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Topics - nous

Metal / Norsk Arisk Classical
« on: January 11, 2011, 07:13:38 AM »

http://www.geirrtveitt.com/ (Norwegian)

Not as popular as Grieg because it is not easy listening classical for proles. Recordings of many of his works are severely lacking, partly because many works were lost in a fire which destroyed his farm house, partly because his opinions were sometimes as strong as his compositions and some modern critics have a problem with that.

Geirr Tveitt MP3 files (or you may use the Neoclassical Music Hub).

Femti folkatonar frao Hardanger (Fifty folk tunes from Hardanger) op. 150
Prillar op. 8; Solgudsymfonien
Piano Concertos

Let me repeat that this music is not easy to grasp. I like to call him the Norwegian Brahms--but his musical language is actually more difficult than Brahms's. The best analogy is that of learning a language: up to a certain point it just sounds silly, then you get to like to the sound of it, then you understand a bit, then you get the overal picture, then you notice details.

My personal experience is that I had to listen to Prillar or the fifth piano concerto about 10 times until I understood what is being "said" by Tveitt--and from then on, it has been very rewarding. Of course it is perfectly possible that you need less time to learn the musical language, or that you, after having perfectly understood it, still do not like the music.

We can use this thread to exchange opinions concerning Tveitt or his music, of course.

Metal / Listening Guides
« on: August 15, 2010, 02:39:27 AM »
Sources for musicians and (metal) composers who like to compare and be inspired.

International Music Score Library Project
Brahms Listening Guides

Metal / June 8: R. Schumann Bicentennial
« on: June 07, 2010, 12:58:56 PM »

June 8, 2010 is Robert Schumann's 200th birthday. If you like the music, it is a good day to show it:

    * Listen to Robert Schumann at full blast in your car.
    * Listen to Robert Schumann at full blast in your home.
    * Listen to Robert Schumann at full blast at your place of employment.
    * Listen to Robert Schumann at full blast in any public place you prefer.

    * And don't forget to mention his birthday to everyone you meet.

What, you do not know what to listen to? Let me suggest this programme:

I. ''Manfred'' op. 115: Overture
II. Violin Concerto WoO 23
III. Symphony No. 2 op. 61
Length: 1:18:17

More music in the audiofiles.

Metal / Why Classical can mend wounded souls
« on: May 11, 2010, 01:22:51 PM »
This could interest you if you've asked yourself why you like classical music so much:

Credo: Trite music blocks our ears to the divine in the liturgy

Plato probably would have added the qualification that no "mysterious" music should be played to kids in order to not confuse them in their education ;-)

Here is an excerpt, if you're curious:

Quote from: John Shepherd (Anglican)
[... ]

By means of evolving harmonies, rhythms, textures, modulations, orchestrations, melodies, counterpoints, imitations, this rich art form has the potential to create an aural environment which enables us to contemplate the mystery of God.

Music of this calibre draws us into an engagement so profound that its sense can never be exhausted. Any work of art, be it sculpture, painting, literature, poetry or music, whose implications are immediately obvious and can instantly be grasped can never enlist our imagination, and so cannot equip us for mystery; and what cannot equip us for mystery cannot equip us for God.


True art transcends the ordinary. It invites us to contemplate a presence beyond itself. It entangles us in the divine web of ultimate reality, and so creates an aural environment in which we can experience, in the words of Anselm of Bec, the presence of “that than which nothing greater can be thought”.

"God is beautiful, and He loves beauty." (Hadith.)

Audiofile / Leifs, Jón
« on: April 11, 2010, 04:52:23 AM »

Interzone / Intelligence
« on: March 29, 2010, 03:52:20 AM »
What we have to remember when we think of intelligence: that the modern way of ascribing it ("IQ") is essentially flat and outward. Outward, because it only reveals dianoia (thinking), not noesis (knowing); flat, because highly developed dianoia can engage in the most vain topics (and will, as we all witness).

Superficiality and high "IQ" can go well together. Intelligence, in contrast, is never superficial.

