, so the solo songs arrived a few days ago and I have been listening to them.

A great disappointment  :( (perhaps why I hadn't heard about the disks, no one was raving about them!)

Anyway, they are not very good, definitely not up to the level of the orchestral and chamber works, or even the folk-song settings. Moeran doesn't seem to have had much literary discernment as the poems he chose were mostly quite poor, and those that weren't (Shakespeare songs &c) challenge comparison with better settings and come off worse. And his vocal lines are very unmemorable and non-inevitable... you know how a really great song-setting convinces you that it couldn't have been set any other way and has you singing it to yourself afterwards? Well, there aren't any like that.

 :( again

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 20, 2018, 07:25:19 AM
Regarding the Cello sonata, I find it a bit dry. I suppose I need to appreciate it better.

I'll admit to never having understood what commenters mean when they call a given work "dry" or (in this case) "a bit dry".  (BTW, why do reviewers conversely never refer to a piece as "wet" or "moist" or even "fluid", - though sometimes "florid" or "flowing")?  Just what IS the standard antithesis of "dry" in musical commentary?


Can anyone elaborate?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mahlerian on June 20, 2018, 08:53:15 AM
I'll admit to never having understood what commenters mean when they call a given work "dry" or (in this case) "a bit dry".  (BTW, why do reviewers conversely never refer to a piece as "wet" or "moist" or even "fluid", - though sometimes "florid" or "flowing")?  Just what IS the standard antithesis of "dry" in musical commentary?


Can anyone elaborate?

I'm not quite sure, but I think that dry in this context is being used in an analogy with wine, where it means "astringent."  So the opposite would be something like "succulent" or "sweet."  One often sees "lush" being used to describe music as well.

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/dry

Gives as No. 20: Dull, uninteresting, which is probably close to how the term is sometimes used in music criticism, though I think that the wine analogy often applies as well, when someone talks about dry fugal writing providing an intellectual rather than emotional pleasure, for instance.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 20, 2018, 02:43:44 PM
I'm not quite sure, but I think that dry in this context is being used in an analogy with wine, where it means "astringent."  So the opposite would be something like "succulent" or "sweet."  One often sees "lush" being used to describe music as well.

You may be onto it.  I get that, and can apply the suggested analogy and contrast to my own listening experience in a meaningful way.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on October 30, 2018, 01:29:52 AM
Moeran's first string quartet is an intriguing work. His wife, Peers Coetmore discovered the score in a draw after his death. It is not known when he wrote it although Coetmore thought it an early work. Listening to an excellent Maggini SQ performance on Naxos I'm not so sure. In two movements, there doesn't seem a connection between them - composed at the same time? - and yet, I enjoyed both equally. The first is pastoral with a Vaughan Williams/Delius flavour. The second movement, in five parts, possess a strong traditional folk music influence. The fourth part (Andante) comes as a surprise, superbly played by Maggini, the second violin, viola and cello play in unison what I can only describe as a drone, and the violin plays a heartfelt melody above. After what feels like walking into a cathedral is followed up by a jig!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 30, 2018, 02:22:10 AM
Moeran's first string quartet is an intriguing work. His wife, Peers Coetmore discovered the score in a draw after his death. It is not known when he wrote it although Coetmore thought it an early work. Listening to an excellent Maggini SQ performance on Naxos I'm not so sure. In two movements, there doesn't seem a connection between them - composed at the same time? - and yet, I enjoyed both equally. The first is pastoral with a Vaughan Williams/Delius flavour. The second movement, in five parts, possess a strong traditional folk music influence. The fourth part (Andante) comes as a surprise, superbly played by Maggini, the second violin, viola and cello play in unison what I can only describe as a drone, and the violin plays a heartfelt melody above. After what feels like walking into a cathedral is followed up by a jig!
Right, I must give this another listen to.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: springrite on October 30, 2018, 02:34:27 AM
Right, I must give this another listen to.

Me, too. I don't have much of an impression of this disc after two listens years ago.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on October 30, 2018, 05:48:28 AM
Re the Moeran Quartet - there is a doctoral thesis from Durham University "The Importance of Being Ernest John : Challenging the Misconceptions about the Life and Works of E. J. Moeran" that is a very interesting read.  The writer Ian Maxwell addresses various aspects of Moeran's life and works that are open to conjecture.  One of which is the dating of this string quartet - not officially No.1.  By comparing handwriting/manuscript used etc he feels they are from very different parts of Moeran's life and career.  Its downloadable for free and if you are interested in Moeran it is well worth searching out.

Edit:  for those who said they will relisten to this the E flat Op.posth quartet is quite delightful.  We have performed in concert on more than one occasion and always got a good response - especially from some Irish Nuns who were really taken with it!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on October 30, 2018, 05:52:44 AM
Re the Moeran Quartet - there is a doctoral thesis from Durham University "The Importance of Being Ernest John : Challenging the Misconceptions about the Life and Works of E. J. Moeran" that is a very interesting read.  The writer Ian Maxwell addresses various aspects of Moeran's life and works that are open to conjecture.  One of which is the dating of this string quartet - not officially No.1.  By comparing handwriting/manuscript used etc he feels they are from very different parts of Moeran's life and career.  Its downloadable for free and if you are interested in Moeran it is well worth searching out.

Edit:  for those who said they will relisten to this the E flat Op.posth quartet is quite delightful.  We have performed in concert on more than one occasion and always got a good response - especially from some Irish Nuns who were really taken with it!

Very interesting - thanks for this.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on October 30, 2018, 12:15:16 PM
When I listen to that Maggini disk, which has the two SQs and the String Trio (another fabulous work), I don't feel any 'earliness' in that SQ; all the pieces on the disk sounded equally accomplished.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on October 31, 2018, 01:00:04 AM
When I listen to that Maggini disk, which has the two SQs and the String Trio (another fabulous work), I don't feel any 'earliness' in that SQ; all the pieces on the disk sounded equally accomplished.

I thought the same. Their marriage was not a long one and maybe more of a guess on Coetmore's part that it was an early work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on November 03, 2018, 11:34:29 AM
I don't feel any 'earliness' in that SQ; all the pieces on the disk sounded equally accomplished.

I don't think "earliness" is used here in any pejorative sense - literally just when it was written.  The Durham doctoral thesis makes a good case for it being early based on the actual paper manuscript used and the handwriting.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on November 03, 2018, 11:42:37 AM
I guess then either the pieces are all of about the same time or Moeran was remarkable consistent throughout his career. And now I come think about it, the second proposition is true too.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on January 11, 2019, 01:02:24 PM
To my great delight, my local radio station was playing Moeran’s lively, “outdoorsy” Sinfonietta earlier this afternoon.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 11, 2019, 01:18:03 PM
To my great delight, my local radio station was playing Moeran’s lively, “outdoorsy” Sinfonietta earlier this afternoon.

That’s a fantastic piece! Love it. I love the Hickox performance of it on EMI.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 11, 2019, 03:30:08 PM
That’s a fantastic piece! Love it. I love the Hickox performance of it on EMI.
I agree. I think that it could just as well be his Symphony 2. Like Bliss's Cello Concerto (originally designated as a 'Concertino') the title is rather diminutive for such a great work. Boult's is my favourite version but I've had that one since the days of LP.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 11, 2019, 03:38:37 PM
I agree. I think that it could just as well be his Symphony 2. Like Bliss's Cello Concerto (originally designated as a 'Concertino') the title is rather diminutive for such a great work. Boult's is my favourite version but I've had that one since the days of LP.

Indeed. I’ve loved the work on first-listen. I’ve got the Boult recording (somewhere), so I may have to dig it out and give it a spin soon.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 11, 2019, 03:52:47 PM
Indeed. I’ve loved the work on first-listen. I’ve got the Boult recording (somewhere), so I may have to dig it out and give it a spin soon.
I like all the versions I have, including the first performance under Beecham but I think the Boult has a special quality to it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 11, 2019, 04:05:12 PM
I agree. I think that it could just as well be his Symphony 2. Like Bliss's Cello Concerto (originally designated as a 'Concertino') the title is rather diminutive for such a great work. Boult's is my favourite version but I've had that one since the days of LP.
As opposed to the completion! I'll have another listen to the Boult recording,soon! (I haven't got the Hiccups.......sorry,Hickox!! ;D)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 11, 2019, 05:01:51 PM
I like all the versions I have, including the first performance under Beecham but I think the Boult has a special quality to it.

What you said about Boult having a special quality could be said of many of his performances. He really was a remarkable conductor and the older I get, the more I realize just how special he was.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on January 11, 2019, 06:50:30 PM
BTW, they were playing the Lloyd-Jones/Naxos recording of the Sinfonietta on the radio, which is great. I also know the Boult/Lyrita recording, which is excellent as well. Don’t know the Hickox/EMI.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Christo on January 12, 2019, 12:57:27 AM
(I haven't got the Hiccups.......sorry,Hickox!! ;D)
He RIP.  ;)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 12, 2019, 01:16:39 AM
What you said about Boult having a special quality could be said of many of his performances. He really was a remarkable conductor and the older I get, the more I realize just how special he was.
Yes, Boult was very understated on the podium, standing virtually motionless using a very long conductor's baton but produced some wonderful performances and recordings not least of the music of his friend Vaughan Williams's music ('Job' was dedicated to Boult). He is very much known for conducting the music of British composers but I also really like his Sibelius recordings. His Walton Symphony 1 and Vaughan Williams Symphony 6 (Decca) are favourite versions of mine. Also, to remain on focus here, his Lyrita recordings of Moeran's Symphony and Sinfonietta and also unrivalled, IMHO, as is his recording of Rubbra's 7th Symphony.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 05:51:14 AM
Always good to see Moeran alive and well, being listened to. Thanks to you all, I went back to the Symphony and the Sinfonietta, and still love them very much. In Moeran the pastoral is warped by pain. RVW's pastoral Third may reflect WW1, but in Moeran it gets into the harmonies. Moeran is shellshocked Delius. Hence the poignant quality of even an upbeat piece like the Overture for a Masque. To put it in Tolkienian fashion: in Moeran the Shire is invaded by the Shadow.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 12, 2019, 07:37:20 AM
Always good to see Moeran alive and well, being listened to. Thanks to you all, I went back to the Symphony and the Sinfonietta, and still love them very much. In Moeran the pastoral is warped by pain. RVW's pastoral Third may reflect WW1, but in Moeran it gets into the harmonies. Moeran is shellshocked Delius. Hence the poignant quality of even an upbeat piece like the Overture for a Masque. To put it in Tolkienian fashion: in Moeran the Shire is invaded by the Shadow.

Great analogies, Johan.  8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 10:35:39 AM
Great analogies, Johan.  8)

At least provocative, - but in need of more elaboration to flesh out the meaning thereof.

"Great" (as always) is flattering but empty (at least intellectually).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Christo on January 12, 2019, 10:42:47 AM
"Great" (as always) is flattering but empty (at least intellectually).

Great analogies, Johan.  8)

There; fixed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 10:44:30 AM
At least provocative, - but in need of more elaboration to flesh out the meaning thereof.

"Great" (as always) is flattering but empty (at least intellectually).


OK.


If you know (and love) Delius, you know about his intense chromaticism. It evokes both Eros and landscape. Moeran's lyricism is also chromatic, but there is no Eros, but something tortured, and the landscape you see is not sunny, but dark. It's like Tolkien's dream-England, the Shire, taking on some of the features of Mordor. Moeran survived World War I, it probably accounted for his drinking problem. He also had a plate in his head where shrapnel had hit it.


That's behind what I wrote.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 10:46:10 AM
There; fixed.


 :o


 :D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 11:20:19 AM
There; fixed.

Could you fix my following comment (to Jeffrey) also?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Christo on January 12, 2019, 11:25:20 AM
Could you fix my following comment (to Jeffrey) also?

Now wait a minute Many thanks, Jeffrey, you're always right.  :o  Shall I dig up the quote (maybe on this thread somewhere) where you said Dilkes' reading of the Symphony was your very favorite?

Sure, fixed too.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 11:25:32 AM

OK.


If you know (and love) Delius, you know about his intense chromaticism. It evokes both Eros and landscape. Moeran's lyricism is also chromatic, but there is no Eros, but something tortured, and the landscape you see is not sunny, but dark. It's like Tolkien's dream-England, the Shire, taking on some of the features of Mordor. Moeran survived World War I, it probably accounted for his drinking problem. He also had a plate in his head where shrapnel had hit it.


That's behind what I wrote.


Something I can think about now, Johan.  I wouldn't have "demanded" anything I thought you incapable of.

John's unchallenging flattery was no more than indulgence.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 11:29:59 AM
Sure, fixed too.

Hehe.  Yeah, I can go with that.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 11:38:32 AM
Something I can think about now, Johan.  I wouldn't have "demanded" anything I thought you incapable of.


I can err on the side of brevity. Glad to hear I didn't...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 11:48:16 AM

I can err on the side of brevity. Glad to hear I didn't...

Err you did in regards to my wishes, - but relative to the forum I suppose appropriately.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 11:58:31 AM
Err you did in regards to my wishes, - but relative to the forum I suppose appropriately.


Excellent.


As for Moeran, I think he has carved out his own special niche in British music. His music has endured.


Btw: has anyone ever noticed in the slow middle movement of the Sinfonietta ,that one of the variations sounds remarkably similar to the Force theme in Star Wars?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 12, 2019, 12:29:09 PM
I like Johan's idea of Moeran as a shell shocked Delius.
And yes, Dilkes is my favourite version of the Symphony - it was the first one I knew on LP and made a huge impression on my youthful self. I bought it from Harrods, where I was working in my university holiday and made use of my staff discount to purchase it (context).
Dilkes is more intimate with an IMHO unrivalled poetry in the slow movement, the end of which I find very moving.
Boult's is more magisterial.
And yes, I am always right (just ask my wife and daughter).
 8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 12:41:48 PM
Your wife and daughter are as unfallible as the Pope.
I don't know the Dilkes... Something to explore!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 01:04:35 PM
Loving many others as I do (Rubbra, Brian, Bax, Vaughan Williams...) Delius & Moeran among English composers touch a vein of feeling and manifest a unique quality I especially resonate with, and thus the ways their music both intersects and yet also contrasts is persistently interesting to me, though nothing I've quite been able to nail down in a satisfying way.  Brief and only suggestive as it is, and only one approach among many as it might be, I find your (Johan's) comment (specifically about "Eros" and its lack vis-à-vis Delius and Moeran) quite striking and well worth reflecting over.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 01:19:40 PM
Dilkes is my own favorite too, Jeffrey, and your contrasting his interpretation's "intimacy" with that of Boult's "majesty" a perfect characterization of their difference.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 01:22:12 PM
I have always seen Delius and Brian as complementary. Moeran and Bax are in the Delian orbit, although there is an epic side to Bax which intersects with Brian. Delius, to me, is unalloyed Beauty, and Brian sheer Power (at their characteristic best). Moeran's range is smaller, but within his limits he plunges the depths. When I listened to the Symphony today I was again struck by how masterly and self-assured it is. And how moving.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 01:33:50 PM
I have always seen Delius and Brian as complementary. Moeran and Bax are in the Delian orbit, although there is an epic side to Bax which intersects with Brian. Delius, to me, is unalloyed Beauty, and Brian sheer Power (at their characteristic best). Moeran is smaller, but within his limits he plunges the depths. When I listened to the Symphony today I was again struck by how masterly and self-assured it is. And how moving.

Delian beauty is an especially transient type beauty though, isn't it, - one might say (varying your terms) "a beauty alloyed with transience"?  It's not some frozen or Platonic like "form" or archetype, but suffused with the temporal. 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 12, 2019, 01:36:50 PM
Delian beauty is an especially transient type beauty though, isn't it, - one might say (varying your terms) "a beauty alloyed with transience"?  It's not some frozen or Platonic like "form" or archetype, but suffused with the temporal.


Spot on. Yes,  it's the transience of life and earthly beauty which suffuses everything Delius wrote and which makes his music so poignant.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 12, 2019, 03:53:52 PM
Dilkes is my own favorite too, Jeffrey, and your contrasting his interpretation's "intimacy" with that of Boult's "majesty" a perfect characterization of their difference.
Thank you Greg. I think that the Dilkes has a special quality to it which is difficult to pin down and I must be aware that my very positive opinion of it may well be determined, or at least influenced, by it being my first contact with the work in its EMI LP manifestation (with its fine Ring of Kerry cover photograph). However, I know that someothers admire it as well. I'm not aware of many other recordings conducted by Neville Dilkes, except some shorter British works including Walter Leigh's charming and poignant (he was killed in World War Two) Harpsichord Concerto.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 12, 2019, 05:11:13 PM
Thank you Greg. I think that the Dilkes has a special quality to it which is difficult to pin down and I must be aware that my very positive opinion of it may well be determined, or at least influenced, by it being my first contact with the work in its EMI LP manifestation (with its fine Ring of Kerry cover photograph). However, I know that someothers admire it as well. I'm not aware of many other recordings conducted by Neville Dilkes, except some shorter British works including Walter Leigh's charming and poignant (he was killed in World War Two) Harpsichord Concerto.

I'd known the Handley recording before discovering Dilkes, and was just so happy to find an alternative.  Now, Handley's read of Moeran's Violin Concerto (with Mordkovich) I've always loved, but in the Symphony he comes off unrelieved and overbearing, - too loud and "in-your-face" for me, almost vulgar at times (a minority judgment, I'm aware).  With my "inner ear" I could still apprehend the underlying beauty, - Moeran's vision and its contrasts beneath Handley's hulking mass of sounds, - but it was Dilkes' distinction to exemplify that in performance, with a pacing and flow, with affirmation accompanied by the often necessary reticence (not weakness) I feel in-sync with.  His rhythm is my rhythm, and in nowise would I respond to the work as ecstatically as I do without him.  As you say, he's an almost "one-off" conductor, come along (in terms of recording legacy) to provide this and this alone.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 12, 2019, 05:31:54 PM
Really?! Wow! :o I really don't hear that,at all. Handley's recording of the Moeran Symphony was the first one I ever heard,and I still love it! The Chandos recording is a little resonant;which may have something to do with it?!! Although I don't have a problem with it. But unrelieved and overbearing?!! Again! Wow! ??? I think his reading is full of drama,poetry and the evocation of glorious scenery! Although,years later,and having heard other recordings since then,I'd say Leslie Heward's my favourite,followed by Dilkes and Boult. And probably Dilkes,before Boult;which might put me in a minority?! :( ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on January 12, 2019, 08:08:52 PM

OK.


If you know (and love) Delius, you know about his intense chromaticism. It evokes both Eros and landscape. Moeran's lyricism is also chromatic, but there is no Eros, but something tortured, and the landscape you see is not sunny, but dark. It's like Tolkien's dream-England, the Shire, taking on some of the features of Mordor. Moeran survived World War I, it probably accounted for his drinking problem. He also had a plate in his head where shrapnel had hit it.


That's behind what I wrote.

Food for thought, Johan. :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on January 12, 2019, 09:29:26 PM
Always good to see Moeran alive and well, being listened to. Thanks to you all, I went back to the Symphony and the Sinfonietta, and still love them very much. In Moeran the pastoral is warped by pain. RVW's pastoral Third may reflect WW1, but in Moeran it gets into the harmonies. Moeran is shellshocked Delius. Hence the poignant quality of even an upbeat piece like the Overture for a Masque. To put it in Tolkienian fashion: in Moeran the Shire is invaded by the Shadow.

What a fantastic analogy, Johan - I totally agree! I wish I had your way with words! :D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on January 12, 2019, 09:32:18 PM
If you know (and love) Delius, you know about his intense chromaticism. It evokes both Eros and landscape. Moeran's lyricism is also chromatic, but there is no Eros, but something tortured, and the landscape you see is not sunny, but dark. It's like Tolkien's dream-England, the Shire, taking on some of the features of Mordor. Moeran survived World War I, it probably accounted for his drinking problem. He also had a plate in his head where shrapnel had hit it.

Once again, a most vivid and strikingly accurate description! :o
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on January 12, 2019, 10:12:54 PM
Also, quick question: is Moeran pronounced MOOR-en or moor-ANN?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on January 13, 2019, 12:00:56 AM
Also, quick question: is Moeran pronounced MOOR-en or moor-ANN?

MOOR-en
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 13, 2019, 12:07:45 AM
MOOR-en


The OE isn't an OO. It's More-an.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on January 13, 2019, 12:43:00 AM

The OE isn't an OO. It's More-an.

I've always said Moy (as in boy) - ran
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 13, 2019, 12:47:18 AM
'Moran' is the way I heard it pronounced several times on British radio. And I remember reading about it in Geoffrey Self's study about the composer. It certainly is a curious name.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 13, 2019, 12:58:08 AM
I'd known the Handley recording before discovering Dilkes, and was just so happy to find an alternative.  Now, Handley's read of Moeran's Violin Concerto (with Mordkovich) I've always loved, but in the Symphony he comes off unrelieved and overbearing, - too loud and "in-your-face" for me, almost vulgar at times (a minority judgment, I'm aware).  With my "inner ear" I could still apprehend the underlying beauty, - Moeran's vision and its contrasts beneath Handley's hulking mass of sounds, - but it was Dilkes' distinction to exemplify that in performance, with a pacing and flow, with affirmation accompanied by the often necessary reticence (not weakness) I feel in-sync with.  His rhythm is my rhythm, and in nowise would I respond to the work as ecstatically as I do without him.  As you say, he's an almost "one-off" conductor, come along (in terms of recording legacy) to provide this and this alone.
You've expressed this much better than I could Greg. I think that I would say that Handley's recording if the Moeran Symphony is too 'beefy' compared with Dilkes's more nuanced account. I don't want to be too negative about Handley as I have the highest opinion of many of his recordings and the greatest respect for him introducing me to many composers whom I otherwise may never have come across (Rootham, Bainton, Clifford, etcetc) also his recording of Patrick Hadley's 'The Trees so High' is one of the most beautiful recordings I know of that very poignant work (I think that Finzi fans would admire it if they don't already know it).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Biffo on January 13, 2019, 03:33:38 AM
'Moran' is the way I heard it pronounced several times on British radio. And I remember reading about it in Geoffrey Self's study about the composer. It certainly is a curious name.

It is an Irish name and not uncommon. I am sure I encountered it long before I had heard of the composer. Wikipedia suggest MOOR-an which is how I would have pronounced it. There are several other websites giving guidance and ,needless to say, several variants of pronunciation. I think we need an Irish speaker for enlightenment.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 13, 2019, 03:39:45 AM
Any Irishman with a Moeran obsession here?!


Did some checking. There was an article on Moeran.net, which aims to settle the matter. But the site is no longer there... I must have read the article a long time ago.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 13, 2019, 06:16:35 AM
You've expressed this much better than I could Greg. I think that I would say that Handley's recording if the Moeran Symphony is too 'beefy' compared with Dilkes's more nuanced account. I don't want to be too negative about Handley as I have the highest opinion of many of his recordings and the greatest respect for him introducing me to many composers whom I otherwise may never have come across (Rootham, Bainton, Clifford, etcetc) also his recording of Patrick Hadley's 'The Trees so High' is one of the most beautiful recordings I know of that very poignant work (I think that Finzi fans would admire it if they don't already know it).
I think allot of it's just the 'boomy' sounding Chandos engineering,not Handley's conducting. Which is one of the criticisms that have been made toward's Thomson's recordings of Bax,over the years;and some of the earlier Chandos recordings,which seem to emphasise all the louder bits. I think it's a good recording;and a refreshingly,different perspective on this work. Handley has the same sort of approach to Bax. Which is why I prefer Thomson. But I think it works quite well for Moeran. That said,I've got to know the other recordings,since then,and I would now choose Heward or Dilkes as my first stop;then Boult. I think Handley is good if you want a more epic approach,though. I think some of the recording is quite thrilling. But,I'll admit you get more of the grandeur of the scenery,than the poetry! ::) ;D And I've got to say,here. I love the photograph on the front! :) Not that it's important,of course! ;D Actually,talking about Handley's conducting,of the Moeran Symphony,makes me wonder what it would have sounded like if Solti had ever recorded it?! Unlikely! But his conducting was often described as "hard driven". His recordings of the Elgar symphonies are hated by some,for that very reason. As someone who isn't a big fan of the Elgar symphonies,I actually quite enjoy them (now and again! ::) ;D. Elgar's own recordings  (including his acoustic recording of No 2) are my first port of call;followed by Barbirolli's mono recording (on emi) of No 2;which is my favourite Elgar symphony.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 13, 2019, 08:08:32 AM
In 2009 I saw Moeran's Symphony performed at the proms by Vassily Sinaisky and it was so great to hear it live. I even wrote to BBC Music Magazine asking them if they could include it on their cover CD but probably there is not a wide enough appeal to do that. I think Dilkes's remains my favourite recording with the Heward and Boult close behind. My least favourite is the one which appeared on Naxos by Lloyd Jones. I really liked the Ring of Kerry image on the original Dilkes LP and on its original CD manifestation. I'd love to go there one day.

Here is a video, without commentary featuring places associated with Moeran, including his pub, his grave and the pier from which he sadly fell to his death in Kenmare.

As to pronouncing his name I think that I mispronounced it for decades but I think it should be 'Moyran' rather than 'Mooran' or at least that's how it tends to be pronounced in broadcasts:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=s2F-kc6ZQBA
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: André on January 13, 2019, 09:54:05 AM
I have the Lloyd-Jones version  :( :D . I guess I need something better !

My hunch for the pronunciation would have been to follow other words with « oe », such as toe, toe-tapping, hoe-down. So, no hoo or hoy for me. We have similar surnames here, Moran or Morand. I have no idea if they, too, are of irish/celtic origin (very common among French Canadians).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 13, 2019, 11:26:16 AM
I have the Lloyd-Jones version  :( :D . I guess I need something better !

My hunch for the pronunciation would have been to follow other words with « oe », such as toe, toe-tapping, hoe-down. So, no hoo or hoy for me. We have similar surnames here, Moran or Morand. I have no idea if they, too, are of irish/celtic origin (very common among French Canadians).
That was my subjective reaction Andre but I guess I think that Dilkes and Boult are much better.
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on January 18, 2019, 08:05:36 AM
Thank you Greg. I think that the Dilkes has a special quality to it which is difficult to pin down and I must be aware that my very positive opinion of it may well be determined, or at least influenced, by it being my first contact with the work in its EMI LP manifestation (with its fine Ring of Kerry cover photograph). However, I know that someothers admire it as well. I'm not aware of many other recordings conducted by Neville Dilkes, except some shorter British works including Walter Leigh's charming and poignant (he was killed in World War Two) Harpsichord Concerto.

There is a third. Neville Dilkes was a great advocate for British music, yet for some reason he never got credit for it.

(https://yatra8exe7uvportalprd.blob.core.windows.net/images/products/HighStDonated/Zoom/HD_100457462_01.jpg?v=1)

Edit: The front cover is of The Long Minn, Shropshire.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 18, 2019, 03:22:44 PM
There is a third. Neville Dilkes was a great advocate for British music, yet for some reason he never got credit for it.

(https://yatra8exe7uvportalprd.blob.core.windows.net/images/products/HighStDonated/Zoom/HD_100457462_01.jpg?v=1)

Edit: The front cover is of The Long Minn, Shropshire.
Yes, I have that LP. The Bridge is an especially fine work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on January 19, 2019, 01:49:18 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/816xiytPtJL._SX466_.jpg)

A lovely recording - at St. Peter's, Notting Hill - of Moeran's String Trio. A poster in reference to another recording of the trio said he thought it Moeran's best chamber work. I am coming round to that view myself. The Hanson group are excellent.

They are equally fine in the early first string quartet by Frank Bridge. I have a problem with the work itself though. The two middle movements are excellent but the two outer movements did nothing for this listener. I read that this quartet was written as a competition piece and Bridge composed it over a few short weeks. Perhaps this is why I find the work uneven.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 19, 2019, 02:17:31 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/816xiytPtJL._SX466_.jpg)

A lovely recording - at St. Peter's, Notting Hill - of Moeran's String Trio. A poster in reference to another recording of the trio said he thought it Moeran's best chamber work. I am coming round to that view myself. The Hanson group are excellent.

They are equally fine in the early first string quartet by Frank Bridge. I have a problem with the work itself though. The two middle movements are excellent but the two outer movements did nothing for this listener. I read that this quartet was written as a competition piece and Bridge composed it over a few short weeks. Perhaps this is why I find the work uneven.
I also have that LP somewhere in the attic.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 19, 2019, 08:10:03 AM
A bit of information on Neville Dilkes, the conductor of my favourite version of Moeran's Symphony:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neville_Dilkes
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on January 20, 2019, 04:39:40 AM
A bit of information on Neville Dilkes, the conductor of my favourite version of Moeran's Symphony:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neville_Dilkes

A depressingly small discography.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 20, 2019, 08:28:55 AM
A depressingly small discography.

Absolutely my thought as well. I've just been listening to his wonderful recording of the Moeran Symphony.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 20, 2019, 08:41:17 AM
I also have that LP somewhere in the attic.
A nice view. I wonder where it was taken? But you've have to climb up into your attic!! By the way? Is it a nice floored one,or the kind you have to squeeze through a trap door,to get into?! I remember having a nice floored one,accessed via a trapdoor. I took my cd player up there,so I could play loud music without annoying the people underneath me. Unfortunately,it was a hell hole estate. Judging from the stones,and rocks,rolling down the roof,the local's didn't enjoy classical music!! Playing Brian's Gothic symphony and Gliere's Ilya Murometz,only brought larger missiles! :( ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on January 20, 2019, 10:21:06 AM
A nice view. I wonder where it was taken?

River Lune, Kirkby Lonsdale.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 20, 2019, 12:28:30 PM
River Lune, Kirkby Lonsdale.
Thanks,Irons! :) Otherwise,I'd have to buy the Lp,s/h,to find out! ::) ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 21, 2019, 12:29:19 AM
River Lune, Kirkby Lonsdale.

A place I know well from my days at Lancaster University. I recall Kirkby Lonsdale as a most beautiful place. I think Turner painted there. I seem to recall a commemorative plaque. I even played football (soccer) their in my youth.  :o
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on January 21, 2019, 12:53:11 AM
Absolutely my thought as well. I've just been listening to his wonderful recording of the Moeran Symphony.

Vandermolen - further down this thread you mention Dilkes' disc which included the Leigh Harpischord Concertino which was absolutely my favourite piece.  The Moeran Symphony is pretty luck on disc as all the versions are at least good - the Naxos/Lloyd-Jones possibly the least amongst equals simply because it was done as a replacement/pick-up session and does sound like a good read through.  But for me the Dilkes must bow to the Boult not least for the power of the Lyrita recording.  But as you say - a conductor who deserved to have a larger legacy.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on January 21, 2019, 01:23:28 AM
Vandermolen - further down this thread you mention Dilkes' disc which included the Leigh Harpischord Concertino which was absolutely my favourite piece. 

Totally agree. Like Moeran's symphony Lyrita also made a recording of the Leigh Harpsichord Concertino. On LP it is rare and second-hand not cheap! One of the few Lyrita Edition missing from my shelves, but with the excellent Dilkes recording not too bothered by the omission.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Oates on January 21, 2019, 01:59:21 AM
A place I know well from my days at Lancaster University. I recall Kirkby Lonsdale as a most beautiful place. I think Turner painted there. I seem to recall a commemorative plaque. I even played football (soccer) their in my youth.  :o

I hadn't spotted that this was Kirkby Lonsdale - maybe because the angle of the scene is a bit deceptive. It is taken from the path from the back of the churchyard that opens to the panorama known as "Ruskin's View" (which in fact was made famous by Turner, as you say). The classic view of the river and Casterton Fell is more to the left of the photo on the LP - odd that they went for the less obvious. A great place and a great LP!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 22, 2019, 12:56:22 AM
Vandermolen - further down this thread you mention Dilkes' disc which included the Leigh Harpischord Concertino which was absolutely my favourite piece.  The Moeran Symphony is pretty luck on disc as all the versions are at least good - the Naxos/Lloyd-Jones possibly the least amongst equals simply because it was done as a replacement/pick-up session and does sound like a good read through.  But for me the Dilkes must bow to the Boult not least for the power of the Lyrita recording.  But as you say - a conductor who deserved to have a larger legacy.
Roasted Swan - my first encounter with Moeran's Symphony was the Dilkes LP which I think was its first release on LP  and the first tecording since the Heward version, made with Moeran in the studio. This is one of the reasons why I have such a strong attachment to the Dilkes recording. It is a less grand affair that the Boult or less beefy than the Handley but I think that it does have a special, intimate quality to it maybe because it was performed with a slightly smaller orchestra than those other versions. I find the end of the slow movement, in particular, to be very moving and especially so with Dilkes's recording and, oh yes, I love his recording of the Leigh Harpsichord Concerto - a most lovely and charming work. I will listen to the Boult recording of Moeran's Symphony soon. His recording of the Sinfonietta is my favourite version but also my first encounter with the work on a Lyrita LP.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 22, 2019, 06:28:28 AM
Less Beefy than this,rare,Black Kerry Cow?!! ;D Seriously,I quite like Handley's performance;but beefy,is a good way of describing it! Dilkes and Heward are my first stop,then,Boult. But,I like all three,really! I haven't heard the Naxos recording. With some exceptions,I'm not a fan of their recordings..................for various,incomprehensible,reasons!! ::) ;D

(https://i.imgur.com/otFGQnP.jpg)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 22, 2019, 07:16:28 AM
Less Beefy than this,rare,Black Kerry Cow?!! ;D Seriously,I quite like Handley's performance;but beefy,is a good way of describing it! Dilkes and Heward are my first stop,then,Boult. But,I like all three,really! I haven't heard the Naxos recording. With some exceptions,I'm not a fan of their recordings..................for various,incomprehensible,reasons!! ::) ;D

(https://i.imgur.com/otFGQnP.jpg)
No, definitely less beefy than the Kerry Cow  ;D
I thought that 'beefy' was a good word too. I'm with you on the relative values of the recordings of the Moeran Symphony. The Naxos was done in a rush when another recording was cancelled and it's my least favourite version.
Dilkes and Heward are my first stops too then Boult, Handley, Lloyd-Jones and finally the Shrewsbury Philharmonic.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 22, 2019, 10:15:49 AM
One great thing about the Handley recording,though. And I think you will agree with me about this?! The photograph on the front! As I have said before! ::) ;D It was my first encounter with the symphony,and I used to prop the Lp,in front of me,while I was listening. I remember when I bought the Chandos Enchantment series reissue (?) it just wasn't the same! In the end I just had to buy the one with that photograph. Only then,did I really enjoy it again! Silly,I know?!! ::) ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 22, 2019, 11:28:18 AM
One great thing about the Handley recording,though. And I think you will agree with me about this?! The photograph on the front! As I have said before! ::) ;D It was my first encounter with the symphony,and I used to prop the Lp,in front of me,while I was listening. I remember when I bought the Chandos Enchantment series reissue (?) it just wasn't the same! In the end I just had to buy the one with that photograph. Only then,did I really enjoy it again! Silly,I know?!! ::) ;D
Yes, the original Chandos photo was good - also the reissue (Rock in the sea) but not the Enchantment release. Totally agree with you about that. Dilkes's original 'Ring of Kerry' was best I think.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 22, 2019, 11:36:53 AM
A nice view. I wonder where it was taken? But you've have to climb up into your attic!! By the way? Is it a nice floored one,or the kind you have to squeeze through a trap door,to get into?! I remember having a nice floored one,accessed via a trapdoor. I took my cd player up there,so I could play loud music without annoying the people underneath me. Unfortunately,it was a hell hole estate. Judging from the stones,and rocks,rolling down the roof,the local's didn't enjoy classical music!! Playing Brian's Gothic symphony and Gliere's Ilya Murometz,only brought larger missiles! :( ;D

Contextual information for cilgwyn re: my attic.

The attic is too low to stand up in so sadly I can't convert it into my secret CD or LP listening chamber. When we first moved in I did put boards on the floor of the attic, although, in general,  I'm most certainly not a 'DIY Type' (God forbid). However, the boards mean that I can crawl around up there without falling through the floor. Once I fell off a ladder I had put up to get into the attic. Stupidly, I'd put the ladder on a rug which then shifted so I fell out the attic and landed concussed on the floor. My wife was working on her computer in the same room but did not apparently notice that I had come crashing out the attic and was lying on the floor, in a catatonic state, behind where she was quietly working on her computer.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 22, 2019, 03:03:22 PM
Contextual information for cilgwyn re: my attic.

The attic is too low to stand up in so sadly I can't convert it into my secret CD or LP listening chamber. When we first moved in I did put boards on the floor of the attic, although, in general,  I'm most certainly not a 'DIY Type' (God forbid). However, the boards mean that I can crawl around up there without falling through the floor. Once I fell off a ladder I had put up to get into the attic. Stupidly, I'd put the ladder on a rug which then shifted so I fell out the attic and landed concussed on the floor. My wife was working on her computer in the same room but did not apparently notice that I had come crashing out the attic and was lying on the floor, in a catatonic state, behind where she was quietly working on her computer.
:laugh: Funny! Although,maybe not at the time?!! :( ;D That reminds me of my grandfather (my mother's father) who was known for his terrible,bodged DIY. He was putting down a roll of carpet on the stairs. He had the roll at the top of the stairs and sat down on it,to do something,with his back to the staircase. Of course,the roll shot off down the stairs,with him,on top of it,sending him crashing through the door at the bottom!!
I looked at the Dilkes again,now! I didn't have that one on Lp. My first encounter with that recording,was the HMV cd. Yes,I think I'd put that one in first place,now,too. The Chandos one is nice,though. The Bax symphonies had fantastic photographs,too. I kept a few of the Lp's. I think they're up in the attic,like yours?!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Ghost of Baron Scarpia on January 22, 2019, 03:08:35 PM
Contextual information for cilgwyn re: my attic.

The attic is too low to stand up in so sadly I can't convert it into my secret CD or LP listening chamber. When we first moved in I did put boards on the floor of the attic, although, in general,  I'm most certainly not a 'DIY Type' (God forbid). However, the boards mean that I can crawl around up there without falling through the floor. Once I fell off a ladder I had put up to get into the attic. Stupidly, I'd put the ladder on a rug which then shifted so I fell out the attic and landed concussed on the floor. My wife was working on her computer in the same room but did not apparently notice that I had come crashing out the attic and was lying on the floor, in a catatonic state, behind where she was quietly working on her computer.

Too bad you laid those boards down in the attic. I think if you fell through the ceiling in a shower of plaster and splintered ceiling joists you'd finally get her attention.  :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 23, 2019, 12:09:37 AM
:laugh: Funny! Although,maybe not at the time?!! :( ;D That reminds me of my grandfather (my mother's father) who was known for his terrible,bodged DIY. He was putting down a roll of carpet on the stairs. He had the roll at the top of the stairs and sat down on it,to do something,with his back to the staircase. Of course,the roll shot off down the stairs,with him,on top of it,sending him crashing through the door at the bottom!!
I looked at the Dilkes again,now! I didn't have that one on Lp. My first encounter with that recording,was the HMV cd. Yes,I think I'd put that one in first place,now,too. The Chandos one is nice,though. The Bax symphonies had fantastic photographs,too. I kept a few of the Lp's. I think they're up in the attic,like yours?!
Haha that really made me laugh  :).
My late father told me that once, in the days when they played the National Anthem in cinemas (I can just about remember that when I was a child), he was sitting at the end of a row with his legs crossed. When the National Anthem started he stood up but as one his legs was dead he fell over and rolled down the stairs during the playing of 'God Save the Queen' ( it could have been King I guess) - an act of great disrespect to His/Her Majesty.
I was playing that fine old HMV CD yesterday or maybe on Monday. It was a good series and more adventurous that the recent HMV which are mainly the most popular classics. That old series featured Poulenc's Organ Concerto and Sargent's  fine old version of Walton's First Symphony as well as an excellent coupling of VW's 5th and 6th symphonies conducted by Gibson and Berglund. For a long time that was the only CD version of those performances. The Moeran CD also featured great performances of John Ireland's 'London Overture' and 'Tintagel' by Bax conducted by Barbirolli. I hope that HMV survives the current crisis.

I dreamt last night that I was in the last classical music record shop in England! Sad isn't it?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 23, 2019, 12:12:34 AM
Too bad you laid those boards down in the attic. I think if you fell through the ceiling in a shower of plaster and splintered ceiling joists you'd finally get her attention.  :)
Haha - not necessarily, although  it would have been spectacular. Actually there are some gaps in my boarding of the attic so who knows what the future will bring!
 :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aukhawk on January 23, 2019, 01:44:09 AM
... in the days when they played the National Anthem in cinemas (I can just about remember that when I was a child), ...

I'm fairly sure they still do that in my local cinema, here in leafiest Cheshire.

Just checked my very small Moeran collection, to stay on topic.  I have the Dilkes, but I doubt if I've played it in 10 years.  However I like the Sinfonietta and the Hickox and Boult (BBC recording) both get a run out every so often.  The Cello Concerto seems "a bit dry" (did I get that right?  ;) ) but the sleeve photo is on the Malvern Hills so that lifts it a bit.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on January 23, 2019, 09:33:10 AM
I'm fairly sure they still do that in my local cinema, here in leafiest Cheshire.

Just checked my very small Moeran collection, to stay on topic.  I have the Dilkes, but I doubt if I've played it in 10 years.  However I like the Sinfonietta and the Hickox and Boult (BBC recording) both get a run out every so often.  The Cello Concerto seems "a bit dry" (did I get that right?  ;) ) but the sleeve photo is on the Malvern Hills so that lifts it a bit.

