Friday, March 28, 2014

Tell Us What You Really Think, Mark!

Boulezian takes down John Adams's Shaker Loops, in a review worthy of A Lexicon of Musical Invective.

I know a fair amount of Adams, but can't remember whether I've heard Shaker Loops or not; will check the CDs I own later today. I can imagine that Adams might not sound as good as he can be in the company of Carter and Birtwistle; the compositional goals and techniques are too different. Regardless, go read that review, which had me laughing out loud at a bus stop before 8 a.m. this morning.

(Regular readers know that I'm a fan of Adams and adore some of his music. Still!)


Michael Strickland said...

Don't know "Shaker Loops"? I'm ashamed for you. It was Adams' first piece where he really found his voice through his own version of minimalism, and it's immensely popular, and is played just about everywhere all the time. In fact, I'm tired of it after one too many listenings, and would love to hear live performances instead of Fearful Symmetries or Grand Pianola Music or John's Alleged Book of Dances or Harmonium.

As for the concert your friend Mark was reviewing, the programming sounded like a weird joke, with Elliott Carter and Harrison Birtwistle sandwiching "Shaker Loops." The mirror equivalent would be having a program of Glass, Reich, and early Adams sandwiching a late era Eliott Carter String Quartet. Think of how weird that would sound, although it might be interesting out of sheer perversity.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Haha, yeah, I agree that the programming was eccentric!

I don't have Shaker Loops on record and have never heard it live.