Frithjof Schuon, Roots of the Human Condition, "On Intelligence"
Intelligence is the perception of a reality, and a fortiori the perception of the Real as such.
It is ipso facto discernment between the Real and the unreal – or the less real . . .
Intelligence gives rise not only to discernment, but also – ipso facto – to the awareness of
our superiority in relation to those who do not know how to discern; contrary to what
many moralists think, this awareness is not in itself a fault, for we cannot help being
aware of something that exists and is perceptible to us thanks to our intelligence,
precisely. It is not for nothing that objectivity is one of man’s privileges.
But the same intelligence that makes us aware of a superiority, also makes us aware of
the relativity of this superiority and, more than this, it makes us aware of all our
limitations. This means that an essential function of intelligence is self-knowledge: hence
the knowledge – positive or negative according to the aspects in view – of our own
To know God, the Real in itself, the supremely Intelligible, and then to know things in
the light of this knowledge, and in consequence also to know ourselves: these are the
dimensions of intrinsic and integral intelligence, the only one worthy of the name, strictly
speaking, since it alone is properly human.
We have said that intelligence produces, by its very essence, self-knowledge, with the
virtues of humility and charity; but it may also produce, outside its essence or nature and
as a consequence of a luciferian perversion, that vice of vices which is pride. Hence the
ambiguity of the notion of “intelligence” in religious moralities, along with the
accentuation of a humility which is expressly extra-intellectual, and for that very reason
ambiguous and dangerous in its turn, since “there is no right superior to that of the
To the question of knowing whether it is better to have
intelligence or a good character, we reply: a good character. Why? Because, when this
question is asked, one is never thinking of integral intelligence, which essentially implies
self-knowledge; conversely, a good character always implies an element of intelligence,
obviously on condition that the virtue be real and not compromised by an underlying
pride, as is the case in the “zeal of bitterness.” Good character is open to the truth exactly
as intelligence faithful to its substance opens onto virtue; we could also say that moral
perfection coincides with faith, and thus could not be a social perfectionism devoid of
spiritual content.

Frithjof Schuon, To Have a Center, "Universal Categories"
Intelligence is the perception of the real and not the “intellectualization” of the unreal.

Interzone / All men equal before God?
« on: February 14, 2010, 10:18:15 AM »
[It is] Christian dogma that every person was equal in the sight of God, and that richer and more competent people were not the favored ones -- "the meek" were.

I read this in an article and would like to discuss it.

Let me begin my saying that I think that the above statement is false. Religious equality before God means that the social or political status of a man does not already determine his worth in the sight of God. But that does not mean that all men were absolutely equal before Him; that they didn't differ in knowledge, will, or virtue. It means that no matter their worldly value, it does not pre-determine their religious value. Christian ontology, and ethics, is one of degrees, in that there are different degrees of good and evil in the world; it is not as black-and-white as implied in the quote above. Heaven and hell were indeed meaningless if every person was equal before God.

In the kali yuga, slaves can be better in religion than kings; and being a worldly king alone is not any better before God than being a slave. That's all.

This is catholic dogma(!):
Whether the inequality of things is from God?

Audiofile / Creston, Paul
« on: September 24, 2009, 01:01:03 AM »
Creston, Paul: Rapidshare, Blogspot, Megaupload

Paul Creston

Romantic neoclassicism with high rhythmic momentum.

Paul Creston - Symphonies Nos. 1-3 (1998, Kuchar, NSOU)

Paul Creston Symphony No. 5 etc. (1992, Schwarz, Seattle SO)

Metal / Refreshing Classical Albums
« on: June 04, 2009, 11:58:42 AM »
If you want something really refreshing, try Brahms' fourth symphony. This music is all that metal ever dreamed it could be.

(I know I'm being a bit of a dick, but consider this: instead of re-listening to a metal classic for the 100th time, why not advance to the next level?)

Interzone / Samvega: Aesthetic Shock
« on: January 15, 2009, 07:02:06 AM »

Samvega: Aesthetic Shock

   by A. K. Coomaraswamy

This essay should be of interest to some metalheads.


