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Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony/Bizarro


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Audio CD, January 28, 1997
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$10.00 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 1 left in stock. Sold by bmc1701 and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony - 1. LexBaltimore Symphony Orchestra 9:59Album Only
listen  2. Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony - 2. KryptonBaltimore Symphony Orchestra 6:57$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony - 3. MxyzptlkMark Sparks 6:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony - 4. Oh, Lois!Baltimore Symphony Orchestra 5:10$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Daugherty: Metropolis Symphony - 5. Red Cape TangoBaltimore Symphony Orchestra13:00Album Only
listen  6. Daugherty: BizarroBaltimore Symphony Orchestra 9:21Album Only


Product Details

  • Performer: Herbert Greenberg, Emily Controulis, Mark Sparks
  • Orchestra: Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: David Zinman
  • Composer: Michael Daugherty
  • Audio CD (January 28, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Argo/Decca
  • ASIN: B000004CWL
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #360,468 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Michael Daugherty is one of a talented and eclectic group of American composers who have successfully worked in both rock and classical music styles. His compositions celebrate American popular culture--his latest opera, Jackie O, is based on the life of you know who. His largest and most ambitious work to date is this suite of pieces based on characters and events from the Superman comic strip. Rumor has it that the original title was supposed to be "Superman" Symphony, but DC Comics wouldn't give permission to use the name. In any case, the music is jazzy, snazzy, faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to ... you get the picture. --David Hurwitz

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By M. Hibbs on April 15, 2003
Format: Audio CD
The music of Michael Daugherty is deeply rooted in the American psyche because of his focus on pop culture. In an analogous way to the pop art style of some modern visual arts, Daugherty uses familiar motifs and patterns to create soundscapes that are quite evocative.
Some of his critics claim that portions of his music are 'trite' or 'cliches', but this is precisely the point with pop art. Daugherty is able to create beauty from new use of the mundane.
While not everyone will enjoy Metropolis, it is an emminent work in the sense of connections between movements in visual art and music. Just as Schoenburg reflects Kandinsky, Cage reflects Pollak, and Stravinsky reflects Picasso, so does Daugherty reflect Lichtenstein.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Joseph J. Stefan on January 16, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Don't listen to me. I don't know anything. Michael Daughtery's METROPOLIS SYMPHONY is a fitting tribute to the American mythology of the Superman story. He creates an environment of imagination and even suspense starting with the oddly spinning "Lex" which pulls us along with it, trying to keep up with the orchestra trying to keep up with its violin virtuoso. Other movments include "Krypton", a dirge-like piece complete with funeral bells, "Mxyzptlk", a somewhat mystical and confused musical metaphor for the imp from the 5th dimension, "Oh Lois", which is a little campy and gives the feeling of the damsel in constant distress relying on her hero.
The symphony itself ends in the dramatic fight to the death of Superman and Doomsday in "Red Cape Tango". There is also another piece Daughtery composed with the Superman folklore legend in mind called "Bizarro". It is strange, awkward, amusing, and potentially dangerous, just like it's supposed to be, forging off with superpower going...well,somewhere. All music makes full use of a fully structured orchestra tightly conducted by David Zinman. A great ride.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 3, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I bought this cd on a whim after performing one of Daugherty's more recent compositions for band, Niagara Falls. I found the first and last movements of the the symphony to be incredible. One thing that Daugherty manages to do is to keep the listner interested. The second, third, and fourth movements lack the interest and excitement contained in the first and last movements, but that is not enough to change my opinion on this particular work. I feel that Bizarro is also a quality work. The thing that I like about Daugherty is that he is not afraid to fuse rock and roll with contemporary music with jazz. It turns out to be one of the most interesting cd's I own.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 8, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Regarding Superman, an international fictional heroic symbol and as staple youth entertainment, I have many fond memories that go way back into my childhood.
I first saw "Superman I" in Taiwan, at age six in a premier metropolitan theater along with my grandmother. That night was special: I got "so totally psyched" when grandma said, "I'm taking you to see 'Superman' tonight." An experience like this, especially since I was seeing the debut production of what later became an entire series of exciting sequels (something you don't predict off-hand), was the ultimate "coolness" for a young boy. Nowadays, seeing "Superman" movies not only throws me back to that nostalgic evening with grandma, but also I'm driven to praise its legendary creator. No other "branded" American comic hero holds to Superman's household recognition, time-tested.
I have heard Michael Daugherty's "Metropolis Symphony" (A.K.A. "Superman Symphony") both live and on CD. Throughout my hearings, I feel totally confused with Daugherty's compositional reference, intent, structure, and relation to the superhero's basic philosophy. Superman is not just about rough gong crashes, ostinados, triple-forte brass, booms, groans, and relentless percussion. Instead, Superman's character is supra humanistic, largely romantic, subtly passionate, and even self-effacing. On the flip side, Daugherty does maintain musical success in capturing the movie's surface excitement. But compared to my first stimulus, the feelings are worlds apart. Thank goodness Lois wasn't overused as theme for "post-modern decomposition" (Daugherty's own quote), for that "she's too sexy for my shirt" (R&B song lyrics).
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Format: Audio CD
The other day I was browsing the music section of a large brick & mortar, and I found the new (2009) recording of Daugherty's 'Metropolis Symphony'. I bought it and gave it a listen. Although I appreciate the fact that this (fairly obscure) work of postmodern American classical music has been re-recorded, I'm not in love with the 2009 recording.

The newer CD is the Nashville Symphony conducted by Giancarlo Guerrero. It's fair to say Nashville is no Chicago, and Guerrero is no Solti. The sound quality, and indeed some of the performance, especially from the wind players, leave something to be desired in the 2009 recording.

Therefore, I am quite confident in calling the 1996 Argo pressing of 'Metropolis' featuring the Baltimore Symphony with Zinman the superior effort. Indeed, Zinman's is the definitive recording of 'Metropolis'. I find Baltimore's woodwind and brass playing superior to the efforts of Nashville. Baltimore as a whole plays more confidently, deftly handling Daugherty's complicated meters/rhythms, especially in the fifth movement, which is a major stumbling block for the Nashville players.

So in closing, for those who are choosing between the two recordings, my recommendation is to choose the Balt/Zinman. Superior sound quality, better playing from the musicians. It's better all around.
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