The Sinfonietta is a fabulous work. Good to hear that your local cinema is still in the 1950s. It must be nice to have a local cinema. I love the Cello Concerto and especially the Coetmore/Boult performance. Her playing is a bit scratchy but all the more moving as she was Moeran's wife. I find the final climax in the last moving to be emotionally overwhelming. That performance is in my opinion so much better than the more 'polished' versions.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: cilgwyn on January 27, 2019, 06:12:17 AM
Haha that really made me laugh  :).
My late father told me that once, in the days when they played the National Anthem in cinemas (I can just about remember that when I was a child), he was sitting at the end of a row with his legs crossed. When the National Anthem started he stood up but as one his legs was dead he fell over and rolled down the stairs during the playing of 'God Save the Queen' ( it could have been King I guess) - an act of great disrespect to His/Her Majesty.
I was playing that fine old HMV CD yesterday or maybe on Monday. It was a good series and more adventurous that the recent HMV which are mainly the most popular classics. That old series featured Poulenc's Organ Concerto and Sargent's  fine old version of Walton's First Symphony as well as an excellent coupling of VW's 5th and 6th symphonies conducted by Gibson and Berglund. For a long time that was the only CD version of those performances. The Moeran CD also featured great performances of John Ireland's 'London Overture' and 'Tintagel' by Bax conducted by Barbirolli. I hope that HMV survives the current crisis.

I dreamt last night that I was in the last classical music record shop in England! Sad isn't it?
Very funny! ;D And republicans think they have a tough time,these days!!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: André on February 07, 2019, 06:55:37 PM
A bit of information on Neville Dilkes, the conductor of my favourite version of Moeran's Symphony:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neville_Dilkes

Thanks to you I now understand the great respect and love you have for the Dilkes recording. It is absolutely smashing compared to the ho-hum Lloyd-Jones on Naxos. I listened to both back to back today and again to the Dilkes.

Reading about him in the Wiki entry provides a clue (my hunch) for the difference. Dilkes founded the English Sinfonia (it was called the Midland Sinfonia in the beginning) and had been its director for 12 years when the recording of the Moeran symphony was put to disc. I think that this special connection accounts for the striking personality of this performance. Conductor and orchestra are in a symbiotic state, with the pulse of the music, its particular sway, the heaving and pulling of the phrases sounding utterly natural.

It helps that the recording is more immediate, more impactful, with important instrumental touches such as the swirling wind figurations or harp scales brought to the fore. The Lloyd-Jones is particularly good in the finale, with the Elgar and Sibelius connections registering strikingly. But the first three movements are definitely less interesting. The Naxos sound is wide-ranging, but lacking detail and transparency. Under Dilkes Moeran’s symphony has a stature that approaches Walton’s first.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 07, 2019, 11:42:08 PM
Thanks to you I now understand the great respect and love you have for the Dilkes recording. It is absolutely smashing compared to the ho-hum Lloyd-Jones on Naxos. I listened to both back to back today and again to the Dilkes.

Reading about him in the Wiki entry provides a clue (my hunch) for the difference. Dilkes founded the English Sinfonia (it was called the Midland Sinfonia in the beginning) and had been its director for 12 years when the recording of the Moeran symphony was put to disc. I think that this special connection accounts for the striking personality of this performance. Conductor and orchestra are in a symbiotic state, with the pulse of the music, its particular sway, the heaving and pulling of the phrases sounding utterly natural.

It helps that the recording is more immediate, more impactful, with important instrumental touches such as the swirling wind figurations or harp scales brought to the fore. The Lloyd-Jones is particularly good in the finale, with the Elgar and Sibelius connections registering strikingly. But the first three movements are definitely less interesting. The Naxos sound is wide-ranging, but lacking detail and transparency. Under Dilkes Moeran’s symphony has a stature that approaches Walton’s first.
I'm delighted that you like the recording Andre and was very interested to read your comparative analysis which rings true to me. Apparently the orchestra's original HQ was in Dilkes's living room! I'm sorry that he did nor record more. That Moeran recording, however, is something very special. I think that Lloyd-Jones is better in the inspiriting Sinfonietta rather than the Symphony, although I should listen again to his recording.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on February 08, 2019, 02:04:05 AM
I'm delighted that you like the recording Andre and was very interested to read your comparative analysis which rings true to me. Apparently the orchestra's original HQ was in Dilkes's living room! I'm sorry that he did nor record more. That Moeran recording, however, is something very special. I think that Lloyd-Jones is better in the inspiriting Sinfonietta rather than the Symphony, although I should listen again to his recording.

I'm 99% sure the Naxos/Moeran was a last minute substitution for a cancelled Beethoven session.  Hence its a classic read/record session that British orchestras can do so well but one that ultimately will reveal a deeper lack of familiarity or knowledge of the score.....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 08, 2019, 02:54:29 AM
I am so pleased I invested in the Dilkes recording of Moeran's symphony. The recording I have lived with for many years is Sir Adrian's on Lyrita. I planned to do a comparison which I haven't got round to yet, but my impression based on a definitely dodgy musical memory is that Dilkes is lighter and swifter. Something I can't understand -  the Moeran symphony is sometimes accused of plagiarism, I do hear some similarity's with other works in Boult's recording, but do not in Dilkes!   
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 08, 2019, 10:27:26 AM
I'm 99% sure the Naxos/Moeran was a last minute substitution for a cancelled Beethoven session.  Hence its a classic read/record session that British orchestras can do so well but one that ultimately will reveal a deeper lack of familiarity or knowledge of the score.....
That is what I heard about the recording session. I wish Sinaisky's Prom performance was released on CD.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 08, 2019, 10:29:27 AM
I am so pleased I invested in the Dilkes recording of Moeran's symphony. The recording I have lived with for many years is Sir Adrian's on Lyrita. I planned to do a comparison which I haven't got round to yet, but my impression based on a definitely dodgy musical memory is that Dilkes is lighter and swifter. Something I can't understand -  the Moeran symphony is sometimes accused of plagiarism, I do hear some similarity's with other works in Boult's recording, but do not in Dilkes!

You might find this of interest although I'm not a great fan of Simon Heffer:
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/classicalmusic/5779831/Proms-2009-EJ-Moerans-Symphony-in-G-Minor.html
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 08, 2019, 02:47:11 PM
You might find this of interest although I'm not a great fan of Simon Heffer:
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/classicalmusic/5779831/Proms-2009-EJ-Moerans-Symphony-in-G-Minor.html

A good piece that gives Moeran's symphony due credit. I think it a crucial observation that Heseltine was born to drink and Moeran wasn't. Alcohol was the death of Moeran. I'm not sure I hear much RVW in the symphony. Sibelius is lurking in the background but Moeran is far from being alone there. The repeated notes at the end of the work are a bit too similar to the end of Sibelius 5 for comfort but other then that I have no problem with concerns of the work being derivative.

I think it quite likely you own a copy of "From Parry to Britten-British Music in Letters 1900-1945". One letter written two months prior to Heseltine's suicide from him to Moeran. I find fascinating for many reasons. I will copy here as of interest, I think, for anyone with even a slightest interest in British music.

12A Tite Street
   Chelsea S.W.3
6th X 1930

Dear Jack.

The piano was delivered on Saturday morning. It was brought in without any difficulty and is safely housed in a room with a gas fire.
I carefully avoided hearing Bridge's composition. Walton's work improves at every hearing. He is the best musician this country has produced for a long while. Lambert is perhaps more talented, but I do not feel that music is his ultimate mode of expression. His keen observation, sensibility, wit and critical intellect seem rather to point to literature as his medium, whereas Walton is specifically musical or nothing. Bax, as usual, drove me out of the hall after ten minutes. Ireland's concerto is very interesting but by no means a great or a particularly original work. My greatest musical experience has been Elgar's second symphony, of which the old gentleman gave a most moving performance.
The "Severn suite" is all balls, of course. We contrived to spend a very amusing day at the (Crystal) Palace; the promoter of the show (the annual brass band competition) was very pleased with the publicity given to it bu the Telegraph and caused the booze to flow freely.
If you can get Midland Regional on Thursday, listen to Debussy's Gigues - his last orchestral work and most fascinating; originally called Gigues tristes, it is a kind of grisly-ghostly discourse on "Weel may the keel row", which however is never stated in full but merely hinted at in sinister and distorted fragments. The orchestration is quite amazing, with ...........
I hope the leg is doing all that was expected of it since it has been let loose again.
All good wishes and many thanks again for the loan of the piano.

Yours ever

PETER W.
One Thiman (Thimple or otherwise) has infringed one of your copyrights. See this month's "Monthly Musical Record".


 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 08, 2019, 03:13:30 PM
A good piece that gives Moeran's symphony due credit. I think it a crucial observation that Heseltine was born to drink and Moeran wasn't. Alcohol was the death of Moeran. I'm not sure I hear much RVW in the symphony. Sibelius is lurking in the background but Moeran is far from being alone there. The repeated notes at the end of the work are a bit too similar to the end of Sibelius 5 for comfort but other then that I have no problem with concerns of the work being derivative.

I think it quite likely you own a copy of "From Parry to Britten-British Music in Letters 1900-1945". One letter written two months prior to Heseltine's suicide from him to Moeran. I find fascinating for many reasons. I will copy here as of interest, I think, for anyone with even a slightest interest in British music.

12A Tite Street
   Chelsea S.W.3
6th X 1930

Dear Jack.

The piano was delivered on Saturday morning. It was brought in without any difficulty and is safely housed in a room with a gas fire.
I carefully avoided hearing Bridge's composition. Walton's work improves at every hearing. He is the best musician this country has produced for a long while. Lambert is perhaps more talented, but I do not feel that music is his ultimate mode of expression. His keen observation, sensibility, wit and critical intellect seem rather to point to literature as his medium, whereas Walton is specifically musical or nothing. Bax, as usual, drove me out of the hall after ten minutes. Ireland's concerto is very interesting but by no means a great or a particularly original work. My greatest musical experience has been Elgar's second symphony, of which the old gentleman gave a most moving performance.
The "Severn suite" is all balls, of course. We contrived to spend a very amusing day at the (Crystal) Palace; the promoter of the show (the annual brass band competition) was very pleased with the publicity given to it bu the Telegraph and caused the booze to flow freely.
If you can get Midland Regional on Thursday, listen to Debussy's Gigues - his last orchestral work and most fascinating; originally called Gigues tristes, it is a kind of grisly-ghostly discourse on "Weel may the keel row", which however is never stated in full but merely hinted at in sinister and distorted fragments. The orchestration is quite amazing, with ...........
I hope the leg is doing all that was expected of it since it has been let loose again.
All good wishes and many thanks again for the loan of the piano.

Yours ever

PETER W.
One Thiman (Thimple or otherwise) has infringed one of your copyrights. See this month's "Monthly Musical Record".


Yes, the letter is very interesting and thank you got repeating it here. I don't think I have a copy of that book. I find the reference to the 'gas fire' a bit chilling in the circumstances (didn't Warlock put the cat out before gassing himself?) I think that Sibelius is a much greater influence on Moeran's Symphony than Vaughan Williams. The storm in the last movement echoes than in Tapiola but none of this takes anything away from the greatness of Moeran's Symphony as far as I'm concerned.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 10, 2019, 01:57:54 AM
Yes, the letter is very interesting and thank you got repeating it here. I don't think I have a copy of that book. I find the reference to the 'gas fire' a bit chilling in the circumstances (didn't Warlock put the cat out before gassing himself?) I think that Sibelius is a much greater influence on Moeran's Symphony than Vaughan Williams. The storm in the last movement echoes than in Tapiola but none of this takes anything away from the greatness of Moeran's Symphony as far as I'm concerned.

Yes, why mention the gas fire in that context? I will never be able to listen to Elgar's "The Severn Suite" without thinking of Heseltine's critique of the work! Odd that the letter mentions most British composers of the period with one glaring omission.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 10, 2019, 02:16:35 AM
Yes, why mention the gas fire in that context? I will never be able to listen to Elgar's "The Severn Suite" without thinking of Heseltine's critique of the work! Odd that the letter mentions most British composers of the period with one glaring omission.

The explosive ending of Walton's First Symphony also echoes that of Sibelius's 5th Symphony but this in no way detracts from its greatness as far as I'm concerned.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 10, 2019, 02:20:44 AM
PS I've just ordered the 'Parry to Britten' book for 45p + postage.

thanks v much for alerting me to it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 10, 2019, 03:05:32 AM
PS I've just ordered the 'Parry to Britten' book for 45p + postage.

thanks v much for alerting me to it.

The best 45p you have ever spent!

Haydn is all over Beethoven's music which is seen as the natural order. Parry's music is dismissed as being too "Germanic". For the English musical renaissance to take place, although largely based on folk music, required a template. Is it surprising that the greatest symphonist/composer of the generation, Sibelius, had some input. I love Walton's 1st Symphony and you are right Sibelius is there too. With Moeran perhaps I have missed it but I cannot think of a Sibelius influence in any other works. The excellent violin concerto for example is nothing like the Sibelius VC.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on February 10, 2019, 07:14:53 PM
When I was listening to the Symphony recently I heard a passage which I thought sounded like an echo of vw’s Symphony No 4 (written just before), but then I heard a passage I thought that vw had remembered when he wrote his 5th Symphony  :)
(Course I can’t pinpoint these).
Once when listening to the slow movement I had an interesting experience of synesthesia. I was falling asleep and as I listened I had the distinct impression of floating in a cool rock pool on the beach, rising and falling with a gentle swell.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 11, 2019, 01:11:20 AM

Once when listening to the slow movement I had an interesting experience of synesthesia. I was falling asleep and as I listened I had the distinct impression of floating in a cool rock pool on the beach, rising and falling with a gentle swell.

Funny you say that. I listened last night to the excellent Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra. I need to revisit but my initial reaction was that the Rhapsody is one of Moeran's finest works. After a medium-paced opening the piece falls into a slow dream-like state, spare, but most effective.
The notes by Anthony Payne are instructive and I think this worth repeating:His dramatic change of direction involved the completion of a large scale Symphony in 1937, an achievement which could hardly have been predicted from his previous output of small orchestral works. Although adding Sibelius to his other influences, the Symphony is nonetheless a heroic breakthrough, structurally sure and touching in expression, and it released a flow of large scale works which crowned his output, the exquisite Violin Concerto (1938-41), Sinfonietta (1944), Cello Concerto (1944-5) and the Rhapsody in F sharp, completed in 1943.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 11, 2019, 01:39:55 AM
Funny you say that. I listened last night to the excellent Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra. I need to revisit but my initial reaction was that the Rhapsody is one of Moeran's finest works. After a medium-paced opening the piece falls into a slow dream-like state, spare, but most effective.
The notes by Anthony Payne are instructive and I think this worth repeating:His dramatic change of direction involved the completion of a large scale Symphony in 1937, an achievement which could hardly have been predicted from his previous output of small orchestral works. Although adding Sibelius to his other influences, the Symphony is nonetheless a heroic breakthrough, structurally sure and touching in expression, and it released a flow of large scale works which crowned his output, the exquisite Violin Concerto (1938-41), Sinfonietta (1944), Cello Concerto (1944-5) and the Rhapsody in F sharp, completed in 1943.

A very nice quotation from Anthony Payne and thanks for posting. In my youth I once read a rave review (by Anthony Payne) of a concert  I'd attended of VW's 'A Pastoral Symphony' conducted by Norman del Mar. I thought the performance was terrible and my brother fell asleep during it. I wrote to the paper asking if Anthony Payne had actually been to the concert. He wrote back saying that I had 'a bloody cheek' to suggest that he hadn't  been to the concert, pointing out that my brother was hardly in a position to judge the performance as he was unconscious for much of it! A fair point I guess.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 11, 2019, 07:41:55 AM
A very nice quotation from Anthony Payne and thanks for posting. In my youth I once read a rave review (by Anthony Payne) of a concert  I'd attended of VW's 'A Pastoral Symphony' conducted by Norman del Mar. I thought the performance was terrible and my brother fell asleep during it. I wrote to the paper asking if Anthony Payne had actually been to the concert. He wrote back saying that I had 'a bloody cheek' to suggest that he hadn't  been to the concert, pointing out that my brother was hardly in a position to judge the performance as he was unconscious for much of it! A fair point I guess.

 ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 13, 2019, 02:43:02 PM
Interesting looking new release:
I'm unaware of any other Barbirolli Moeran recording.
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: André on February 13, 2019, 05:19:47 PM
Very nice program. Constance Schacklock is the Angel in Barbirolli’s 1957 Rome Gerontius.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 14, 2019, 01:32:31 AM
Interesting looking new release:
I'm unaware of any other Barbirolli Moeran recording.
(http://)

Did some digging but didn't find anything. What I did find shocked me. Barbirolli conducted the premier of Sinfonietta with the BBC Symphony Orchestra in 1944 which drew a response from Moeran "Thank God, we have escaped Boult for it".

Looking into it, the quote is not quite as stark as it seems as the tenure of Boult at the BBC during this period was difficult.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 14, 2019, 01:37:12 AM
Did some digging but didn't find anything. What I did find shocked me. Barbirolli conducted the premier of Sinfonietta with the BBC Symphony Orchestra in 1944 which drew a response from Moeran "Thank God, we have escaped Boult for it".

Looking into it, the quote is not quite as stark as it seems as the tenure of Boult at the BBC during this period was difficult.
How interesting! I have a CD of Beecham conducting the Sinfonietta which I thought was the premiere but evidently not.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on February 21, 2019, 04:14:51 AM
In part prompted by the discussion here, I relistened to the Dilkes version of the Symphony.  I like his "Lonely Waters" a lot - I find the Symphony just too rough - a rehearsal or two short of real orchestral security.  Also, the EMI recording is not one of their finest - on my system suffering from quite a bit of peaking and distortion.  Love the piece as much as ever but this version sits behind Boult and Handley in my preferred list.....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 21, 2019, 04:36:12 AM
In part prompted by the discussion here, I relistened to the Dilkes version of the Symphony.  I like his "Lonely Waters" a lot - I find the Symphony just too rough - a rehearsal or two short of real orchestral security.  Also, the EMI recording is not one of their finest - on my system suffering from quite a bit of peaking and distortion.  Love the piece as much as ever but this version sits behind Boult and Handley in my preferred list.....
Maybe I'm influenced by it being the first recording I heard of the symphony (on LP) but then again maybe the 'roughness' appeals to me in the way that those old Melodiya recordings of Shostakovich conducted by Kondrashin do - they have a kind of rough authenticity which I find appealing. I want to listen to the Boult again. The Handley version never appealed to me. I wish that the Sinaisky version was on CD.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Papy Oli on February 21, 2019, 04:45:24 AM
Is this one any good for a first (if not, only) foray into Moeran's music please ? Just to avoid further surprises, the sound is not too "historical" on this one (the sample i found on YT sounded ok) ? Thank you.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on February 21, 2019, 03:36:23 PM
Some of us prefer Dilkes in the Symphony, but Boult's recording is the Classic rendition, with an exceptional Sinfonietta accompanying.  Hard to argue against this CD as a first Moeran acquisition, but as to what might come next, I'd choose the Violin Concerto (with Lonely Waters) on Chandos.  Mordkovitch nails this piece quite beautifully, - and BTW (i'm sorry to say) I find Tasmin Little's recording of the VC largely sterile and unmoving (with equal blame for it on Andrew Davis), - probably the most disappointing Moeran playing I've heard ( not technically but interpretively, - though it's not that good technically either).  I challenge anyone to listen to it on YouTube (1rst & 3rd movements) side by side with Mordkovitch and argue otherwise, - which the reviewer on MusicWeb does, though I believe erroneously, or at least he hears what I don't.  How he can call it "the finest available recording of the Moeran Concerto" is utterly beyond me.  I think it's the worst.  Little entirely fails to convey the visionary quality, - she clips the phrasing throughout (Davis too) and doesn't allow the music to breathe and expand the way it should IMO, - there's no light and shade, no nuance.  It's a monochrome performance, all surfaces, - typical of these younger players, who just lack the needed soul (Little's bad in the Delius Concerto as well).  I'll just add that Chandos' house replacements for Handley, Thomson, Hickox, & Mordkovitch in English music with Gamba, Davis, Little, (who else?) have had disastrous results.  I can't think of any issues by them I regard as successful. 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 22, 2019, 03:35:39 AM
Is this one any good for a first (if not, only) foray into Moeran's music please ? Just to avoid further surprises, the sound is not too "historical" on this one (the sample i found on YT sounded ok) ? Thank you.



That recording is often considered the 'market leader' Olivier. It is generally considered the finest recording of both works. Its more 'magisterial' approach compliments the more intimate Dilkes version as far as I'm concerned. They are both excellent as is the historic Heward version made with Moeran in the studio.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 22, 2019, 04:22:02 AM
Some of us prefer Dilkes in the Symphony, but Boult's recording is the Classic rendition, with an exceptional Sinfonietta accompanying.  Hard to argue against this CD as a first Moeran acquisition, but as to what might come next, I'd choose the Violin Concerto (with Lonely Waters) on Chandos.  Mordkovitch nails this piece quite beautifully, - and BTW (i'm sorry to say) I find Tasmin Little's recording of the VC largely sterile and unmoving (with equal blame for it on Andrew Davis), - probably the most disappointing Moeran playing I've heard ( not technically but interpretively, - though it's not that good technically either).  I challenge anyone to listen to it on YouTube (1rst & 3rd movements) side by side with Mordkovitch and argue otherwise, - which the reviewer on MusicWeb does, though I believe erroneously, or at least he hears what I don't.  How he can call it "the finest available recording of the Moeran Concerto" is utterly beyond me.  I think it's the worst.  Little entirely fails to convey the visionary quality, - she clips the phrasing throughout (Davis too) and doesn't allow the music to breathe and expand the way it should IMO, - there's no light and shade.  It's a constipated performance.
Largely agree with Greg's verdict on the Boult here as well. Actually I prefer the Cello Concerto to the Violin Concerto, beautiful though that is. Even though the Boult/Coetmore version of the Cello Concerto has some imperfect cello playing from Coetmore (who was Moeran's wife) it has a depth of feeling unlike any of the other, ostensibly more polished, versions. In a way Coetmore's, at times, scratchy playing adds to the whole experience and I find the climax of the last movement overwhelming.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on February 22, 2019, 05:20:32 AM
Have you heard Little/Davis in the VC, Jeffrey, - and love it (which I don't)?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 22, 2019, 06:01:59 AM
Have you heard Little/Davis in the VC, Jeffrey, - and love it (which I don't)?
Don't think so Greg. I have versions by Mordkovitch, Campoli, Georgiadis and Sammons and like all of those.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Papy Oli on February 22, 2019, 06:10:17 AM
Thank you J & Jeffrey. I'll add the Boult in the basket for now.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on February 22, 2019, 11:53:54 AM
In fact, you can can acquire the Violin & Cello Concertos together on a Chandos reissue (the CC with Wallfisch), - a definite "next in line" for Papy Oli.  I don't quite share Jeffrey's great enthusiasm for Coetmore's reading of Moeran's Cello Concerto, less because of the scrappy playing than her unworkably distended tempo in the middle ( slow) movement, which is just unbearably slow to me (almost "slow motion" even, - like about half-tempo).  I've played it dozens of times, and still find it agonizing and simply "wrong".
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 22, 2019, 02:15:01 PM
Thank you J & Jeffrey. I'll add the Boult in the basket for now.

You won't regret it Olivier.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 22, 2019, 02:21:28 PM
In fact, you can can acquire the Violin & Cello Concertos together on a Chandos reissue (the CC with Wallfisch), - a definite "next in line" for Papy Oli.  I don't quite share Jeffrey's great enthusiasm for Coetmore's reading of Moeran's Cello Concerto, less because of the scrappy playing than her unworkably distended tempo in the middle ( slow) movement, which is just unbearably slow to me (almost "slow motion" even, - like about half-tempo).  I've played it dozens of times, and still find it agonizing and simply "wrong".

Yes, it's a very nice disc as well:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aukhawk on February 23, 2019, 03:42:23 AM
Is this one any good for a first (if not, only) foray into Moeran's music please ? Just to avoid further surprises, the sound is not too "historical" on this one (the sample i found on YT sounded ok) ? Thank you.

The recording date for the Symphony is 1975 which is pretty much 'peak Lyrita' in terms of engineering quality, and that means up there with the best.  The Sinfonietta recording date is 1968 which, for all it's over 50 years ago now, is not what I'd view as historical.  I'm saying this not having heard this recording at all - but I'd buy with confidence.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Papy Oli on February 23, 2019, 04:43:06 AM
The recording date for the Symphony is 1975 which is pretty much 'peak Lyrita' in terms of engineering quality, and that means up there with the best.  The Sinfonietta recording date is 1968 which, for all it's over 50 years ago now, is not what I'd view as historical.  I'm saying this not having heard this recording at all - but I'd buy with confidence.

ok, thank you aukhawk.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 23, 2019, 10:03:32 AM
The recording date for the Symphony is 1975 which is pretty much 'peak Lyrita' in terms of engineering quality, and that means up there with the best.  The Sinfonietta recording date is 1968 which, for all it's over 50 years ago now, is not what I'd view as historical.  I'm saying this not having heard this recording at all - but I'd buy with confidence.

Being pedantic the dates quoted on CD's are incorrect. Lyrita hired Decca to make their recordings from 1965 onwards. Both the Sinfonietta (22-23 November 1967) and the Symphony (13-15 August 1973) were recorded by Decca's best sound engineer, Kenneth Wilkinson at the Kingsway Hall. Both recordings, as well as the rest of the Lyrita catalogue are superb.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on February 28, 2019, 12:37:54 AM
Being pedantic the dates quoted on CD's are incorrect. Lyrita hired Decca to make their recordings from 1965 onwards. Both the Sinfonietta (22-23 November 1967) and the Symphony (13-15 August 1973) were recorded by Decca's best sound engineer, Kenneth Wilkinson at the Kingsway Hall. Both recordings, as well as the rest of the Lyrita catalogue are superb.

Seeing the name Kenneth Wilkinson on just about any recording is pretty much a guarantee of sonic excellence.  Think of all those RCA "Classic Film Scores" discs which are the same venue/engineer as well as many ex-Readers Digest recordings which now appear on Cesky and elsewhere.  I must admit that I actively seek out his name.

Odd quirk of the original Lyrita LP's that recording info was never included.  The main thing is Irons is 100% right - all the early Lyrita discs stand the test of time in both artistic and audio terms and this Moeran coupling is superb. [that said the Del Mar/Bax 6 is one of the least good..... I wonder why?]
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on February 28, 2019, 03:00:43 AM
Seeing the name Kenneth Wilkinson on just about any recording is pretty much a guarantee of sonic excellence.  Think of all those RCA "Classic Film Scores" discs which are the same venue/engineer as well as many ex-Readers Digest recordings which now appear on Cesky and elsewhere.  I must admit that I actively seek out his name.

Odd quirk of the original Lyrita LP's that recording info was never included.  The main thing is Irons is 100% right - all the early Lyrita discs stand the test of time in both artistic and audio terms and this Moeran coupling is superb. [that said the Del Mar/Bax 6 is one of the least good..... I wonder why?]

Totally agree. The film and Readers Digest recordings that Gerhard and Wilkinson made in tandem are fabulous.

I was intrigued by your observation that the Del Mar/Bax 6 is not up to the others. I assumed the Lyrita Bax symphonies were recorded as a set, in fact they were not, far from it. The first recording (6) was one of the first recordings made by Decca for Lyrita, and (7) one of the last. The 6th also was with a different orchestra (New Philharmonia) and the rest of the cycle with LPO.

Bax Symphonies on Lyrita -

Symphony No.6: NPO Del Mar. 1966, Kingsway Hall. Sound engineer, James Lock and Gordon Parry.

Symphony No. 1 & 2: LPO Myer Fredman. 1970, Walthamstow Assembly Hall. Sound engineer, Kenneth Wilkinson.

Symphony No.5: LPO Raymond Leppard. 1971, Walthamstow. Sound Engineer, Stanley Goodall.

Symphony No.7: LPO Raymond Leppard. 1974, Kingsway Hall. sound Engineer, Philip Wade, Malcolm Hogg and Peter Van Biene.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on February 28, 2019, 11:26:30 PM
Totally agree. The film and Readers Digest recordings that Gerhard and Wilkinson made in tandem are fabulous.

I was intrigued by your observation that the Del Mar/Bax 6 is not up to the others. I assumed the Lyrita Bax symphonies were recorded as a set, in fact they were not, far from it. The first recording (6) was one of the first recordings made by Decca for Lyrita, and (7) one of the last. The 6th also was with a different orchestra (New Philharmonia) and the rest of the cycle with LPO.

Bax Symphonies on Lyrita -

Symphony No.6: NPO Del Mar. 1966, Kingsway Hall. Sound engineer, James Lock and Gordon Parry.

Symphony No. 1 & 2: LPO Myer Fredman. 1970, Walthamstow Assembly Hall. Sound engineer, Kenneth Wilkinson.

Symphony No.5: LPO Raymond Leppard. 1971, Walthamstow. Sound Engineer, Stanley Goodall.

Symphony No.7: LPO Raymond Leppard. 1974, Kingsway Hall. sound Engineer, Philip Wade, Malcolm Hogg and Peter Van Biene.
Also I think that Leppard and Fredman were better conductors of Bax!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on March 01, 2019, 12:33:34 AM
Also I think that Leppard and Fredman were better conductors of Bax!

Fredman's reputation of conducting Bax is like good wine, improves with age.

I either read somewhere or dreamt it that Sir Adrian didn't like Bax's music. Although he did record for Lyrita a set of tone-poems this would explain no symphony recordings.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 02, 2019, 01:49:46 PM
Fredman's reputation of conducting Bax is like good wine, improves with age.

I either read somewhere or dreamt it that Sir Adrian didn't like Bax's music. Although he did record for Lyrita a set of tone-poems this would explain no symphony recordings.

His Lyrita set is excellent as is the November Woods, originally coupled with Moeran's Sinfonietta on LP. Boult also recorded an earlier (excellent) Tintagel for Decca - possibly my favourite recording of the work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Oates on March 04, 2019, 07:46:08 AM


I either read somewhere or dreamt it that Sir Adrian didn't like Bax's music. Although he did record for Lyrita a set of tone-poems this would explain no symphony recordings.

Boult has certainly been quoted as saying that he couldn't distinguish one Bax symphony from another - or that they were all indistinct. He might have had a more charitable view of the tone poems however, as many people do.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on March 05, 2019, 07:33:12 AM
His Lyrita set is excellent as is the November Woods, originally coupled with Moeran's Sinfonietta on LP. Boult also recorded an earlier (excellent) Tintagel for Decca - possibly my favourite recording of the work.

I think a case of first love. The second CD I ever purchased was the set of Bax tone poems recorded by Bryden Thomson for Chandos. I thought at the time and still do his rendition of November Woods terrific and my favourite tone poem by the composer. In comparison Boult disappoints me, I find him slow and lacking the winter chill I hear from Thomson.
The tone poem set Lyrita put out (LP) by Boult are fine. It is only November Woods I have a problem with.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 05, 2019, 12:09:27 PM
I think a case of first love. The second CD I ever purchased was the set of Bax tone poems recorded by Bryden Thomson for Chandos. I thought at the time and still do his rendition of November Woods terrific and my favourite tone poem by the composer. In comparison Boult disappoints me, I find him slow and lacking the winter chill I hear from Thomson.
The tone poem set Lyrita put out (LP) by Boult are fine. It is only November Woods I have a problem with.
I must listen to Thomson's 'November Woods'.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 05, 2019, 03:19:09 PM
I think a case of first love. The second CD I ever purchased was the set of Bax tone poems recorded by Bryden Thomson for Chandos. I thought at the time and still do his rendition of November Woods terrific and my favourite tone poem by the composer. In comparison Boult disappoints me, I find him slow and lacking the winter chill I hear from Thomson.
The tone poem set Lyrita put out (LP) by Boult are fine. It is only November Woods I have a problem with.

At the risk of talking about Bax too much for the Morean thread - the Lyrita/Boult/Tintagel is rhythmically very slack and rather tired sounding.  Following the score shows that for some reason Boult is rather generalised in his account.  Likewise the November Woods - the playing of the orchestra and the Lyrita sounds brings much pleasure but this is a tenser/more disturbed work than Boult finds.  I agree that the Thomson November Woods was something of a revelation on the front since before then Boult was pretty much the only reference recording.  Vandermolen mentions enjoying the earlier Boult Tintagel; in that performance he is more alert, rhythms are better sprung and more tightly pointed but in the transfer I have the recording is too thin and the playing too scrappy for me to enjoy unreservedly. 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 05, 2019, 03:22:13 PM
Helpful linking of Bax and Moeran! One of my favourite Lyrita LP covers.
(http://)
And my first encounter with all these works:
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 05, 2019, 03:32:28 PM
To expand this sudden Bax excrescence a bit more: I love Barbirolli's account of Tintagel...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 06, 2019, 05:59:12 AM
To expand this sudden Bax excrescence a bit more: I love Barbirolli's account of Tintagel...
Me too - it's a fine version. The one I was very impressed with recently was a historic recording conducted by George Weldon.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 07, 2019, 12:19:39 PM
To expand this sudden Bax excrescence a bit more: I love Barbirolli's account of Tintagel...

Indeed the Barbirolli is very good - the whole original LP was a good 'un!

I have the Weldon recording (and remember my father having that LP too) but have no clear memory of the performance.  Something for tomorrow's listening!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 07, 2019, 02:23:45 PM
Indeed the Barbirolli is very good - the whole original LP was a good 'un!

I have the Weldon recording (and remember my father having that LP too) but have no clear memory of the performance.  Something for tomorrow's listening!

Here it is. I have the CD version with the same cover:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on March 08, 2019, 12:43:41 AM
At the risk of talking about Bax too much for the Morean thread - the Lyrita/Boult/Tintagel is rhythmically very slack and rather tired sounding.  Following the score shows that for some reason Boult is rather generalised in his account.  Likewise the November Woods - the playing of the orchestra and the Lyrita sounds brings much pleasure but this is a tenser/more disturbed work than Boult finds.  I agree that the Thomson November Woods was something of a revelation on the front since before then Boult was pretty much the only reference recording.  Vandermolen mentions enjoying the earlier Boult Tintagel; in that performance he is more alert, rhythms are better sprung and more tightly pointed but in the transfer I have the recording is too thin and the playing too scrappy for me to enjoy unreservedly.

My thoughts exactly. Boult's "November Woods" is often critically praised and I have always been perplexed by this. 

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on March 08, 2019, 12:51:45 AM
Here it is. I have the CD version with the same cover:
(http://)

I have the LP. I think George Weldon, and up to a point Sargent too, unsung as far as English music is concerned.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 08, 2019, 10:58:36 AM
I have the LP. I think George Weldon, and up to a point Sargent too, unsung as far as English music is concerned.
I agree. Sargent's BBC recording of Sibelius's 5th Symphony is my favourite version. There is a wonderful disc of The Planets and shorter works by Holst and a very good Walton Symphony 1, which I prefer to the famous Previn recording on RCA.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 08, 2019, 12:54:57 PM
... and a very good Walton Symphony 1, which I prefer to the famous Previn recording on RCA.

Vandermolen - I agree with you on almost everything!  But that Sargent/Walton 1 is a definite clunker - slack and lacking vehemence and drive.  Compare the Sargent & Previn timings


Movement        Previn             Sargent
1                     13:49              15:05
2                     5:53                6:57
3                     11:21              10:17
4                     12:11              13:23

The one movement that needs reflection and breadth Sargent rushes and for the rest he lumbers along.  Even the New Philharmonia sound bored!  The Sargent version was the first I ever had and I loved it to bits.  THEN I heard others including Previn and suddenly the veil dropped from my eyes (and ears!).  Actually, I think this is just about the ONLY thing I disagree with you about - so that's pretty good!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on March 09, 2019, 01:15:15 AM
Vandermolen - I agree with you on almost everything!  But that Sargent/Walton 1 is a definite clunker - slack and lacking vehemence and drive.  Compare the Sargent & Previn timings


Movement        Previn             Sargent
1                     13:49              15:05
2                     5:53                6:57
3                     11:21              10:17
4                     12:11              13:23

The one movement that needs reflection and breadth Sargent rushes and for the rest he lumbers along.  Even the New Philharmonia sound bored!  The Sargent version was the first I ever had and I loved it to bits.  THEN I heard others including Previn and suddenly the veil dropped from my eyes (and ears!).  Actually, I think this is just about the ONLY thing I disagree with you about - so that's pretty good!

I did say some time ago on another forum that I preferred Sargent to Previn. The response I received was incredulity, so mightily pleased to see vandermolen write the same. We may not be right, but for both of us to think the same way points to the fact there is something in Sargent's recording. Like you, it is the first recording I heard of this great symphony which makes it the template others are judged. "Lumber" is interesting as that is often said about Klemperer and I love Klemperer.

Sargent is without doubt the finest British conductor as an accompanist and for choral music. His Delius CC with du Pré is outstanding and his recording of Handel's Messiah is legendary. Every man and his dog has conducted Elgar's "Enigma" but none in my eyes match Sargent's EMI recording. I also like his "English Ballet Music" recording.

(https://img.discogs.com/MbGsq6H3B9RTZHD9nTTE2UMlJRY=/fit-in/600x601/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9734660-1491484131-3203.jpeg.jpg)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 09, 2019, 01:38:16 AM
"Lumber" is interesting as that is often said about Klemperer and I love Klemperer.

Sargent is without doubt the finest British conductor as an accompanist and for choral music. His Delius CC with du Pré is outstanding and his recording of Handel's Messiah is legendary. Every man and his dog has conducted Elgar's "Enigma" but none in my eyes match Sargent's EMI recording. I also like his "English Ballet Music" recording.

(https://img.discogs.com/MbGsq6H3B9RTZHD9nTTE2UMlJRY=/fit-in/600x601/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9734660-1491484131-3203.jpeg.jpg)

I suspect - as with any piece - a performance will resonate with a listener when that version consciously or unconsciously resonates with that listener's own view of the work.  Perhaps "lumber" is harsh but Sargent's Walton 1 is certainly a broader/weightier version so perhaps underlining the Sibelian influence.  That is of course perfectly valid but for me Walton 1 is the epitome of the inter-war "Age of Anxiety" music - nervous, energetic in a uneasy slightly sour way - YET at the same time struggling for resolution and certainty.  For me, the closing pages of the first movement which embody this struggle between anxiety and certainty is one of the great passages in all music.  Sargent's battle is too easily won from too far out - there's a too comfortable predictability about his version.  Previn somehow catches this ill-ease - I think him being quite young at the time of his classic recording helps too.

Worth remembering Sargent ended up being the conductor of Walton's Troilus & Cressida for its premiere - something which caused Walton considerable ill-ease for a variety of reasons......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 09, 2019, 02:35:26 AM
I know this may sound a bit weird and I'm aware that we are going a bit 'off piste' here (I wonder what EJ would make of it) but for me any performance of Walton's First Symphony stands or falls by the very opening, which (as far as I'm concerned) sets the tone (no pun intended) for my enjoyment of the whole symphony. That oboe at the start has to sound nervous, hesitant, tentative and above all fragile (not unlike myself really  8)). With the RCA Previn recording it sounds just too confident for my liking. Sargent's opening is much better - best of all was Boult's early PYE recording. My brother had the Boult LP with its garish/psychedelic cover image) and I got to know the work through that recording and the Sargent was my first LP of the work and I remember my youthful excitement when I actually had my own LP copy of the symphony. I'm sure that these early experiences influenced my view of those versions. I'm listening to the Sargent again now and I do not find it lacking in nervous energy and excitement including at that marvellously inspiriting climax of the first movement. My brother regards this as one of the great 'despair turning to defiance' symphonies - and I agree with him. I actually, like the reviewer Rob Barnett, prefer Previn's later RPO recording of the work (which he described as 'Homeric'). Of more recent recordings the one by Bryden Thomson is one of my favourites. Most people do prefer the Previn (RCA) to the Sargent and of course I respect that and Previn remains one of my favourite conductors.

Here's that famous old LP - I loved the cover image:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Biffo on March 09, 2019, 02:49:13 AM
I did say some time ago on another forum that I preferred Sargent to Previn. The response I received was incredulity, so mightily pleased to see vandermolen write the same. We may not be right, but for both of us to think the same way points to the fact there is something in Sargent's recording. Like you, it is the first recording I heard of this great symphony which makes it the template others are judged. "Lumber" is interesting as that is often said about Klemperer and I love Klemperer.

Sargent is without doubt the finest British conductor as an accompanist and for choral music. His Delius CC with du Pré is outstanding and his recording of Handel's Messiah is legendary. Every man and his dog has conducted Elgar's "Enigma" but none in my eyes match Sargent's EMI recording. I also like his "English Ballet Music" recording.

(https://img.discogs.com/MbGsq6H3B9RTZHD9nTTE2UMlJRY=/fit-in/600x601/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9734660-1491484131-3203.jpeg.jpg)

The very first LP I bought was Sargent conducting Vaughan Williams and after that nothing, don't really know why, perhaps he just wasn't on the shelves of the record shops I frequented. I briefly discussed this a while ago and considered buying the Warner Icon box but there wasn't enough in it to tempt me.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 09, 2019, 03:10:58 AM
The very first LP I bought was Sargent conducting Vaughan Williams and after that nothing, don't really know why, perhaps he just wasn't on the shelves of the record shops I frequented. I briefly discussed this a while ago and considered buying the Warner Icon box but there wasn't enough in it to tempt me.

Oh, I liked that set, Bliss, Rubbra PCs, VW, Holst, Walton, Bax and I also liked the Schubert 'Unfinished' and Beethoven 'Eroica' although not my usual cup of tea. Above all, IMO, it features the greatest recorded performance of Sibelius's 5th Symphony or at least the one that moves me most.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Biffo on March 09, 2019, 03:25:10 AM
Oh, I liked that set, Bliss, Rubbra PCs, VW, Holst, Walton, Bax and I also liked the Schubert 'Unfinished' and Beethoven 'Eroica' although not my usual cup of tea. Above all, IMO, it features the greatest recorded performance of Sibelius's 5th Symphony or at least the one that moves me most.