   The Pali word samvega is often used to denote the shock or wonder that may be felt when the perception of a work of art becomes a serious experience. In other contexts the root vij, with or without the intensive prefix sam, or other prefixes such as pra, “forth,” implies a swift recoil from or trembling at something feared.
   The emotional stimulus of painful themes may be evoked deliberately when the will or mind (citta) is sluggish, “then he stirs it up (samvejeti) by a consideration of the Eight Emotional Themes” (attha-samvega-vatthûni) (birth, old age, sickness, death and sufferings arising in four other ways); in the resulting state of distress, he then “gladdens (or thrills, sampahanseti, Skr. hrs, ‘rejoice’ etc.) it by the recollection of the Buddha, the Eternal Law and the Communion of Monks, when it is in need of such gladdening” (Visuddhi Magga, 135). A poignant realization of the transience of natural beauty may have the same effect: in the Yuvañjaya Jâtaka, the Crown Prince (uparâjâ) “one day early in the morning mounted his splendid chariot and went out in all his great splendor to disport himself in the park. He saw on the treetops, the tips of the grasses, the ends of branches, on every spider’s web and thread, and on the points of the rushes, dew-drops hanging like so many strings of pearls.” He learns from his charioteer that that is what men call “dew.” When he returns in the evening the dew has vanished. The charioteer tells him that that is what happens when the sun rises. When the Prince hears this, he is “deeply moved” (samvegappatto hutvâ), and he realizes that “The living constitution of such as we are is just like these drops of dew; ...

Metal / German institution bans 4 Graveland albums
« on: December 04, 2008, 06:10:47 AM »
The German BPjM has announced in September 2008 that "Following The Voices Of Blood", "Immortal Pride", "In The Glare Of Burning Churches" and "The Celtic Winter" have been put on Sublist B of the index, which means that their distribution in Germany is prohibited under the Strafgesetzbuch:

The legal consequences of a work being listed on the index are:
   1. It must not be sold, provided or otherwise made accessible to minors.
   2. It must not be displayed where it can be seen by minors. This would, for example, include playing an indexed game in the presence of minors.
   3. It must be sold only within a shop. Basically selling indexed titles per mail order is illegal, however it is permissible if the package may only be handed over to a specified adult person, who has to present ID.
   4. It must not be rented out, except in a shop inaccessible to minors. This is why most video rentals in Germany are not accessible for minors - otherwise they would not be allowed to rent out certain horror (and adult) films.
   5. It must not be imported by mail order. In this case even an adult buyer is subject to penalty.
   6. It must not be advertised or announced in a place where the announcement or advertisement could be seen by minors.
   7. If it is for one of the above six causes, production, acquiring, and holding in store are subject to penalty too.

I didn't find any news article in English.
BPjM, Graveland

Looks like we have to provide FLACs for the above albums in Audiofile.

Metal / Listen to new GRAVELAND material 08/09
« on: November 08, 2008, 10:53:42 AM »

[Unfinished front cover of new Graveland album]

Listen to fragments from "Spears of Heaven" (2008) and "Thunderbolts of the Gods" (2009), and other tracks:

"Spears of Heaven" will probably be released in fall 2008 April 2009.

Interzone / It's un-metal to only criticize.
« on: October 02, 2008, 09:25:22 AM »
Standard moron:

I don't need religion.
God? Can't prove it. Only what can be proven is real.
Kafka's so good, I read him over and over again.
Democracy is stupid, but it works somehow, you know?

Standard metalhead:
The above +
The world around me is ugly, so Iet's drink lots of beer and bang our heads to loud, ugly music.

I'm tired of it. Everybody, even the lowest low-life, can criticize. Every asshole has an opinion. Do we need to consider them all? No.
Most people are better off working with their mouths shut. Most metalheads too.

Moron: "Did you hear of this new philosopher? Haven't read a better criticism of our media."
Non-moron: "I've read that the world we live in degenerates according to cyclic laws, and that at the start of the new cycle the world will be restored, albeit maybe without mankind."
Moron: "Huh? What's this crazy shit? Didn't you know technology freed man? With it, we're gonna reach the stars!"

This is my opinion, of course, and you're free to correct me, but mind the above when you do.

Interzone / Karl Böhm
« on: October 01, 2008, 06:32:04 AM »
The more I listen to classical music, the plainer the following forms in my opinion:

Herbert von Karajan was a pop star of classical music conductors; he was big on image, but the image was better than what was behind. He was a showman, and that influenced his work. He did not have an inherent desire for quality. The result are some average recordings, and lots of crap that was made chiefly for money or because it suited his egomania.

Karl Böhm was the inverse of the above: less image, more quality music. He realized that his real image would depend on his work, and not on other aspects of his life. Thus, whenever a choice is possible, I prefer the conductor Karl Böhm to the conductor Herbert von Karajan.