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Spiritual Music

Spiritual Music
September 30, 2009, 05:10:50 AM
The way I see it there are basically two types of 'content' in a piece of music.  Firstly there are things we can quantify, pitches, rhythms, pattern based inter-relationships, we can call this intellectual content.  Secondly there are qualitative aspects, moods, colors, implied states of being, we can draw a correlation between these things and quantitative elements, but they are not identical. 

Modernist classical music fails because all composers care about is intellectual content, it is obvious to anybody with the ability to process information, so it impresses people of linear intelligence, it's all about appearances.

Some music I have come across, Hvis Lyset Tar Oss being the prime example, attempts to completely strip away any unnecessary intellectual content to clearly outline the fundamental idea which drives the music.  Any intellectual content emerges as a consequence of a spiritual impulse.  Hence we might only find two or three musical ideas in a piece, but a subtle qualitative shift creates a journey of metaphysical significance.  This is what I call spiritual music.

This kind of thinking also emerges in religious minimalist music and ambient music, although not with the same degree of success as the best black metal.  Theoretically music can incorporate both intellectual and spiritual content, see classical music and later Gorguts, but in my opinion in the age in which we live, where appearances dominate reality, it may be best to avoid unnecessary complications in order to deter foolish listeners.  Burzum has for the most part successfully deterred idiots, whereas Obscura and Beethoven will continue to attract them, unfortunate but true.

Re: Spiritual Music
September 30, 2009, 06:25:05 AM
Burzum has deterred idiots? Not in these days of the internet.

Re: Spiritual Music
September 30, 2009, 07:35:06 PM
Burzum has deterred idiots? Not in these days of the internet.

Put it this way, most people who regard Hvis Lyset Tar Oss as the greatest metal album are intelligent and well balanced.

Re: Spiritual Music
September 30, 2009, 08:40:45 PM
I think what you're getting at is the vital inclusion of "purpose" in the music, where the qualities we find on the surface drive and shape it.  Excellent musicians are well equipped to realize those qualities, but most seem pretty lost when it comes to assembling them for and applying them to anything of lasting value.  This is why most music comes off as stale, hollow, and unnecessary.