Perhaps I will have to give it some more consideration. Last year I overdosed on Icon boxes and it a while to clear the backlog.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 09, 2019, 04:11:14 AM
Perhaps I will have to give it some more consideration. Last year I overdosed on Icon boxes and it a while to clear the backlog.
In recent years I bought the Sargent, Handley, Groves and Berglund sets (last two not Icon I think). I especially enjoy the Sargent, Groves and Berglund sets.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 09, 2019, 04:12:15 AM
Here's that famous old LP - I loved the cover image:
(http://)

Yes indeed that was the LP version I had too - given me a present by my parents one teen-aged birthday together with a copy of the score.  I remember reading - and being impressed by - the note from Walton to Sargent reproduced on the back cover.  My father had the garish Pye/Boult LP too - long since given away......

Despair to Defiance is a perfect description!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 09, 2019, 05:27:41 AM
Yes indeed that was the LP version I had too - given me a present by my parents one teen-aged birthday together with a copy of the score.  I remember reading - and being impressed by - the note from Walton to Sargent reproduced on the back cover.  My father had the garish Pye/Boult LP too - long since given away......

Despair to Defiance is a perfect description!

I'm impressed that you were given the score as well - would have been lost on me. I also remember being impressed with the note from Walton to Sargent reproduced on the LP's sleeve.

To bring this thread back on track I thought that I'd say how much I enjoyed this historic performance of Moeran's 'Sinfonietta' recorded at a live concert in the presence of EJM at the Albert Hall in 1947. Beecham evidently thought highly of the work. He takes the first two movements considerably slower than other performances I have heard but he invests them with great dignity - there are some wonderful horn solos in the first movement and the slow movement, as has been commented on before, sounds more Delian than usual. The finale is especially inspiring. The recording is rather boxed-in but that did not detract from my enjoyment of this memorable performance:
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 09, 2019, 09:03:15 AM
To bring this thread back on track I thought that I'd say how much I enjoyed this historic performance of Moeran's 'Sinfonietta' recorded at a live concert in the presence of EJM at the Albert Hall in 1947.

Not that I have listened to this performance - but its available to hear on the Moeran website to download:

http://www.moeran.net/Audio/Sinfonietta.html

Shame this site went moribund over a decade ago.  There are some good downloads to be found here - the Boult/Sammons/Violin concerto is well worth a listen.  Sammons is one of my very favourite players.

http://www.moeran.net/sammons.html

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 09, 2019, 12:53:46 PM

To bring this thread back on track I thought that I'd say how much I enjoyed this historic performance of Moeran's 'Sinfonietta' recorded at a live concert in the presence of EJM at the Albert Hall in 1947. Beecham evidently thought highly of the work. He takes the first two movements considerably slower than other performances I have heard but he invests them with great dignity - there are some wonderful horn solos in the first movement and the slow movement, as has been commented on before, sounds more Delian than usual. The finale is especially inspiring. The recording is rather boxed-in but that did not detract from my enjoyment of this memorable performance:


I have listened to it. Yes, fine performance. Beecham is indeed slower than usual in the first two movements, but it works. He also makes the melancholy middle of the slow movement weightier and, yes, that much more Delian.


And thanks to Roasted Swan for the link.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 09, 2019, 01:11:14 PM
Oh, and at the end of the recording you can hear the pronunciation of the name Moeran by the presenter... MO-ran. The BBC is usually very precise in these matters, and the composer was still alive.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 10, 2019, 01:32:40 AM
Oh, and at the end of the recording you can hear the pronunciation of the name Moeran by the presenter... MO-ran. The BBC is usually very precise in these matters, and the composer was still alive.

Good point Johan. Also the booklet says that Moeran was in the audience and at the end of the Sinfonietta Beecham turned around to face the audience and looked around until he spotted the shy composer, who apparently went very red in the face and did his best to 'disappear'. And yes, it is an interesting and weightier performance than the others I have heard. I'm sorry that there is no recording of Beecham conducting Moeran's Symphony.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 10, 2019, 01:51:48 AM
Good point Johan. Also the booklet says that Moeran was in the audience and at the end of the Sinfonietta Beecham turned around to face the audience and looked around until he spotted the shy composer, who apparently went very red in the face and did his best to 'disappear'.


QED!


My introduction to Moeran also came courtesy of the BBC. Radio 4, to be precise. One evening during the 1980s in a programme called (iirc) Talking About Music, presenter Antony Hopkins discussed Moeran's Symphony. And he pronounced it MO-ran, too.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Biffo on March 17, 2019, 08:29:47 AM
Interesting looking new release:
I'm unaware of any other Barbirolli Moeran recording.
(http://)

This arrived today, so far only listened to the Delius (1945, v. ropey sound) and RVW - possibly for Barbirolli completists only.

There is an oddity. The booklet points out that the Moeran Serenade originally had 8 movements but two were dropped at the insistence of his publisher. This performance restores the Intermezzo but drops the Air so there is still only 6 movements - the booklet note writer seems unaware of this. Handley/Ulster has all 8 movements.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 17, 2019, 09:44:02 AM
This arrived today, so far only listened to the Delius (1945, v. ropey sound) and RVW - possibly for Barbirolli completists only.

There is an oddity. The booklet points out that the Moeran Serenade originally had 8 movements but two were dropped at the insistence of his publisher. This performance restores the Intermezzo but drops the Air so there is still only 6 movements - the booklet note writer seems unaware of this. Handley/Ulster has all 8 movements.

Yes, Barbirolli's performance of the Serenade is excellent although, at the start it sounds like it was recorded under water. The sound does improve however. I was struck by the similarity between the opening of Delius's 'A Song of Summer' and the opening of 'A London Symphony' by Vaughan Williams, composed some years earlier. Haven't listened to the Tallis Fantasia yet. You could be right with your '...for Barbirolli completists' comment. I think that his Alwyn releases (symphonies and shorter works) were much more interesting.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Biffo on March 18, 2019, 02:06:00 AM
Yes, Barbirolli's performance of the Serenade is excellent although, at the start it sounds like it was recorded under water. The sound does improve however. I was struck by the similarity between the opening of Delius's 'A Song of Summer' and the opening of 'A London Symphony' by Vaughan Williams, composed some years earlier. Haven't listened to the Tallis Fantasia yet. You could be right with your '...for Barbirolli completists' comment. I think that his Alwyn releases (symphonies and shorter works) were much more interesting.

I will have to listen to my stereo Barbirolli recording for a comparison with the London symphony - on this recording there is too much extraneous noise. Also, I will have to check out the Alwyn recordings.

Edit: Sorry, can't hear the resemblance. The Delius emerges out a deep grumbling sound but that is an artefact of the recording. Listening to Barbirolli's beautiful stereo recording is a very different experience.

Second edit: Take that back, on a second listen to the early recording I can now hear the resemblance.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 20, 2019, 08:44:33 AM
I've been listening again to Barbirolli's recording of Moeran's 'Serenade'. It has made me revise my view of the work and the CD. Despite the problems of the recording it is the most deeply felt of the several recordings of that work, which I now find much more poignant and moving than usual. So, I'm glad to have the CD. Must get round to the Tallis Fantasia next.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 08, 2019, 01:36:54 AM
I see that the next copy of the BBC Music Magazine (called "July" but on sale in the UK from this coming week - mid June) has as its cover disc the Sinaisky/BBC PO Proms performance of the Moeran Symphony from a few years back.  Very fine as I recall.  Parry is named as the 'filler' but the title of the work in question is not given.  Certainly I'll be buying a copy......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 08, 2019, 03:40:53 AM
I see that the next copy of the BBC Music Magazine (called "July" but on sale in the UK from this coming week - mid June) has as its cover disc the Sinaisky/BBC PO Proms performance of the Moeran Symphony from a few years back.  Very fine as I recall.  Parry is named as the 'filler' but the title of the work in question is not given.  Certainly I'll be buying a copy......

OMG!!! That is such great news. I wrote to them years ago asking if they could consider issuing it as their cover CD. I was at the concert and am so looking forward to hearing it again. Thanks so much RS for letting us know. I shall be dashing out to WH Smith in due course to snap up a copy.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 08, 2019, 04:26:57 AM
I see that the next copy of the BBC Music Magazine (called "July" but on sale in the UK from this coming week - mid June) has as its cover disc the Sinaisky/BBC PO Proms performance of the Moeran Symphony from a few years back.  Very fine as I recall.  Parry is named as the 'filler' but the title of the work in question is not given.  Certainly I'll be buying a copy......

So will I. Thanks!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 08, 2019, 10:53:42 AM
The coupling is Parry's 5th Symphony (my favourite of Parry's symphonies) so I'm looking forward to this issue even more:
(http://)
I like the CD cover image as well - suitably bleak and windswept.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: SymphonicAddict on June 08, 2019, 06:26:52 PM
Just you reminded me I had found the video of the performance of that symphony uploaded by a kind person on another music forum. I don't know whether the video is still there or not. I had downloaded it because a recording of a work like that is hard to watch elsewhere.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 09, 2019, 04:53:54 AM
The coupling is Parry's 5th Symphony (my favourite of Parry's symphonies) so I'm looking forward to this issue even more:
(http://)
I like the CD cover image as well - suitably bleak and windswept.

Does anyone know publication date? Anything to avoid a fool's errand to WH Smith's. :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 09, 2019, 06:56:51 PM
What's marvelous about Sinaisky's read (posted on YouTube) is how vivid and clear the inner parts and voices of the work are.  You can hear everything going on among the various instrument groups in a way none of the other (more homogenized) recordings approach. 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 11, 2019, 10:39:59 AM
Does anyone know publication date? Anything to avoid a fool's errand to WH Smith's. :)

I think the publication date is tomorrow June 12th.  I live just around the corner from a Smiths so I will go on said errand tomorrow and report back!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 11, 2019, 03:00:46 PM
I think the publication date is tomorrow June 12th.  I live just around the corner from a Smiths so I will go on said errand tomorrow and report back!
Yes, online it says 12th June.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on June 11, 2019, 06:54:57 PM
I found the Sinaisky recording on YouTube: https://youtu.be/Z3cI58UA8wY

I look forward to checking it out. It should be interesting to hear a Russian conductor interpret this masterwork!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 12, 2019, 06:24:15 AM
Picked up my copy from Smiths just now - the coupling of the Parry Symphony No.5 is also Sinaisky/BBC PO from the 2010 Proms.  Scary to realise the Moeran is already a decade old - the 2009 Proms!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 12, 2019, 07:31:49 AM
Sinaisky's performance is a great one in my judgment, - like no other, and probably my favorite now (displacing Dilkes).  What a strongly characterized interpretation, - you can hear things going on very hard to discern in the other recordings.  Anyone who loves Moeran's Symphony needs to have it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 12, 2019, 08:26:31 AM
In the magazine's "about the cover CD" spiel they make the point that this was the Moeran Symphony's 2nd only performance at a Prom - the previous one being 1938.  Perhaps more surprising is the fact the the accompanying Parry Symphony (as Jeffrey says a great work) is also the 2nd of just two outings at the Proms - which is two more than any other Parry Symphony!  I'm not saying the other 4 are towering masterpieces but at the self-styled "world's greatest classical music festival" I wonder why there is room for Musicals and Jazz (both genres which I love) but not works such as those......

Tangentially and on a bit of a soap-box here.  I think it is scandalous that the BBC is being berated this week for proposing stopping free TV licences for the elderly.  This was a socio-political decision made by a government that has been foisted back onto the BBC.  In the UK do the fuel companies pay the winter fuel allowance on behalf of the government....!? For the BBC to fund this will take £750 million pounds rising to £1 billion - which would mean the loss of much programming including - I have no doubt - much/most of their CM support.  I do NOT dispute the value/importance of providing free licences to the aged and needy but this should not be the responsibility of the organisation involved.

Even more distasteful is the linkage created in some of the press between last week's D-Day memorials and this proposal with headlines along the path of "Veterans protest loss of free TV licence".  People will continue to bash the BBC right up to moment we loose it.......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 12, 2019, 08:48:11 AM
Picked up my copy from Smiths just now - the coupling of the Parry Symphony No.5 is also Sinaisky/BBC PO from the 2010 Proms.  Scary to realise the Moeran is already a decade old - the 2009 Proms!

Picked up mine this morning too and hope to listen to it later today. It's one of several CDs I have where I was actually at the concert (Moeran with Elgar's 2nd if I remember correctly) which is always fun to know. Good to have Greg's endorsement as well.

PS I've now listened to the CD and what a terrific performance! Even better than how I remember it. Sinaisky steers a middle path between Dilkes's more intimate and Boult's more magisterial performances. The main difference to the Dilkes's is the considerably faster scherzo, but I think this works well as a brief sibelian interlude between two powerful movements. For me the most moving part of the symphony is the end of the slow movement but that works very well here. The performance has great drive, urgency and rhythmic intensity. The Parry is also a very fine and moving performance. This is one of my favourite BBC Music Magazine's cover discs, along with a fine VW Symphony 9 from Andrew Davis and a CD of Estonian music featuring Tubin's Third Symphony.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 12, 2019, 12:49:20 PM
This is one of my favourite BBC Music Magazine's cover discs, along with a fine VW Symphony 9 from Andrew Davis and a CD of Estonian music featuring Tubin's Third Symphony.

To be fair I think the quality of the BBC Magazine cover discs is very high indeed.  I can think of several (actually many) very fine ones and almost no duds.  My favourites would include a stunning Oramo/Kullervo, Shostakovich Cheryomushki/ Atherton/BBC NOW/Rite of Spring, Tippett/Symphonies 2&3/ Elder Prokofiev October / Hickox & Mackerras Janacek.....

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 12, 2019, 05:48:54 PM
Both gripped and mesmerized by Sinaisky, - a revelation, - almost like an entirely new work.  Just wonderful.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 12, 2019, 09:30:38 PM
To be fair I think the quality of the BBC Magazine cover discs is very high indeed.  I can think of several (actually many) very fine ones and almost no duds.  My favourites would include a stunning Oramo/Kullervo, Shostakovich Cheryomushki/ Atherton/BBC NOW/Rite of Spring, Tippett/Symphonies 2&3/ Elder Prokofiev October / Hickox & Mackerras Janacek.....

Good point! I should have mentioned a very fine Shostakovich Symphony 11 (Karabits, Bournemouth SO).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 12, 2019, 09:31:49 PM
Both gripped and mesmerized by Sinaisky, - a revelation, - almost like an entirely new work.  Just wonderful.

I agree and I liked the emphatic spacing of the final chords as well.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 12, 2019, 09:59:48 PM
Both gripped and mesmerized by Sinaisky, - a revelation, - almost like an entirely new work.  Just wonderful.

First on the listening pile today.....!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 12, 2019, 11:00:01 PM
Picking my copy up today and after reading posts above - can't wait!

Sound has not been mentioned though and the RAH does have a reputation as difficult in this regard.

Looking forward to the Parry too. Frank Howes has some interesting observations and goes into great depth, "very strong impression of the inspiration that exuded from him". Howes judges Parry as a very important figure, a "catalyst" for what and who would follow.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 13, 2019, 04:00:47 AM
I've now listened to the CD and what a terrific performance! Even better than how I remember it. Sinaisky steers a middle path between Dilkes's more intimate and Boult's more magisterial performances. The main difference to the Dilkes's is the considerably faster scherzo, but I think this works well as a brief sibelian interlude between two powerful movements. For me the most moving part of the symphony is the end of the slow movement but that works very well here. The performance has great drive, urgency and rhythmic intensity. The Parry is also a very fine and moving performance. This is one of my favourite BBC Music Magazine's cover discs.

Wholehearted agreement with Vandermolen.  As someone else also mentioned, Sinaisky makes a more marked difference between the urgent and reflective passages to great effect.  In fact I really enjoy his rhapsodic feel in the latter and a darkly brooding - Tapiola-esque - slow movement.  Overall a very impressive performance indeed and great that it is available on CD.

The Parry is just as good - Sinaisky really gets the balance between the the implicit sadness/nobility of the music and the orchestra sounds glorious.  All this does is make me wonder even more why music of this stature by a British composer of this importance has not featured more at a major CM festival in Britain.

My ONLY slight query is the sound of the Moeran compared to the Parry from a year earlier.  I listened to the Moeran first and yes the detail is good but for me the upper strings sound a bit thin and a fraction distanced.  Also the brass sound is not as integrated as I would expect.  Timps and Harp and wind principals very clear with allows some of the detail mentioned elsewhere.  In contrast the Parry is near ideal - rich but detailed with warmth and weight.  The Producer and Engineer are listed as the same but I did wonder if - given that the Moeran was broadcast on TV - whether the sound-rig for TV is slightly different than audio only?  Don't get me wrong it is still very good but for my taste not quite as good.  In any case - a genuine joy to hear both... 3 cheers for the BBC!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 13, 2019, 01:03:50 PM
Wholehearted agreement with Vandermolen.  As someone else also mentioned, Sinaisky makes a more marked difference between the urgent and reflective passages to great effect.  In fact I really enjoy his rhapsodic feel in the latter and a darkly brooding - Tapiola-esque - slow movement.  Overall a very impressive performance indeed and great that it is available on CD.

The Parry is just as good - Sinaisky really gets the balance between the the implicit sadness/nobility of the music and the orchestra sounds glorious.  All this does is make me wonder even more why music of this stature by a British composer of this importance has not featured more at a major CM festival in Britain.

My ONLY slight query is the sound of the Moeran compared to the Parry from a year earlier.  I listened to the Moeran first and yes the detail is good but for me the upper strings sound a bit thin and a fraction distanced.  Also the brass sound is not as integrated as I would expect.  Timps and Harp and wind principals very clear with allows some of the detail mentioned elsewhere.  In contrast the Parry is near ideal - rich but detailed with warmth and weight.  The Producer and Engineer are listed as the same but I did wonder if - given that the Moeran was broadcast on TV - whether the sound-rig for TV is slightly different than audio only?  Don't get me wrong it is still very good but for my taste not quite as good.  In any case - a genuine joy to hear both... 3 cheers for the BBC!
Interesting comments. I listened to both works tonight on my Hi-Fi system (a bit Low-Fi actually) rather than on the portable player. It confirmed my high opinion of the performance of both works. The recording is slightly odd in the Moeran but I also agree with Greg ('J') that it's a bit like listening to a completely different work, such is the impact of Sinaisky's performance of the Moeran. A wonderful CD in all respects.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 13, 2019, 11:26:33 PM
A work new to me - I think I'm right in saying the last recording by Boult - I enjoyed the Parry. I thought his 5th Symphony contained some excellent and novel ideas which belie the image of a staid and boring composer.

Perhaps my expectations were too high but I am not quite as enthusiastic for the Moeran recording as posters here who's judgement I respect. It must be me then, and to be fair I was knackered last night - but not too tired for Parry. I think Jeffrey said he put Sinaisky's interpretation midway between Boult and Dilkes which for me sums it up. I missed the élan, the folksy feel-good factor of Dilkes. Sinaisky is darker, which is just as valid but not what I look for in this work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 14, 2019, 07:50:05 AM
A work new to me - I think I'm right in saying the last recording by Boult - I enjoyed the Parry. I thought his 5th Symphony contained some excellent and novel ideas which belie the image of a staid and boring composer.

Perhaps my expectations were too high but I am not quite as enthusiastic for the Moeran recording as posters here who's judgement I respect. It must be me then, and to be fair I was knackered last night - but not too tired for Parry. I think Jeffrey said he put Sinaisky's interpretation midway between Boult and Dilkes which for me sums it up. I missed the élan, the folksy feel-good factor of Dilkes. Sinaisky is darker, which is just as valid but not what I look for in this work.

The Dilkes's has a special quality to it - I agree. I will always be attached to that recording as it was my first encounter with the work on LP. I remember that I bought it from the record department at Harrods when, as a student, I was working in the silk department, which was the last place I wanted to be. Still, I  was able to get a staff discount on the Moeran. :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 14, 2019, 09:01:05 AM
The Dilkes's has a special quality to it - I agree. I will always be attached to that my recording as it was my first encounter with the work on LP. I remember that I bought it from the record department at Harrods when, as a student, I was working in the silk department, which was the last place I wanted to be. Still, I  was able to get a staff discount on the Moeran. :)

the SILK department.... suits you sir! (do Harrods still have a recorded music department.... any bargains.....??!!)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 14, 2019, 10:03:51 AM
the SILK department.... suits you sir! (do Harrods still have a recorded music department.... any bargains.....??!!)
Haha. I wanted to be in the record dept or the books - so they put me in the silk department - in my student days in my 20s. I hated it as, unlike the experts in the dept, I could not fold up the silk into a neat package but ended up stuffing it into the shopping bag - terrible! But the record dept was great to browse in during my lunch break. I still remember seeing that Dilkes Moeran LP for the first time and wondering what it was like. I took it home and never looked back. It was great fun to finally see it live at the Proms and now have a recording of that memorable evening.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 14, 2019, 12:19:05 PM
The Dilkes's has a special quality to it - I agree. I will always be attached to that my recording as it was my first encounter with the work on LP. I remember that I bought it from the record department at Harrods when, as a student, I was working in the silk department, which was the last place I wanted to be. Still, I  was able to get a staff discount on the Moeran. :)

You are posher then me Jeffrey. I worked as a young man at Barkers and after that, Bentalls at Kingston. Both stores are a shadow of their former self.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 14, 2019, 08:56:33 PM
You are posher then me Jeffrey. I worked as a young man at Barkers and after that, Bentalls at Kingston. Both stores are a shadow of their former self.

OT

Not all my student employment was posh Lol. I was briefly employed at a bronze (sculpture) foundry under railway arches in Peckham until I was sacked for incompetence (an unfortunate incident with a swordfish's nose and a rhinoceros's tail); I remember that the whole building shook when a train went over the railway bridge. I then worked in Whiteley's in Bayswater - finally in the Record Department. When I was left alone on the counter I could play what I wanted. It was at the time of 'Saturday Night Fever' (which I was expected to play). Next to the record department was the fashion boutique. I remember a manager coming up to me to let me know that the boutique had made a complaint that I was driving the customers out the shop with my musical taste (Durufle's Requiem at top volume if I remember correctly instead of the Bee-Gees). Oddly enough the store closed down shortly after I left. My Saturday job at school was in the record department of WH Smith in the Earl's Court Road. I remember using my staff discount to buy Boult's EMI boxed set of the Vaughan Williams symphonies on LP. I also remember playing some VW and a Spanish man wanted to know what it was as he loved the music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 14, 2019, 09:05:30 PM
Great story, Jeffrey. Long live Duruflé!


On topic:


I listened to the Sinaisky on YT a few days ago. It won't replace the Boult in my affections (don't know the Dilkes), but it's very good indeed. You certainly do hear a lot of detail other conductors never brought out that clearly. A winner!


And the symphony remains a masterpiece.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 14, 2019, 09:14:19 PM
Great story, Jeffrey. Long live Duruflé!


On topic:


I listened to the Sinaisky on YT a few days ago. It won't replace the Boult in my affections (don't know the Dilkes), but it's very good indeed. You certainly do hear a lot of detail other conductors never brought out that clearly. A winner!

And the symphony remains a masterpiece.

Thanks Johan!
 :)

I very much agree with your point that the Sinaisky performance brings out considerably more detail than other recordings, which is very much part of its appeal.

You might well enjoy the Dilkes. It is very special I think and quite different to the Boult.


Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 14, 2019, 09:17:20 PM
In honour of our immortal Moeran, I'll listen again. All this talk makes me listen-y.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Christo on June 14, 2019, 10:38:22 PM
I remember a manager coming up to me to let me know that the boutique had made a complaint that I was driving the customers out the shop with my musical taste (Durufle's Requiem at top volume if I remember correctly instead of the Bee-Gees).
With a high baritone in the Requiem, nobody will notice the difference.  8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 14, 2019, 11:23:25 PM
With a high baritone in the Requiem, nobody will notice the difference.  8)
8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 15, 2019, 04:14:53 AM
OT

Not all my student employment was posh Lol. I was briefly employed at a bronze (sculpture) foundry under railway arches in Peckham until I was sacked for incompetence (an unfortunate incident with a swordfish's nose and a rhinoceros's tail); I remember that the whole building shook when a train went over the railway bridge. I then worked in Whiteley's in Bayswater - finally in the Record Department. When I was left alone on the counter I could play what I wanted. It was at the time of 'Saturday Night Fever' (which I was expected to play). Next to the record department was the fashion boutique. I remember a manager coming up to me to let me know that the boutique had made a complaint that I was driving the customers out the shop with my musical taste (Durufle's Requiem at top volume if I remember correctly instead of the Bee-Gees). Oddly enough the store closed down shortly after I left. My Saturday job at school was in the record department of WH Smith in the Earl's Court Road. I remember using my staff discount to buy Boult's EMI boxed set of the Vaughan Williams symphonies on LP. I also remember playing some VW and a Spanish man wanted to know what it was as he loved the music.

Peckham! You rubbed shoulders with possibly the most famous Londoners, Jeffrey.

(https://i2-prod.mirror.co.uk/incoming/article10244766.ece/ALTERNATES/s615b/PROD-uktv_14256198168.jpg)

You are so lucky. Walking into WH Smith and smelling the vinyl from the record department was like nectar! Strangely no other record store could quite compete for smell. I have a moment of deja vu to this day when I enter Smith's.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aukhawk on June 15, 2019, 05:23:49 AM
My ONLY slight query is the sound of the Moeran compared to the Parry from a year earlier. ... In contrast the Parry is near ideal - rich but detailed with warmth and weight.  The Producer and Engineer are listed as the same but I did wonder if - given that the Moeran was broadcast on TV - whether the sound-rig for TV is slightly different than audio only?  Don't get me wrong it is still very good but for my taste not quite as good.  In any case - a genuine joy to hear both... 3 cheers for the BBC!

That was then and this is now:
Sound On Sound: BBC Proms rigging for Radio and TV (https://www.soundonsound.com/techniques/bbc-proms)

Basically a saturation 'flown' rig (suspended from cross-slung wires) is put in prior to the first concert.  That's it for the season, bar a very few stand-mounted spot mics that go in on the night as required.   The slung mics are positioned according to a standard written specification which is 'millimetre-accurate' and subject to ongoing updates. 
By 'saturation' I mean there are an awful lot of mics up there but only a selection are in use for each concert.  The TV mix is separate from the radio mix but generally takes a split feed from the same mics.  Sound for the CD would have been re-mixed later from the archived radio recording.  Interesting that (these days) the TV mix is 5.1 surround, and any stereo the TV viewer may hear is just an automatic (mostly unmonitored) downmix from that 5.1 - a far cry from the days not so long ago when stereo TV sound first became a thing and old-skule sound engineers like me were resisting the Brave New World kicking and screaming.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 15, 2019, 05:28:46 AM
Peckham! You rubbed shoulders with possibly the most famous Londoners, Jeffrey.

(https://i2-prod.mirror.co.uk/incoming/article10244766.ece/ALTERNATES/s615b/PROD-uktv_14256198168.jpg)

You are so lucky. Walking into WH Smith and smelling the vinyl from the record department was like nectar! Strangely no other record store could quite compete for smell. I have a moment of deja vu to this day when I enter Smith's.

Haha - yes, I know what you mean re the 'vinyl smell' at WH Smith. I really miss those days of browsing through record shops.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 17, 2019, 03:08:36 AM
That was then and this is now:
Sound On Sound: BBC Proms rigging for Radio and TV (https://www.soundonsound.com/techniques/bbc-proms)

Basically a saturation 'flown' rig (suspended from cross-slung wires) is put in prior to the first concert.  That's it for the season, bar a very few stand-mounted spot mics that go in on the night as required.   The slung mics are positioned according to a standard written specification which is 'millimetre-accurate' and subject to ongoing updates. 
By 'saturation' I mean there are an awful lot of mics up there but only a selection are in use for each concert.  The TV mix is separate from the radio mix but generally takes a split feed from the same mics.  Sound for the CD would have been re-mixed later from the archived radio recording.  Interesting that (these days) the TV mix is 5.1 surround, and any stereo the TV viewer may hear is just an automatic (mostly unmonitored) downmix from that 5.1 - a far cry from the days not so long ago when stereo TV sound first became a thing and old-skule sound engineers like me were resisting the Brave New World kicking and screaming.

Aukhawk - thankyou for that - really interesting and useful.  Part of the reason I attend so few Proms is that the sound in the hall - unless you stand pretty much central and back a bit is really quite poor relative to the price of the tickets for the stalls or boxes!  I took my son to his first Prom a couple of seasons ago - Oslo PO with Petrenko in Shostakovich.  Sat on the side quite near the stage and just listened to any dynamic orchestral attack "slap" back at you off the back wall.  Listening to the same concert later off the radio was much more satisfactory!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aukhawk on June 17, 2019, 08:33:15 AM
Sat on the side quite near the stage and just listened to any dynamic orchestral attack "slap" back at you off the back wall.

And if promming you get the choice of standing all night (I remember standing through Mahler 9 (Haitink/CO) being quite an ordeal - memorable though the performance was) or going up into the 'gods' where at least you can take the weight off, but you are about level with the flying saucers - I witnessed Rozhdestvensky/Leningrad PO from there - I mean, the LENINGRAD PHILHARMONIC, just WOW, what a band - the sound had about as much impact as my portable radio in the kitchen.
But then, concert-going, what would you have?  Rock-hard seating (Covent Garden, I've never been, but infamous); - non-existent air conditioning (Free Trade Hall as was - my wife slept through Nigel Kennedy playing Elgar's Violin Concerto - no wonder they converted it to a chain hotel); - lost in transit finding your way in or out (Barbican - so unmemorable I've no idea what the concert was); - minor wardrobe miscalculation spoiling the occasion (Glyndebourne, no I've never been, too risky with my dress sense); - bottle-washing noises after the interval loudly overlaying the pp opening of the London Symphony (Boult conducting - back at the RAH - actually not too disturbing 'live' - a bit like the early morning milk delivery, RVW could have scored it in like Mahler's cowbells - but the noises off picked up ruthlessly on the broadcast, which a friend recorded for me).

As a colleague once observed (also a sound engineer, and more eminent at that time than I would ever be) "I've stopped going to concerts - not enough top" (an acknowledgement of our marked preference to monitor sound in the control rooms with a somewhat presencey or 'toppy' balance).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on June 23, 2019, 09:57:20 AM
Just wanted to put in a word for Moeran's Violin Concerto, especially in this recording:



The concerto follows a rather unusual moderate-fast-slow structure. Perhaps the reason the concerto is not more popular is because of its rather unassuming first movement, which although filled with pastoral loveliness doesn't contain any particularly striking material. But Moeran really ups the level of inspiration for the next two movements. The second movement (perhaps the only non-finale movement entitled a "Rondo" that I've come across!) is a joyously exhilarating romp inspired by a day at an Irish country fair. Moeran boldly chose to end the work with an extended slow movement, which is movingly poignant and rises to a climax of cathartically intense beauty.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 24, 2019, 11:03:12 PM
Just wanted to put in a word for Moeran's Violin Concerto, especially in this recording:



The concerto follows a rather unusual moderate-fast-slow structure. Perhaps the reason the concerto is not more popular is because of its rather unassuming first movement, which although filled with pastoral loveliness doesn't contain any particularly striking material. But Moeran really ups the level of inspiration for the next two movements. The second movement (perhaps the only non-finale movement entitled a "Rondo" that I've come across!) is a joyously exhilarating romp inspired by a day at an Irish country fair. Moeran boldly chose to end the work with an extended slow movement, which is movingly poignant and rises to a climax of cathartically intense beauty.

Your eloquent review is bad news for my wallet! Such a shame that Tasmin Little plans to retire next year. 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 25, 2019, 08:59:02 AM
Your eloquent review is bad news for my wallet! Such a shame that Tasmin Little plans to retire next year.

Feeling smug - picked up this recording on Amazon Marketplace very cheaply...... Not yet heard it but I must admit I've NOT enjoyed Little's more recent recordings compared to her early discs.  Not yet listened to this so am interested to see what she makes of the Moeran.......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 25, 2019, 04:23:32 PM
Feeling smug - picked up this recording on Amazon Marketplace very cheaply...... Not yet heard it but I must admit I've NOT enjoyed Little's more recent recordings compared to her early discs.  Not yet listened to this so am interested to see what she makes of the Moeran.......

Sweetheart and goodfellow as Tasmin Little and Andrew Davis truly are I loathe their recording of Moeran's Concerto frankly (as I wrote about earlier in this thread).  I won't elaborate details again except to say they just miss all the poignance and every nuance of the work entirely (parts of the recording can be heard on YouTube).   Both Mordkovich and the Lyrita performance are superior on all counts in my judgment (which isn't just an opinion, - even if not definitive).  Sometimes Kyle simply loses his head (and critical faculties at the same time). :o
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 26, 2019, 05:26:12 AM
Sweetheart as Tasmin Little truly is, I loathe her recording of Moeran's Concerto, frankly (as I wrote about earlier in this thread).  I won't elaborate details again (parts of the recording can be heard on YouTube), but both Mordkovich and the Lyrita performance are superior on all counts in my judgment (which isn't just an opinion, - even if not definitive).  Sometimes Kyle simply loses his head (and critical faculties at the same time). :o

You are most kind to my wallet. ;)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on June 26, 2019, 01:05:44 PM
Sweetheart and goodfellow as Tasmin Little and Andrew Davis truly are I loathe their recording of Moeran's Concerto frankly (as I wrote about earlier in this thread).  I won't elaborate details again except to say they just miss all the poignance and every nuance of the work entirely (parts of the recording can be heard on YouTube).   Both Mordkovich and the Lyrita performance are superior on all counts in my judgment (which isn't just an opinion, - even if not definitive).  Sometimes Kyle simply loses his head (and critical faculties at the same time). :o

 :o Well, to be fair, I haven’t heard any alternative recordings of the work, but the Little recording sounded fine to my ears. I’ll be sure to check out the Mordkovich recording.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 26, 2019, 09:57:45 PM
:o Well, to be fair, I haven’t heard any alternative recordings of the work, but the Little recording sounded fine to my ears. I’ll be sure to check out the Mordkovich recording.

Don't forget the 2 other/earlier live recordings of the Moeran -



Campoli is absolutely one of my favourite players - his lighter lyrical style suits this work really well - which is where I'm just a little wary of Mordkovitch.  The Coates on this historic disc is well worth a listen too.  Then there is the Lyrita/BBC archive recording also of Campoli but a different performance;



The rest of this Lyrita set is of real value too - the Benjamin Concerto is good but its the Bax played by Gertler that is worth the journey........

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 26, 2019, 10:18:44 PM
Don't forget the 2 other/earlier live recordings of the Moeran -



Campoli is absolutely one of my favourite players - his lighter lyrical style suits this work really well - which is where I'm just a little wary of Mordkovitch.  The Coates on this historic disc is well worth a listen too.  Then there is the Lyrita/BBC archive recording also of Campoli but a different performance;



The rest of this Lyrita set is of real value too - the Benjamin Concerto is good but its the Bax played by Gertler that is worth the journey........
The Coates is well worth exploring. Much as I like Bax I never enjoyed either his violin or cello concerto and much prefer the Moeran in both works. I also much prefer Moeran's Cello Concerto to his, admittedly lyrical, Violin Concerto.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 26, 2019, 10:33:18 PM
Thanks RS and Jeffrey for your reply to my Bax query.

Here's another one! Has anyone heard this?

(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/images/records/duttoncdlx7281.jpg?1317984697)

I was greatly tempted yesterday but already gone well past my quota I passed. Could always go back though. :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 26, 2019, 10:40:27 PM
Nothing to do with Moeran except that its in this month's BBC Music Magazine which I bought because it had the Moeran Symphony on the cover;

Interestingly captioned picture of Sir Henry Wood on page 33 with the heading Novelty Value the caption reads; "Fine focus; Wood rehearses at the Queen Elizabeth Hall for the 1938 Proms".

Novel indeed given that Wood died in 1944 and the QEH was opened in 1967....... I assume they mean the Queen's Hall.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 26, 2019, 10:50:42 PM
Thanks RS and Jeffrey for your reply to my Bax query.

Here's another one! Has anyone heard this?

(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/images/records/duttoncdlx7281.jpg?1317984697)

I was greatly tempted yesterday but already gone well past my quota I passed. Could always go back though. :)

Irons - this has been very well received and indeed it is a skillful CONJECTURAL reconstruction well played and recorded.  Personally I have big doubts about its value.  And that's from someone who loves what Anthony Payne did for Elgar's notionally 3rd Symphony.  The issue - for me - is that the Elgar symphony did exist in its composer's mind in a near fully-formed/final version.  Of course we will never know what that was but the sketches/fragments give a coherent idea that a musician as skilled as Payne can work from even if ultimately it must be considered a work by Payne after Elgar.

The Moeran is far less 'complete' in any sense.  There are articles/doctoral theses available online detailing very carefully the extent of Moeran's sketches.  There seems to be fairly tragic evidence that towards the end of his life Moeran was struggling with his mental health and finding the effort of creating a coherent large-scale symphonic work literally beyond him.  There are stories of a 2nd Symphony being complete but then destroyed.  The work which Yates has reconstructed seems to be based on a further/different effort.  But looking at the sketches he worked from the are far more fragmentary than the Elgar ones.  So for me this work lies much closer to the end of a line running from Moeran to Yates at the Yates end.  This is a symphony by Yates in the style of Moeran.  Likewise his orchestration of Sarnia is very clever but quite unlike anything Ireland would have produced I think.  So I'm glad to have it in my collection but hardly ever listen to it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on June 26, 2019, 11:56:40 PM
I think the Yates version of the Moeran symphonic sketches is wonderful, and even if it's nothing like what Moeran would have produced it's a symphony in its own right!
You can probably find me raving about it on this thread when I discovered it around 2013.
 ;)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 27, 2019, 12:27:29 AM
I think the Yates version of the Moeran symphonic sketches is wonderful, and even if it's nothing like what Moeran would have produced it's a symphony in its own right!
You can probably find me raving about it on this thread when I discovered it around 2013.
 ;)

Don't get me wrong - I'd MUCH rather be able to hear anything from this Symphony than not!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 27, 2019, 05:57:48 AM
Hmm, so much music and so little time. Thanks for your balanced view RS. As in life nothing is black or white although we would like it to be. All things considered I do not regret my decision to pass.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 27, 2019, 06:40:28 AM
Thanks RS and Jeffrey for your reply to my Bax query.

Here's another one! Has anyone heard this?

(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/images/records/duttoncdlx7281.jpg?1317984697)

I was greatly tempted yesterday but already gone well past my quota I passed. Could always go back though. :)

There's a different (and I think better) performance by the same performers in the British archive here.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 27, 2019, 08:46:24 AM
There's a different (and I think better) performance by the same performers in the British archive here.

can you repost the link that I assume is missing..... thanks!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 27, 2019, 09:05:28 PM
Thanks RS and Jeffrey for your reply to my Bax query.

Here's another one! Has anyone heard this?

(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/images/records/duttoncdlx7281.jpg?1317984697)

I was greatly tempted yesterday but already gone well past my quota I passed. Could always go back though. :)

I have the CD but can hardly remember anything about it! I'll try to have another listen soon.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on August 12, 2019, 06:25:35 PM
What's marvelous about Sinaisky's read (posted on YouTube) is how vivid and clear the inner parts and voices of the work are.  You can hear everything going on among the various instrument groups in a way none of the other (more homogenized) recordings approach.

I'd been listening to the YouTube posting of Sinaisky's performance for at least several months (perhaps a dozen times or more) and marveling at all the details one can hear like in no other recording, so finally purchased the BBC Magazine with the CD attached, - but to my utter dismay (even horror) find all those said details now homogenized out,  - they can barely be heard in the CD issue, they've vanished, been gauzed over.  It's just terrible.  How does that happen?  I want my money back, as Sainaisky's interpretation now sounds pretty ordinary and not very distinctive at all.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 12, 2019, 11:12:37 PM
I'd been listening to the YouTube posting of Sinaisky's performance for at least several months (perhaps a dozen times or more) and marveling at all the details one can hear like in no other recording, so finally purchased the BBC Magazine with the CD attached, - but to my utter dismay (even horror) find all those said details now homogenized out,  - they can barely be heard in the CD issue, they've vanished, been gauzed over.  It's just terrible.  How does that happen?  I want my money back, as Sainaisky's interpretation now sounds pretty ordinary and not very distinctive at all.

I am stunned by your post. I obtained BBC MM Moeran freebie with great excitement which proved, much to my surprise, a disappointment. I have asked my wife to pick up today the current issue with RVW/Elgar CD which I hope does not suffer the same fate.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 13, 2019, 02:02:59 AM
I am stunned by your post. I obtained BBC MM Moeran freebie with great excitement which proved, much to my surprise, a disappointment. I have asked my wife to pick up today the current issue with RVW/Elgar CD which I hope does not suffer the same fate.

Curiouser and curiouser.....  I've just recorded the YouTube stream and loaded both it and the BBC magazine CD into Audacity - 1st movement only for the moment.  One thing is clear the CD recorded level is quite low - easily fixed.  But here's the odd thing - the CD has the 1st movement as 13:04 (I've deleted even the couple of seconds of silence before the playing starts).... but YouTube has the "same" performance as 13:37.  The timing "drift" seems to be quite equal through the movement so perhaps whoever posted this on YouTube has done some audio tweaking .... but why change/slow the playing time?  Did Sinaisky perform this more than once and the versions have got mixed up?  Cannot believe the Beeb would tweak a performance in this manner......  I might have a look at the other movements later too. 

Even allowing for the difference in level the YouTube version does seem to have more bite in the sound?

EDIT:  a little digging brings an answer I think..... the YouTube version says "2010" and indeed on the BBC website there is a link (now defunct) to a Bridgewater Hall Sinaisky/BBC PO performance from February 2010.  The CD version is the 23rd July 2009 Proms version ..... very similar ....... but NOT the same!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 13, 2019, 05:47:30 AM
Curiouser and curiouser.....  I've just recorded the YouTube stream and loaded both it and the BBC magazine CD into Audacity - 1st movement only for the moment.  One thing is clear the CD recorded level is quite low - easily fixed.  But here's the odd thing - the CD has the 1st movement as 13:04 (I've deleted even the couple of seconds of silence before the playing starts).... but YouTube has the "same" performance as 13:37.  The timing "drift" seems to be quite equal through the movement so perhaps whoever posted this on YouTube has done some audio tweaking .... but why change/slow the playing time?  Did Sinaisky perform this more than once and the versions have got mixed up?  Cannot believe the Beeb would tweak a performance in this manner......  I might have a look at the other movements later too. 

