Not being a big fan of Debussy may well put me at something of a disadvantage. However, being modernised and worked upon, a development of a classic work has it's appeal immediately for me. All music being derivative, is a unmotivational maxim. If that were the case I should not bother trying to write a review. But I insist, partly because I appreciate this endeavour at creativeness by the artists involved, and to play my role in the commons, otherwise both become unsustainable. Even if, as Doc says elsewhere, that might not be appreciated until twenty years time, at least it will be appreciated at some point in the future.
I want that to be now, why not? If there is to be a revolution there has to be a vanguard formed culturally, that's basic military tactics. The difference today is that warfare has been despersonalised into some VR simulation with extra real effects that are not necessarily bound to the assailants conscience. Music can be just as depersonalised and left to be created by computer programmes of various sorts and effect. These are but my reflections, and that is part of the motive behind musical creation, to inspire awe, to be a tremendous impact on the listener.
Here, however, I am presented by something that I don't want to turn on and drift off to sleep with, having become lulled into some annoying state of unconsciousness by my choice of visualisations on my music player. I feel an activity in the music that is thoughtful and poignant. And, aqueous, though not obviously so, as in watery noises. They have there place no doubt. Only yesterday, I listened to a track with a thunderstorm and thought it was fantastic, not only because I admire such natural phenomena, but that the track is was contained therein was also an abstraction of the original sound effect.
There is a sense of activity which I would expect from some classical compositions and to be reflected and enhanced directly into any derivative work thereof. There are a lot of classical composer that are overlooked, indeed totally forgotten and lost, due to the marketing whims that present us with an array of what we are to like at their direct profit. But then, am I teaching my grandmother how to crack an egg, am I preaching to the already converted, or am I talking to someone who just wants a free download. Music has to have passion and meaningfulness for me. It appears to be present here and I appreciate it appropriately, I hope. Whether I can express that in terms of my words, is another matter altogether. I tend to find that as soon as I use a big word, the recipient's brain turns off. And that is something of a fear when I listen to 'big' music, such as this, that the recipient will just utilise it to get themselves to sleep rather than listen to it critically.
Perhaps that is sufficient, but not for me. Even if I absorb the music subconsciously while I nod off with my ear-goggles on, that is not enough for me. Lena's beautiful piano music enhances Doc's interpretations, wonderfully well. It makes me want to go and listen to Debussy again, so there is a positive note!) And onto, the Movement in Stillness, nominally paradoxical but musically beautiful. The sounds drift majestically, as stillness does. Like silence, it can never be, there is always sound, there is always movement, even in death, which is its epitome. It boils down to perception thereof and I am sure that there are painting and sculpture of nothing. There is always an essence, and it is that indefinable something that we cannot account for. The rising of consciousness from a brain, that cannot account for its own sense of self.
The melodiousness sounds slightly off-kilter but then does that not capture the essence of that jeunesse ce quoi, of which I speak of? It calms and is replaced by a variety of noises, a synthetic layer here, the ghost of voices there. Always there will be an angelic choir, fallen or not, they still have their vocalisms to express their own sense of being. Then the tempo increases and gives structure to the movement, that staggers then reiterates itself, somewhat chaotically. Again, perfectly naturally, and vouchsafing my thoughts and words. It all has meaning, just because we don't understand it, does not mean it does not exist in reality. We cannot know reality, we are inescapably subjective and epistemological. What we know, is merely, what we know, NOT reality. 'Reality' is for ontologists, who are just bounded systems of knowledge, lacking the wisdom of the very thing they purport to know.
Echoes from an Engulfed Cathedral starts on a sonorous, organic note, this time with the sounds of water, ebbing and flowing, and the seagull that has haunted me for the past five years. It's meaning deeply personal to me and known only to two others, one a musician who relied on the concept, the other a social worker (trainee, failed) who mocked his efforts. The scenario had a deep impact on me and maybe now I have begun to find my flock, maybe not quite yet. Recent experience with dealing with local and national diocesan organisations has led me to believe that, in comparison to this water engulfed cathedral, they are now engulfed in there own bureaucracy, passing me from pillar to post, denying accountability, accidentally revealing their secrets before public awareness. Such is there efficiency. They may as well be submerged.
The voices make me think of Gurdjieff for some reason, particularly his Beelzebubs Tales to his Grandson. Random synaptical association that one day may be prey to copyright laws themselves. Imagine that. P(r)ay and display! I love organ works generally, particularly religiously toned ones, which they chiefly are, as the instrument in question is invariably housed in a place of holiness. But there are the holes, in that that sound may be emulated within the comfort of my own front room, my earphones, my brain. And, then everything turns very ethereal in tone and structure, like I have shifted into a different phase of consciousness. This is the magic of musical creative expression, that it can be passed from one mind to another and still retain through that transmission, an essence of its origination.
Resonant reverberations take to the floor and play with equilibrium, looking for its golden mean, it's sense of balance. Just the way life should be, and for some is. The lost ones go to one side or the other and stay there for safety in their apparent numbers, but it works like the intelligence quotient. There are a few, way below and beyond all hope of recovery. Then at the other end of the scale there are the geniuses, equally beyond all hope of comprehension. But, the majority are slap bang in the middle and sadly in a muddle. That statistical structure bears witness to many aspects of life, religion included, of whatever faith, though here we are I suppose concentrating on the Westernised Christian theology. Is that the voice of the Vatican? Or, just voices in my head, I cannot tell any longer. I am engulfed. And, that's the way it should be. I have been transported. There is your magical transposition of expression to reception, my semiotic hypothesis works, but remains untouched because there is no obvious profit margin. Sad but true, and with that I say 'adieu'.
However, one last note. Don't just sit back and listen, stand up and be counted.