Even allowing for the difference in level the YouTube version does seem to have more bite in the sound?

EDIT:  a little digging brings an answer I think..... the YouTube version says "2010" and indeed on the BBC website there is a link (now defunct) to a Bridgewater Hall Sinaisky/BBC PO performance from February 2010.  The CD version is the 23rd July 2009 Proms version ..... very similar ....... but NOT the same!

All explained then and (deerstalker) hats off for sorting that out.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 13, 2019, 05:50:21 AM
All explained then and (deerstalker) hats off for sorting that out.


No sh*t, Sherlock! Tip of my deerstalker, too.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on August 13, 2019, 07:29:34 AM
Curiouser and curiouser.....  I've just recorded the YouTube stream and loaded both it and the BBC magazine CD into Audacity - 1st movement only for the moment.  One thing is clear the CD recorded level is quite low - easily fixed.  But here's the odd thing - the CD has the 1st movement as 13:04 (I've deleted even the couple of seconds of silence before the playing starts).... but YouTube has the "same" performance as 13:37.  The timing "drift" seems to be quite equal through the movement so perhaps whoever posted this on YouTube has done some audio tweaking .... but why change/slow the playing time?  Did Sinaisky perform this more than once and the versions have got mixed up?  Cannot believe the Beeb would tweak a performance in this manner......  I might have a look at the other movements later too. 

Even allowing for the difference in level the YouTube version does seem to have more bite in the sound?

EDIT:  a little digging brings an answer I think..... the YouTube version says "2010" and indeed on the BBC website there is a link (now defunct) to a Bridgewater Hall Sinaisky/BBC PO performance from February 2010.  The CD version is the 23rd July 2009 Proms version ..... very similar ....... but NOT the same!

Just amazing.  I'd been driven to the brink of madness since acquiring the magazine CD over how different (and inferior) it sounded from the YouTube posting, and so confused over how that could have happened and what might explain it, - but never imagined they were different performances.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 13, 2019, 09:30:49 AM
Just amazing.  I'd been driven to the brink of madness since acquiring the magazine CD over how different (and inferior) it sounded from the YouTube posting, and so confused over how that could have happened and what might explain it, - but never imagined they were different performances.

It through me for a bit.... even things like the cymbals are clearly the same pair... but it shows how the BBC engineers struggle with the Royal Albert Hall as a venue and how the Bridgewater is a much more sympathetic recording environment.  It also underlines how in many ways a 'single' recorded performance is a fallible record of an interpretation.... within a few months the same artists were giving a significantly differing view of a work....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on August 13, 2019, 02:00:09 PM


Coincidentally (and almost astonishingly) there's another similar instance of just what we've established here in regards to discrete Sinaisky/BBC performances of Moeran's Symphony that concerns Moeran's "other" Symphony, - fleshed out and performed by Martin Yates and the Royal Scottish Orch.  In the British Archive at the Art Music Forum is a performance of the Premiere by these forces, very clearly recorded and with a real sense of occasion to the proceedings, - wonderful to experience.  Not so long thereafter Dutton issued a studio recording with the same forces that falls rather flat in my judgment, and with noticeably more opaque sonics, -  just not a patch on their earlier rendition.
 
You would think after me experiencing the disparity between these two contiguous performances of Moeran's "Symphony No.2" (with identical performers but on different occasions and in different venues) I might haves suspected the same phenomenon could underlie any cognitive dissonance over the YouTube and Magazine CD comparisons that so troubled me subsequently, - but it never crossed my mind.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 13, 2019, 11:18:26 PM

Coincidentally (and almost astonishingly) there's another similar instance of just what we've established here in regards to discrete Sinaisky/BBC performances of Moeran's Symphony that concerns Moeran's "other" Symphony, - fleshed out and performed by Martin Yates and the Royal Scottish Orch.  In the British Archive at the Art Music Forum is a performance of the Premiere by these forces, very clearly recorded and with a real sense of occasion to the proceedings, - wonderful to experience.  Not so long thereafter Dutton issued a studio recording with the same forces that falls rather flat in my judgment, and with noticeably more opaque sonics, -  just not a patch on their earlier rendition.
 
You would think after me experiencing the disparity between these two contiguous performances of Moeran's "Symphony No.2" (with identical performers but on different occasions and in different venues) I might haves suspected the same phenomenon could underlie any cognitive dissonance over the YouTube and Magazine CD comparisons that so troubled me subsequently, - but it never crossed my mind.

The difference here is that the "other" Yates performance post-dates the Dutton recording - it was part of the English music festival at Dorchester Abbey and again the existence of the recording is thanks to the BBC for preserving it and also the BBC Concert Orchestra for playing it.

Where exactly is this performance on Art Music Forum is this live performance - I couldn't find it during a cursory search....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 14, 2019, 10:35:49 PM
It through me for a bit.... even things like the cymbals are clearly the same pair... but it shows how the BBC engineers struggle with the Royal Albert Hall as a venue and how the Bridgewater is a much more sympathetic recording environment.  It also underlines how in many ways a 'single' recorded performance is a fallible record of an interpretation.... within a few months the same artists were giving a significantly differing view of a work....

I posted this yesterday but like other forum members experienced difficulties and my post disappeared in thin air! Anyway, may be the exception that proves the rule but coincidently the current BBC MM freebie includes a recording from the Royal Albert Hall and one from Bridgwater. You've guessed it the one from the RAH is in far better sound - from a Prom of last year, didn't like the performance. The Bridgewater, goes back a bit (1997). The sound is acceptable but no more then that, a fine performance of the Elgar CC though. 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Christo on August 14, 2019, 11:08:22 PM
The difference here is that the "other" Yates performance post-dates the Dutton recording - it was part of the English music festival at Dorchester Abbey and again the existence of the recording is thanks to the BBC for preserving it and also the BBC Concert Orchestra for playing it.

Where exactly is this performance on Art Music Forum is this live performance - I couldn't find it during a cursory search....

The Art-Music Forum is a complicated puzzle, but the archive is under the download section: the Moeran can be found here: https://www.mediafire.com/?yqrs5q7n92j17
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on August 14, 2019, 11:27:23 PM
The Art-Music Forum is a complicated puzzle, but the archive is under the download section: the Moeran can be found here: https://www.mediafire.com/?yqrs5q7n92j17

I also have a recording of the Moeran Symphony by the Shrewsbury Philharmonic (complete with cathedral bells) but I'm not sure that I'd recommend that one.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 15, 2019, 09:42:49 PM
The Art-Music Forum is a complicated puzzle, but the archive is under the download section: the Moeran can be found here: https://www.mediafire.com/?yqrs5q7n92j17

many thanks!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 13, 2020, 09:36:07 PM
Anyone imbibed this newish YouTube performance:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frXgyEZpMvo

A hard listen, in my case.  I just didn't think it cohered very well.  Some of the tempos and tempo relationships seemed very peculiar.

There was no packed house.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 13, 2020, 09:47:00 PM
Anyone viewed and listened to this newish YouTube performance:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frXgyEZpMvo

I had a hard time with it.  To start with, the tempos and tempo relationships seem very idiosyncratic.

It doesn't look like a packed house.

How interesting! Thanks for posting this - one of my favourite symphonies. Interesting to hear the, presumably correct, pronunciation of the composer's name from the RTE announcer. Yes, pity about the poor turnout for the concert. I was at the Sinaisky performance in London, also featured there on You Tube. That performance was issued on the accompanying CD (with Parry's 5th Symphony) with BBC Music Magazine a while back.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 13, 2020, 09:54:41 PM
Will be listening to the complete performance later today. Thanks for the alert, J!

Yes, I heard the presenter saying Mor-AN, the Irish way, too, but still think it's MORE-an, Jeffrey...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 13, 2020, 10:34:27 PM
Will be listening to the complete performance later today. Thanks for the alert, J!

Yes, I heard the presenter saying Mor-AN, the Irish way, too, but still think it's MORE-an, Jeffrey...

I think you're probably right Johan from other pronunciations I have heard.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 13, 2020, 11:38:49 PM
I was at the Sinaisky performance in London, also featured there on You Tube. That performance was issued on the accompanying CD (with Parry's 5th Symphony) with BBC Music Magazine a while back.

You've forgotten our previous discussion here, Jeffrey.  The YouTube Sinaisky performance isn't the same as the BBC Magazine issued one.  Scroll back for details.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Papy Oli on May 14, 2020, 12:07:38 AM
Anyone imbibed this newish YouTube performance:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frXgyEZpMvo

A hard listen, in my case.  I just didn't think it cohered very well.  Some of the tempos and tempo relationships seemed very peculiar.

There was no packed house.

Thank you for that one J, saved it on my Watch Later list.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 14, 2020, 03:23:41 AM
You've forgotten our previous discussion here, Jeffrey.  The YouTube Sinaisky performance isn't the same as the BBC Magazine issued one.  Scroll back for details.

Oh, thanks Greg.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 14, 2020, 11:00:31 AM
Having listened through twice now, I can't say anything good about Henty's performance, I'm afraid.  Just one thing after another to my ears, with no discernable coherence. The 2nd movement especially is terribly unfocused, and positively glacial.  It's enervating, - and things don't improve subsequently. Ensemble is poor throughout, and the players don't look that into it (despite Henty's own passionate exercising).  The audience raved however (perhaps just what audiences do nowadays, without understanding), so what do I know? 

Was anyone here impressed?

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 14, 2020, 01:51:38 PM
Having listened through twice now, I can't say anything good about Henty's performance, I'm afraid.  Just one thing after another to my ears, with no discernable coherence. The 2nd movement especially is terribly unfocused, and no less than glacial.  It's enervating, - and things don't improve subsequently. Ensemble could be a lot better, and the players don't look that into it (though Henty himself does jump around incessantly).  The audience raved however (perhaps just what audiences do nowadays, without understanding), so what do I know? 

Was anyone here impressed?

So far I only listened to the opening, which seemed a bit wanting in atmosphere compared with Boult, Heward and Dilkes. I find the Vernon Handley recording to be too 'beefy'.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 14, 2020, 07:08:36 PM
So far I only listened to the opening, which seemed a bit wanting in atmosphere compared with Boult, Heward and Dilkes. I find the Vernon Handley recording to be too 'beefy'.

But check out this apparently alternative (live) Handley performance I just noted posted on YouTube a few weeks ago:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0mbUxGCn_rQ

Unlike Henty's discombobulated and indifferently played performance, Handley & Co. are completely inside the music.

It's crackling.  I was riveted.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 21, 2020, 06:41:11 AM
But check out this apparently alternative (live) Handley performance I just noted posted on YouTube a few weeks ago:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0mbUxGCn_rQ

Unlike Henty's discombobulated and indifferently played performance, Handley & Co. are completely inside the music.

It's crackling.  I was riveted.

Well, I agree Greg. From the opening chords you can tell that there is something really special about this performance which is now my favourite version. It has an urgency and communicative power power unlike (IMO) Handley's studio recording made with the same forces for Chandos. What a pity that this live recording was not released on CD instead. The brass were especially exciting and I too was riveted from beginning to end. I also really liked the accompanying visual imagery on the You Tube video, ending up with Moeran's rather neglected-looking grave in an overgrown churchyard. Thanks for posting this marvellous performance.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: André on May 21, 2020, 12:24:58 PM
Well, I agree Greg. From the opening chords you can tell that there is something really special about this performance which is now my favourite version. It has an urgency and communicative power power unlike (IMO) Handley's studio recording made with the same forces for Chandos. What a pity that this live recording was not released on CD instead. The brass were especially exciting and I too was riveted from beginning to end. I also really liked the accompanying visual imagery on the You Tube video, ending up with Moeran's rather neglected-looking grave in an overgrown churchyard. Thanks for posting this marvellous performance.

+1. An urgent, passionate performance. The sibelian overtones very much to the fore.

(Edited for typo)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 21, 2020, 02:01:11 PM
+1. An urgent, passionate performance. The siblian overtones very much to the fore.

Yes, I definitely agree with your sibelian overtones point André.
And here is a nice photo of the Great Man, looking happier than usual, which I have never seen before:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on May 21, 2020, 02:40:28 PM
Yes, I definitely agree with your sibelian overtones point André.
And here is a nice photo of the Great Man, looking happier than usual, which I have never seen before:
(http://)

Nice photo, indeed, Jeffrey. I rather like this one:
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on May 21, 2020, 02:43:20 PM
Here’a a better quality of the one that you found, Jeffrey:

(https://collectionimages.npg.org.uk/large/mw47614/Ernest-John-Moeran.jpg)

A few other good ones:

(https://collectionimages.npg.org.uk/large/mw47615/Ernest-John-Moeran.jpg)

(https://collectionimages.npg.org.uk/large/mw47617/Ernest-John-Moeran.jpg)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 21, 2020, 03:25:29 PM
They always wore suits in those days, even while just lounging around the house, - huh?

I typically play the piano in sweatpants and a t-shirt.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on May 21, 2020, 04:26:37 PM
They always wore suits in those days, even while just lounging around the house, - huh?

I typically play the piano in sweatpants and a t-shirt.

Well, it is a job after all. Many composers, especially back then, would wake up at 8 AM and begin work and stop around 5 PM.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 21, 2020, 05:54:34 PM
Even in that famous photo of Moeran walking hand in hand with Peers Coetmore on a moor somewhere (see the Lyrita cover of Moeran's Cello Concerto) he's wearing a suit, - albeit in more casual style than his "home suit". But true "casualwear" didn't exist then, did it?

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on May 21, 2020, 08:25:10 PM
This was before central heating, a good wool suit is warm and practical attire for all those months when the British climate is on the cold side (10-12  ;)).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 21, 2020, 10:18:26 PM
Nice pics!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 21, 2020, 11:33:20 PM
Here’a a better quality of the one that you found, Jeffrey:

(https://collectionimages.npg.org.uk/large/mw47614/Ernest-John-Moeran.jpg)

A few other good ones:

(https://collectionimages.npg.org.uk/large/mw47615/Ernest-John-Moeran.jpg)

(https://collectionimages.npg.org.uk/large/mw47617/Ernest-John-Moeran.jpg)
Indeed John -thanks. He usually has a soulful troubled look about him and it is nice to see him looking happier.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vers la flamme on May 22, 2020, 01:31:16 AM
What are some good works by Moeran? I would like to check out his music. He's been recommended to me before, but I can't remember which pieces.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Papy Oli on May 22, 2020, 04:21:00 AM
Get that one immediately ;D



then that :



also that :



Jeffrey will vouch for that :



 0:) :)




Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on May 22, 2020, 01:04:58 PM
Get that one immediately ;D



then that :



also that :



Jeffrey will vouch for that :



 0:) :)

good choices all - the string quartets are lovely as well...... (Maggini/Naxos)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Daverz on May 22, 2020, 02:18:23 PM
Get that one immediately ;D



The latest remastering is a great sonic improvement over that CD, though. 

https://www.prostudiomasters.com/search?cs=1&q=moeran#quickview/album/37627
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 22, 2020, 04:33:44 PM
For anyone who missed the link some time and many pages ago originally offered by another poster, here's a dissertation by Ian Maxwell titled "The Importance of Being Ernest John: Challenging the Misconceptions About the Life and Works of E. J. Moeran", a thoroughly documented and fascinating study that reviews all the previous literature and comes to often different conclusions about many things that had been thought well established:

https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/30276193.pdf

Reputed not to work in the UK, however.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 22, 2020, 10:12:22 PM
For anyone who missed the link some time and many pages ago originally offered by another poster, here's a dissertation by Ian Maxwell titled "The Importance of Being Ernest John: Challenging the Misconceptions About the Life and Works of E. J. Moeran", a thoroughly documented and fascinating study that reviews all the previous literature and comes to often different conclusions about many things that had been thought well established:

https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/30276193.pdf

Reputed not to work in the UK, however.

That link did work Greg. Thanks for posting it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 22, 2020, 10:24:48 PM
In addition to Olivier's recommendations, all of which I agree with, I would suggest these.
Dilkes's more intimate version of the Symphony is a compliment to the more magisterial Boult version and I wouldn't be without it. It is available in various manifestations and the one I posted makes a nice programme (available in expensively - in the UK anyway).
Coetmore was Moeran's wife and her performance of the Cello Concerto on Lyrita is the most moving of all (with Boult's accompaniment). Having said that she had ceased to play regularly by the time she made the recording and it is a bit 'rough' in places. However, I would not be without it either - I find the climax of the last movement overwhelming in that recording. Del Mar's recording of the lovely 'Sinfonietta' is my favourite version:
(http://[img][img])[/img][/img]
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 22, 2020, 11:10:31 PM
For anyone who missed the link some time and many pages ago originally offered by another poster, here's a dissertation by Ian Maxwell titled "The Importance of Being Ernest John: Challenging the Misconceptions About the Life and Works of E. J. Moeran", a thoroughly documented and fascinating study that reviews all the previous literature and comes to often different conclusions about many things that had been thought well established:

https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/30276193.pdf (https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/30276193.pdf)

Reputed not to work in the UK, however.
Excellent, Greg! I own Geoffrey Self's study, which is also slightly apologetic when it comes to Moeran's 'originality' and whether his music has its own 'voice'. It will be Interesting to see what this study will bring to the table.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vers la flamme on May 23, 2020, 06:37:44 AM
Get that one immediately ;D



then that :



also that :



Jeffrey will vouch for that :



 0:) :)

Thanks my friend, we'll take it one step at a time.  ;D The first one looks good. The Lyrita label has its die-hard fans here on the forums and I've been meaning to check it out.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on May 23, 2020, 11:58:03 PM
The attached might be of interest - a brief press-cutting I have.  Moeran struggles with his health and personal well-being are well known.  This is a little further insight......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 24, 2020, 12:02:12 AM
Sad. The Great War had a detrimental effect on him for the rest of his life (shrapnel in the head).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 24, 2020, 12:12:42 AM
Yes, very sad indeed. Moeran was injured during the Great War and had a piece of shrapnel embedded in his head which couldn't be safely removed. This is believed to have undermined his mental as well as his physical health. Thanks for posting the very interesting article RS.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 24, 2020, 09:00:35 AM
Yes, very sad indeed. Moeran was injured during the Great War and had a piece of shrapnel embedded in his head which couldn't be safely removed. This is believed to have undermined his mental as well as his physical health. Thanks for posting the very interesting article RS.

Ian Maxwell refers to the circumstances and consequences of Moeran's injury as "the most sensational aspect of the Moeran Myth", to which he gives elaborate and meticulous attention (beginning on page 154), concluding much of what has been believed isn't factual, - "persuasive but unsupported stories" as he puts it, - and really digs into things in provocative and eye-opening fashion to support that judgment (the summary of which begins on page 181).  It's fascinating, and does at least render "shrapnel in the head and its effects" open to question (a key element of Maxwell's case is speculative, however). We've perhaps accepted Geoffrey Self's sketch of Moeran's life (my only substantial resource up to now, apart from CD notes, - and whose own sources Maxwell repeatedly picks apart) too uncritically, - and not only in reference to the "war wound" issue.  Good to have beliefs challenged, even with no definitive outcome, - though not quite so comfortably and authoritatively being able to repeat what we thought we knew can be a bummer.

BTW, that "motoring incident" referred to in the press clipping Roasted Swan reproduces is treated in detail by Maxwell also.

It's Roasted Swan who first alerted me to Maxwell's study in this thread awhile back, for which I am very grateful.


Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 24, 2020, 12:27:24 PM
Ian Maxwell refers to the circumstances and consequences of Moeran's injury as "the most sensational aspect of the Moeran Myth", to which he gives elaborate and meticulous attention (beginning on page 154), concluding much of what has been believed isn't factual, - "persuasive but unsupported stories" as he puts it, - and really digs into things in provocative and eye-opening fashion to support that judgment (the summary of which begins on page 181).  It's fascinating, and does at least render "shrapnel in the head and its effects" open to question (a key element of Maxwell's case is speculative, however). We've perhaps accepted Geoffrey Self's sketch of Moeran's life (my only substantial resource up to now, apart from CD notes, - and whose own sources Maxwell repeatedly picks apart) too uncritically, - and not only in reference to the "war wound" issue.  Good to have beliefs challenged, even with no definitive outcome, - though not quite so comfortably and authoritatively being able to repeat what we thought we knew can be a bummer.

BTW, that "motoring incident" referred to in the press clipping Roasted Swan reproduces is treated in detail by Maxwell also.

It's Roasted Swan who first alerted me to Maxwell's study in this thread awhile back, for which I am very grateful.
Yes, although it does not destroy what it describes as 'the Moeran Myth' as it shows that there was clearly some evidence of the shrapnel wound to the head. Very interesting though.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on May 24, 2020, 11:06:05 PM
I'm just reading that thesis now. A pretty good read.

I think that Moeran is one of those composers who is endlessly patronised, but in reality he wrote very well-crafted music and hardly ever wrote a dull note.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 25, 2020, 02:09:43 AM
I'm just reading that thesis now. A pretty good read.

I think that Moeran is one of those composers who is endlessly patronised, but in reality he wrote very well-crafted music and hardly ever wrote a dull note.

I agree.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on May 25, 2020, 12:44:42 PM
Maxwell's thesis is pretty convincing except for one thing: he argues that Moeran's war service was not long and, compared to others who served in the trenches, not as traumatic (Moeran didn't serve in the trenches but was a motorbike messenger, so was backwards and forwards from the front line and not stuck in the trenches under bombardment (though when he was wounded it was the result of being shot at, so being in a fairly close combat situation)). His war wound seems to have been less serious than has been portrayed, he soon recovered from it, and there is no evidence of his having a metal plate put in his skull to treat a war wound (if he did have a plate it may have been as a result of a motor vehicle accident later in his life).

Maxwell explains Moeran's later alcoholism as a result, not of a head wound, or PTSD caused by his time in the trenches, but as a result of his association with Philip Heseltine (Peter Warlock) from 1925 onwards. However, I am pretty sure that it is almost unheard of for someone who had no problems with alcohol before suddenly choosing to become a heavy drinker around the beginning of middle age. Like other addictions, basically unless you begin early you never get hooked. So I suspect either that:

1. Moeran began drinking at school when he was away from home and managed to keep his drinking under control until living in the same house as Hestletine brought it out in the open.
2. He began drinking in the Army in Britain, and continued in France and Ireland and after the War and then it got worse after 1925. (In Goodbye to All That Robert Graves incidentally reveals that he acquired a heavy drinking habit in the trenches. This was because of the drinking culture of the officer corps and the stress of being the trenches.)

I agree with Maxwell that Moeran's drinking was not a result of PTSD (because it probably began before he was exposed to combat) but I don't think that it only began in 1925.

However, these are just quibbles, what's important is the music, and Moeran's music is very good, and it's good that he managed to complete what he did despite his alcoholism.

(Beethoven was a heavy drinker throughout his life too!)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 25, 2020, 02:46:56 PM
Whatever the remaining ambiguities, I agree Maxwell pretty convincingly debunks any notion that Moeran's war experience and a war wound was directly and primarily responsible for his later difficulties with alcohol and otherwise.  Just how much their origin should now be shifted to the Eynsford cottage hiatus and problematic influence of Heseltine is debatable (as you suggest), but Maxwell has uncovered such an abundance of details and plausibly interpreted them, so as to make one's understanding of Moeran much fuller and more nuanced than previous sources allowed for.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on May 25, 2020, 10:07:18 PM

However, these are just quibbles, what's important is the music, and Moeran's music is very good, and it's good that he managed to complete what he did despite his alcoholism.


You have hit the nail on the head.  The context of how the music came to be written is valuable and interesting but ultimately whether it engages people today will be because the music itself has merit nothing else.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 25, 2020, 11:42:49 PM
You have hit the nail on the head.  The context of how the music came to be written is valuable and interesting but ultimately whether it engages people today will be because the music itself has merit nothing else.

Who Moeran was, and us knowing that doesn't impact the "merit" of his music?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 25, 2020, 11:51:15 PM
Who Moeran was, and us knowing that doesn't impact the "merit" of his music?
Knowing about Moeran does add to our understanding of the music. But its quality is something apart from that. I loved the symphony, for instance, on its own musical merits long before I knew anything about Moeran's life.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 26, 2020, 12:34:31 AM
Knowing about Moeran does add to our understanding of the music. But its quality is something apart from that. I loved the symphony, for instance, on its own musical merits long before I knew anything about Moeran's life.

Yes, me too, apart from what I read on the back of the old Neville Dilkes EMI LP sleeve. I'd never heard of him and impulse bought the LP, featuring the Symphony, from the Harrods Record Dept. in London, where I was working  (in the silk department  ::)) during my university holidays. I remember that I was entitled to a staff discount on the LP! When I got home and played it, it was a revelation to me and I never looked back with Moeran.
Currently enjoying this CD of even older recordings:

(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on May 26, 2020, 01:27:31 AM
Have just read through this entire thread with much pleasure, notwithstanding many posts from me repeating more or less the same information  ::). Made me realise how much I miss those members who have disappeared from the forum, including the starter of the thread. Anyway, I look forward to reading more of the Moeran dissertation posted by Greg.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on May 26, 2020, 06:04:35 AM
One of the great wonders of the internet is being able to access unknown/previously inaccessible papers on any kind of subject.  Moeran seems to have prompted a few doctoral theses in his time.  Aprt from the one recently discussed there is also;

"A critical study of the life and works of E J Moeran" (Melbourne 1982) - https://minerva-access.unimelb.edu.au/handle/11343/35509
and
"An exploration of the compositional idiom of E. J. Moeran with specific focus on his cello concerto" (Sydney university 2010) - https://ses.library.usyd.edu.au/handle/2123/8800

Most interesting I have found the copies and description of the sketches for the 2nd Symphony - https://www.musicologyireland.com/jsmi/index.php/journal/article/view/81/89

The article by Fabian Huss accompanying these sketches seems to have been removed..... but here's another link I found

This analysis of the sketches shows the real struggle Moeran had later in his life when his mental health significantly impinged on his ability to compose.  Others have found Martin Yates's reconstruction of Symphony 2 to be effective and compelling.  With other works - Elgar 3 notably - I enjoy reconstructions greatly - there is a sense that only time (or lack of it) really deprived the likes of Elgar/Bruckner/Mahler etc completing works.  With this Moeran I think that the truth is that sadly he had lost the ability to write large coherent structures and that perhaps this work should have been allowed to remain as sketches.  Too much of the  recorded symphony sounds to me like good pastiche Moeran rather than the real thing.  A wholly subjective opinion I know!


Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 26, 2020, 06:35:00 AM
Despite some attractive themes, "Symphony 2" hasn't worn well with me.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on May 26, 2020, 07:24:38 AM
Knowing about Moeran does add to our understanding of the music. But its quality is something apart from that. I loved the symphony, for instance, on its own musical merits long before I knew anything about Moeran's life.

You are "knowing Moeran" in assimilating his music is how I would put it.  Discursive understanding ("knowing about") may come later, but the music (it's merits or quality) is never detached or separate from him previous to that.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 26, 2020, 08:25:13 AM
You are "knowing Moeran" in assimilating his music is how I would put it.  Discursive understanding may come later, but the music (it's merits or quality) is never detached or separate from him previous to that.
I understood your earlier remark to mean that 'knowing about Moeran' in a biographical sense was related to how we assess the quality of his music, its 'merit'.
Of course you also 'know Moeran' by listening to his music. But music is its own process, with its own logic and cogency, and is only related to the composer in a more abstract sense.
So what I said was that knowing about Moeran biographically has no bearing, for me, on how I assess the quality of the music. Just as I don't take Wagner's antisemitism in account in assessing the quality of that man's music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Symphonic Addict on June 06, 2020, 02:20:47 PM
I'm listening to the Fantasy Quartet, for oboe and string trio from here:

(https://img.discogs.com/pKb2Zbbv7sy6uFaCy9cCnfzNWMw=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-9926650-1488667979-3964.jpeg.jpg)

A fascinating piece of music, imbued with melancholy and that typical English pastoral air, but not devoid of sparkling and jolly moments either. A most welcome find today.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on June 06, 2020, 03:07:19 PM
I'm listening to the Fantasy Quartet, for oboe and string trio from here:

(https://img.discogs.com/pKb2Zbbv7sy6uFaCy9cCnfzNWMw=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-9926650-1488667979-3964.jpeg.jpg)

A fascinating piece of music, imbued with melancholy and that typical English pastoral air, but not devoid of sparkling and jolly moments either. A most welcome find today.

+1 Yes, a very fine work! Moeran’s small chamber output contains some gems, like the A minor string quartet (I don’t know the other one) and the Cello Sonata, a powerful and passionate work:

https://youtu.be/nJ7L5XlBIhk

I’ve been enjoying this CD as of late, particularly the first two Rhapsodies and the Overture for a Masque:



I’m struck by the occasional similarities to Braga Santos’ earlier style in the bright, breezy, folksy nature of this music. Is it possible that the two composers knew each other’s music? Not likely, but not impossible I suppose! I’d certainly like to hear Falletta give a recording of the G minor Symphony, since she’s so attuned to Moeran’s style throughout the above disc.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Symphonic Addict on June 06, 2020, 05:19:25 PM
+1 Yes, a very fine work! Moeran’s small chamber output contains some gems, like the A minor string quartet (I don’t know the other one) and the Cello Sonata, a powerful and passionate work:

https://youtu.be/nJ7L5XlBIhk

I’ve been enjoying this CD as of late, particularly the first two Rhapsodies and the Overture for a Masque:



I’m struck by the occasional similarities to Braga Santos’ earlier style in the bright, breezy, folksy nature of this music. Is it possible that the two composers knew each other’s music? Not likely, but not impossible I suppose! I’d certainly like to hear Falletta give a recording of the G minor Symphony, since she’s so attuned to Moeran’s style throughout the above disc.

Agreed on the String Quartet, but the Cello Sonata didn't impress me that much to be honest.

I also hear some English reminiscences on Braga Santos, being VW and Moeran like the closest composers in idiom.

I should revisit that Naxos CD. This also features the Rhapsodies minus the Overture for a Masque:

(https://cdn.naxosmusiclibrary.com/sharedfiles/images/cds/hires/CHAN8639.jpg)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 06, 2020, 08:09:36 PM
+1 Yes, a very fine work! Moeran’s small chamber output contains some gems, like the A minor string quartet (I don’t know the other one) and the Cello Sonata, a powerful and passionate work:

https://youtu.be/nJ7L5XlBIhk

I’ve been enjoying this CD as of late, particularly the first two Rhapsodies and the Overture for a Masque:



I’m struck by the occasional similarities to Braga Santos’ earlier style in the bright, breezy, folksy nature of this music. Is it possible that the two composers knew each other’s music? Not likely, but not impossible I suppose! I’d certainly like to hear Falletta give a recording of the G minor Symphony, since she’s so attuned to Moeran’s style throughout the above disc.
I can see the Braga Santos/Moeran connection. I suspect that Braga Santos may have, most likely, been influenced by the work of Vaughan Williams but who knows? 'In the Mountain Country' is another work that I like, featured on those discs and yes, it would be great to hear Ms Falletta record the Symphony.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Christo on June 07, 2020, 12:52:41 AM
I can see the Braga Santos/Moeran connection. I suspect that Braga Santos may have, most likely, been influenced by the work of Vaughan Williams but who knows? 'In the Mountain Country' is another work that I like, featured on those discs and yes, it would be great to hear Ms Falletta record the Symphony.

I once found that the very first chords of Moeran's Sinfonietta (1945) are echoed almost exactly in the opening chords of the scherzo from Braga Santos' Third Symphony, composed three years later (depends a bit on the performance of the Sinfonietta, I took the one by the Philharmonic Orchestra under Sir Adrian Boult, BBC Radio Classics 15656 91632).

Of course you can compare for yourselves now, with Youtube, Braga Santos' scherzo starting at 22:00 exactly:
https://www.youtube.com/v/gEsSJEPiwFM https://www.youtube.com/v/JQxBKV9rs2c
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 07, 2020, 05:38:07 AM
I once found that the very first chords of Moeran's Sinfonietta (1945) are echoed almost exactly in the opening chords of the scherzo from Braga Santos' Third Symphony, composed three years later (depends a bit on the performance of the Sinfonietta, I took the one by the Philharmonic Orchestra under Sir Adrian Boult, BBC Radio Classics 15656 91632).

Of course you can compare for yourselves now, with Youtube, Braga Santos' scherzo starting at 22:00 exactly:
https://www.youtube.com/v/gEsSJEPiwFM https://www.youtube.com/v/JQxBKV9rs2c
Yes, I can see/hear what you mean.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on June 07, 2020, 05:53:59 AM
I recall being the most impressed by the Symphony, Sinfonietta and Serenade in G major. I listened to some of his chamber music and didn’t really connect with them, but I did enjoy one of the SQs --- I forget which one at the moment.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 07, 2020, 06:57:06 AM
The 'so-called' Braga Santos Experts ride again!  ;D (Vandermolen, Christo)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 07, 2020, 07:14:46 AM
I once found that the very first chords of Moeran's Sinfonietta (1945) are echoed almost exactly in the opening chords of the scherzo from Braga Santos' Third Symphony, composed three years later (depends a bit on the performance of the Sinfonietta, I took the one by the Philharmonic Orchestra under Sir Adrian Boult, BBC Radio Classics 15656 91632).

Of course you can compare for yourselves now, with Youtube, Braga Santos' scherzo starting at 22:00 exactly:
https://www.youtube.com/v/gEsSJEPiwFM https://www.youtube.com/v/JQxBKV9rs2c
It's even the same tonality....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 07, 2020, 12:06:15 PM
Just in passing, don't get why my posts (at least 2) have been deleted here.  Not that posterity needed them.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 07, 2020, 12:09:08 PM
Just in passing, don't get why my posts (at least 2) have been deleted here.  Not that posterity needed them.

The site crashed and the backup was from a couple of days before that - so anything posted in that gap from backup to crash is lost.  Sadly I posted a large series of wholly insightful, profoundly intelligent and deeply meaningful posts during that time... Gone all gone...... that's my story and I'm sticking to it
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Symphonic Addict on June 07, 2020, 04:43:30 PM
The site crashed and the backup was from a couple of days before that - so anything posted in that gap from backup to crash is lost.  Sadly I posted a large series of wholly insightful, profoundly intelligent and deeply meaningful posts during that time... Gone all gone...... that's my story and I'm sticking to it

How humble!  ;D  :P
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 07, 2020, 08:52:39 PM
The 'so-called' Braga Santos Experts ride again!  ;D (Vandermolen, Christo)
Yes Christo and I have returned Phoenix-like from the ashes.
 8)

(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 07, 2020, 10:53:25 PM
Yes Christo and I have returned Phoenix-like from the ashes.
 8)

(http://)

are they good likenesses?  Which one is you?(!)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 07, 2020, 11:11:30 PM
are they good likenesses?  Which one is you?(!)

Lower one  8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 07, 2020, 11:57:40 PM
Lower one  8)
I can vouch for that.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 08, 2020, 01:07:38 AM
I can vouch for that.
Indeed!
 ;D

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: kyjo on June 08, 2020, 09:52:57 AM
I once found that the very first chords of Moeran's Sinfonietta (1945) are echoed almost exactly in the opening chords of the scherzo from Braga Santos' Third Symphony, composed three years later (depends a bit on the performance of the Sinfonietta, I took the one by the Philharmonic Orchestra under Sir Adrian Boult, BBC Radio Classics 15656 91632).

Of course you can compare for yourselves now, with Youtube, Braga Santos' scherzo starting at 22:00 exactly:
https://www.youtube.com/v/gEsSJEPiwFM https://www.youtube.com/v/JQxBKV9rs2c

Indeed, the resemblance is quite uncanny! :o
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 09, 2020, 11:15:13 AM
Just in passing, don't get why my posts (at least 2) have been deleted here.  Not that posterity needed them.
But at least the Durham thesis on Moeran is still there.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 10, 2020, 12:23:57 AM
Been greatly enjoying this - a bit of a patchwork but sounds authentically like the voice of Moeran. Such a pity that he never completed the work himself:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Symphonic Addict on June 10, 2020, 07:59:14 AM
Been greatly enjoying this - a bit of a patchwork but sounds authentically like the voice of Moeran. Such a pity that he never completed the work himself:
(http://)

Good to know you changed your mind about this symphony, Jeffrey. Despite it wasn't completed by the Moeran, it sounds very close to his style as you say.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 10, 2020, 08:58:23 AM
Yes Cesar, I have enjoyed it much more now than first time round.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on June 10, 2020, 09:03:10 AM
Been greatly enjoying this - a bit of a patchwork but sounds authentically like the voice of Moeran. Such a pity that he never completed the work himself:
(http://)

The alternative performance you can download at AMF is much better IMO.

Despite some very attractive themes I don't find the work hangs together well (as you suggest).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 10, 2020, 09:24:20 AM
The alternative performance you can download at AMF is much better IMO.

Despite some very attractive themes I don't find the work hangs together well (as you suggest).

I'm with you on this.  Read/check out the detailed description of the surviving sketches.  They are not coherent in the way Elgar 3/Bruckner 9/Mahler 10 are - and consider the controversy surrounding those works!  This Moeran 2 is a very good pastiche on fragmentary themes by Moeran.  If you enjoy it on that basis - fine, no problem - but for me calling it "Moeran 2" is simply not true.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 10, 2020, 10:31:27 AM
I'm with you on this.  Read/check out the detailed description of the surviving sketches.  They are not coherent in the way Elgar 3/Bruckner 9/Mahler 10 are - and consider the controversy surrounding those works!  This Moeran 2 is a very good pastiche on fragmentary themes by Moeran.  If you enjoy it on that basis - fine, no problem - but for me calling it "Moeran 2" is simply not true.

I don't disagree with this at all. I just liked it more this time round.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 10, 2020, 11:07:52 AM
I don't disagree with this at all. I just liked it more this time round.

We rarely disagree!  I happened to relisten to this disc a couple of months ago for the simple reason that my early/first reaction had been dismissive and given the generally positive response I wondered if I'd over-reacted.  In fact I think I enjoyed it even less the second time!  And the icing on the cake are the accompanying Ireland orchestrations which sound nothing like Ireland would have ever scored for orchestra.  For me a rare Dutton-dud.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 10, 2020, 11:15:13 AM
We rarely disagree!  I happened to relisten to this disc a couple of months ago for the simple reason that my early/first reaction had been dismissive and given the generally positive response I wondered if I'd over-reacted.  In fact I think I enjoyed it even less the second time!  And the icing on the cake are the accompanying Ireland orchestrations which sound nothing like Ireland would have ever scored for orchestra.  For me a rare Dutton-dud.

I thought the Ireland orchestration sounded a bit like Delius in places - I still enjoyed it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: 71 dB on June 11, 2020, 03:49:00 PM
vandermolen, I coudn't send you PM because your message box is full.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 11, 2020, 09:54:18 PM
Thank you! I thought as a subscriber I had almost unlimited PM storage but evidently not! I'll have to have a PM sort out and thank you for letting me know. Hopefully I will be in contact again soon.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 11, 2020, 10:39:12 PM
vandermolen, I coudn't send you PM because your message box is full.
PS my forum profile includes my email address, so if you, or anyone else, wants to contact me please feel free to do it that way until I sort the PM problem out.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: 71 dB on June 12, 2020, 01:31:46 AM
Thank you! I thought as a subscriber I had almost unlimited PM storage but evidently not! I'll have to have a PM sort out and thank you for letting me know. Hopefully I will be in contact again soon.

PS my forum profile includes my email address, so if you, or anyone else, wants to contact me please feel free to do it that way until I sort the PM problem out.

No problem. Yes, the PM storage runs out easily. I sent you email instead for now.  ;)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 24, 2020, 12:19:54 PM
From 1943 the Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra is one of Moeran's best works in my opinion, even that my preference is for strings over piano. A kaleidoscope of a work both musically and emotionally, there is a moment where time itself is put on hold. My impression of Moeran is of an instinctive composer but the Rhapsody breaks the mould in so far as seemingly a composition with a structure brilliantly conceived. A fine Lyrita recording and John McCabe rates the work highly which is obvious in the commitment to the piece by his performance.

 (https://i.imgur.com/qj4GniC.jpg)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 24, 2020, 12:28:59 PM
From 1943 the Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra is one of Moeran's best works in my opinion, even that my preference is for strings over piano. A kaleidoscope of a work both musically and emotionally, there is a moment where time itself is put on hold. My impression of Moeran is of an instinctive composer but the Rhapsody breaks the mould in so far as seemingly a composition with a structure brilliantly conceived. A fine Lyrita recording and John McCabe rates the work highly which is obvious in the commitment to the piece by his performance.

 (https://i.imgur.com/qj4GniC.jpg)
Interesting Lol. Of course I had that fine old Lyrita LP. I must listen to the work again as it's a long time since I heard it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 25, 2020, 12:58:10 AM
Interesting Lol. Of course I had that fine old Lyrita LP. I must listen to the work again as it's a long time since I heard it.

A work Jeffrey that I think would appeal to someone not into Moeran.

That, the symphony, violin and cello concertos are my favourite works by him. Well thought of but the penny is yet to drop for the Serenade and Sinfonietta. I deed to switch to a different recording maybe.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 25, 2020, 01:22:56 AM
A work Jeffrey that I think would appeal to someone not into Moeran.

That, the symphony, violin and cello concertos are my favourite works by him. Well thought of but the penny is yet to drop for the Serenade and Sinfonietta. I deed to switch to a different recording maybe.
I like the Sinfonietta Lol but don't (yet) rate the Serenade so highly.
My favourites are the Symphony and the Cello Concerto followed by the Sinfonietta and Cello Sonata. More recently I've come to increasingly admire the Violin Concerto.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 25, 2020, 06:08:10 AM
I like the Sinfonietta Lol but don't (yet) rate the Serenade so highly.
My favourites are the Symphony and the Cello Concerto followed by the Sinfonietta and Cello Sonata. More recently I've come to increasingly admire the Violin Concerto.

Yes, I am with you Jeffrey with the Cello Sonata - interestingly the Lyrita recording of this work is the only in my entire music collection that sends my speakers in a flap, literally! In other words no other recording reaches as low in bass. I am now able to operate bass cut in my pre but actually prefer to ride out the (bass) storm.

The string quartets are OK and string trio better but not Moeran at his best I feel. Need to explore works for piano.

For a composer I so admire who's output was quite small, I shamefully admit not getting around to the reverse side of the Lyrita Cello Concerto LP, Overture for a Masque and Rhapsody No.2. Are you familiar with these pieces, Jeffrey?

Blimey, its hot in leafy Surrey!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 25, 2020, 10:10:37 AM
Yes, I am with you Jeffrey with the Cello Sonata - interestingly the Lyrita recording of this work is the only in my entire music collection that sends my speakers in a flap, literally! In other words no other recording reaches as low in bass. I am now able to operate bass cut in my pre but actually prefer to ride out the (bass) storm.

The string quartets are OK and string trio better but not Moeran at his best I feel. Need to explore works for piano.

For a composer I so admire who's output was quite small, I shamefully admit not getting around to the reverse side of the Lyrita Cello Concerto LP, Overture for a Masque and Rhapsody No.2. Are you familiar with these pieces, Jeffrey?

Blimey, its hot in leafy Surrey!

Yes, I like both of those works Lol. 'Overture to a Masque' doesn't sound very promising but it is a very characteristic and sometimes moving work. Far too hot for me. Can't stand it. I can't imagine anything worse than being on a packed beach in Bournemouth catching Coronavirus. Bring on Winter! This may sound like 'grumpy old man' syndrome but, due to Hay-fever I hated summer as a child and sat my university final exams during the appalling Summer of 1976 which went on forever.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on June 25, 2020, 10:49:39 PM
Yes, I like both of those works Lol. 'Overture to a Masque' doesn't sound very promising but it is a very characteristic and sometimes moving work. Far too hot for me. Can't stand it. I can't imagine anything worse than being on a packed beach in Bournemouth catching Coronavirus. Bring on Winter! This may sound like 'grumpy old man' syndrome but, due to Hay-fever I hated summer as a child and sat my university final exams during the appalling Summer of 1976 which went on forever.

Thanks, will give a spin. Listened to VC last night, had the ring of Delius in parts I thought.

In 1976 I was operating a Hoffman garment press in the basement of a shop in London with one extractor fan for company. Young man then so got through it but don't know how!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 26, 2020, 12:32:40 AM
Thanks, will give a spin. Listened to VC last night, had the ring of Delius in parts I thought.

In 1976 I was operating a Hoffman garment press in the basement of a shop in London with one extractor fan for company. Young man then so got through it but don't know how!
OT
Sounds appalling.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aukhawk on June 27, 2020, 01:46:18 AM
Summer of 76 went on forever for me too - but in a good way
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 27, 2020, 04:36:15 AM
Summer of 76 went on forever for me too - but in a good way
Pleased to hear it!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Christo on June 28, 2020, 12:14:09 AM
Summer of 76 went on forever for me too - but in a good way
Don't tell me you once had a Summer over there!  ???
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 28, 2020, 01:38:47 AM
Don't tell me you once had a Summer over there!  ???

Wasn't the summer of '76 the "plague" of ladybirds?  I remember a year when the school playground was carpeted with ladybirds and you could not walk anywhere without crushing thousands - it was quite traumatic!  This was in Liverpool - and for the avoidance of any doubt I'd just like to mention we are now Premier League Champions in case anyone hadn't heard.........
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on June 28, 2020, 04:44:08 AM
Wasn't the summer of '76 the "plague" of ladybirds?  I remember a year when the school playground was carpeted with ladybirds and you could not walk anywhere without crushing thousands - it was quite traumatic!  This was in Liverpool - and for the avoidance of any doubt I'd just like to mention we are now Premier League Champions in case anyone hadn't heard.........
Yes, I had noticed that. Were you one of the attendees at the unofficial Rave Party celebrations in the city centre?
 ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on June 28, 2020, 07:28:42 AM
Yes, I had noticed that. Were you one of the attendees at the unofficial Rave Party celebrations in the city centre?
 ;D

I now live in sedate Surrey where I'm not sure we do raves - even after a 30 year wait......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on December 27, 2020, 04:35:44 PM
I was pleased and surprised to see that the indomitable David Hurwitz has done a comparative survey of the Moeran Symphony. I largely agree with his comments, although I especially like the Neville Dilkes recording. I have come to appreciate the Handley version more over the past year or so:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=wJymxkTi8Vc
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on December 27, 2020, 05:34:06 PM
Thanks, Jeffrey. I've become a fan of Hurwitz and his channel. This one I had missed. Will watch! The Boult and the Handley are my favourites. But I don't know the Dilkes...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on December 27, 2020, 08:17:44 PM
Might one of the (YouTube) commenters tell Dave he's pronouncing the name wrong.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on December 28, 2020, 02:28:42 AM
Might one of the (YouTube) commenters tell Dave he's pronouncing the name wrong.

Yes, also the first conductor was 'Leslie Heward' and not 'Leslie Howard' who was an actor killed in World War Two.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 15, 2021, 04:54:47 AM
Having recently discovered this Forum, I have just read the entirety of the EJ Moeran discussion, and have noted with interest the comments on my Durham PhD thesis that some forum members have been able to read. Forum members may be interested to know that the thesis has finally developed into a full-length biography of Moeran, due for publication in June 2021.

After graduating with my doctorate in 2015, I continued my research into the life and work of Moeran, and was able to uncover substantial additional evidence that has both added to and superseded the conclusions reached in the PhD Thesis - some of which is now obsolete. I hope that the forthcoming book will clarify much of Moeran's life for those still clinging to the extensive mythology, and will interest others in a composer whose full significance in British music is only now beginning to be revealed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Brewski on March 15, 2021, 05:29:46 AM
Hello, Dr. Maxwell, thanks for weighing in, and welcome! Feel free to roam around the discussions here and contribute if you like.

--Bruce
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 15, 2021, 05:36:47 AM
That's very good news indeed. We need a proper biography of Moeran dealing with both the man and his music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 15, 2021, 06:23:26 AM
Thank you. Since I don't know the Forum policy on advertising and promoting one's own work, I have not given any specific details of the book title or publisher, but a Google search of Moeran coupled with my surname will bring up the relevant information.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 15, 2021, 06:39:09 AM
Excellent news - I will be ordering a copy for sure!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 15, 2021, 06:40:36 AM
Excellent news - I will be ordering a copy for sure!
+1

Do you know if and when the paperback edition will be published?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 15, 2021, 07:24:48 AM
A tangential query to Dr Maxwell.  I was googling your name as suggested to find details about the Moeran book but found as well reference to Joseph Joachim who you have written about.  Is it coincidental that you were in Durham.... my father was the principal of a teacher training college in Liverpool.  A close friend and colleague of his was Nina Joachim who was principal of St. Hilds in Durham.  She was a relation of Joachim violinist and had a remarkable silver salva on which had been engraved the signatures of the great and the good when it was given to Joachim as a gift (can't remember the occasion).  Did you know Nina Joachim and/or this link?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 15, 2021, 08:49:32 PM
Having recently discovered this Forum, I have just read the entirety of the EJ Moeran discussion, and have noted with interest the comments on my Durham PhD thesis that some forum members have been able to read. Forum members may be interested to know that the thesis has finally developed into a full-length biography of Moeran, due for publication in June 2021.

After graduating with my doctorate in 2015, I continued my research into the life and work of Moeran, and was able to uncover substantial additional evidence that has both added to and superseded the conclusions reached in the PhD Thesis - some of which is now obsolete. I hope that the forthcoming book will clarify much of Moeran's life for those still clinging to the extensive mythology, and will interest others in a composer whose full significance in British music is only now beginning to be revealed.
A bit late to the party, but this is excellent news. High time Self's pioneering book was superseded!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 16, 2021, 12:43:31 AM
A bit late to the party, but this is excellent news. High time Self's pioneering book was superseded!
I agree, Geoffrey Self's book was very good but it focused mainly on the music.

The tribute below is both entertaining and touching and worth reading:

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2009/Oct09/Geoffrey_Self.htm
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 16, 2021, 01:47:59 AM
A bit late to the party, but this is excellent news. High time Self's pioneering book was superseded!
Self’s brief was primarily an examination of Moeran’s music in the context of a theory he had developed during research for an MMus degree in which he proposed that M’s music incorporated loci classici, referencing other music believed to evoke particular emotional responses. His biographical content was constrained both by space and a lack of primary evidence. However, at the time he was writing, several people who knew Moeran were still alive, and Self relied on their testimony for much of his necessarily superficial account of the composer’s life. Unfortunately, he had little possibility of verifying this evidence, and accepted it is it stood. The result, in combination with the personal evidence provided by Lionel Hill in Lonely Waters, which was published around the same time, was an uncritical assumption that, because these people actually  knew Moeran, their testimony must have been authoritative. Together with earlier evidence published by Philip Heseltine during the 1920s which derived from his friendship with Moeran, the two 1980s books contributed substantially to the “Moeran mythology”.

While my book substantially rewrites the Moeran biography, the music, of course, remains the same. But my hope is that a clearer and more realistic appreciation of its composer’s life will enable a better understanding of the circumstances under which the music was conceived, and so enhance the listening experience.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 16, 2021, 01:49:20 AM
+1

Do you know if and when the paperback edition will be published?

No plans for a paperback edition at the moment. However, there will be an eBook version alongside the hardback.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 16, 2021, 01:52:21 AM
No plans for a paperback edition at the moment. However, there will be an eBook version alongside the hardback.
That's excellent news (eBook)!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 16, 2021, 01:52:59 AM
A tangential query to Dr Maxwell.  I was googling your name as suggested to find details about the Moeran book but found as well reference to Joseph Joachim who you have written about.  Is it coincidental that you were in Durham.... my father was the principal of a teacher training college in Liverpool.  A close friend and colleague of his was Nina Joachim who was principal of St. Hilds in Durham.  She was a relation of Joachim violinist and had a remarkable silver salva on which had been engraved the signatures of the great and the good when it was given to Joachim as a gift (can't remember the occasion).  Did you know Nina Joachim and/or this link?

The Durham connection is coincidence, but was more or less imposed because it was the only UK university music department sufficiently interested in my research project to offer me a place. However, I did meet Nina Joachim once when I was about 10 years old. She was the sister of Jo Joachim of Wigton (grandson of Joseph Joachim) whose wife Bernice was my piano teacher during the 1960s. I have been examining the British Joachim family archives with a view to writing a book on "the British Joachim".
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 16, 2021, 01:58:13 AM
Self’s brief was primarily an examination of Moeran’s music in the context of a theory he had developed during research for an MMus degree in which he proposed that M’s music incorporated loci classici, referencing other music believed to evoke particular emotional responses. His biographical content was constrained both by space and a lack of primary evidence. However, at the time he was writing, several people who knew Moeran were still alive, and Self relied on their testimony for much of his necessarily superficial account of the composer’s life. Unfortunately, he had little possibility of verifying this evidence, and accepted it is it stood. The result, in combination with the personal evidence provided by Lionel Hill in Lonely Waters, which was published around the same time, was an uncritical assumption that, because these people actually  knew Moeran, their testimony must have been authoritative. Together with earlier evidence published by Philip Heseltine during the 1902s which derived from his friendship with Moeran, the two 1980s books contributed substantially to the “Moeran mythology”.

While my book substantially rewrites the Moeran biography, the music, of course, remains the same. But my hope is that a clearer and more realistic appreciation of its composer’s life will enable a better understanding of the circumstances under which the music was conceived, and so enhance the listening experience.
Many thanks for this answer, and for the fact that you wanted to put the record straight about Moeran. I have always been a bit miffed about Self's idea that Moeran was some sort of brilliant magpie, taking things from other composers, recombining them, and then the war trauma comes in to give the music its own bittersweet stamp. I cannot wait to see the varnish taken off this wonderful composer!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 16, 2021, 02:07:05 AM
Many thanks for this answer, and for the fact that you wanted to put the record straight about Moeran. I have always been a bit miffed about Self's idea that Moeran was some sort of brilliant magpie, taking things from other composers, recombining them, and then the war trauma comes in to give the music its own bittersweet stamp. I cannot wait to see the varnish taken off this wonderful composer!

Regarding Moeran's originality, this is a paragraph from the Introduction to my book. There is, of course, much more detail in the main text.

"Opinion has been divided as to what extent Moeran created a distinctive voice in his music, with writers being reluctant to credit him with freshness of idea or style. Indeed, discussion of Moeran has almost always taken place within the context of seemingly obvious influences from other composers, such as Ireland, Delius, Warlock or Sibelius, and the higher profile enjoyed by these composers has ensured that when apparent similarities are identified, it is always Moeran’s music that is presumed to be the derivative. The notion that he exhibited a unique style that may even have inspired other composers has never been considered seriously, and his compositional skill has been relegated to an expertise in the re-working of influences. The existence of creative individuality is difficult to establish effectively, as it ultimately requires the identification of the nebulous quality of originality. Nevertheless, if it may be reasonably asserted that Moeran’s music could not have been composed by anybody else, then it is equally reasonable to assert that Moeran did have a distinct voice."
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 16, 2021, 02:09:15 AM
Hear! Hear!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 16, 2021, 02:13:18 AM
Hear! Hear!

Having already quoted from my Introduction, I thought I may as well quote the final paragraph - just in case any appetites need to be whetted!

"While Moeran’s music, as with that of many of his contemporaries, must now find an alternative relevance in a world that can no longer remember the traumas experienced and witnessed by its creator, its appreciation can surely only be enhanced if it is accompanied by a clear understanding of its composer’s life. Moeran’s achievement is available for all to experience in the one hundred and twenty or so musical compositions that posterity possesses, and which technology has now ensured most of which may be listened to by almost anybody at almost any time. It is the enduring legacy of a life that, as this book will show, was filled variously with promise, achievement, disappointment and despair. While bearing in mind Igor Stravinsky’s admonishment that if music appears to express anything beyond itself, this can only ever be an illusion, it is nonetheless suggested that the sensations and emotions that much of Moeran’s music still has the capacity to arouse in attentive listeners may, in themselves, be regarded as evidence that he successfully expressed himself. It is the nature of music that each response to it is an individual one, informed by the unique experiences of each listener, and it is the lasting power of Moeran’s creation that it still resonates so vividly. This book presents a definitive and candid study both of Moeran (the man) and of Moeran (the composer), each finally revealed after decades of opaqueness and misunderstanding. The journey of discovery is both challenging and fascinating."
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 16, 2021, 02:16:41 AM
This not only whets my appetite, I'm positively drooling...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 16, 2021, 03:04:48 AM
No plans for a paperback edition at the moment. However, there will be an eBook version alongside the hardback.
Thanks v much.

The discovery of Moeran's Symphony (Dilkes LP) had a great impact on my youthful self.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 16, 2021, 04:48:50 AM
That's excellent news (eBook)!

Is it best to order direct form the publishers?  You hear stories of the big online retailers driving such punitive deals with publishers and authors that any profit margin for the creators is all but eliminated.....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on March 16, 2021, 08:07:56 AM
Delius needs a similar effort to what you've accomplished with Moeran.  There's never been a definitive biography that ties all the threads together.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 16, 2021, 08:10:40 AM
Agreed. It's like a broken mirror.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 16, 2021, 08:14:07 AM
Delius needs a similar effort to what you've accomplished with Moeran.  There's never been a definitive biography that ties all the threads together.
A new book on Delius is being published the same day as mine on Moeran. Coincidentally, it has been written by my doctoral supervisor Jeremy Dibble.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 16, 2021, 08:15:30 AM
Ha! Excellent!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 16, 2021, 08:16:29 AM
Is it best to order direct form the publishers?  You hear stories of the big online retailers driving such punitive deals with publishers and authors that any profit margin for the creators is all but eliminated.....
Since my royalty percentage is pitiful, it really makes little difference from my point of view. I guess you're best to go for wherever you get the best deal.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on March 16, 2021, 04:23:11 PM
Since my royalty percentage is pitiful, it really makes little difference from my point of view. I guess you're best to go for wherever you get the best deal.

Even were it to become a big hit among Moeran enthusiasts (as it should and will be assuming its existence becomes known), just how many of those are there in this world?   I suppose libraries are always the most reliable stalwarts in purchasing such volumes, and willing to pay a hefty price for them also.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on March 17, 2021, 12:19:24 AM
Even were it to become a big hit among Moeran enthusiasts (as it should and will be assuming its existence becomes known), just how many of those are there in this world?   I suppose libraries are always the most reliable stalwarts in purchasing such volumes, and willing to pay a hefty price for it also.

To my mind £40/45 is very reasonable for a high quality hardback book.  I tend to buy this type of publication as soon as they appear because it seems depressingly short how long they are "in print".  I'll be ordering the Moeran book for sure and probably the Delius book too!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 17, 2021, 03:07:22 AM
To my mind £40/45 is very reasonable for a high quality hardback book.  I tend to buy this type of publication as soon as they appear because it seems depressingly short how long they are "in print".  I'll be ordering the Moeran book for sure and probably the Delius book too!
My contract with the publisher envisages a print run of about 600 hardback copies, and this seems to be usual for academic books with a very limited circulation. The publisher's catalogue includes some very abstruse works, the market for which would clearly be very restricted. Academic book publishing is rarely about making money!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on March 17, 2021, 08:00:13 AM
There are few single volumes over the years I've been willing to pay $80(US) for (Amazon's pre-publication list price).  This will be one of them.

I remember when Tassie's Myaskovsky bio first appeared I saw it around for $50 or $60(US), but decided to hold off and wait for a cheaper used copy to appear.  I'm still waiting, and it now seems impossible to find under $100.

That's not happening with Dr Maxwell's Moeran book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Brewski on March 17, 2021, 08:05:11 AM
Thank you. Since I don't know the Forum policy on advertising and promoting one's own work, I have not given any specific details of the book title or publisher, but a Google search of Moeran coupled with my surname will bring up the relevant information.

Speaking as one of the moderators here, your courtesy and discretion makes me glad to have you posting, and clearly there are many here who are delighted to know of your new book. I confess not to know much of Moeran's work, but perhaps this will spur some exploration!

--Bruce
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on March 17, 2021, 09:33:46 AM
There are few single volumes over the years I've been willing to pay $80(US) for (Amazon's pre-publication list price).  This will be one of them.

I remember when Tassie's Myaskovsky bio first appeared I saw it around for $50 or $60(US), but decided to hold off and wait for a cheaper used copy to appear.  I'm still waiting, and it now seems impossible to find under $100.

That's not happening with Dr Maxwell's Moeran book.

While I would not wish to appear as excessively promoting the Durham University Music Department (particularly in the light of Brewski's kind comments), your mention of Myaskovsky prompts me to alert you to the publication, also on 18 June 2021, of another book from that currently prolific stable. It is "Nikolay Myaskovsky - A Composer and His Times" by Patrick Zuk
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Brewski on March 17, 2021, 10:10:02 AM
While I would not wish to appear as excessively promoting the Durham University Music Department (particularly in the light of Brewski's kind comments), your mention of Myaskovsky prompts me to alert you to the publication, also on 18 June 2021, of another book from that currently prolific stable. It is "Nikolay Myaskovsky - A Composer and His Times" by Patrick Zuk

Not to worry about Durham. We have a number of composers, writers, and other creative types here who periodically promote their work, or their institutions. All fine, as long as the forum's main purpose is kept in mind: discussion of (mostly) classical music.

--Bruce
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 17, 2021, 11:05:04 AM
There are few single volumes over the years I've been willing to pay $80(US) for (Amazon's pre-publication list price).  This will be one of them.

I remember when Tassie's Myaskovsky bio first appeared I saw it around for $50 or $60(US), but decided to hold off and wait for a cheaper used copy to appear.  I'm still waiting, and it now seems impossible to find under $100.

That's not happening with Dr Maxwell's Moeran book.
It's (NYM Tassie) coming out in paperback soon Greg.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on March 17, 2021, 11:06:51 AM
While I would not wish to appear as excessively promoting the Durham University Music Department (particularly in the light of Brewski's kind comments), your mention of Myaskovsky prompts me to alert you to the publication, also on 18 June 2021, of another book from that currently prolific stable. It is "Nikolay Myaskovsky - A Composer and His Times" by Patrick Zuk
V interesting about NYM biography as well.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 08, 2021, 07:50:34 AM
Look what arrived in today's post!  Very excited to start reading this......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 08, 2021, 11:56:11 AM
Look what arrived in today's post!  Very excited to start reading this......
Wow! Am most jealous. Let us know what it's like. I have the Geoffrey Self book but that is mainly about the music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 09, 2021, 06:50:44 AM
Look what arrived in today's post!  Very excited to start reading this......

That will be a good read. I have always thought the best subject of a biopic of an English composer would be Moeran. There can't be many who rode a motorcycle naked!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 07:22:36 AM
Look what arrived in today's post!

What did you pay?

I see it for just under $60(US) here where I am (shipping included), - much less than anticipated.

I wonder how the book's been modified (both content-wise & structurally) from the doctoral thesis.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 09, 2021, 08:18:10 AM
What did you pay?

I see it for just under $60(US) here where I am (shipping included), - much less than anticipated.

I wonder how the book's been modified (both content-wise & structurally) from the doctoral thesis.

I think it was about £45.00 including shipping - I got Jeremy Dibble's new book on Delius at the same time.  Dr Ian Maxwell who wrote the Moeran book occasionally has posted on this thread so I guess he might see this and answer your question directly.  Just started reading it but as an actual physical book it is absolutely lovely - beautifully printed and bound.  Its why I can't get into digital books!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 09, 2021, 08:36:35 AM
What did you pay?

I see it for just under $60(US) here where I am (shipping included), - much less than anticipated.

I wonder how the book's been modified (both content-wise & structurally) from the doctoral thesis.

I completed and submitted the PhD thesis in January 2014. The book represents the result of six more years of research, the bulk of which has rendered obsolete many of the conclusions I reached at that time. The book is in no sense a modification of the PhD thesis - it entirely supersedes it. Indeed, I have now embargoed the thesis on this basis.

As far as I can gather the book is selling well, but I have yet to see any review of its content.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 09:39:02 AM
I completed and submitted the PhD thesis in January 2014. The book represents the result of six more years of research, the bulk of which has rendered obsolete many of the conclusions I reached at that time. The book is in no sense a modification of the PhD thesis - it entirely supersedes it.

Given that an outcome of the PhD thesis (at least in your own mind) was the proving wrong of much previous Moeran scholarship (the "Moeran Myth" as you called it) it's curious to see you imply that at least some of the research amounted to just your own alternative mythicizing.

Without a complete giveaway, could you elaborate somewhat on conclusions reached in your dissertation now rendered obsolete by subsequent investigation?

One instance of that, perhaps?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 09, 2021, 10:36:20 AM
Given that an outcome of the PhD thesis (at least in your own mind) was the proving wrong of much previous Moeran scholarship (the "Moeran Myth" as you called it) it's curious to see you imply that at least some of the research amounted to just your own alternative mythicizing.

Without a complete giveaway, could you elaborate somewhat on conclusions reached in your dissertation now rendered obsolete by subsequent investigation?

One instance of that, perhaps?

buy the book and judge for yourself!  less than a tank of fuel or a decent meal out.  Any subject - the deeper you go into it the more nuanced your conclusions will become
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 10:47:25 AM
buy the book and judge for yourself!  less than a tank of fuel or a decent meal out.  Any subject - the deeper you go into it the more nuanced your conclusions will become

My copy is on order.

Dr Maxwell doesn't refer to merely changed "nuances" as between dissertation and book, but rather the "obsolescence" of previous conclusions.  That strikes me as much more radical.

In any case, this isn't some potboiler whereby if the author reveals parts of the scoop in advance he could well sacrifice thousands of copies in sales.

The original thesis (which I read through twice) unfolded almost like a judicial proceeding, wherein certain longstanding and seemingly well-established assertions about Moeran were painstakingly debunked in no uncertain fashion.  It's somewhat surprising then (though admirable in its way) to see the author now admitting that case was substantially mistaken or "superceded" as he puts it.  Having myself thought at the time it was quite brilliant and gripping detective work, I'm a bit taken aback that the evidence was apparently not so clearcut after all, - or at least the conclusions more speculative and questionable than he let on.   

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 09, 2021, 12:16:09 PM
... it's curious to see you imply that at least some of the research amounted to just your own alternative mythicizing ...

I implied nothing of the sort. You asked how the book had been modified from the doctoral thesis, and I responded by explaining that the book is NOT a modification of the thesis. My January 2014 thesis represented the most considered understanding of Moeran's life and work at that time. Seven years later, knowledge has moved on as more primary evidence - Moeran's regimental war diaries, for example - has been unearthed, and which has necessitated a re-consideration of conclusions presented previously.

However, regardless of that, I most certainly did not indulge in "mythicizing" in my doctoral thesis, and I find the suggestion offensive.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 12:33:19 PM
I implied nothing of the sort. You asked how the book had been modified from the doctoral thesis, and I responded by explaining that the book is NOT a modification of the thesis. My January 2014 thesis represented the most considered understanding of Moeran's life and work at that time. Seven years later, knowledge has moved on as more primary evidence - Moeran's regimental war diaries, for example - has been unearthed, and which has necessitated a re-consideration of conclusions presented previously.

However, regardless of that, I most certainly did not indulge in "mythicizing" in my doctoral thesis, and I find the suggestion offensive.

Whatever "mythicizing" might mean (which is arguable, and not necessarily pejoritive in my own mind), you did after all judge your predecessors (by repeatedly referring to the "Moeran Myth") as guilty of just such an "offense".  Why not have just said that new evidence had rendered their own conclusions obsolete (as you now say about (some of) your dissertation), rather than referring to them as "mythical".  Could they not rightly regard that as unfair literary effect?  (I've added a paragraph to my previous post with additional thoughts).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 09, 2021, 12:46:56 PM
The simple truth is that both of the previous published books on Moeran are lovely but limited.  Neither professed to be an in depth survey of the music or indeed a study of the man.  I would not want to be without either but at the same time the publication of a new in-depth study is a cause for rejoicing. 

But don't start critiquing a book before a page has been read even if it is based in part on a previous publication.  especially if that previous publication has now been withdrawn on the basis of new research.  The essence of any good biographer/ researcher/scientist whatever is an ability to change theories and concepts as new evidence emerges and not be bogged down in previously held beliefs.  Otherwise we would still be living on an earth that was flat......!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 09, 2021, 12:50:54 PM
Whatever "mythicizing" might mean (which is arguable, and not necessarily pejoritive in my own mind), you did after all judge your predecessors (by repeatedly referring to the "Moeran Myth") as guilty of just such an "offense".  (I've added a paragraph to my previous post with additional thoughts).

Mythicizing was your word, and in the context of referring to the conclusions drawn from the evidence presented in an extended thesis for which a research degree was awarded, it is most certainly pejorative.

With regard to your additional paragraph, stating that my book supersedes my thesis is NOT an admission that my case was substantially mistaken. On the contrary, the book extends substantially the case presented in the thesis, but it does revisit some conclusions in the light of additional evidence.

In order to avoid further misunderstanding, I suggest this conversation be suspended until you have read the book. I will then be very interested in your opinions and happy to discuss anything in more detail.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 01:00:54 PM
Mythicizing was your word, and in the context of referring to the conclusions drawn from the evidence presented in an extended thesis for which a research degree was awarded, it is most certainly pejorative.

With regard to your additional paragraph, stating that my book supersedes my thesis is NOT an admission that my case was substantially mistaken. On the contrary, the book extends substantially the case presented in the thesis, but it does revisit some conclusions in the light of additional evidence.

In order to avoid further misunderstanding, I suggest this conversation be suspended until you have read the book. I will then be very interested in your opinions and happy to discuss anything in more detail.

Nonetheless, it was you who coined "Moeran Myth" as the outcome of your predecessors efforts.

I'll gladly suspend further comment until after reading the new volume.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 09, 2021, 01:04:22 PM
Just catching up on this interesting discussion. I still remember the impact that Neville Dilkes's LP of the Symphony in G Minor had on me when I came across it in the Harrods Music Dept c. 1972. I certainly think that Moeran had an original style and is not just Vaughan Williams and Delius/Sibelius with water. That symphony still remains one of my favourites and I had the pleasure of seeing Sinaisky conduct it at the Proms some years ago. I'd like to ask 'HotFXMan' which is his favourite recording of the Symphony. I'm playing this one at the moment:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 09, 2021, 01:07:34 PM
The simple truth is that both of the previous published books on Moeran are lovely but limited.  Neither professed to be an in depth survey of the music or indeed a study of the man.

Very true. Geoffrey Self and Lionel Hill both worked with the limited biographical evidence available to them at the time, and relied on testimony they had no reason to regard as suspect. Thus, their accounts represent honest and genuine perspectives appropriate to the circumstances under which their books were written. They cannot be blamed for not knowing what they could not have known.

I endeavoured to be fair to both in my critique of their books in my thesis, and I hope that I have done the same in my book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 01:48:09 PM
Very true. Geoffrey Self and Lionel Hill both worked with the limited biographical evidence available to them at the time, and relied on testimony they had no reason to regard as suspect. Thus, their accounts represent honest and genuine perspectives appropriate to the circumstances under which their books were written. They cannot be blamed for not knowing what they could not have known.

I endeavoured to be fair to both in my critique of their books in my thesis, and I hope that I have done the same in my book.

Honorably stated, but in that case how is it appropriate to associate their work with "myth" while so strenuously objecting in its application to your own?  Merely more accurate facts is hardly equivalent to the "real history".

Whatever.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 02:07:10 PM
Just catching up on this interesting discussion. I still remember the impact that Neville Dilkes's LP of the Symphony in G Minor had on me when I came across it in the Harrods Music Dept c. 1975. I certainly think that Moeran had an original style and is not just Vaughan Williams and Delius/Sibelius with water. That symphony still remains one of my favourites and I had the pleasure of seeing Sinaisky conduct it at the Proms some years ago. I'd like to ask 'HotFXMan' which is his favourite recording of the Symphony. I'm playing this one at the moment:
(http://)

Not that you asked ME, Jeffrey, but the Handley concert performance on YouTube bests all the alternatives in my view, and I may rate Sinaisky's own YouTube performance (definitely different from the BBC Music Magazine accompanied one) just below that.
Dilkes is still my favorite commercially recorded performance, followed by Boult, - but more judicious to just say they all offer
valued individual perspectives, - which is different from suggesting all "better or worse" judgments are merely subjective.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 09, 2021, 02:41:26 PM
I got Jeremy Dibble's new book on Delius at the same time. 

I'm almost glad this is a musicological study rather than a biographical one, as my book budget for a while will be exhausted by Moeran/Maxwell and the even more painfully expensive Zuk/Myaskovsky (though I suppose the authors deserve it).

I'd appreciate but don't expect it that Maxwell elaborate more on Moeran's relationship to Delius than he did in the PhD thesis.
Wiki states Moeran (with Heseltine) traveled to France "ostensibly to meet Delius", - which implies a meeting never happened,
but just what communications may have occurred, and just why and how Moeran became so enamored with Delius would be curious to learn more about.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 09, 2021, 09:38:55 PM
Just catching up on this interesting discussion. I still remember the impact that Neville Dilkes's LP of the Symphony in G Minor had on me when I came across it in the Harrods Music Dept c. 1972. I certainly think that Moeran had an original style and is not just Vaughan Williams and Delius/Sibelius with water. That symphony still remains one of my favourites and I had the pleasure of seeing Sinaisky conduct it at the Proms some years ago. I'd like to ask 'HotFXMan' which is his favourite recording of the Symphony. I'm playing this one at the moment:
(http://)

Trying to raise the intellectual level of this conversation - I am still struggling with the realisation that Neville Dilkes is actually no more than the stage name of BoJo The Great
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 09, 2021, 10:10:10 PM
Not that you asked ME, Jeffrey, but the Handley concert performance on YouTube bests all the alternatives in my view, and I may rate Sinaisky's own YouTube performance (definitely different from the BBC Music Magazine accompanied one) just below that.
Dilkes is still my favorite commercially recorded performance, followed by Boult, - but more judicious to just say they all offer
valued individual perspectives, - which is different from suggesting all "better or worse" judgments are merely subjective.
Thanks Greg - interesting to know. I remain very loyal to the Dilkes, which was my first encounter with the work. I played it over and over again on LP. The one I've come to appreciate more, recently, is Handley's 'beefy' Chandos recording.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 09, 2021, 10:14:39 PM
Trying to raise the intellectual level of this conversation - I am still struggling with the realisation that Neville Dilkes is actually no more than the stage name of BoJo The Great
OT
Haha - I trust he'll be conducting the England supporters singing the National Anthem at Wembley tomorrow (no doubt wearing an England top), so that he can identify himself even more closely with England's unexpected success (so far!) in the Euros.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on July 09, 2021, 11:15:33 PM
Just to weigh in here on the Moeran Myth. It is actually quite common in academic discourse to talk about a “myth” surrounding a poet, writer or composer. Usually it is used to describe a common set of assumptions about the figure which align nicely with contemporary beliefs but is not based on any serious academic research. When such work is done it is not correct to call it an alternative myth, but instead an academic argument, which can only be refuted by equally comprehensive work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 09, 2021, 11:32:29 PM
Just to weigh in here on the Moeran Myth. It is actually quite common in academic discourse to talk about a “myth” surrounding a poet, writer or composer. Usually it is used to describe a common set of assumptions about the figure which align nicely with contemporary beliefs but is not based on any serious academic research. When such work is done it is not correct to call it an alternative myth, but instead an academic argument, which can only be refuted by equally comprehensive work.

Succinctly and elegantly put. Thank you for clarifying what I had failed to communicate effectively.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 09, 2021, 11:44:41 PM
Just catching up on this interesting discussion ... I'd like to ask 'HotFXMan' which is his favourite recording of the Symphony ...

I don't really have a favourite as such. Each recording (even the amateur ones) has merits, and, of course, the more times the work is played and recorded the better (from my somewhat biased perspective). However, when I listen to the symphony, it does tend to be the Sir Adrian Boult/New Philharmonia Orchestra original Lyrita LP version that I select on my player. This was one of the first LPs that I bought as a teenager and it holds additional personal memories.

Incidentally, it was not so much the symphony that attracted me to Moeran's music, but a chance hearing of part of the Cello Concerto that I caught on Radio 3 some time in the early 1980s. It was a studio broadcast and I don't recall who was playing it, but I do remember that the middle movement made me stop whatever I was doing at the time and just sit listening in awe.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 10, 2021, 08:29:48 AM
I don't really have a favourite as such. Each recording (even the amateur ones) has merits, and, of course, the more times the work is played and recorded the better (from my somewhat biased perspective). However, when I listen to the symphony, it does tend to be the Sir Adrian Boult/New Philharmonia Orchestra original Lyrita LP version that I select on my player. This was one of the first LPs that I bought as a teenager and it holds additional personal memories.

Incidentally, it was not so much the symphony that attracted me to Moeran's music, but a chance hearing of part of the Cello Concerto that I caught on Radio 3 some time in the early 1980s. It was a studio broadcast and I don't recall who was playing it, but I do remember that the middle movement made me stop whatever I was doing at the time and just sit listening in awe.
Thank you. I had a similar experience hearing Miaskovsky's Cello Concerto on the radio c. 1975. Of course it was the Dilkes LP which introduced me to Moeran, which is why I remain very loyal to it - I have never heard a more moving performance of the slow movement. Boult's magisterial Lyrita recording was/is one of the treasures of the Lyrita catalogue. As I already owned the Dilkes recording I didn't get the Boult version for many years but Boult did introduce me to the marvellous Sinfonietta on a fine Lyrita LP, coupled, I think, with Bax's 'November Woods' and Holst's 'Fugal Overture'. The Boult/Coetmore recording of the Cello Concerto is by far the most deeply felt, even though her playing was not, by then, entirely secure.
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 10, 2021, 08:45:30 AM
Just to weigh in here on the Moeran Myth. It is actually quite common in academic discourse to talk about a “myth” surrounding a poet, writer or composer. Usually it is used to describe a common set of assumptions about the figure which align nicely with contemporary beliefs but is not based on any serious academic research. When such work is done it is not correct to call it an alternative myth, but instead an academic argument, which can only be refuted by equally comprehensive work.

This is how it feels when someone puts something so neatly and coherently that you wished you were able to frame your own thoughts so well! - thankyou Calyptorhynchus!!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Biffo on July 11, 2021, 01:13:30 AM
Perhaps ignorance is bliss in some cases. I have a modest selection of Moeran's music and know very little about him except a bare biographical outline obtained from record booklets, consequently I am am unaware  of any 'myths'. My favourite album is from Chandos and has the Violin and Cello concertos. I have just listened to Lonely Waters (Handley/Ulster) from that album,  a beautiful piece dedicated to RVW.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 11, 2021, 06:20:16 AM
I ... know very little about him except a bare biographical outline obtained from record booklets, consequently I am am unaware  of any 'myths'.

In fact, by reading the LP cover notes and CD liner notes, you will already be aware of many of the "myths" - although you will not necessarily recognise them as such. The "Moeran Myth", as I put it in my PhD thesis, has become so embedded in the conventional wisdom about the composer that extracting and expunging it has been particularly difficult. For example, some years ago, I provided the BBC (at their request) with an updated biographical note, which they are supposed to use whenever such material is required for broadcast. However, the last time I heard anything by Moeran on Radio 3, the same (incorrect) information that has been current for the past thirty or more years was presented alongside the music. The same has been true of most of the Moeran CDs published during the past ten years.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 11, 2021, 06:37:28 AM
It seems as if exploding a myth is akin to effecting a 'paradigm shift'. Entrenched 'truths' are hard to topple. Let's hope the rectified Moeran view finally gains currency!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 11, 2021, 06:51:00 AM
In fact, by reading the LP cover notes and CD liner notes, you will already be aware of many of the "myths" - although you will not necessarily recognise them as such. The "Moeran Myth", as I put it in my PhD thesis, has become so embedded in the conventional wisdom about the composer that extracting and expunging it has been particularly difficult. For example, some years ago, I provided the BBC (at their request) with an updated biographical note, which they are supposed to use whenever such material is required for broadcast. However, the last time I heard anything by Moeran on Radio 3, the same (incorrect) information that has been current for the past thirty or more years was presented alongside the music. The same has been true of most of the Moeran CDs published during the past ten years.
Well, I'm certainly intrigued by your latest research and look forward to hearing/reading it in the future.  I have a couple of recordings of his music:  On Chandos Classics--Symphony in G minor/Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra and his Overture for a Masque.  Also, a later recording on Naxos of his Cello Concerto, Serenade, Lonely Waters and Whythorne's Shadow.  The liner notes are from Andrew Burn and Paul Conway respectively.  I suspect that the 2013 (Naxos one) would then be out-of-date as it were?

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 11, 2021, 10:49:15 AM
It seems as if exploding a myth is akin to effecting a 'paradigm shift'. Entrenched 'truths' are hard to topple. Let's hope the rectified Moeran view finally gains currency!

Getting the facts right is of course important, but to equate the "truth" about Moeran with bagfuls of correct facts is a quite threadbare notion.

A "rectified Moeran view" in that regard is merely preparatory to understanding (a much more uncertain effort), and whatever of such emerges from Dr Maxwell's study is going to obscure at the same time it reveals, notwithstanding his meticulous research.
That is inevitable.

It's on the level of understanding that I would use the word "myth" rather than the level of facts, and in that relation myth does not mean contrary to truth, but the necessary approach to truth.  In no definitive way are we going to get "the" truth about Moeran from Dr Maxwell's pen, no matter how accurate all his facts might be, but we are going to get a myth that one hopes offers a great deal of insight about the man, - perhaps even a revelation.

Anyhow, I'm anxious for the book to arrive.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on July 11, 2021, 01:09:41 PM
To stand aside from the biography and so forth, what I find remarkable about Moeran's music is the consistently high quality of it. I think I have heard every single piece of his that has been recorded and there is hardly a poor one amongst them. The only Moeran music I didn't enjoy much were his art songs (but then my introduction to English song when I was a teenager was Finzi's Hardy settings, and few English songs match up to those).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 13, 2021, 01:47:30 AM
Getting the facts right is of course important, but to equate the "truth" about Moeran with bagfuls of correct facts is a quite threadbare notion.

A "rectified Moeran view" in that regard is merely preparatory to understanding (a much more uncertain effort), and whatever of such emerges from Dr Maxwell's study is going to obscure at the same time it reveals, notwithstanding his meticulous research.
That is inevitable.

It's on the level of understanding that I would use the word "myth" rather than the level of facts, and in that relation myth does not mean contrary to truth, but the necessary approach to truth.  In no definitive way are we going to get "the" truth about Moeran from Dr Maxwell's pen, no matter how accurate all his facts might be, but we are going to get a myth that one hopes offers a great deal of insight about the man, - perhaps even a revelation.

Anyhow, I'm anxious for the book to arrive.
I think that this is a very good point. Most 'myths' are based on some essential truth (see Rollo May's 'The Cry for Myth' for example). I'm sure that Geoffrey Self's book, for example, whatever its shortcomings, does give us insights into Moeran's character and personality, as well as his music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 13, 2021, 02:12:25 AM
I think that this is a very good point ...

Well, I am sorry but I do not. The common dictionary definitions of the word "myth" are variously:

a widely held but false belief or idea.
a misrepresentation of the truth.
a fictitious or imaginary person or thing.
an exaggerated or idealized conception of a person or thing

None of these has a place in academia except as targets to be discredited by rigorous research, and they certainly do not apply to the results of my work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 13, 2021, 05:29:29 AM
... It's on the level of understanding that I would use the word "myth" rather than the level of facts, and in that relation myth does not mean contrary to truth, but the necessary approach to truth.  In no definitive way are we going to get "the" truth about Moeran from Dr Maxwell's pen, no matter how accurate all his facts might be, but we are going to get a myth that one hopes offers a great deal of insight about the man ...

It is difficult to respond to this reasonably. Words such as "drivel" and "twaddle" spring readily to mind.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 13, 2021, 05:36:24 AM
I apologise to those reading this discussion thread for being a bit defensive about my work. However, I have devoted the past sixteen years of my life to Moeran and have, I believe, achieved a level of knowledge and understanding about the composer and his work that far surpasses that of anybody else. To be told that all I have done amounts to no more than a new myth about the man is intolerable.

I hope that those of you that have bought or will buy or otherwise read my book will enjoy it, and that it may inform, surprise, and provoke discussion. However, at the risk of sounding petulant (for which I also apologise) I will not be visiting this forum again.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 13, 2021, 05:43:40 AM
That's a pity. We're not all relativists.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 13, 2021, 06:12:33 AM
I'm sorry to hear that HotFXMan as I was looking forward to reading your contributions here and elsewhere on the forum.

Hopefully, I can read your book via a college library (probably can't check it out, but sometimes they will set aside a book(s) for me to use at a desk in the appropriate library--once things get back to 'normal' that is).

Best wishes,

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 13, 2021, 07:50:55 AM
Well, I did some checking around online and then called my local library and have put in a request to see whether or not I could get a copy of the book through inter-library loan.  We'll see what happens!  :)

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 13, 2021, 07:52:22 AM
That's a pity. We're not all relativists.

Nor am I. 

Of course I'll now be villified (or ridiculed) for driving off the august scholar, - who's taken his cricket stick and run home, - with my "drivel" and "twaddle".

This isn't an Oxford or Cambridge classroom.  It's a discussion forum where one can freely throw out ideas and offer reactions without concern for academic proprieties or violating other posters' excessive self-regard.

Nonetheless I'm no ignoramus, and the points I made were an offhand expression of legitimate and serious issues.

Do I regret spending 65 US dollars on this guy's book?  Kind of, - at the moment (what a bad publicist he is).

BTW, Maxwell using a dictionary to pin down the meaning of a quite nuanced and many-shaded notion like "myth" shows he's not above in his own right the vulgarity he accuses me of.

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on July 13, 2021, 10:15:58 AM
What a pity he left and you stayed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 13, 2021, 10:39:45 AM
What a pity he left and you stayed.

Of course.  We know you're the lapdog who the honorable gentleman gave a nice little pat to earlier.

No apologies.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 13, 2021, 11:08:35 AM
Strange levels of passive agression on a forum where we theoretically come together to share a love for music and an enthusiasm for an Art form that is at risk of being at best marginalised or at worst dismissed by the great majority.  So instead of mutually supporting each other's appreciation and enjoyment of the form we debate the meaning of "myth".  Forgive me, I have to go and arrange the deckchairs on the Titanic.......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 13, 2021, 12:54:30 PM
Strange levels of passive agression on a forum where we theoretically come together to share a love for music and an enthusiasm for an Art form that is at risk of being at best marginalised or at worst dismissed by the great majority.  So instead of mutually supporting each other's appreciation and enjoyment of the form we debate the meaning of "myth".  Forgive me, I have to go and arrange the deckchairs on the Titanic.......
Thank you for bringing this up as this has been quite upsetting to me and it should be discussed....

+1
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 13, 2021, 01:18:44 PM
I hope to to read the new biographies of Moeran (and Miaskovsky for that matter) if I can ever afford them - I might get my local library to get them through inter-library loan. I'm sure that they will contain many new insights. It's a pity that 'HotFXMan' has left us. The only thing I would add is that the best way of promoting one's own thesis is not necessarily by rubbishing those of other people, especially as Geoffrey Self is sadly no longer around to defend his own book on Moeran (which I, for one, enjoyed enormously). I think that a more nuanced approach is needed - I'm sure that you all agree  8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on July 13, 2021, 01:20:47 PM
Of course.  We know you're the lapdog who the honorable gentleman gave a nice little pat to earlier.



Actually, I'm not, I did raise some queries about the assumptions in the thesis when that was posted here a little while ago, and I think that the biography of Moeran is of little interest compared to the works; he seems to have had a pretty wretched life, but still managed to produce a series of marvelous works, many of which are warmer and more fun-filled than you'd expect given the biography.

Can anyone who has the book tell me if there is a decent discussions of the works, or is it all biography?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 13, 2021, 05:06:49 PM
Actually, I'm not, I did raise some queries about the assumptions in the thesis when that was posted here a little while ago, and I think that the biography of Moeran is of little interest compared to the works; he seems to have had a pretty wretched life, but still managed to produce a series of marvelous works, many of which are warmer and more fun-filled than you'd expect given the biography.

Can anyone who has the book tell me if there is a decent discussions of the works, or is it all biography?

I assume given the title of "Life & Music" there would be substantial coverage (though in the dissertation, at least, it was unsystematic), - I hope for my own sake more understandably descriptive than with pages of score reproduction and analyses.

It was Maxwell himself who rather presumptively if not dismissively applied the notion of "myth" (i.e. the "Moeran Myth") to the aggregate of all previous writing about Moeran before his own, and announced (in the thesis) his mission as that of debunking and correcting the accumulating mess.  My only purpose was merely to suggest myth as a possibly more elastic notion than his own chosen application allowed for.  Somehow he took that as a crusade to belittle and invalidate his work, which I had previously and repeatedly praised and expressed gratitude for here.  Weird.

Besides that, if you're an Oxbridge don and now distinguished author who encounters some anonymous bloke on an internet forum making what you regard as disparaging and ignorant remarks about your work, is it really a mature response stooping to invective, and then cutting out in a huff absent any discussion?  A bit of disarming grace and/or patient repudiation would have been much more worthy in my estimation.

Done with it.

 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 13, 2021, 10:24:29 PM
I assume given the title of "Life & Music" there would be substantial coverage (though in the dissertation, at least, it was unsystematic), - I hope for my own sake more understandably descriptive than with pages of score reproduction and analyses.

It was Maxwell himself who rather presumptively if not dismissively applied the notion of "myth" (i.e. the "Moeran Myth") to the aggregate of all previous writing about Moeran before his own, and announced (in the thesis) his mission as that of debunking and correcting the accumulating mess.  My only purpose was merely to suggest myth as a possibly more elastic notion than his own chosen application allowed for.  Somehow he took that as a crusade to belittle and invalidate his work, which I had previously and repeatedly praised and expressed gratitude for here.  Weird.

Besides that, if you're an Oxbridge don and now distinguished author who encounters some anonymous bloke on an internet forum making what you regard as disparaging and ignorant remarks about your work, is it really a mature response stooping to invective, and then cutting out in a huff absent any discussion?  A bit of disarming grace and/or patient repudiation would have been much more worthy in my estimation.

Done with it.

I agree. I found it surprising he got so upset, it would take more then that to get me going. The discussion was way above my head so kept out of it but is myth such a terrible thing? Plenty, I  imagine, attached to Beethoven and hasn't done him any harm. I'm not against some colour attached to hard facts.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 13, 2021, 11:58:18 PM
Actually, I'm not, I did raise some queries about the assumptions in the thesis when that was posted here a little while ago, and I think that the biography of Moeran is of little interest compared to the works; he seems to have had a pretty wretched life, but still managed to produce a series of marvelous works, many of which are warmer and more fun-filled than you'd expect given the biography.

Can anyone who has the book tell me if there is a decent discussions of the works, or is it all biography?

I've started reading the book - but it is very substantial so I'm still with the ancestors!  But in response to your query I've had a very quick skim through the book/index.  There are 62 printed music examples.  I picked 2 works - pretty much at random - to see how they have been discussed.  They were the Symphony as Moeran's largest work and the Op. posth. E flat String quartet - because I've played it a lot and like it!  The latter is discussed with 2 examples and provides the best solution/answer to the enduring question of whether this work dates from early or late in Moeran's career - the answer is both.  Oddly, the symphony seems to receive no musical analysis at all (as I say this is a skim of the index - perhaps I've missed an appendix or something).  The context is well laid out - interesting correspondance with Britten I don't remember reading before as well as a swingeing review of the HMV recording.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 14, 2021, 02:48:46 AM
I've started reading the book - but it is very substantial so I'm still with the ancestors!  But in response to your query I've had a very quick skim through the book/index.  There are 62 printed music examples.  I picked 2 works - pretty much at random - to see how they have been discussed.  They were the Symphony as Moeran's largest work and the Op. posth. E flat String quartet - because I've played it a lot and like it!  The latter is discussed with 2 examples and provides the best solution/answer to the enduring question of whether this work dates from early or late in Moeran's career - the answer is both.  Oddly, the symphony seems to receive no musical analysis at all (as I say this is a skim of the index - perhaps I've missed an appendix or something).  The context is well laid out - interesting correspondance with Britten I don't remember reading before as well as a swingeing review of the HMV recording.
Tell us more please. The contact with Britten sounds most interesting. Is that (HMV recording) the Heward or Dikes version?
Thanks RS.
Years ago HMV issued this CD, in the days that their In-House releases were more adventurous:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 14, 2021, 04:48:19 AM
Tell us more please. The contact with Britten sounds most interesting. Is that (HMV recording) the Heward or Dikes version?
Thanks RS.
Year ago HMV issued this CD, in the days that their In-House releases were more adventurous:
(http://)

The review is about the Heward and it was by Edward Sackville-West writing in the New Statesman.  One choice excerpt reads; "... the impression made by each movement is in the last degree vague and imprecise.  Instead of dealing a series of well-aimed blows, the symphony flops against the mind like a stingless jellyfish"......   Erm..... ouch

The Britten reference is indeed interesting (actually Maxwell cites several meetings/letters/conversations between the two which I don't remember ever hearing about before)..  Apparently in the 30's there was some communication/friendship between Moeran and Britten with the older composer theoretically a guide/adviser to the younger.  But Britten wrote in his diary the following; "After dinner Jack Moeran comes with his new symphony.. it has some excellent things in it but terribly under the influence of Sibelius - moods, ideas & technique.  This is going to be as bad as the Brahms influence on English music I fear."

Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 14, 2021, 07:20:00 AM
The review is about the Heward and it was by Edward Sackville-West writing in the New Statesman.  One choice excerpt reads; "... the impression made by each movement is in the last degree vague and imprecise.  Instead of dealing a series of well-aimed blows, the symphony flops against the mind like a stingless jellyfish"...... 

Whatever might this last statement mean (if anything)?  Are vague and imprecise impressions necessarily a bad thing? - and anyway, I hear plenty of apparently "well-aimed blows" in Moeran's Symphony.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 14, 2021, 10:30:17 AM
Whatever might this last statement mean (if anything)?  Are vague and imprecise impressions necessarily a bad thing? - and anyway, I hear plenty of apparently "well-aimed blows" in Moeran's Symphony.

I think we can safely assume Mr Sackville-West was wholly negative in his appraisal!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 14, 2021, 11:09:35 AM
The review is about the Heward and it was by Edward Sackville-West writing in the New Statesman.  One choice excerpt reads; "... the impression made by each movement is in the last degree vague and imprecise.  Instead of dealing a series of well-aimed blows, the symphony flops against the mind like a stingless jellyfish"......   Erm..... ouch

The Britten reference is indeed interesting (actually Maxwell cites several meetings/letters/conversations between the two which I don't remember ever hearing about before)..  Apparently in the 30's there was some communication/friendship between Moeran and Britten with the older composer theoretically a guide/adviser to the younger.  But Britten wrote in his diary the following; "After dinner Jack Moeran comes with his new symphony.. it has some excellent things in it but terribly under the influence of Sibelius - moods, ideas & technique.  This is going to be as bad as the Brahms influence on English music I fear."
Thanks very much. That sounds much more revealing about Britten than about Moeran's Symphony. I get the impression that Britten was quite a duplicitous individual.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 14, 2021, 12:07:13 PM
I've started reading the book - but it is very substantial so I'm still with the ancestors!  But in response to your query I've had a very quick skim through the book/index.  There are 62 printed music examples.  I picked 2 works - pretty much at random - to see how they have been discussed.  They were the Symphony as Moeran's largest work and the Op. posth. E flat String quartet - because I've played it a lot and like it!  The latter is discussed with 2 examples and provides the best solution/answer to the enduring question of whether this work dates from early or late in Moeran's career - the answer is both.  Oddly, the symphony seems to receive no musical analysis at all (as I say this is a skim of the index - perhaps I've missed an appendix or something).  The context is well laid out - interesting correspondance with Britten I don't remember reading before as well as a swingeing review of the HMV recording.


Geoffrey Self's book is all about the music, quite analytical, with lots of examples (100). The Symphony gets a whole chapter to itself (102-133). Perhaps Mr Maxwell didn't want to duplicate Self's analysis (or couldn't improve on it?). I get the impression from what you're saying his Moeran book is more focussed on the life.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on July 14, 2021, 12:59:18 PM

Geoffrey Self's book is all about the music, quite analytical, with lots of examples (100). The Symphony gets a whole chapter to itself (102-133). Perhaps Mr Maxwell didn't want to duplicate Self's analysis (or couldn't improve on it?). I get the impression from what you're saying his Moeran book is more focussed on the life.

Dammit, sounds like I have to buy both now!  ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 14, 2021, 01:10:32 PM
Dammit, sounds like I have to buy both now!  ;D
Ha!
I share Jeffrey's affection for Self's pioneering book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 14, 2021, 01:10:40 PM
Dammit, sounds like I have to buy both now!  ;D

I think you will!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 14, 2021, 01:14:09 PM
Ha!
I share Jeffrey's affection for Self's pioneering book.

Absolutely re Self.  I don't think Maxwell is saying for a second his book supercedes previous studies just simply that with the passage of time more documentation has come to light which provides more detail.  But Maxwell also states that much is still missing from the jigsaw puzzle that was Moeran's life and his hope is that his book might result in even more information surfacing - the proverbial unknown unknowns!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 14, 2021, 01:22:56 PM
Agreed. I think Mr Maxwell's book will be an excellent addition to the not exactly burgeoning field of Moeran studies.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 15, 2021, 09:08:59 AM
I agree. I found it surprising he got so upset, it would take more then that to get me going. The discussion was way above my head so kept out of it but is myth such a terrible thing? Plenty, I  imagine, attached to Beethoven and hasn't done him any harm. I'm not against some colour attached to hard facts.
I very much agree with you Lol. I don't want it all to 'kick off' again, but I think that 'HotFXMan' unfortunately rather overreacted to what were legitimate questions about his book. He didn't have to react that way - that was his choice. I'm sure that his book is a great contribution to understanding Moeran, and ironically it was J who kindly alerted me to Dr Maxwell's studies, knowing my enthusiasm for Moeran's music and even sent me a link to the PhD thesis.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 16, 2021, 10:30:00 AM
I very much agree with you Lol. I don't want it all to 'kick off' again, but I think that 'HotFXMan' unfortunately rather overreacted to what were legitimate questions about his book. He didn't have to react that way - that was his choice. I'm sure that his book is a great contribution to understanding Moeran, and ironically it was J who kindly alerted me to Dr Maxwell's studies, knowing my enthusiasm for Moeran's music and even sent me a link to the PhD thesis.

I devoured Maxwell's Moeran thesis after first discovering it, - twice in quick succession and some sections many times more than that subsequently.  It fascinated me to read and consider his case, and I couldn't have been more grateful for his efforts in tracing out so many varying threads and the provocative judgments he argued for. Thus to see my hero later on sneer his contempt at me was something of a comedown, - though if having one's comments ignored is the worst fate one can endure here, then at least I got his attention 8).

Me calling Maxwell a "mythmaker" in his own right was part tweak over him sensationalizing the possible missteps of his predecessors (the "Moeran Myth"), and part recognition that after all the research, some essential mystery of Moeran remains (as with any person), - not just what we do not know, but what we cannot know.

That's hardly saying Maxwell's portraiture is therefore only a product of his imagination, or denying his authority in significantly advancing our understanding.  But is it improper to suggest the results might be conditioned and conditional in many respects nonetheless (though not merely relative), without reference to all the relevant historiographical, hermeneutical, personal, and literary issues involved?

This isn't a scholar's domain, and when those participate here they need to be a bit more indulgent in contending with their inferiors, couldn't we agree?  It's not all bad though, as I can now (sheepishly) tell my grandchildren the great EJ Moeran doyen Ian Maxwell one time got pissed off at me.  I'm saving the post(s) where it happened.






 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 18, 2021, 12:10:49 AM
Absolutely re Self.  I don't think Maxwell is saying for a second his book supercedes previous studies just simply that with the passage of time more documentation has come to light which provides more detail.  But Maxwell also states that much is still missing from the jigsaw puzzle that was Moeran's life and his hope is that his book might result in even more information surfacing - the proverbial unknown unknowns!

In retrospect, it may be seen that Self created a rod for his own back by tying his assessment of the music so closely to his beliefs about Moeran's personality and life experiences. However, as I make clear in my book, Self had no reason to doubt what he had been told by seemingly authoritative sources, and he constructed an understandable personality profile for the man based on this. If anybody reads my book carefully, they will note that I assert that improved knowledge of the composer's life and circumstances does not change a single note of what Moeran composed, but Self's assessments must be addressed and corrected since much of the knowledge on which he based them can now be shown to have been incorrect or mistaken. However, as I explain in the Preface and Introduction to the book, ultimately, it is for each listener and reader to form their own assessment. Mine should be apparent by the end of the book, but I make no claim that it is definitive.

However, the facts are the facts, and until somebody unearths more evidence or provides a better interpretation of the evidence that is there, my book is represents the current state of knowledge about Moeran's life and work.

With regard to the Symphony in G minor, I make it clear in the Preface that I did not have the space within my contractual word limit to devote equal attention to every work, and I chose to concentrate my efforts on the music that has not had so much examination hitherto. I have provided references to other studies - including Self - and suggested that readers consult those. In fact, I disagree with Self's analysis of the Symphony in G minor, based as it is on an assumption that it is a sort of requiem for the victims of the Great War. While this is a romantic and attractive notion, there is no evidence for it whatsoever, and the improved understanding of Moeran's wartime experiences and post-war life strongly argue (in my opinion) against Self's assumption. The suggestion that the musical content of some of the symphony is based on the folksong "The Shooting of his Dear" is easily refuted. However, I did not wish to fill the book with a "sensationalizing [of] the possible missteps of [my] predecessors" (in fact I do not do this at all), and so simply did not mention Self's work, other than to refer interested readers to it.

For those that do intend to read the book, I strongly recommend reading both the Preface and the Introduction first, as these place the content of the book in context.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 18, 2021, 12:36:08 AM
Well, I tried to get ahold of a copy of Mr. Maxwell's book through inter-library loan, but I was told that the book was too new and that I should try again in a few months.  Mind you, this was outside of the normal network of libraries that I could easily borrow from (normally "newness" isn't an issue).  Will try again maybe in the fall?  As for good news:  I was able to find and borrow a few more CDs of Moeran's music including a Chandos one which has his String Quartet No. 1, Fantasy Quartet for Oboe and Strings, and his Sonata for Violin and Piano.   :)

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 18, 2021, 02:27:52 AM

Geoffrey Self's book is all about the music, quite analytical, with lots of examples (100). The Symphony gets a whole chapter to itself (102-133). Perhaps Mr Maxwell didn't want to duplicate Self's analysis (or couldn't improve on it?). I get the impression from what you're saying his Moeran book is more focussed on the life.

To quote from my own Preface: "The form I have employed for the book is that of a biographical narrative, beginning with Moeran's ancestors and ending with his residual family. The narrative is interspersed with writings about the compositions presented chronologically, as far as can be determined. While I have endeavoured to at least mention everything that Moeran is known to have composed, the depth of examination necessarily varies, from a brief comment to a more extended assessment."

I did not provide an analysis of the symphony because to do it full justice would have required 8000-10,000 words, unbalancing the treatment of Moeran's corpus of work and necessitating the omission of much other material that I regarded as more essential to the completeness of the book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 18, 2021, 03:51:32 AM
To quote from my own Preface: "The form I have employed for the book is that of a biographical narrative, beginning with Moeran's ancestors and ending with his residual family. The narrative is interspersed with writings about the compositions presented chronologically, as far as can be determined. While I have endeavoured to at least mention everything that Moeran is known to have composed, the depth of examination necessarily varies, from a brief comment to a more extended assessment."

I did not provide an analysis of the symphony because to do it full justice would have required 8000-10,000 words, unbalancing the treatment of Moeran's corpus of work and necessitating the omission of much other material that I regarded as more essential to the completeness of the book.
Thanks for the clarification!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: foxandpeng on July 18, 2021, 03:58:54 AM

I did not provide an analysis of the symphony because to do it full justice would have required 8000-10,000 words, unbalancing the treatment of Moeran's corpus of work and necessitating the omission of much other material that I regarded as more essential to the completeness of the book.

You doubtless already have enough material for the next book  :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 18, 2021, 09:02:18 AM

However, the facts are the facts, and until somebody unearths more evidence or provides a better interpretation of the evidence that is there, my book is represents the current state of knowledge about Moeran's life and work.

I would agree this is (likely) incontestable, - having not yet read the book but only memorized the thesis.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 18, 2021, 11:17:03 AM
I'm also really looking forward to reading Dr Maxwell's biography as soon as I can track down a copy. This book and the new biography of Miaskovsky are high on my reading lists. I'm now playing the Sinaisky BBC recording of Moeran's Symphony. It is fine, I think, although not necessarily the greatest (Dilkes, Heward, Boult) but I was actually at the concert so, it has a special appeal to me. Moeran has fascinated me since I came across the LP of the great G minor Symphony (Dilkes/English Sinfonia) in the Harrods record department when I was working there (sadly not in the Record Dept) in my student days (c.1973). I remember playing that LP over and over again. I'm no musician but there are aspects of Moeran's life that I would like to more about including his First World War experiences, which I recall Dr Maxwell had interesting things to say about in his Ph D thesis (after Greg AKA 'J' thoughtfully sent me a link to it). Moeran's (apparently) ill-fated marriage to Piers Coetmore (who made such a moving recording, with Boult, of the Cello Concerto - yes, the playing is not absolutely technically secure, but there is a humanity and human understanding about her performance which IMO is lacking in all the more 'accomplished' more recent recordings - I find it extraordinarily moving). It seems that the sad circumstances of Moeran's death (falling into the water off the pier in Kenmare) have now been cleared up (no, he wasn't drunk as had originally been assumed - presumably another example of the 'Moeran mythology'). Moeran's emotional fragility (?) and vulnerability make him a most attractive and endearing character and I love the idea that, rather than Vaughan Williams, (another one of my heroes) who went into pubs as an academic with his notebook, Moeran went in to get drunk with the locals. On a separate note I'm glad that Dr Maxwell has posted here again, he joins a number of distinguished members (Dan Rootham, the son of Cyril, for example) whom it is great to see contributing, notwithstanding any differences of opinion. I've rambled on enough now.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 18, 2021, 12:28:03 PM
I'm also really looking forward to reading Dr Maxwell's biography as soon as I can track down a copy. This book and the new biography of Miaskovsky are high on my reading lists ...

Unfortunately, library copies will take some considerable time before they are available for loan. Indeed, it can take the British Library up to twelve months to catalogue new acquisitions, and the situation is even worse at Cambridge University Library. I would imagine that both my book and Patrick's book on Myaskovsky are unlikely to be in any public lending library any time soon. I understand that the price for the hardback editions is steep (not set by me or even in consultation with me, by the way) - with Patrick's book even more expensive than mine. However, there is an eBook version available at, I think, £19.99. Moreover, if you are a member of the British Music Society, there is a 35% discount offer on my book and Jeremy Dibble's book on Delius. Cambridge Core have the full text online, but you will need an academic affiliation to get access: https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/ernest-john-moeran/366602F7F872A264770C473D7F15C170

Extracts from the book are available on various websites, but my publisher would slaughter me if I made anything other than brief quotations available here or in any other forum. I do hope that you can eventually find a copy to read. The more people that read it, the more potential feedback I will get and the more opportunity there could be for new information or new thoughts on Moeran and his music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 18, 2021, 12:41:34 PM
Unfortunately, library copies will take some considerable time before they are available for loan. Indeed, it can take the British Library up to twelve months to catalogue new acquisitions, and the situation is even worse at Cambridge University Library. I would imagine that both my book and Patrick's book on Myaskovsky are unlikely to be in any public lending library any time soon. I understand that the price for the hardback editions is steep (not set by me or even in consultation with me, by the way) - with Patrick's book even more expensive than mine. However, there is an eBook version available at, I think, £19.99. Moreover, if you are a member of the British Music Society, there is a 35% discount offer on my book and Jeremy Dibble's book on Delius. Cambridge Core have the full text online, but you will need an academic affiliation to get access: https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/ernest-john-moeran/366602F7F872A264770C473D7F15C170

Extracts from the book are available on various websites, but my publisher would slaughter me if I made anything other than brief quotations available here or in any other forum. I do hope that you can eventually find a copy to read. The more people that read it, the more potential feedback I will get and the more opportunity there could be for new information or new thoughts on Moeran and his music.
Thank you Dr Maxwell - my local library is quite good at obtaining books, so, I will be in touch with them. The combined price of both books would be about £100 (the Moeran biography being less expensive). Gregor Tassie's earlier Miaskovsky biography is coming out in paperback soon and I hope that, sooner or later, the EJM and NYM biographies appear in paperback.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 18, 2021, 01:00:32 PM
Thank you Dr Maxwell - my local library is quite good at obtaining books, so, I will be in touch with them. The combined price of both books would be about £100 (the Moeran biography being less expensive). Gregor Tassie's earlier Miaskovsky biography is coming out in paperback soon and I hope that, sooner or later, the EJM and NYM biographies appear in paperback.

Merely suspend your regular CD purchases for a month or so, Jeffrey, and the necessary funds will be in hand.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 18, 2021, 01:07:23 PM
Merely suspend your regular CD purchases for a month or so, Jeffrey, and the necessary funds will be in hand.
A brilliant idea Greg! Why did I not think of that?
 ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 18, 2021, 10:39:55 PM
A brilliant idea Greg! Why did I not think of that?
 ;D

As long as a MONTH...... surely not  >:D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 18, 2021, 10:46:30 PM
This is a random thought with nothing to do with Moeran per se.  I do LOVE a good new book.  There is such a wonderful solidity and weight to them.  And in world of digitised everything I even enjoy their simple presence.  In recent years I've made a point of buying particular books as soon as they appear - not many fit the criteria, but this Moeran book was definitely one of them.  Experience shows that they go OOP or tricky to track down very quickly.  I feel sorry for my kids when they have to deal with it all once I've shuffled off but that's before they tackle the CD's or the sheet music!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 18, 2021, 11:38:49 PM
As long as a MONTH...... surely not  >:D
OT
True - going 'Cold Turkey' will be difficult  ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 18, 2021, 11:43:35 PM
This is a random thought with nothing to do with Moeran per se.  I do LOVE a good new book.  There is such a wonderful solidity and weight to them.  And in world of digitised everything I even enjoy their simple presence.  In recent years I've made a point of buying particular books as soon as they appear - not many fit the criteria, but this Moeran book was definitely one of them.  Experience shows that they go OOP or tricky to track down very quickly.  I feel sorry for my kids when they have to deal with it all once I've shuffled off but that's before they tackle the CD's or the sheet music!
OT
I'm sure that my wife will have all my books and CDs in a skip in no time at all!
I don't know about you but when I receive a second hand CD I sometimes find carefully preserved reviews etc inside and sometimes a list of dates when the recording was listened to. I find something infinitely sad about a once treasured collection now being dispersed into the hands of an unknown person (me). Also, this will be the fate of my collection too one day - unless they all end up in a skip  :(
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 19, 2021, 12:04:19 AM
OT
I'm sure that my wife will have all my books and CDs in a skip in no time at all!
I don't know about you but when I receive a second hand CD I sometimes find carefully preserved reviews etc inside and sometimes a list of dates when the recording was listened to. I find something infinitely sad about a once treasured collection now being dispersed into the hands of an unknown person (me). Also, this will be the fate of my collection too one day - unless they all end up in a skip  :(
I believe that only once have I found a review inside a CD (once in an opera set); I have, however, several times found carefully clipped articles/reviews inside of LPs or sometimes books.  Sadly sweet, but I enjoy reading them.  And, yes, like you, believe that someone really cared about the music and their collection.

I'm also a book lover too, so you gents aren't alone there!  :)  And no skips!  Tell her to contact a reputable bookseller as some of them could be rare/oop/first editions, etc.!  If nothing else (and certainly not to belittle this point), hopefully someone else would appreciate running across them at a used bookstore and would happily pay for them and take them home!

TD,

Listened to Moeran's Serenade yesterday:  enjoyed sections of it, but on first listen (to be truthful) it didn't particularly excite/move me.  :(  Have some other music of his to check out soon too.

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 19, 2021, 01:14:44 AM
I believe that only once have I found a review inside a CD (once in an opera set); I have, however, several times found carefully clipped articles/reviews inside of LPs or sometimes books.  Sadly sweet, but I enjoy reading them.  And, yes, like you, believe that someone really cared about the music and their collection.

I'm also a book lover too, so you gents aren't alone there!  :)  And no skips!  Tell her to contact a reputable bookseller as some of them could be rare/oop/first editions, etc.!  If nothing else (and certainly not to belittle this point), hopefully someone else would appreciate running across them at a used bookstore and would happily pay for them and take them home!

TD,

Listened to Moeran's Serenade yesterday:  enjoyed sections of it, but on first listen (to be truthful) it didn't particularly excite/move me.  :(  Have some other music of his to check out soon too.

PD

To be honest PD the Serenade is one of my less favourite Moeran pieces.  It still has lots of his characteristics in it but somehow a bit more inconsequential (I'm sure that's bad grammar!).  The Sinfonietta is wonderful as well as the other bigger pieces and the 2 Small Orchestra works - Lonely Waters and Whythorne's Shadow are jewels.

As an aside my daughter gave me a birthday card recently which read; "The more you correct my grammar, the fewer I care".

I laughed....................
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 19, 2021, 01:31:32 AM

As an aside my daughter gave me a birthday card recently which read; "The more you correct my grammar, the fewer I care".

I laughed....................
;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 19, 2021, 01:44:15 AM
To be honest PD the Serenade is one of my less favourite Moeran pieces.  It still has lots of his characteristics in it but somehow a bit more inconsequential (I'm sure that's bad grammar!).  The Sinfonietta is wonderful as well as the other bigger pieces and the 2 Small Orchestra works - Lonely Waters and Whythorne's Shadow are jewels.

As an aside my daughter gave me a birthday card recently which read; "The more you correct my grammar, the fewer I care".

I laughed....................
Thank you for your comments--nice to know that I'm not totally 'off mark' (or 'alone' in my first impressions here of the Serenade).  Will listen to his Sinfonietta later today.

And thank you, also, for making me laugh this morning!  Your daughter has a good sense of humor.   ;) :)

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 19, 2021, 01:59:27 AM
My views on Moeran's 'Serenade' (a late work) coincide with those of RS - pleasant enough. The Symphony and Cello Concerto are by far my favourites plus there is some fine chamber music (and the Violin Concerto).

I found the comment by RS's daughter to be hilarious.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 19, 2021, 02:08:40 AM
I believe that only once have I found a review inside a CD (once in an opera set); I have, however, several times found carefully clipped articles/reviews inside of LPs or sometimes books.  Sadly sweet, but I enjoy reading them.  And, yes, like you, believe that someone really cared about the music and their collection.

I'm also a book lover too, so you gents aren't alone there!  :)  And no skips!  Tell her to contact a reputable bookseller as some of them could be rare/oop/first editions, etc.!  If nothing else (and certainly not to belittle this point), hopefully someone else would appreciate running across them at a used bookstore and would happily pay for them and take them home!

TD,

Listened to Moeran's Serenade yesterday:  enjoyed sections of it, but on first listen (to be truthful) it didn't particularly excite/move me.  :(  Have some other music of his to check out soon too.

PD
OT

At the school where I worked full-time for 28 years, the Deputy Head came up to my office one day and announced 'The Headmistress has told me to tell you that you must declutter your office' (it contained hundreds of old history books, maps, photos, a large collection of already obsolete VHS videos, magazines charts and a papier maché owl presented to me by one of the pupils). He did, however go on to say (and I'm not making this up) that 'the school is prepared to give you any assistance ...such as by hiring a skip.' I had this wonderful vision of prospective parents visting the school (an imposing building above the cliffs) to be greeted by one of those long building-site yellow tubes with all my old history books etc flying down (my office was high up) into the skip!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 19, 2021, 02:14:19 AM
I'm the odd one out here. I have grown to like the Serenade through the JoAnne Falleta recording on Naxos. Instead of the six movements of the Hickox recording, Falleta has eight of the original 1948 version. I find the Elizabethan feel, which reminds me of RVW, and the lightness of touch attractive.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 19, 2021, 02:36:31 AM
I'm the odd one out here. I have grown to like the Serenade through the JoAnne Falleta recording on Naxos. Instead of the six movements of the Hickox recording, Falleta has eight of the original 1948 version. I find the Elizabethan feel, which reminds me of RVW, and the lightness of touch attractive.
I enjoy the Serenade Lol but just not as much as some of the other works. I recently acquired a historic Barbirolli version as well. Rather annoyingly it features seven of the eight movements - I prefer the work complete:
(http://)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 19, 2021, 03:47:30 AM
OT

At the school where I worked full-time for 28 years, the Deputy Head came up to my office one day and announced 'The Headmistress has told me to tell you that you must declutter your office' (it contained hundreds of old history books, maps, photos, a large collection of already obsolete VHS videos, magazines charts and a papier maché owl presented to me by one of the pupils). He did, however go on to say (and I'm not making this up) that 'the school is prepared to give you any assistance ...such as by hiring a skip.' I had this wonderful vision of prospective parents visting the school (an imposing building above the cliffs) to be greeted by one of those long building-site yellow tubes with all my old history books etc flying down (my office was high up) into the skip!
Oh, no! lol  So what happened in the end?  Did you move 98% of the stuff home?  Or retired?  Must admit, I have some old VHS's myself.  With the exception of some family recorded things, I should just get rid of them.  Not even certain whether or not I would be able to watch any of them anymore unless I bought some sort of a stand table and an extra long cord to be able to hook it up to my stereo.  At least they're boxed up.  Are any of your VHS's worth paying someone to transfer them to DVD's Jeffrey?

I'm the odd one out here. I have grown to like the Serenade through the JoAnne Falleta recording on Naxos. Instead of the six movements of the Hickox recording, Falleta has eight of the original 1948 version. I find the Elizabethan feel, which reminds me of RVW, and the lightness of touch attractive.
I was able to get ahold of a copy of that CD and will give it a shot the next time that I want to listen to the Serenade.  I was going to put on his Sinfonietta just now, but can't figure out where I put the liner notes to it!  ::)  Will keep looking for it--whilst tidying up.  :-[

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: foxandpeng on July 19, 2021, 04:43:32 AM
I should just get rid of them. 
PD

I don't understand that sentence on any level. We are in process of looking to move house because neither of us is able to hire a skip, a long yellow tube, or an army of helpers to remove seemingly pointless objects.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 19, 2021, 05:05:01 AM
Desert Island Moeran:

1 Second Rhapsody for Orchestra
2 Diaphenia
3 In the Mountain Country*
4 The Little Milkmaid
5 Stalham River
6 Air from Serenade in G
7 Parson and Clerk
8 Cello Concerto (2nd movement) coupled with Prelude for Cello & Piano - cheating, I know, but I can't have one without the other!!!
(* selection if I'm only allowed one!)

However, my selection tomorrow could well be different!

Book: mine (obviously!), but if I'm not allowed that, then Lionel Hill's 'Lonely Waters' (although I've read it numerous times, it still tugs the heartstrings).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 19, 2021, 05:47:22 AM
I'm the odd one out here. I have grown to like the Serenade through the JoAnne Falleta recording on Naxos. Instead of the six movements of the Hickox recording, Falleta has eight of the original 1948 version. I find the Elizabethan feel, which reminds me of RVW, and the lightness of touch attractive.

Don't get me wrong I do like the Serenade - just not as much as others works by Moeran.  The 6 movements are what was published - quite why Moeran held back the other 2 movements I don't know.  Handley in Ulster recorded the 8 movement suite too and that disc includes the only commercial recording of the Nocturne,  The Faletta recording is very good indeed and for me the version of the Cello Concerto is the best there is.  I understand the emotional pull of Coetmore's version with Boult but personally the technical issues are rather present........
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 19, 2021, 05:55:46 AM
Desert Island Moeran:

1 Second Rhapsody for Orchestra
2 Diaphenia
3 In the Mountain Country*
4 The Little Milkmaid
5 Stalham River
6 Air from Serenade in G
7 Parson and Clerk
8 Cello Concerto (2nd movement) coupled with Prelude for Cello & Piano - cheating, I know, but I can't have one without the other!!!
(* selection if I'm only allowed one!)

However, my selection tomorrow could well be different!

Book: mine (obviously!), but if I'm not allowed that, then Lionel Hill's 'Lonely Waters' (although I've read it numerous times, it still tugs the heartstrings).

Sad I know, but I have printed your list off. ;D

So many questions I would love to ask, but the reply would rightly be - read my book!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 19, 2021, 06:04:03 AM
Oh, no! lol  So what happened in the end?  Did you move 98% of the stuff home?  Or retired?  Must admit, I have some old VHS's myself.  With the exception of some family recorded things, I should just get rid of them.  Not even certain whether or not I would be able to watch any of them anymore unless I bought some sort of a stand table and an extra long cord to be able to hook it up to my stereo.  At least they're boxed up.  Are any of your VHS's worth paying someone to transfer them to DVD's Jeffrey?
I was able to get ahold of a copy of that CD and will give it a shot the next time that I want to listen to the Serenade.  I was going to put on his Sinfonietta just now, but can't figure out where I put the liner notes to it!  ::)  Will keep looking for it--whilst tidying up.  :-[

PD
OT - The VHS collection has all gone, apart from one or two of my daughter in school shows as a young girl. The school never had to get a skip in the end but I did make a token clear-up (as I do at home when I'm told that my CDs are 'ALL OVER THE PLACE').
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 19, 2021, 06:09:38 AM
Found the missing liner notes and case, and, of course, I had put them in a very logical place (with the other material borrowed from the library).  I swear, that I had looked through that stack too!  Aie!  ::)

Off to listen to his Sinfonietta now.

PD

p.s.  Irons, like you, I printed off (scap really) of Dr. Maxwell's list!  ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 19, 2021, 06:10:31 AM
Desert Island Moeran:

1 Second Rhapsody for Orchestra
2 Diaphenia
3 In the Mountain Country*
4 The Little Milkmaid
5 Stalham River
6 Air from Serenade in G
7 Parson and Clerk
8 Cello Concerto (2nd movement) coupled with Prelude for Cello & Piano - cheating, I know, but I can't have one without the other!!!
(* selection if I'm only allowed one!)

However, my selection tomorrow could well be different!

Book: mine (obviously!), but if I'm not allowed that, then Lionel Hill's 'Lonely Waters' (although I've read it numerous times, it still tugs the heartstrings).
Hmm let me see - I don't know all your choices:

Symphony in G Minor (Dilkes or Heward)
Cello Concerto (Boult/Coetmore)
In the Mountain Country
Sinfonietta (Boult/Lyrita)
Cello Sonata
Overture for a Masque
Violin Concerto (I enjoy all the recordings)
Rhapsody No.2

Book: Moeran Man and Music by HotFXMan  8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 19, 2021, 06:25:55 AM
Rats!! I forgot the Overture for a Masque. But I can't slot it in because I'd have to lose one of my 8 ...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: foxandpeng on July 19, 2021, 06:36:50 AM
Desert Island Moeran:

1 Second Rhapsody for Orchestra
2 Diaphenia
3 In the Mountain Country*
4 The Little Milkmaid
5 Stalham River
6 Air from Serenade in G
7 Parson and Clerk
8 Cello Concerto (2nd movement) coupled with Prelude for Cello & Piano - cheating, I know, but I can't have one without the other!!!
(* selection if I'm only allowed one!)

However, my selection tomorrow could well be different!

Book: mine (obviously!), but if I'm not allowed that, then Lionel Hill's 'Lonely Waters' (although I've read it numerous times, it still tugs the heartstrings).

OK. I'll play, in no order.

1. Summer Valley (acknowledging RVW's superior take)
2. A Dream of Death
3. Symphony in G minor
4. Cello Concerto
5. Fantasy Quartet
6. In the Mountain Country
7. VC
8. Lonely Waters

Book: Apparently, there is a new one out by some chap called Maxwell...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 19, 2021, 07:36:14 AM
Question for you folks:  So, when did Moeran start on his Sinfonietta?  In the liner notes to the EMI recording with Hickox that I've been listening to, it says that he finished it in 1944 and it was first performed by the BBC SO under Barbirolli on 7 March the following year.  Listening to it, overall it struck me that it was rather ebullient.  I did enjoy it quite it bit more than his Serenade (which I thought was pleasant).  The reason why I'm asking is because it was at least finished during WWII, I would have thought that it would have been maybe much more somber and/or defiant in nature?

Would love to hear your thoughts.

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 19, 2021, 08:14:58 AM
Question for you folks:  So, when did Moeran start on his Sinfonietta?  In the liner notes to the EMI recording with Hickox that I've been listening to, it says that he finished it in 1944 and it was first performed by the BBC SO under Barbirolli on 7 March the following year.  Listening to it, overall it struck me that it was rather ebullient.  I did enjoy it quite it bit more than his Serenade (which I thought was pleasant).  The reason why I'm asking is because it was at least finished during WWII, I would have thought that it would have been maybe much more somber and/or defiant in nature?

Would love to hear your thoughts.

PD
The first work on the Sinfonietta was done in the summer/early autumn of 1942 at the behest of Arthur Bliss, who had asked Moeran for a work for a Mozart-size orchestra. However, work was abandoned due to other commitments and not resumed until early 1944. Moeran had promised the Sinfonietta for the 1944 Proms but he was stuck in Ireland between March and late-June and he had not taken the manuscript with him. On returning to England, he worked on it again, apparently completing it in late September. However, he was not happy with the scoring, and he re-wrote large sections between January and March 1945.

There is no evidence that Moeran was at all influenced by the war in his approach to composition. Some critics claimed an 'optimistic and victory-heralding' character for the Rhapsody for piano and orchestra, but Moeran's own words suggest that he was not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war. Perhaps he just assumed that the allies would be victorious.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 19, 2021, 08:26:13 AM
Question for you folks:  So, when did Moeran start on his Sinfonietta?  In the liner notes to the EMI recording with Hickox that I've been listening to, it says that he finished it in 1944 and it was first performed by the BBC SO under Barbirolli on 7 March the following year.  Listening to it, overall it struck me that it was rather ebullient.  I did enjoy it quite it bit more than his Serenade (which I thought was pleasant).  The reason why I'm asking is because it was at least finished during WWII, I would have thought that it would have been maybe much more somber and/or defiant in nature?

Would love to hear your thoughts.

PD

Shockingly I'm too lazy to walk up two flights of stairs to where I have Dr Maxwell's new book to coroborate Self's statement that the Sinfonietta was wholly written in 1944.  I don't find it inconceivable that a work written in Wartime MUST reflect that era.  Take Bax for example - except for one brief reference to WW1 in the Symphonic Variations NONE of his music written 1914-18 seems to be influenced by that War at all (something I have found slightly odd but true)

An edit - Strauss' Alpine Symphony is another wartime work with no seeming influence.......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Mirror Image on July 19, 2021, 09:14:40 AM
I wonder if HotFXMan actually listens to other composers’ music besides Moeran? :-\
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 19, 2021, 09:57:01 AM
The first work on the Sinfonietta was done in the summer/early autumn of 1942 at the behest of Arthur Bliss, who had asked Moeran for a work for a Mozart-size orchestra. However, work was abandoned due to other commitments and not resumed until early 1944. Moeran had promised the Sinfonietta for the 1944 Proms but he was stuck in Ireland between March and late-June and he had not taken the manuscript with him. On returning to England, he worked on it again, apparently completing it in late September. However, he was not happy with the scoring, and he re-wrote large sections between January and March 1945.

There is no evidence that Moeran was at all influenced by the war in his approach to composition. Some critics claimed an 'optimistic and victory-heralding' character for the Rhapsody for piano and orchestra, but Moeran's own words suggest that he was not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war. Perhaps he just assumed that the allies would be victorious.
Thank you for the information.  Yes, it would have been interesting to have known what he was thinking/feeling when he composed it.  Did he ever keep any diaries?  And any idea what Bliss thought of it?

Shockingly I'm too lazy to walk up two flights of stairs to where I have Dr Maxwell's new book to coroborate Self's statement that the Sinfonietta was wholly written in 1944.  I don't find it inconceivable that a work written in Wartime MUST reflect that era.  Take Bax for example - except for one brief reference to WW1 in the Symphonic Variations NONE of his music written 1914-18 seems to be influenced by that War at all (something I have found slightly odd but true)

An edit - Strauss' Alpine Symphony is another wartime work with no seeming influence.......
And, no he (nor any composer) was/were/are required to only write works reflecting wartimes.  It had just struck me as being unbelievably cheery considering the times--perhaps he was thinking of happier times and/or believing that they would soon return to them?  Or??? Who knows! Just ever the curious one here.  :)

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 19, 2021, 10:15:39 AM
The first work on the Sinfonietta was done in the summer/early autumn of 1942 at the behest of Arthur Bliss, who had asked Moeran for a work for a Mozart-size orchestra. However, work was abandoned due to other commitments and not resumed until early 1944. Moeran had promised the Sinfonietta for the 1944 Proms but he was stuck in Ireland between March and late-June and he had not taken the manuscript with him. On returning to England, he worked on it again, apparently completing it in late September. However, he was not happy with the scoring, and he re-wrote large sections between January and March 1945.

There is no evidence that Moeran was at all influenced by the war in his approach to composition. Some critics claimed an 'optimistic and victory-heralding' character for the Rhapsody for piano and orchestra, but Moeran's own words suggest that he was not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war. Perhaps he just assumed that the allies would be victorious.
I find it difficult to believe that Moeran was 'not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war'. That implies that he'd have been happy or at least indifferent if the Nazis won. In view of his service in World War One and his composition of 'Overture for a Masque' as a patriotic morale booster for ENSA, not to mention a 'Fanfare for the Red Army' ('...I am going to make it really snappy and exciting for the troops to listen to' - cable to Peers, 5th January 1944, quoted in Self's book) I find this most unlikely.
Self also states that 'Moeran's experience in the previous war had been horrific; yet there is no evidence that these experiences had soured his patriotism' (p. 158).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 19, 2021, 10:37:53 AM
The first work on the Sinfonietta was done in the summer/early autumn of 1942 at the behest of Arthur Bliss, who had asked Moeran for a work for a Mozart-size orchestra. However, work was abandoned due to other commitments and not resumed until early 1944. Moeran had promised the Sinfonietta for the 1944 Proms but he was stuck in Ireland between March and late-June and he had not taken the manuscript with him. On returning to England, he worked on it again, apparently completing it in late September. However, he was not happy with the scoring, and he re-wrote large sections between January and March 1945.

There is no evidence that Moeran was at all influenced by the war in his approach to composition. Some critics claimed an 'optimistic and victory-heralding' character for the Rhapsody for piano and orchestra, but Moeran's own words suggest that he was not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war. Perhaps he just assumed that the allies would be victorious.
May I ask (and I'm sure that Jeffrey and others here would also be interested too), what were Moeran's own words that as you said "suggest that he was not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war"?

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 19, 2021, 12:29:20 PM
May I ask (and I'm sure that Jeffrey and others here would also be interested too), what were Moeran's own words that as you said "suggest that he was not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war"?

PD
Perhaps I worded what I wrote badly. My meaning was that there is nothing in any of Moeran's letters or other writings that indicate any concern that the outcome of the war would be anything other than favourable. In fact, he wrote very little about the war, other than to mention commissions such as the ENSA overture and the Fanfare for Red Army Day as "war work", and in both these cases, he did the work firstly because he was paid, and secondly working for ENSA precluded him from being called up to do anything else. The main impression one gets from the letters Moeran wrote during the war is that he regarded it mostly as a nuisance, in that it prevented him from continuing uninterrupted the working life that he had created for himself during the few years immediately preceding September 1939.

My own feeling is that Self's assertion about patriotism was misplaced. The fact that Moeran had probably been either a member of, or closely associated with the IRA, suggests strongly that his attitude to the British establishment was not quite as wholesome as has hitherto been assumed. Moeran's main interest, at least until he met Peers Coetmore, was Moeran. Things that got in his way, such as the war, possible interest from MI5 in his movements, uncomplimentary attention from critics, were simply ignored.

... and for any more, you will have to read the book ....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 19, 2021, 01:16:25 PM
I find it difficult to believe that Moeran was 'not particularly concerned about the outcome of the war'. That implies that he'd have been happy or at least indifferent if the Nazis won. In view of his service in World War One and his composition of 'Overture for a Masque' as a patriotic morale booster for ENSA, not to mention a 'Fanfare for the Red Army' ('...I am going to make it really snappy and exciting for the troops to listen to' - cable to Peers, 5th January 1944, quoted in Self's book) I find this most unlikely.
Self also states that 'Moeran's experience in the previous war had been horrific; yet there is no evidence that these experiences had soured his patriotism' (p. 158).

I did not mean that Moeran did not care which side was victorious. His interest or otherwise in the war and its outcome is not possible to determine from his letters, and the fact that he never really mentioned it in letters to his closest companion is some evidence at least of his indifference. Self’s comment is based on an assumption that Moeran had patriotism that could be soured, and I contend that this was not the case. Moeran’s WW1 experiences certainly affected him, but not in the way Self asserted.

The real Moeran really was very different from what most people have hitherto believed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 19, 2021, 07:55:54 PM
I did not mean that Moeran did not care which side was victorious. His interest or otherwise in the war and its outcome is not possible to determine from his letters, and the fact that he never really mentioned it in letters to his closest companion is some evidence at least of his indifference. Self’s comment is based on an assumption that Moeran had patriotism that could be soured, and I contend that this was not the case. Moeran’s WW1 experiences certainly affected him, but not in the way Self asserted.

The real Moeran really was very different from what most people have hitherto believed.
Thanks for the explanation. I thought that was probably what you meant. I also did wonder, in view of Moeran's love of Ireland if he supported Irish nationalism. I'm not sure, however, that the lack of specific reference to the Second World War in Moeran's letters, by itself, indicates disinterest in its outcome. I'll look forward to, sooner or later (hopefully sooner!) reading what you have to say about this in your book.

I found this interesting, if rather sad, article about Moeran online:
https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/an-irishman-s-diary-1.1172507
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 20, 2021, 02:09:17 AM
I did not mean that Moeran did not care which side was victorious. His interest or otherwise in the war and its outcome is not possible to determine from his letters, and the fact that he never really mentioned it in letters to his closest companion is some evidence at least of his indifference. Self’s comment is based on an assumption that Moeran had patriotism that could be soured, and I contend that this was not the case. Moeran’s WW1 experiences certainly affected him, but not in the way Self asserted.

The real Moeran really was very different from what most people have hitherto believed.

I do not mean to be presumptuous but because Moeran didn't mention it I do not see as a sign of indifference. I have personal experience of someone close to me who lived a pretty normal life but from a lowly position found himself at Sandhurst and with a commission. He went on to be in charge of a prisoner-of-war camp in north Africa during WW2. With the end of war he returned to normal life out of the army. Not a shrinking violet by any means, but he never at any time recounted the story of his exploits in army life although it was the pinnacle of everything he achieved in his life. 
For those of us lucky enough not to experience horror of war it is difficult, if not impossible, to read the mind of those who have.     
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 20, 2021, 02:28:58 AM
Perhaps I worded what I wrote badly. My meaning was that there is nothing in any of Moeran's letters or other writings that indicate any concern that the outcome of the war would be anything other than favourable. In fact, he wrote very little about the war, other than to mention commissions such as the ENSA overture and the Fanfare for Red Army Day as "war work", and in both these cases, he did the work firstly because he was paid, and secondly working for ENSA precluded him from being called up to do anything else. The main impression one gets from the letters Moeran wrote during the war is that he regarded it mostly as a nuisance, in that it prevented him from continuing uninterrupted the working life that he had created for himself during the few years immediately preceding September 1939.

My own feeling is that Self's assertion about patriotism was misplaced. The fact that Moeran had probably been either a member of, or closely associated with the IRA, suggests strongly that his attitude to the British establishment was not quite as wholesome as has hitherto been assumed. Moeran's main interest, at least until he met Peers Coetmore, was Moeran. Things that got in his way, such as the war, possible interest from MI5 in his movements, uncomplimentary attention from critics, were simply ignored.

... and for any more, you will have to read the book ....
Thank you for the information and your thoughts on what he wrote (or didn't) on the war and his attitudes towards work and life (in a nutshell).  I'll try again in a few months to borrow a copy of your book through my library.

Best wishes,

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 20, 2021, 02:30:40 AM
Thanks for the explanation. I thought that was probably what you meant. I also did wonder, in view of Moeran's love of Ireland if he supported Irish nationalism. I'm not sure, however, that the lack of specific reference to the Second World War in Moeran's letters, by itself, indicates disinterest in its outcome. I'll look forward to, sooner or later (hopefully sooner!) reading what you have to say about this in your book.

I found this interesting, if rather sad, article about Moeran online:
https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/an-irishman-s-diary-1.1172507
Thanks for that link Jeffrey; very interesting article!

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 20, 2021, 02:41:32 AM
I do not mean to be presumptuous but because Moeran didn't mention it I do not see as a sign of indifference. I have personal experience of someone close to me who lived a pretty normal life but from a lowly position found himself at Sandhurst and with a commission. He went on to be in charge of a prisoner-of-war camp in north Africa during WW2. With the end of war he returned to normal life out of the army. Not a shrinking violet by any means, but he never at any time recounted the story of his exploits in army life although it was the pinnacle of everything he achieved in his life. 
For those of us lucky enough not to experience horror of war it is difficult, if not impossible, to read the mind of those who have.     
You are not being presumptuous at all. Everybody is entitled to express an opinion, and all opinions potentially have a value in the full understanding of a historical person. Trying to get inside Moeran's head is something that I have been doing for the past sixteen years. I now believe that I have assembled a credible and supportable personality as it changed through the composer's life. Obviously, it is open to question, correction, debunking etc. as and when further evidence emerges or better interpretation is asserted for the evidence that presently exists. Hitherto, Moeran's life, character, behaviour and personality have been assumed largely on the basis of what people would have liked him to have been and what they feel accords best with a mistaken understanding of his life and an understandable regard for his musical creation. But this cannot be used to counter hard evidence.

However, I am attempting to summarise the conclusions of a 160,000 word book into a few sentences. You really need to read the book in order to have a basis for grasping the reality of Moeran. And, most importantly, you must cast aside ALL preconceptions based on anything that you may have read up to now. Moeran really was NOT that person, and I can only explain why not through the text of my book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Oates on July 20, 2021, 03:08:06 AM
It is high time that we are presented with a different perspective on Moeran.

I was never convinced by how he has been represented in at least two dramatic characterisations: the feature film Peter Warlock: Some Little Joy (2005) in which Moeran is played by Richard Dempsey, and the BBC radio play Moeran's Last Symphony (2010) (Moeran played by Tim McKinnery). Both of these struggled to give the man any real substance. In the former, he is played as a lesser talent to Warlock and simply tagging along and dabbling with composition.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 20, 2021, 07:03:04 AM
You are not being presumptuous at all. Everybody is entitled to express an opinion, and all opinions potentially have a value in the full understanding of a historical person. Trying to get inside Moeran's head is something that I have been doing for the past sixteen years. I now believe that I have assembled a credible and supportable personality as it changed through the composer's life. Obviously, it is open to question, correction, debunking etc. as and when further evidence emerges or better interpretation is asserted for the evidence that presently exists. Hitherto, Moeran's life, character, behaviour and personality have been assumed largely on the basis of what people would have liked him to have been and what they feel accords best with a mistaken understanding of his life and an understandable regard for his musical creation. But this cannot be used to counter hard evidence.

However, I am attempting to summarise the conclusions of a 160,000 word book into a few sentences. You really need to read the book in order to have a basis for grasping the reality of Moeran. And, most importantly, you must cast aside ALL preconceptions based on anything that you may have read up to now. Moeran really was NOT that person, and I can only explain why not through the text of my book.

Perfectly understood, and I would love to read your book. I doubt if Moeran knew what was going on in his own head so I do not envy your task of the past sixteen years. For me there are few composers who led a more interesting and eventful life.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 20, 2021, 07:58:12 AM
"Moeran's main interest, at least until he met Peers Coetmore, was Moeran"

That struck me as a very interesting quote and made me think that much the same could be said of Bax (insert Harriet Cohen/Mary Gleave depending on decade etc!).  Compositionally Moeran and Bax are very different yet they are often cast together and - I assume this is true - had a personal friendship.  Were they perhaps kindred spirits in other ways....?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 22, 2021, 02:57:56 AM
"Ernest John Moeran: His Life and Music" has received its first review. https://www.britishmusicsociety.co.uk/2021/07/ernest-john-moeran-his-life-and-music/ for those interested.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 22, 2021, 03:25:26 AM
"Ernest John Moeran: His Life and Music" has received its first review. https://www.britishmusicsociety.co.uk/2021/07/ernest-john-moeran-his-life-and-music/ for those interested.
Thank you for that link!  :)

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 22, 2021, 03:39:40 AM
"Ernest John Moeran: His Life and Music" has received its first review. https://www.britishmusicsociety.co.uk/2021/07/ernest-john-moeran-his-life-and-music/ for those interested.
Congratulations on the excellent review - interesting about the details of the late marriage to Peers Coetmore.
I don't agree at all, however, with the reviewer's comparison of Moeran's Sinfonietta with the music of Richard Rodney Bennett; I considerer the Sinfonietta to be far superior to anything written by RRB. My favourite work by RRB, by far, was his fine soundtrack to 'Nicholas and Alexandra' which has, frustratingly, never been released on CD.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 22, 2021, 05:28:13 AM
Good review. Anyone interested in British music would now certainly be curious!
 ('Philip Helestine', 'vice-vera'... no proofreader there, evidently.)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 22, 2021, 07:12:58 AM
Good review. Anyone interested in British music would now certainly be curious!
 ('Philip Helestine', 'vice-vera'... no proofreader there, evidently.)

Surely you've heard of the ignorant Greek art critic Philip Helestine? And the less said about "Vice Vera" the better ...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 22, 2021, 08:04:50 AM
Surely you've heard of the ignorant Greek art critic Philip Helestine? And the less said about "Vice Vera" the better ...
I'm curious, as is your reviewer, about your view on the reconstructed Moeran's 2nd Symphony. I rather enjoyed but I know that others here didn't. I won't be offended if you ignore the question.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 22, 2021, 08:14:58 AM
"Moeran was almost certainly bi-sexual."

Is this the reviewer restating your well-evidenced conclusion, - or a tangent of his own?

I remember no treatment at all of this topic (possibly a minor one) in the thesis study.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Iota on July 22, 2021, 08:31:04 AM
Surely you've heard of the ignorant Greek art critic Philip Helestine? And the less said about "Vice Vera" the better ...

 :laugh:
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 22, 2021, 08:32:53 AM
Surely you've heard of the ignorant Greek art critic Philip Helestine? And the less said about "Vice Vera" the better ...
Ah, that explains it!
 :D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 22, 2021, 10:53:29 AM
Good review. Anyone interested in British music would now certainly be curious!
 ('Philip Helestine', 'vice-vera'... no proofreader there, evidently.)

I've just reached the section dealing with Moeran's War and injury.  As I read it, it was a neck injury not the head injury the reviewer mentions and certainly not an injury as severe (ie requiring a plate in the skull) that was previously received wisdom.  Maxwell cites at length from various medical boards Moeran attended when he was being assessed for a return to active duty.  Perhaps the reviewer slightly skimmed things....?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 22, 2021, 11:47:32 AM
"Moeran was almost certainly bi-sexual."

Is this the reviewer restating your well-evidenced conclusion, - or a tangent of his own?

I remember no treatment at all of this topic (possibly a minor one) in the thesis study.
There's some discussion of that possibility here (see the comments after the article). I'd never come across the suggestion before either. Of course I have no idea how reliable this article is:
https://strangeflowers.wordpress.com/2011/12/17/to-the-very-dregs/
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 22, 2021, 12:11:56 PM
Regarding Moeran's sexuality, there is strong circumstantial evidence - which has all emerged since I submitted my doctoral thesis - for a primarily homosexual identity. However, finding primary evidence, let alone proof, dating from a time when such activity was illegal is only rarely possible, and one is left deducing probable scenarios from inconclusive evidence. In my book, I present the evidence - such as it is - and my reasons for my conclusion. Others whom I have consulted have concurred. However, some have not - one commentator claiming that Moeran could not have been gay because if he had been, it would have been impossible for him to have composed the violin concerto. I am at a loss to comprehend such reasoning. As with all the more controversial content of my book, I invite Forum members to read it carefully and offer their own reasoned opinions.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 22, 2021, 12:56:04 PM
I'm curious, as is your reviewer, about your view on the reconstructed Moeran's 2nd Symphony. I rather enjoyed but I know that others here didn't. I won't be offended if you ignore the question.
I ignored it in the book because my book was about Moeran, and Yates’ “reconstruction” is not Moeran. That is all I have to say about it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 22, 2021, 09:13:55 PM
I ignored it in the book because my book was about Moeran, and Yates’ “reconstruction” is not Moeran. That is all I have to say about it.
Fair enough - but thanks for the response.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 22, 2021, 10:27:28 PM
With the major caveat that I am still in the foothills of the book (but enjoying it very much!) so the "significance" of Moeran's sexuality might yet become clearer..... 

But I find it interesting that we are still in a time when the 'revelation' that someone might have been a homosexual is in any way controversial except simply because it is contrary to previously received wisdom.  Unless that orientation or its impact on Moeran in an era when it was still illegal had a specific manifestation in the music (or his daily life) I am not sure I am bothered except as filling out biographical detail.  There was already a sense that the relationship with Coetmore was an idealised rather than 'practical' love/relationship so even that is not radically altered by this.  With all the new information in the book I find it slightly wearying that the BMS reviewer feels that Moeran's sexuality is the stuff of prime importance.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 22, 2021, 11:31:56 PM
With the major caveat that I am still in the foothills of the book (but enjoying it very much!) so the "significance" of Moeran's sexuality might yet become clearer..... 

But I find it interesting that we are still in a time when the 'revelation' that someone might have been a homosexual is in any way controversial except simply because it is contrary to previously received wisdom.  Unless that orientation or its impact on Moeran in an era when it was still illegal had a specific manifestation in the music (or his daily life) I am not sure I am bothered except as filling out biographical detail.  There was already a sense that the relationship with Coetmore was an idealised rather than 'practical' love/relationship so even that is not radically altered by this.  With all the new information in the book I find it slightly wearying that the BMS reviewer feels that Moeran's sexuality is the stuff of prime importance.

The main reason that I devoted space in the book to Moeran's sexuality was because others have speculated about it and tied it to an overall assessment of Moeran as both man and composer. As you have discerned, my principal purpose for my book was to present the real evidence pertaining to Moeran, give my own reasoned conclusions, and leave space for other reasoning or, indeed, more evidence to emerge. Thus, Moeran's sexuality acquires an importance in that it was a component of his personality, and, as I suggest at the beginning of the book, Moeran's personality and his music are perhaps more intertwined than has been the case with most composers. But you are, of course, correct; Moeran's sexuality cannot objectively be apparent in his music, as cannot the colour of his hair, his weight, which football team he supported, his politics etc. etc. etc.. But since others have tried to make this so, it was necessary to include the evidence and my interpretation of it - most especially so in the light of comments such as the ludicrous one I quoted above relating to the violin concerto. Moreover, the book is a biography, and as such it endeavours to present Moeran as a person, and his sexuality is as relevant to that as is where he lived, how was he educated, etc. etc.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 23, 2021, 01:48:43 AM
I've just reached the section dealing with Moeran's War and injury.  As I read it, it was a neck injury not the head injury the reviewer mentions and certainly not an injury as severe (ie requiring a plate in the skull) that was previously received wisdom.  Maxwell cites at length from various medical boards Moeran attended when he was being assessed for a return to active duty.  Perhaps the reviewer slightly skimmed things....?
Why reviewers (and interviewers) surely never do such things?!  ;)

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 23, 2021, 02:04:54 AM
With the major caveat that I am still in the foothills of the book (but enjoying it very much!) so the "significance" of Moeran's sexuality might yet become clearer..... 

But I find it interesting that we are still in a time when the 'revelation' that someone might have been a homosexual is in any way controversial except simply because it is contrary to previously received wisdom.  Unless that orientation or its impact on Moeran in an era when it was still illegal had a specific manifestation in the music (or his daily life) I am not sure I am bothered except as filling out biographical detail.  There was already a sense that the relationship with Coetmore was an idealised rather than 'practical' love/relationship so even that is not radically altered by this.  With all the new information in the book I find it slightly wearying that the BMS reviewer feels that Moeran's sexuality is the stuff of prime importance.
I don't really agree - an understanding of someone's sexuality may be of significance in understanding them as a person or, in the case of a composer, of giving us some new insight into their music (Tchaikovsky comes to mind, although others may disagree). I think that it depends on context and there surely must be a difference in being homosexual in a liberal society, where people are valued for who they are regardless of their sexuality and being homosexual at a time when it it was illegal or when people were persecuted for it (sadly, there are countries where this is still the case). I do agree that the Violin Concerto point is absurd, although I would like to know which football team Moeran supported!

Interesting discussion.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 23, 2021, 06:34:40 AM
I don't really agree - an understanding of someone's sexuality may be of significance in understanding them as a person or, in the case of a composer, of giving us some new insight into their music (Tchaikovsky comes to mind, although others may disagree). I think that it depends on context and there surely must be a difference in being homosexual in a liberal society, where people are valued for who they are regardless of their sexuality and being homosexual at a time when it it was illegal or when people were persecuted for it (sadly, there are countries where this is still the case). I do agree that the Violin Concerto point is absurd, although I would like to know which football team Moeran supported!

Interesting discussion.

I agree, Jeffrey. That Moeran may be bisexual or homosexual had not crossed my mind but maybe it should as a good proportion of the greatest artists were. Closer to home then Tchaikovsky is Britten of course. Does it have any bearing on their life's work? Yes. Also in Moeran's case it sheds light on his relationship with Peers Coetmore and maybe his excessive alcohol intake.

Probably I can comment with more authority on which football team Moeran may of supported. Sorry Jeffrey, not Chelskie, nor the mighty Hammers. My guess is Celtic.   
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 23, 2021, 07:36:09 AM
I agree, Jeffrey. That Moeran may be bisexual or homosexual had not crossed my mind but maybe it should as a good proportion of the greatest artists were. Closer to home then Tchaikovsky is Britten of course. Does it have any bearing on their life's work? Yes. Also in Moeran's case it sheds light on his relationship with Peers Coetmore and maybe his excessive alcohol intake.

Probably I can comment with more authority on which football team Moeran may of supported. Sorry Jeffrey, not Chelskie, nor the mighty Hammers. My guess is Celtic.   
Thanks Lol. My own view is that we should not attach too much importance to Moeran's possible sexuality, although it is another factor which may help us to understand him. Like you, I hadn't considered it before.

Re: Your second point. Moeran must have mixed with all those arty types in central London, such as Warlock, Constant Lambert etc and apparently he spoke in a posh accent (something else I discovered recently - well, he did go to Uppingham), therefore he must have been a Chelsea supporter!  ;D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 23, 2021, 09:09:58 AM
Thanks Lol. My own view is that we should not attach too much importance to Moeran's possible sexuality, although it is another factor which may help us to understand him. Like you, I hadn't considered it before.

Re: Your second point. Moeran must have mixed with all those arty types in central London, such as Warlock, Constant Lambert etc and apparently he spoke in a posh accent (something else I discovered recently - well, he did go to Uppingham), therefore he must have been a Chelsea supporter!  ;D

I think for sure there are recordings of Moeran speaking.  Anyone know where these might be accessible?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 29, 2021, 02:39:43 AM
A brief update on the new Moeran biography.  I'm about 130 pages in - Philip Heseltine/Peter Warlock has just died - and I have to say I am finding it a compelling read.  Moeran was clearly a very complex personality.  I have not read Dr Maxwell's thesis so cannot comment on how he has developed/expanded/revised opinions from there.  Two things I find intriguing; so much is still missing!  Moeran did not keep diaries, he did not keep musical sketches/notebooks.  Much of the time his movements/motivations are gleaned through the records of others or organisations he was affiliated with.  Music-wise the presumption is that he wrote - or at least conceived of - a lot more music than we still have.  Which for the admirer of his work is both tantalising and frustrating.  Also, it seems clear that he liked to be liked.  In the presence of a powerful personality like Heseltine the conclusion seems inescapable that he "went along" with his views.  To the extent where - it is implied - he even downplayed his role in WW1 - including his wounding simply because Heseltine was anti-War and Moeran's role as a genuinely brave officer in the trenches would not chime with that view.

Interestingly, at the point Moeran extricated himself from the infamous cottage in Eynesford (actually because of unpaid rent!) he came out of a near 3-year composing hiatus with the relatively austere 2 violin sonata and string trio.  Maxwell quotes Moeran as writing to Heseltine that he was doing this to purge himself of the influence of Delius.  However, Maxwell also quotes Moeran as saying how easy it had become to be "lazy" at Eynesford.  I wonder if the purge was more of Heseltine than Delius and that the enforced intellectual rigour of writing for such limited musical resources was a kind of musical work-out for Moeran to get back into composing shape away from the excesses of Kent.  Easier to blame Delius than tell Heseltine that he was the cause of the compositional lacuna.

Anyway, lots to think about and absorb and I'm looking forward to reading more.......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 29, 2021, 03:33:31 AM
A brief update on the new Moeran biography.  I'm about 130 pages in - Philip Heseltine/Peter Warlock has just died - and I have to say I am finding it a compelling read.  Moeran was clearly a very complex personality.  I have not read Dr Maxwell's thesis so cannot comment on how he has developed/expanded/revised opinions from there.  Two things I find intriguing; so much is still missing!  Moeran did not keep diaries, he did not keep musical sketches/notebooks.  Much of the time his movements/motivations are gleaned through the records of others or organisations he was affiliated with.  Music-wise the presumption is that he wrote - or at least conceived of - a lot more music than we still have.  Which for the admirer of his work is both tantalising and frustrating.  Also, it seems clear that he liked to be liked.  In the presence of a powerful personality like Heseltine the conclusion seems inescapable that he "went along" with his views.  To the extent where - it is implied - he even downplayed his role in WW1 - including his wounding simply because Heseltine was anti-War and Moeran's role as a genuinely brave officer in the trenches would not chime with that view.

Interestingly, at the point Moeran extricated himself from the infamous cottage in Eynesford (actually because of unpaid rent!) he came out of a near 3-year composing hiatus with the relatively austere 2 violin sonata and string trio.  Maxwell quotes Moeran as writing to Heseltine that he was doing this to purge himself of the influence of Delius.  However, Maxwell also quotes Moeran as saying how easy it had become to be "lazy" at Eynesford.  I wonder if the purge was more of Heseltine than Delius and that the enforced intellectual rigour of writing for such limited musical resources was a kind of musical work-out for Moeran to get back into composing shape away from the excesses of Kent.  Easier to blame Delius than tell Heseltine that he was the cause of the compositional lacuna.

Anyway, lots to think about and absorb and I'm looking forward to reading more.......
Most interesting - thanks RS
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 29, 2021, 06:13:30 AM
Moeran did not keep diaries, he did not keep musical sketches/notebooks.

Not to be nitpicky, but Dr Maxwell refers to the unearthing of Moeran's "regimental war diaries" and that they "necessitated a re-consideration of conclusions presented previously" (in the doctoral thesis).

I assume also the recovered (incomplete) material for Moeran's planned 2nd Symphony existed as "musical sketches" in some sort of notebook.  How does any composer avoid having that (at least in Moeran's time)?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 29, 2021, 06:41:58 AM
...Moeran did not keep diaries, he did not keep musical sketches/notebooks...

Just a clarification here, no diaries and very few notes and sketches have been found. It is, of course, entirely possible that Moeran did write diaries (which were lost or destroyed), and it is known that he did make copious musical notes. However, he was unfortunately very dilligent in throwing them in the waste-paper basket.

Anyway, I am glad you are enjoying the book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 29, 2021, 07:23:02 AM
Just a clarification here, no diaries and very few notes and sketches have been found. It is, of course, entirely possible that Moeran did write diaries (which were lost or destroyed), and it is known that he did make copious musical notes. However, he was unfortunately very dilligent in throwing them in the waste-paper basket.

Anyway, I am glad you are enjoying the book.

It was you who previously referred to the unearthed "war diaries" and the re-consideration they necessitated of previously presented conclusions.

Was that inaccurate (a myth, as you understand the term)?  You didn't peruse any diaries?

 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 29, 2021, 07:26:12 AM
My January 2014 thesis represented the most considered understanding of Moeran's life and work at that time. Seven years later, knowledge has moved on as more primary evidence - Moeran's regimental war diaries, for example - has been unearthed, and which has necessitated a re-consideration of conclusions presented previously.

?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 29, 2021, 07:50:17 AM
Not to be nitpicky, but Dr Maxwell refers to the unearthing of Moeran's "regimental war diaries" and that they "necessitated a re-consideration of conclusions presented previously" (in the doctoral thesis).

I assume also the recovered (incomplete) material for Moeran's planned 2nd Symphony existed as "musical sketches" in some sort of notebook.  How does any composer avoid having that (at least in Moeran's time)?

regimental war diaries are official records kept by the regiment - they are not an individual's record of their war - that is what I was refering to when I meant that Moeran's activities had to be traced in the accounts of others or other organisations.....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 29, 2021, 08:05:27 AM
regimental war diaries are official records kept by the regiment - they are not an individual's record of their war - that is what I was refering to when I meant that Moeran's activities had to be traced in the accounts of others or other organisations.....

Thanks for helping me out here, Roasted. I was simply ignoring the interminably insufferable "J", and will continue to do so.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 29, 2021, 08:32:36 AM
Not to be nitpicky, but Dr Maxwell refers to the unearthing of Moeran's "regimental war diaries" and that they "necessitated a re-consideration of conclusions presented previously" (in the doctoral thesis).

I assume also the recovered (incomplete) material for Moeran's planned 2nd Symphony existed as "musical sketches" in some sort of notebook.  How does any composer avoid having that (at least in Moeran's time)?

The assumption is not that Moeran made no notes/sketches etc but that he destroyed them.  His death prevented him from doing that with the 2nd symphony material.  Of course, the problem with not having more examples of his sketches is that it is hard to know whether the fragmentary nature of the 2nd symphony was typical of his way of working or a reflection on his state of being late in his life.  The book makes an interesting case for Moeran extensively working out material in his head and latterly refining/checking it at the piano.   The tantalising promises made to Harty of a symphony 10 years before the actual symphony appeared makes you wonder if he really had worked something out in some complete way - as he suggested - or whether he was again telling people what he thought they wanted to hear......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 29, 2021, 08:43:31 AM
To all those that have bought my book (either hardback or ebook) and have read it, or are reading it, or plan to read it, or have otherwise read it through borrowing from a library etc., thank you, and I am grateful for and welcome all comments and, indeed, criticism.

To those that have not read the book but still feel it necessary to comment on the content, I hope you realise what a complete numpty you appear to be.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 30, 2021, 06:44:55 AM
regimental war diaries are official records kept by the regiment - they are not an individual's record of their war - that is what I was refering to when I meant that Moeran's activities had to be traced in the accounts of others or other organisations.....
Rather like Vaughan Williams, who served in the First WW but AFAIK didn't keep a diary. The new book about VW's experiences in the First WW has had to be pieced together from regimental war diaries etc.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 30, 2021, 07:12:49 AM
regimental war diaries are official records kept by the regiment - they are not an individual's record of their war - that is what I was refering to when I meant that Moeran's activities had to be traced in the accounts of others or other organisations.....
So, are they kept (written) by the commander of the regiment?  And how detailed are they?  Are there any notes about someones bravery, what their job was and what they did in the end?  Or do they vary quite a bit in terms of detail?  Just wondering whether or not you or anyone else here knows as I'm curious.

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on July 30, 2021, 07:20:21 AM
Thanks for helping me out here, Roasted. I was simply ignoring the interminably insufferable "J", and will continue to do so.
It was 'J' who originally and enthusiastically alerted me to your PhD Thesis on Moeran and sent me a link. I certainly will be acquiring your book, however, in a forum where people have very different views, I wonder how helpful your above comment is?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 30, 2021, 07:34:09 AM
It was 'J' who originally and enthusiastically alerted me to your PhD Thesis on Moeran and sent me a link. I certainly will be acquiring your book, however, in a forum where people have very different views, I wonder how helpful your above comment is?
I'm with you, Jeffrey. We cannot be friends with everyone, we even may dislike someone. But - here it's all about music, in particular: Moeran's. I suggest we unite in the love we have for it, and keep the animosity at home.

That said, I too will read this undoubtedly fascinating book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 30, 2021, 02:05:50 PM
So, are they kept (written) by the commander of the regiment?  And how detailed are they?  Are there any notes about someones bravery, what their job was and what they did in the end?  Or do they vary quite a bit in terms of detail?  Just wondering whether or not you or anyone else here knows as I'm curious.

PD

This is taken from a web page about the 1914-18 War:

WW1 British Army War Diaries
British Army War Diaries were handwritten or typed documents providing a daily account of the activities of a British, Dominion, Indian and Colonial Army unit on active service. This was a British Army Field Service Regulation dating from 1907. Sometimes the War Diary was designated as an Intelligence Summary.

It was the responsibility of the commander of every military unit – from the level of a battalion to a division – to ensure that the War Diary was kept up to date. It was to be written up each evening by a specific junior officer and usually signed off by a senior officer or the commanding officer.

The War Diary was compiled by month for every month that the unit was on active service.

In addition to the completed official War Diary Army Form, there might also be sketches, messages, maps and Operational Orders included as appendices.

Purpose of the War Diary
The purpose of the War Diary was to create a record of the operations of the unit on active service. It would record the part it was playing in a battle and would usually list the number of men who went into action and the number of casualties when the unit came out of the action. The information in a War Diary would be used by senior commanders for intelligence about the enemy opposite their units and as a historical record for future planning.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 30, 2021, 08:24:33 PM
Thanks for helping me out here, Roasted. I was simply ignoring the interminably insufferable "J", and will continue to do so.

You're unique among authors in my experience, HotFXMan, in quite effectively killing (by your rude and immature comments) any enthusiasm I might formerly have had for reading your book, and more unfortunately (but I think temporarily) for the music of its subject.  Others here can genuflect to your prickly and sensitive ego as they wish.  My only offense was in not immediately acknowledging you as God in relation to understanding this composer's life and work, and by making a few innocuously questioning comments about it, - startlingly met by your blast of invective.  You should really get over this, but ignore me if you like.  I admit to (previously) lacking a grip on what exactly are "regimental war diaries".  So what.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 30, 2021, 10:20:42 PM
... I admit to (previously) lacking a grip on what exactly are "regimental war diaries".  So what.
So what? The “what” is that instead of politely enquiring about the diaries, or even better making some minimal effort to inform yourself about them (a simple Google exercise), you assumed that I had contradicted myself by having previously mentioned that Moeran did not keep a diary. You jumped to a conclusion, failed to verify the facts, and delightedly seized what you saw as an opportunity to call me out about it. Having now realised how foolish this makes you look, you endeavour to minimise things by saying “So what”.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 30, 2021, 10:41:44 PM
I get a sense world peace might be an illusion.
Oh well. Off to listen to 'Lonely Waters'.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on July 30, 2021, 10:42:39 PM
So what? The “what” is that instead of politely enquiring about the diaries, or even better making some minimal effort to inform yourself about them (a simple Google exercise), you assumed that I had contradicted myself by having previously mentioned that Moeran did not keep a diary. You jumped to a conclusion, failed to verify the facts, and delightedly seized what you saw as an opportunity to call me out about it. Having now realised how foolish this makes you look, you endeavour to minimise things by saying “So what”.

One of the dangers of forums such as this it is easy to get your facts wrong and ending up feeling a bit of a numpty, we have all done it - I know I have! J has the grace to raise his hands and admit his error so that should be the end of it. Nobody has suffered and "So what" is right. Spilling of blood not required.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 30, 2021, 11:12:03 PM
you assumed that I had contradicted myself by having previously mentioned that Moeran did not keep a diary and delightedly seized what you saw as an opportunity to call me out about it.

Pretty much right, Ian.  This is an internet forum, and sometimes we play in that fashion.  I contend you initiated the provocations.

Let's proceed by you/us talking about the book, - and the music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 30, 2021, 11:37:24 PM
Pretty much right, Ian.  This is an internet forum, and sometimes we play in that fashion.  I contend you initiated the provocations.
So your justification is the tactics of the playgound: "please miss, he started it!".

Let's proceed by you/us talking about the book, - and the music.
If you really wanted to do that, you could have done so, without the needling.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 30, 2021, 11:44:16 PM
This is taken from a web page about the 1914-18 War:

WW1 British Army War Diaries
British Army War Diaries were handwritten or typed documents providing a daily account of the activities of a British, Dominion, Indian and Colonial Army unit on active service. This was a British Army Field Service Regulation dating from 1907. Sometimes the War Diary was designated as an Intelligence Summary.

It was the responsibility of the commander of every military unit – from the level of a battalion to a division – to ensure that the War Diary was kept up to date. It was to be written up each evening by a specific junior officer and usually signed off by a senior officer or the commanding officer.

The War Diary was compiled by month for every month that the unit was on active service.

In addition to the completed official War Diary Army Form, there might also be sketches, messages, maps and Operational Orders included as appendices.

Purpose of the War Diary
The purpose of the War Diary was to create a record of the operations of the unit on active service. It would record the part it was playing in a battle and would usually list the number of men who went into action and the number of casualties when the unit came out of the action. The information in a War Diary would be used by senior commanders for intelligence about the enemy opposite their units and as a historical record for future planning.

It was the evidence from the West Yorkshire Regiment war diaries that revealed Moeran's true role during the First World War. These diaries can be examined at the UK National Archive or online via such websites as Ancestry.co.uk. In my book, I had the space for only a few quotations, but the entirety of the period Moeran spent at the front line is covered by the diary. It is fascinating reading.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 30, 2021, 11:48:55 PM
It was 'J' who originally and enthusiastically alerted me to your PhD Thesis on Moeran and sent me a link. I certainly will be acquiring your book, however, in a forum where people have very different views, I wonder how helpful your above comment is?
Not helpful at all. It only served to let off steam in the face of what I regarded as unwarranted provocation. I apologise to you and the other forum members for this.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 31, 2021, 02:24:45 AM
One of the dangers of forums such as this it is easy to get your facts wrong and ending up feeling a bit of a numpty, we have all done it - I know I have! J has the grace to raise his hands and admit his error so that should be the end of it. Nobody has suffered and "So what" is right. Spilling of blood not required.

Irons, if J had raised his hands and admitted his error and (perhaps) apologised, that would, indeed, be the end of it. However, what he has admitted is that his remarks were deliberately intended to needle me. I hardly think that counts as "having grace".
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Pohjolas Daughter on July 31, 2021, 03:13:32 AM
This is taken from a web page about the 1914-18 War:

WW1 British Army War Diaries
British Army War Diaries were handwritten or typed documents providing a daily account of the activities of a British, Dominion, Indian and Colonial Army unit on active service. This was a British Army Field Service Regulation dating from 1907. Sometimes the War Diary was designated as an Intelligence Summary.

It was the responsibility of the commander of every military unit – from the level of a battalion to a division – to ensure that the War Diary was kept up to date. It was to be written up each evening by a specific junior officer and usually signed off by a senior officer or the commanding officer.

The War Diary was compiled by month for every month that the unit was on active service.

In addition to the completed official War Diary Army Form, there might also be sketches, messages, maps and Operational Orders included as appendices.

Purpose of the War Diary
The purpose of the War Diary was to create a record of the operations of the unit on active service. It would record the part it was playing in a battle and would usually list the number of men who went into action and the number of casualties when the unit came out of the action. The information in a War Diary would be used by senior commanders for intelligence about the enemy opposite their units and as a historical record for future planning.
Thank you for the further info RS.

PD
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on July 31, 2021, 10:48:30 AM
Can I just say - at the risk of "genuflecting"! (haven't had a good genuflect in years mind) - this is a really good book!!!  I'm not sure when I last found a biography so compelling.  The thing that is so hard to judge at a lifetime's distance is; was Moeran's drink problem (I had no idea he was such a regular attendee of the drink-driving courts!) simply a consequence of Heseltine's hedonistic influence or a delayed PTSD or both.......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 31, 2021, 11:17:39 AM
Can I just say - at the risk of "genuflecting"! (haven't had a good genuflect in years mind) - this is a really good book!!!
Good to hear!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on July 31, 2021, 12:05:19 PM
...The thing that is so hard to judge at a lifetime's distance is; was Moeran's drink problem (I had no idea he was such a regular attendee of the drink-driving courts!) simply a consequence of Heseltine's hedonistic influence or a delayed PTSD or both.......

As you rightly say, at this distance in time and with the limited amount of reliable evidence, it is difficult to say. My own view is that the assertion that Moeran had some form of PTSD deriving from his wartime experiences for the simple reason that he must have done - which was essentially Self's argument - lacks credibility in the light of what is known about his life during the early and mid 1920s. Self based his theory on assumptions about Moeran's wartime experiences, assumptions that, while perhaps reasonable at the time Self was writing, can now be shown to have been incorrect.

Moeran's documented drink-related issues all post-date his association with Heseltine and the infamous cottage, and there is no evidence of drink problems pertaining to Moeran's life before Heseltine. Taken together, I have dismissed Self's reasoning due to lack of evidence, and have asserted that Moeran's problems began with his meeting and close association with Heseltine.

However, I could be wrong, and am open to alternative suggestions.

Incidentally, thank you for your kind remarks about the book.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on July 31, 2021, 08:43:24 PM
Being a passionate Delius lover, I'm especially interested in the influence of Delius on Moeran, and also curious if there transpired any personal contact or communications between them.  It's in my head Moeran at some point travelled to Grez with the purpose of meeting Delius, but for some reason that meeting never happened.  Can you clarify briefly their relationship in this regard, HotFXMan (did Delius & Moeran at least correspond?), - and how extensively do you cover the Delius/Moeran interface in your book?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 31, 2021, 09:02:13 PM
Good question. I'm a Delian as well. From what I have read (don't know Mr Maxwell's Moeran book yet) it's Heseltine/Warlock who was in contact with Delius. Moeran wasn't.
Interested in Mr Maxwell's answer. 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on August 02, 2021, 07:54:25 AM
Good question. I'm a Delian as well. From what I have read (don't know Mr Maxwell's Moeran book yet) it's Heseltine/Warlock who was in contact with Delius. Moeran wasn't.
Interested in Mr Maxwell's answer.

Speaking of 1929 the lengthy Wiki article about Moeran says "that same year he went with Heseltine and others to France, ostensibly to meet Delius.  The trip degenerated into a drunken binge, during which Moeran passed out in the street."

I wonder about the circumstances of that trip (if it happened, - this being Wiki).  Were there prior communications between them? 

BTW, Johann, "Dr" Maxwell is the proper mode of reference.                                                                                             
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 02, 2021, 08:36:32 AM
The book quotes Eric Fenby's "Delius as I knew him"  pgs 59-63:  "One morning, on going down to lucnh, I discovered that Heseltine and several other people had arrived unexpectedly.  They were not at their full strength, they told us for they had missed 'Old Raspberry' [the nickname for Moeran] on the way; he would probably be coming along later in the day...... Our rowdy friends had not been gone for more than a few minutes when 'Old Raspberry' drove up in a taxi; but we pushed him in again and directed the driver to Marlotte.  Delius had had enough for one day...."

Apparently during this same trip through France Moeran lost the original version of Whythorne's Shadow due to having dropped it while drunk........
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 02, 2021, 08:48:56 AM
More sad than funny, that story. Pity Heseltine and the gang had to make such fools of themselves.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on August 02, 2021, 09:14:11 AM
The book quotes Eric Fenby's "Delius as I knew him"  pgs 59-63:  "One morning, on going down to lucnh, I discovered that Heseltine and several other people had arrived unexpectedly.  They were not at their full strength, they told us for they had missed 'Old Raspberry' [the nickname for Moeran] on the way; he would probably be coming along later in the day...... Our rowdy friends had not been gone for more than a few minutes when 'Old Raspberry' drove up in a taxi; but we pushed him in again and directed the driver to Marlotte.  Delius had had enough for one day...."

Apparently during this same trip through France Moeran lost the original version of Whythorne's Shadow due to having dropped it while drunk........

Very interesting, - thank you for that.  How extensively does Maxwell write of the Moeran/Delius relationship otherwise?

I have "the book" now (in a secluded place), but resolutely waiting for impressions of its author to fade away somewhat before reading.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 02, 2021, 10:04:42 AM
Very interesting, - thank you for that.  How extensively does Maxwell write of the Moeran/Delius relationship otherwise?

I have "the book" now (in a secluded place), but resolutely waiting for impressions of its author to fade away somewhat before reading.

Delius is a recurring reference in the book - after all Moeran's only work for chorus and orchestra - The Nocturne - was dedicated to the older composer.  However, a theme throughout the book is that Moeran had a "two-way" relationship with composers in the sense that he often had an influence (musically) on them as much as they did on him.  Maxwell cites Ireland as a prime example.  A common criticism of Moeran has been that he "cribbed" other composers.  Maxwell does not avoid that observation - indeed he quoes letters where Moeran specifically requested copies of scores by Sibelius (for the end of the symphony) Ireland & Rachmaninov (the piano rhapsody) explicitly to see how other composers achieved their effects.  However, he also gives examples of situations where Moeran pre-empted certain stylisitc characteristics associated with other composers thereby showing that he was a composer capable of very original musical thought. 

My own sense is that apart from occasional musical gestures Moeran is very different from Delius aesthetically/emotionally/technically.  I love them both but don't feel there is much linkage.....
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 02, 2021, 10:20:20 AM

My own sense is that apart from occasional musical gestures Moeran is very different from Delius aesthetically/emotionally/technically.  I love them both but don't feel there is much linkage.....
I agree. Moeran's Nature music is more melancholy, less obsessed by transience as Delius's is. There is also no eroticism in Moeran's music, as far as I know...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 03, 2021, 04:36:23 AM
On February 12th 1971 the arts series "Anthology" on RTE (Irish National Television) broadcast a documentary simply entitled E J Moeran.  For those who have never seen this hour long film here is a link.  The video recording/picture quality is pretty poor.  However the interest lies in the people who could still be interviewed in 1971 and what they have to say........

here is a link

https://drive.google.com/file/d/17DNQhHK-N1J6EqVfibeOeam57jzr6oiT/view?usp=sharing

below is the cover of the copy of the ripped DVD I found in a music shop some years ago......
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 03, 2021, 04:47:40 AM
Excellent! Many thanks!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on August 03, 2021, 01:20:54 PM
... However, a theme throughout the book is that Moeran had a "two-way" relationship with composers in the sense that he often had an influence (musically) on them as much as they did on him.  Maxwell cites Ireland as a prime example.  A common criticism of Moeran has been that he "cribbed" other composers.  Maxwell does not avoid that observation - indeed he quoes letters where Moeran specifically requested copies of scores by Sibelius (for the end of the symphony) Ireland & Rachmaninov (the piano rhapsody) explicitly to see how other composers achieved their effects.  However, he also gives examples of situations where Moeran pre-empted certain stylisitc characteristics associated with other composers thereby showing that he was a composer capable of very original musical thought. 


I remember listening to the Symphony in G minor a few years ago and noting that there were references to Vaughan Williams' 4th Symphony in it (don't ask me to quote bar numbers!). But equally there were passages which must have influenced Vaughan Williams when he came to write his 5th Symphony!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on August 03, 2021, 09:24:09 PM
Yesterday I listened to the Sonata for Violin and Piano, which I hardly knew, and found it to be a wonderful discovery. The abrupt chords at the end of the Symphony and the 'Tapiola'-like storm in the finale are the most obvious references to Sibelius I think although Moeran possessed a very original style which those other references (Delius/VW) are integrated into.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 03, 2021, 11:01:56 PM
Yesterday I listened to the Sonata for Violin and Piano, which I hardly knew, and found it to be a wonderful discovery. The abrupt chords at the end of the Symphony and the 'Tapiola'-like storm in the finale are the most obvious references to Sibelius I think although Moeran possessed a very original style which those other references (Delius/VW) are integrated into.

I recall on another forum, Gramophone I think, Moeran received quite a mauling being accused of plagiarism, "guess the composer" whilst listening to his symphony. Plagiarism is miles too strong, but as you allude Jeffrey the work is open to criticism. The abrupt chords you mention are such a crib on the Sibelius 5th they always when I hear them leave me slightly uncomfortable. The Moeran Symphony is my favourite work by him and in my top five by any English composer. So not that bothered by the odd slight indiscretion.
This only applies far as I'm aware to the Symphony as for example the concerti for cello and violin have no direct influence from other composers. So many questions, must be a long book! 
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 04, 2021, 12:54:15 AM
I recall on another forum, Gramophone I think, Moeran received quite a mauling being accused of plagiarism, "guess the composer" whilst listening to his symphony. Plagiarism is miles too strong, but as you allude Jeffrey the work is open to criticism. The abrupt chords you mention are such a crib on the Sibelius 5th they always when I hear them leave me slightly uncomfortable. The Moeran Symphony is my favourite work by him and in my top five by any English composer. So not that bothered by the odd slight indiscretion.
This only applies far as I'm aware to the Symphony as for example the concerti for cello and violin have no direct influence from other composers. So many questions, must be a long book!

The book is quite a treasure trove of information!  Moeran seems to have lacked a bit of confidence as far as how to handle certain aspects of orchestration throughout his career.  He specifically asked for a score of Sibelius 5 so he could see how the final chords were voiced etc.  For the Piano Rhapsody he asked for copies of the Ireland Concerto and Rach. 2 and for the cello concerto Maxwell draws parallels with the Dvorak (also B minor) but also the Elgar.  My response to such occurences is exactly the same as yours - I'm aware of them but somehow the sum of the whole far outweighs a fleeting "sounds like...."
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on August 04, 2021, 01:08:40 AM
The close of Walton's 1st Symphony (another of my favourite symphonies, along with the Moeran) also references the end of Sibelius's 5th Symphony. Coming across the LP of the Moeran Symphony (Dilkes recording) was one of my most memorable classical discoveries along with VW Symphony No.6 (LPO/Boult) and Miaskovsky Symphony No.6 (Kondrashin). My brother had the PYE LP (Boult) of Walton's First Symphony in his collection, so that I was always familiar with that work. His LP of Copland's 3rd Symphony (Everest LP/Copland) was one of my first forays into classical music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 04, 2021, 01:22:04 AM
The close of Walton's 1st Symphony (another of my favourite symphonies, along with the Moeran) also references the end of Sibelius's 5th Symphony. Coming across the LP of the Moeran Symphony (Dilkes recording) was one of my most memorable classical discoveries along with VW Symphony No.6 (LPO/Boult) and Miaskovsky Symphony No.6 (Kondrashin). My brother had the PYE LP (Boult) of Walton's First Symphony in his collection, so that I was always familiar with that work. His LP of Copland's 3rd Symphony (Everest LP/Copland) was one of my first forays into classical music.

The Everest/Copland/LSO recording still sounds remarkably fine on CD.  My LP encounters with the Everest label were always circumscribed by some truly dreadful pressings.  Those same recordings on CD are revelatory

(https://classicstoday-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/coverpics/8174_coverpic.jpg)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on August 04, 2021, 03:52:53 AM
The Everest/Copland/LSO recording still sounds remarkably fine on CD.  My LP encounters with the Everest label were always circumscribed by some truly dreadful pressings.  Those same recordings on CD are revelatory

(https://classicstoday-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/coverpics/8174_coverpic.jpg)
Yes, I agree. I still think that it is one of the finest performances of Copland's 3rd Symphony - much better than Bernstein's much admired CBS/Sony recording.
There are another couple of Everest CD manifestations - I like the one which replicated the original LP sleeve, which I recall had some connection with the producer of military weapons!
Thanks for posting the Moeran video by the way.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on August 05, 2021, 12:46:53 PM
Ok so I'm thinking about performances of the Symphony I have heard. The first one I heard was back in the early 80s on a cassette tape from EMI that had a green spine (there was a whole series of different EMI green spine recordings I think).

Which orchestra/conductor would that have been?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 05, 2021, 10:01:13 PM
Ok so I'm thinking about performances of the Symphony I have heard. The first one I heard was back in the early 80s on a cassette tape from EMI that had a green spine (there was a whole series of different EMI green spine recordings I think).

Which orchestra/conductor would that have been?

Dilkes/English Sinfonia without a doubt.  When it got re-released on EMI's cheaper "Greensleeves" label;

(https://img.discogs.com/-cAyL7qQq03tY6nGmOgxyCRtXBo=/fit-in/600x971/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-15647511-1595179891-3238.mpo.jpg)

The Moeran Symphony has been relatively lucky - all of the performances are good - excellent.  The surprise/shame is that his music does not seem to have "travelled" much if at all.  Its such attractive and accessible music but I'm not sure there's been much attention given to it outside of the UK & Ireland (Hurwitz did a 'survey' but I mean actual performances).  I wonder if Falletta took any of it back to play with her orchestras in the US or Sinaisky to Russia!?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on August 05, 2021, 10:44:19 PM
Dilkes/English Sinfonia without a doubt.  When it got re-released on EMI's cheaper "Greensleeves" label;

(https://img.discogs.com/-cAyL7qQq03tY6nGmOgxyCRtXBo=/fit-in/600x971/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-15647511-1595179891-3238.mpo.jpg)

The Moeran Symphony has been relatively lucky - all of the performances are good - excellent.  The surprise/shame is that his music does not seem to have "travelled" much if at all.  Its such attractive and accessible music but I'm not sure there's been much attention given to it outside of the UK & Ireland (Hurwitz did a 'survey' but I mean actual performances).  I wonder if Falletta took any of it back to play with her orchestras in the US or Sinaisky to Russia!?

That's the one!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 05, 2021, 11:51:45 PM
Dilkes/English Sinfonia without a doubt.  When it got re-released on EMI's cheaper "Greensleeves" label;

(https://img.discogs.com/-cAyL7qQq03tY6nGmOgxyCRtXBo=/fit-in/600x971/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-15647511-1595179891-3238.mpo.jpg)

The Moeran Symphony has been relatively lucky - all of the performances are good - excellent.  The surprise/shame is that his music does not seem to have "travelled" much if at all.  Its such attractive and accessible music but I'm not sure there's been much attention given to it outside of the UK & Ireland (Hurwitz did a 'survey' but I mean actual performances).  I wonder if Falletta took any of it back to play with her orchestras in the US or Sinaisky to Russia!?

I find the two Falletta Naxos issues most impressive. The idiom is spot-on. Hopefully she will get around to recording the symphony one day.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on August 06, 2021, 12:23:40 AM
I find the two Falletta Naxos issues most impressive. The idiom is spot-on. Hopefully she will get around to recording the symphony one day.
+1
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 06, 2021, 01:17:13 AM
I find the two Falletta Naxos issues most impressive. The idiom is spot-on. Hopefully she will get around to recording the symphony one day.

++1 - I have to say I've never been that fussed either way with Falletta's recordings in Buffalo (others seem to love them) but I thought her 3 Naxos discs in Ulster - 2 x Moeran and 1 x Holst were really really fine.  Her short tenure in Ulster means something just didn't click there for her and/or the orchestra but the small recorded legacy is excellent.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on August 06, 2021, 01:23:51 AM
++1 - I have to say I've never been that fussed either way with Falletta's recordings in Buffalo (others seem to love them) but I thought her 3 Naxos discs in Ulster - 2 x Moeran and 1 x Holst were really really fine.  Her short tenure in Ulster means something just didn't click there for her and/or the orchestra but the small recorded legacy is excellent.
Her recording of Gliere's Ilya Muromets Symphony is one of the best (Buffalo PO).
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on August 08, 2021, 11:42:46 PM
I agree. Moeran's Nature music is more melancholy, less obsessed by transience as Delius's is. There is also no eroticism in Moeran's music, as far as I know...

Having been away on holiday for a while, I have returned to find some interesting postings on the forum. Might I ask generally how you define eroticism in music, and to give some specific examples of where you believe it exists in music. The context of my question is that I do not consider that music is capable of conveying concepts such as eroticism (indeed, it is incapable of conveying anything at all) except by agreed convention, and would be interested to know how you (and anybody else for that matter) has acquired such a convention. Why do you think this does not exist in Moeran's music?

You will be well aware of Stravinsky's assertion, to which I refer in my book, that if music appears to communicate anything beyond itself, this can only be an illusion. I am very interested to understand how such illusions come about. Some are obvious, film and TV music for example has conventionally led to the definition of certain musical characteristics as representing images or emotions. But explaining other acquisitions is problematic.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 09, 2021, 01:53:38 AM
Having been away on holiday for a while, I have returned to find some interesting postings on the forum. Might I ask generally how you define eroticism in music, and to give some specific examples of where you believe it exists in music. The context of my question is that I do not consider that music is capable of conveying concepts such as eroticism (indeed, it is incapable of conveying anything at all) except by agreed convention, and would be interested to know how you (and anybody else for that matter) has acquired such a convention. Why do you think this does not exist in Moeran's music?

You will be well aware of Stravinsky's assertion, to which I refer in my book, that if music appears to communicate anything beyond itself, this can only be an illusion. I am very interested to understand how such illusions come about. Some are obvious, film and TV music for example has conventionally led to the definition of certain musical characteristics as representing images or emotions. But explaining other acquisitions is problematic.
Yes, I'm aware of Stravinsky's infamous pronouncement. The idea that all emotion in music is not inherent but something we ascribe to it. But if I remember correctly, even Stravinsky himself found this a bit of an overstatement, born of the desire to get rid of overblown Romanticism. In the meantime he was able to write a ballet like The Fairy's Kiss, based on material by that most emotional of composers, Tchaikovsky, whom he revered...
Back to Delius and Moeran, and eroticism in music. Composers who have been considered 'erotic' in their music are people like Wagner, Scriabin and Delius. The common musical denominator among them is extreme chromaticism. The diatonic in that view is a mode of the defined, clear-cut, in former days: masculine. Chromaticism is erotic in its erosion of barriers, its fluidity, its destabilisation of (diatonic) harmony.
Delius was a Nietzschean hedonist. His music is ultra-chromatic. Moeran's much less so. Hence my assertion.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 09, 2021, 03:58:47 AM
Having been away on holiday for a while, I have returned to find some interesting postings on the forum. Might I ask generally how you define eroticism in music, and to give some specific examples of where you believe it exists in music. The context of my question is that I do not consider that music is capable of conveying concepts such as eroticism (indeed, it is incapable of conveying anything at all) except by agreed convention, and would be interested to know how you (and anybody else for that matter) has acquired such a convention. Why do you think this does not exist in Moeran's music?

You will be well aware of Stravinsky's assertion, to which I refer in my book, that if music appears to communicate anything beyond itself, this can only be an illusion. I am very interested to understand how such illusions come about. Some are obvious, film and TV music for example has conventionally led to the definition of certain musical characteristics as representing images or emotions. But explaining other acquisitions is problematic.

The "music can't mean anything except sound" is a debate that regularly rears its head on this forum and elsewhere.  But I would say there are explicit and implicit examples.  Strauss caused consternation by depicting a love scene with his wife in Sinfonia Domestica - that's what he meant and that's what he tried to depict.  Walton's storm scene in "Troilus and Cressida" is not meant to be anything except a night of passion.  But then I suppose I suppose there are other works where the sensuality is more implicit - or perhaps not if you're Nijinsky choosing Prelude a l'apres midi to dance (more consternation).  I think there is possibly(!) a strong case for someone like Bax's music being completely linked to his libido.  Nearly all his great music is (as he said himself) a response to life love and death.  The 3 famous tone poems are all so linked - Tintagel is dedicated to harriet Cohen and November Woods is an allegory for emotional storms as much as natural ones.

Stravinsky had an approach/agenda which clearly suited the anti-Romantic position so no surprise he wrote what he did.  With Moeran I hear place rather than person in his music.  The quotes from him - whether accurate or fanciful speak of the symphony being based on Irish or Norfolk landscapes.  In the Mountain Country is again more of a nature picture.  I think that even the works for Coetmore are not great emotional outpourings in the Baxian style but more an expression of 'proof of love' rather than an evocation of love - emotional or physical.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: vandermolen on August 09, 2021, 04:05:24 AM
Bax came to my mind too - especially the stormy works like 'November Woods', arguably reflecting the turbulent emotions aroused by his passionate affair with Harriet Cohen.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 09, 2021, 04:34:42 AM
I am reminded of RVW's amusement at seeing the following entry in a music encyclopaedia: Cohen, Harriet. See under Bax, Arnold.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on August 09, 2021, 11:47:43 AM
I am reminded of RVW's amusement at seeing the following entry in a music encyclopaedia: Cohen, Harriet. See under Bax, Arnold.

I'm sure that the text in the musical dictionary was deliberate. In the old days when everyone was very proper writers and journalists used to delight in trying to get double entendres through. I grew up in Cambridge and the story went that the Cambridge Evening News had an editor who was ruthless in eliminating anything suggestive, but the journalists didn't give up and one day his guard slipped: the headline for a story about a man objecting to his neighbour trying to get permission to extend his house was "Man fights erection in street"  :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 09, 2021, 11:49:44 AM
That's one massive slip.  :D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on August 09, 2021, 11:55:12 AM
Some time in the 30s one whole issue of the Times had to be recalled and pulped because they had printed a letter signed "R Supward"!
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 09, 2021, 01:09:16 PM
 :D
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: André on August 09, 2021, 03:00:06 PM
I'm sure that the text in the musical dictionary was deliberate. In the old days when everyone was very proper writers and journalists used to delight in trying to get double entendres through. I grew up in Cambridge and the story went that the Cambridge Evening News had an editor who was ruthless in eliminating anything suggestive, but the journalists didn't give up and one day his guard slipped: the headline for a story about a man objecting to his neighbour trying to get permission to extend his house was "Man fights erection in street"  :)

I wonder what that editor would have made of this scene of the inauguration of the Brooklyn Bridge ?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4cCyukRyMw

The fun starts around 0:55  :)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Biffo on August 10, 2021, 04:41:34 AM
Some time in the 30s one whole issue of the Times had to be recalled and pulped because they had printed a letter signed "R Supward"!

I can't remember the exact date (sometime in the 1970s?) but The Times published an article about a cache of papyrus rolls that had been unearthed in Egypt. They had been dated to the 1st century BC and contained a number of the sayings of Jesus. No one at the Times seemed to have noticed that the alleged scholar who translated the scrolls was called Batson D. Sealing. This was doubly embarrassing because it wasn't long after Times Newspapers had spent a huge sum of money buying a set of fake Hitler Diaries.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on August 13, 2021, 04:08:52 AM
The "music can't mean anything except sound" is a debate that regularly rears its head on this forum and elsewhere.  But I would say there are explicit and implicit examples.  Strauss caused consternation by depicting a love scene with his wife in Sinfonia Domestica - that's what he meant and that's what he tried to depict.  Walton's storm scene in "Troilus and Cressida" is not meant to be anything except a night of passion.  But then I suppose I suppose there are other works where the sensuality is more implicit - or perhaps not if you're Nijinsky choosing Prelude a l'apres midi to dance (more consternation).  I think there is possibly(!) a strong case for someone like Bax's music being completely linked to his libido.  Nearly all his great music is (as he said himself) a response to life love and death.  The 3 famous tone poems are all so linked - Tintagel is dedicated to harriet Cohen and November Woods is an allegory for emotional storms as much as natural ones.

Stravinsky had an approach/agenda which clearly suited the anti-Romantic position so no surprise he wrote what he did.  With Moeran I hear place rather than person in his music.  The quotes from him - whether accurate or fanciful speak of the symphony being based on Irish or Norfolk landscapes.  In the Mountain Country is again more of a nature picture.  I think that even the works for Coetmore are not great emotional outpourings in the Baxian style but more an expression of 'proof of love' rather than an evocation of love - emotional or physical.

Music by its very nature cannot intrinsically "mean" or be about anything, in the way that expressions in language do "mean" something. But even in language, meaning comes from agreement and convention. Exactly the same sequence of sounds can have different meanings or representations in different languages (which, of course, are themselves collectively agreed conventions) - consider the English "gift" and the German "Gift", for example.

Music can have acquired metaphorical meaning, but again, this may not be the same for each listener. In each of the examples you quoted, we are reliant on what the composer claimed for their music, or what others have claimed on the composer's behalf. I did it myself in the book, as you will recall, when I asserted a possible programme for In the Mountain Country. I could compose a piece of music that I asserted represented my walk in the Peak District the other day. But unless I informed listeners that this is the case, how would anybody know?
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 13, 2021, 07:24:24 AM
Music by its very nature cannot intrinsically "mean" or be about anything, in the way that expressions in language do "mean" something. But even in language, meaning comes from agreement and convention. Exactly the same sequence of sounds can have different meanings or representations in different languages (which, of course, are themselves collectively agreed conventions) - consider the English "gift" and the German "Gift", for example.

Music can have acquired metaphorical meaning, but again, this may not be the same for each listener. In each of the examples you quoted, we are reliant on what the composer claimed for their music, or what others have claimed on the composer's behalf. I did it myself in the book, as you will recall, when I asserted a possible programme for In the Mountain Country. I could compose a piece of music that I asserted represented my walk in the Peak District the other day. But unless I informed listeners that this is the case, how would anybody know?

 To convey emotion music is far more powerful then words and can reach our inner soul. A quotation from Henrich Heine sums it up for me Where words leave off, music begins. Without fail the Larghetto of Elgar's 2nd Symphony cracks me up and I have no idea why. Nothing in this music has any connection with my life or past and outwardly I'm not an emotional person and yet this string of notes cuts to the quick.
Moeran is different, the second movement of his Cello Concerto moves me greatly but unlike the Elgar I know why it does.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on August 13, 2021, 12:01:36 PM
To convey emotion music is far more powerful then words and can reach our inner soul. A quotation from Henrich Heine sums it up for me Where words leave off, music begins. Without fail the Larghetto of Elgar's 2nd Symphony cracks me up and I have no idea why. Nothing in this music has any connection with my life or past and outwardly I'm not an emotional person and yet this string of notes cuts to the quick.
Moeran is different, the second movement of his Cello Concerto moves me greatly but unlike the Elgar I know why it does.
I neither deny nor dispute that music can have an emotional effect on listeners. While I do not share your connection with the Elgar movement, there are countless other pieces that can affect me deeply. All responses to music are by necessity learned, whether or not one recalls it or even realises how that learning took place. However, in order for music to communicate anything meaningful, it has to be commonly agreed what it is, and this can only come externally - the music itself can provide no information. Like many composers, Moeran made certain claims for his music, which I have documented in my book. I have also presented my response to his claims, but I make no assertion that my response is any more correct than anybody else's. As I have said in the Introduction to my book: "It is the nature of music that each response to it is an individual one, informed by the unique experiences of each listener ...", so there can really never be a general agreement.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Roasted Swan on August 13, 2021, 01:20:00 PM
I neither deny nor dispute that music can have an emotional effect on listeners. While I do not share your connection with the Elgar movement, there are countless other pieces that can affect me deeply. All responses to music are by necessity learned, whether or not one recalls it or even realises how that learning took place. However, in order for music to communicate anything meaningful, it has to be commonly agreed what it is, and this can only come externally - the music itself can provide no information. Like many composers, Moeran made certain claims for his music, which I have documented in my book. I have also presented my response to his claims, but I make no assertion that my response is any more correct than anybody else's. As I have said in the Introduction to my book: "It is the nature of music that each response to it is an individual one, informed by the unique experiences of each listener ...", so there can really never be a general agreement.

So if Strauss in the Alpine Symphony says "this is a waterfall...., this is a meadow" are we not to believe him!?  If Dvorak in his late tone poems very deliberately illustrates the narratives of the the folk stories he portrays in music are we meant to be sceptical?  Of course there are musical "signposts" that in certain cultures we understand represent certain things, but that is just a learned cultural response no different from a gesture in one culture meaning something quite different in another - context within that culture is everything.  Of course composers will use those musical gestures as signifiers for their intent - they don't have to write an instruction booklet with every work.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on August 13, 2021, 11:14:41 PM
So if Strauss in the Alpine Symphony says "this is a waterfall...., this is a meadow" are we not to believe him!?  ...

Yes, of course we are, and that is exactly my point - we are reliant on the composer to explain his or her music, because without such explanation, we have no objective points of reference. If an abstract artist says that their creation of seemingly random red lines on an alternating black and dark blue background represents a response to the view from the summit of Mount Snowden, we are constrained to accept that, no matter how sceptical we may be. But if the artist simply shows us the painting and says nothing, how could a view from Mount Snowden - or anywhere else for that matter - occurs to us. It is exactly the same for music. With programme music, we as listeners are provided with an explanation of what the music is intended to represent. However, like the painting, we are at liberty to accept or reject that because there are no semiotic indicators inherent in the music. Middle C followed by G followed by B cannot "mean" anything, nor can the harmonic sequence Cm7, Gm7flat9, Ddim, Eflat7sus4, nor the use of flute and bassoon in unison for two bars. These are all effects that combine to produce a temporally changing sequence of sounds that, ultimately, either pleases (satisfies) us or doesn't.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: foxandpeng on August 14, 2021, 12:49:19 AM
Yes, of course we are, and that is exactly my point - we are reliant on the composer to explain his or her music, because without such explanation, we have no objective points of reference. If an abstract artist says that their creation of seemingly random red lines on an alternating black and dark blue background represents a response to the view from the summit of Mount Snowden, we are constrained to accept that, no matter how sceptical we may be. But if the artist simply shows us the painting and says nothing, how could a view from Mount Snowden - or anywhere else for that matter - occurs to us. It is exactly the same for music. With programme music, we as listeners are provided with an explanation of what the music is intended to represent. However, like the painting, we are at liberty to accept or reject that because there are no semiotic indicators inherent in the music. Middle C followed by G followed by B cannot "mean" anything, nor can the harmonic sequence Cm7, Gm7flat9, Ddim, Eflat7sus4, nor the use of flute and bassoon in unison for two bars. These are all effects that combine to produce a temporally changing sequence of sounds that, ultimately, either pleases (satisfies) us or doesn't.

I agree. Apart from Beethoven 6. There is always an outlier.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 14, 2021, 05:40:37 AM
Yes, of course we are, and that is exactly my point - we are reliant on the composer to explain his or her music, because without such explanation, we have no objective points of reference. If an abstract artist says that their creation of seemingly random red lines on an alternating black and dark blue background represents a response to the view from the summit of Mount Snowden, we are constrained to accept that, no matter how sceptical we may be. But if the artist simply shows us the painting and says nothing, how could a view from Mount Snowden - or anywhere else for that matter - occurs to us. It is exactly the same for music. With programme music, we as listeners are provided with an explanation of what the music is intended to represent. However, like the painting, we are at liberty to accept or reject that because there are no semiotic indicators inherent in the music. Middle C followed by G followed by B cannot "mean" anything, nor can the harmonic sequence Cm7, Gm7flat9, Ddim, Eflat7sus4, nor the use of flute and bassoon in unison for two bars. These are all effects that combine to produce a temporally changing sequence of sounds that, ultimately, either pleases (satisfies) us or doesn't.

I get the impression most composers dislike intensely the need to explain their music. Even when obviously a programme work they will deny the fact and claim it to to be just music and listened as such (Stravinsky). Or failing that they will create a red herring, for example RVW with his "Pastoral" symphony. A case of a title of a work that is misleading and deliberately so.   
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: relm1 on August 14, 2021, 03:26:03 PM
I get the impression most composers dislike intensely the need to explain their music. Even when obviously a programme work they will deny the fact and claim it to to be just music and listened as such (Stravinsky). Or failing that they will create a red herring, for example RVW with his "Pastoral" symphony. A case of a title of a work that is misleading and deliberately so.   

It isn't so much that we intensely dislike explaining the music, just that saying too much weakens the intention.  It's really the same for any art form.  You don't want a wine creator to say "at first, the fermentation is sour but a few seconds later, the fruitiness of the grapes have a hind of mint that will make you think of summer since these grapes were picked during the summer months" type of thing.  It would be preferable to describe the flavor as nostalgic and leave it to you to know what that means.  Same with music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J on August 15, 2021, 09:41:37 AM
Pardon me, I was looking for discussion concerning the English composer EJ Moeran, if anyone could kindly offer directions.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on August 15, 2021, 11:42:28 PM
I get the impression most composers dislike intensely the need to explain their music. Even when obviously a programme work they will deny the fact and claim it to to be just music and listened as such (Stravinsky). Or failing that they will create a red herring, for example RVW with his "Pastoral" symphony. A case of a title of a work that is misleading and deliberately so.   
"In the Mountain Country" is very interesting in this respect, in as much as the title may be regarded as "explaining" the music. Geoffrey Self criticised the work for failing to live up to expectations as to what "mountain music" might reasonably be expected to be. However, as I show in my book, the original title of the work and the landscape that inspired its composition has no connection with mountains. Thus, an interpretation of the music has been asserted - quite reasonably of course - that is not grounded in the reality of its composition.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 16, 2021, 06:20:07 AM
"In the Mountain Country" is very interesting in this respect, in as much as the title may be regarded as "explaining" the music. Geoffrey Self criticised the work for failing to live up to expectations as to what "mountain music" might reasonably be expected to be. However, as I show in my book, the original title of the work and the landscape that inspired its composition has no connection with mountains. Thus, an interpretation of the music has been asserted - quite reasonably of course - that is not grounded in the reality of its composition.

If Mr Self was judging Moeran's work against the Alpine Symphony or maybe even Novak's "In the Tatras" then yes "In the Mountain Country" as a travelogue may come up short. If, as I think you are hinting, Moeran is using some subterfuge with the title then who can blame him? The last thing most composers wish to be is an open book. I will listen to "In the Mountain Country" with added interest.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on August 17, 2021, 06:49:42 AM
If Mr Self was judging Moeran's work against the Alpine Symphony or maybe even Novak's "In the Tatras" then yes "In the Mountain Country" as a travelogue may come up short. If, as I think you are hinting, Moeran is using some subterfuge with the title then who can blame him? The last thing most composers wish to be is an open book. I will listen to "In the Mountain Country" with added interest.
Self's comparison work was Delius "Song of the High Hills". His somewhat dismissive assessment of Moeran's music was "... Moeran aspires to mountain music and his earth-bound and wooden little tune does not have within it the potential for ecstasy inherent in the Song of the High Hills and thus can never soar to reach that rapt contemplation of nature in solitary splendour which we would reasonably expect from the title." However, Self was clearly unaware of the compositional history of the piece. Nevertheless, I disagree with his blatantly subjective judgement, for which he provided no objective support. It was just his opinion, to which he was of course entitled, but this was in a book purporting to be an authoritative biographical examination of Moeran's music, and such subjectivity would no longer be acceptable in an academic work.

My own opinion, for which I provide ample support in my book, is that In the Mountain Country is an assured, original and imaginative work that effectively paints a tone picture of the landscape that inspired it.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Irons on August 18, 2021, 07:13:52 AM
Self's comparison work was Delius "Song of the High Hills". His somewhat dismissive assessment of Moeran's music was "... Moeran aspires to mountain music and his earth-bound and wooden little tune does not have within it the potential for ecstasy inherent in the Song of the High Hills and thus can never soar to reach that rapt contemplation of nature in solitary splendour which we would reasonably expect from the title." However, Self was clearly unaware of the compositional history of the piece. Nevertheless, I disagree with his blatantly subjective judgement, for which he provided no objective support. It was just his opinion, to which he was of course entitled, but this was in a book purporting to be an authoritative biographical examination of Moeran's music, and such subjectivity would no longer be acceptable in an academic work.

My own opinion, for which I provide ample support in my book, is that In the Mountain Country is an assured, original and imaginative work that effectively paints a tone picture of the landscape that inspired it.

After reading your comments I did re listen "In the Mountain Country" with an open mind ignoring the title. Plain and simply my guess the "Mountain Country" of the title is Ireland. I am aware that is not a revelation to anyone who has the slightest interest in Moeran and far from being an insight but that is subjectively what I heard in the piece.   
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: calyptorhynchus on August 21, 2021, 05:21:39 PM
I have just uploaded a performance of the Sonata for Two Violins to the AMF.

This was from that defunct website (Moeran.net or something) and was of an Australian radio performance from the 1990s. (Very good).

If anyone can't access it through AMF let me know and I'll send you the link.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 22, 2021, 12:26:10 PM
The first (?) review of Mr Maxwell's book:

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2021/Aug/Moeran-book-Boydell.htm (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2021/Aug/Moeran-book-Boydell.htm)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: André on August 22, 2021, 02:04:37 PM
The first (?) review of Mr Maxwell's book:

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2021/Aug/Moeran-book-Boydell.htm (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2021/Aug/Moeran-book-Boydell.htm)

An extensive, laudatory review indeed.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on August 23, 2021, 03:10:24 AM
The first (?) review of Mr Maxwell's book:

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2021/Aug/Moeran-book-Boydell.htm (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2021/Aug/Moeran-book-Boydell.htm)

There is another review on the British Music Society website:

https://www.britishmusicsociety.co.uk/2021/07/ernest-john-moeran-his-life-and-music/
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 23, 2021, 03:31:56 AM
There is another review on the British Music Society website:

https://www.britishmusicsociety.co.uk/2021/07/ernest-john-moeran-his-life-and-music/ (https://www.britishmusicsociety.co.uk/2021/07/ernest-john-moeran-his-life-and-music/)
Thanks. I now remember having read that. There is an Ernest John Moeran Appreciation Group on Facebook, where I'll share this one, too. A few members there are also reading the book (in appreciation) or intend to do so.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on September 04, 2021, 09:50:24 AM
'Lonely Waters', a radio documentary about Moeran, from 1994. And yes, it's MORE-an...

https://youtu.be/t_whHkIQ0A8 (https://youtu.be/t_whHkIQ0A8)
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: Symphonic Addict on September 04, 2021, 05:55:57 PM
The Violin Concerto melted my heart once again. The recording with Mordkovitchplaying so wonderfully is worth enjoying second by second. Wow! So endearing and noble.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: HotFXMan on September 11, 2021, 08:46:47 AM
To all that have bought my book, I would like to draw your attention to the following correction:

An important omission has been noted in Ernest John Moeran: His Life and Music. A section of the Select Bibliography was inadvertently removed prior to publication. The following should have been included in the Bibliography:

Music Editions
Talbot, John, E. J. Moeran, Centenary Edition (Revised Version 2011), Collected Solo Piano Music, Vols. 1-2, (originally Thames Publishing, London, 1994)
Talbot, John, E. J. Moeran, Centenary Edition (Revised Version 2011), Collected Solo Songs, Vols. 1-4 (originally Thames Publishing, London, 1994)
Talbot, John, E. J. Moeran, Centenary Edition (Revised Version 2011), Collected Folksong Arrangements, Vols. 1-2 (originally Thames Publishing, London, 1994)
Talbot, John, E. J. Moeran, Centenary Edition (Revised Version 2011), Collected Choral Music, Vols. 1-5 (originally Thames Publishing, London, 1994)

The author expresses his apologises to Mr Talbot for this error.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aligreto on October 02, 2021, 06:02:32 AM
Moeran: Symphony in G minor [Dilkes]


(https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/af8AAOSws95gxbk9/s-l500.jpg)


This is my first listen to the orchestral music of Moeran.

I like the opening movement of this work. It is both exciting and expansive. I like its broad sweep and its large expansive palette. The opening movement is powerful and it has a big presence. The orchestral scoring is both engaging and absorbing. I am particularly attracted to the woodwind scoring. The rhythmic element and the forward momentum of the movement are both well driven here; it is powerful, ebullient and exciting. The scoring for the woodwinds in the slow movement is wondrous. The musical language here is also very interesting and engaging. There is also great drama and tension here and it is all richly and powerfully presented. This is a wonderfully sweeping piece of music. The Scherzo is a suitably animated affair which is richly scored, particularly for the woodwinds. It is a very finely crafted piece of music which, once again, has that very engaging sweeping and expansive element. The final movement opens with some wonderful orchestral scoring; this wonderful scoring continues throughout the movement. Drama and tension soon build up into a wonderfully exciting sound world. Both the brass and the timpani play their part in the development of the inherent atmosphere of movement but the ubiquitous woodwinds also have their contribution to make. I like the fine conclusion: it is quite resolute.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on October 02, 2021, 06:41:26 AM
If this is your first listen, you have listened very well indeed! That about covers it...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aligreto on October 02, 2021, 06:56:05 AM
If this is your first listen, you have listened very well indeed! That about covers it...

Yes, my first listen. I will definitely explore more of this composer's music.
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on October 02, 2021, 07:04:38 AM
Yes, my first listen. I will definitely explore more of this composer's music.


Very good! I'd suggest the Sinfonietta next, and Lonely Waters...
Title: Re: EJ Moeran
Post by: aligreto on October 02, 2021, 07:47:40 AM

Very good! I'd suggest the Sinfonietta next, and Lonely Waters...

Thank you very much for your comments and your recommendations.