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Big Beautiful Dark and Scary Enhanced

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Audio CD, Enhanced, February 28, 2012
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$20.41 & FREE Shipping on orders over $49. Details Only 2 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

With Big Beautiful Dark and Scary, the Bang on a Can All-Stars show off their blazing speed, polyrhythmic virtuosity and all-world versatility in a return to the core Bang on a Can sound - an uncategorizable supermix of classical and electric instruments that is part classical ensemble, part rock band, and part jazz sextet. The album is the first in a decade that features the All-Stars exclusively, rather than as part of a collaborative project. Each of the pieces on the double-CD calls upon a different kind of virtuosity, demonstrating the range of musical abilities and experiences arguably unique to this ensemble. Recorded in New York City, all of the music on Big Beautiful Dark and Scary (including the arrangements of the works by Conlon Nancarrow) were written for and premiered by the Bang on a Can All-Stars.

Review

This album collects some of the greatest music the band has made over its 25 years of being dedicated to 'awesome' --San Francisco Classical Voice

NPR Classical's Favorite Albums Of 2012 (So Far): Who would have thought that the wild youth of the avant-garde, the Bang on a Can collective, would be celebrating their 25th anniversary? They offered free downloads of this 2-CD set as a gift to fans. One of the highlights is For Madeline, a harrowing tribute by Michael Gordon on the passing of his mother. The music is not sentimental, but evokes some specific sonic images including beautiful reimaginings of traditional Jewish sounds. Listen for echoes of the shofar, the ram's horn of the High Holy Days, and the Kaddish prayer of mourning. --NPR Deceptive Cadence, Tom Huizenga, June 13, 2012
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Product Details

  • Performer: Evan Ziporyn, Ashley Bathgate, Robert Black, Vicky Chow, David Cossin, et al.
  • Conductor: --
  • Composer: Louis Andreissen, David Longstreth, Conlon Nancarrow, Kate Moore, Michael Gordon, et al.
  • Audio CD (February 28, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Enhanced
  • Label: Cantaloupe
  • ASIN: B006J7YIOC
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #230,061 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
The new BOAC CD,'BBDAS' is a great way to commemorate the 25th anniversary of an amazing music phenomenon, both as a performer collective and a nurturing home for post-minimalist composers. Who knew 25 years ago, that the establishment of BOAC would spawn so much great music, not just from the founders, but their minimalist and post-minimalist American and European parents and now, more recently, their own post-minimalist children. Most importantly, inside this vast network of organizational and promotional aplomb, is cocooned/caressed the 4 most important American composers writing today. Historically, it is difficult to find 4 composers so obsessed with similar compositional preoccupations, living in the same town, managing to get along and yet all have a distinctive voice within their idiom. (Didn't the Russian 5 and French 6 all eventually shoot each other literally and metaphorically?)

The first CD in BBDAS is dedicated to the New York 4 and if I was to be too reductive, this music is all about heavily metered, expanding/contracting passacaglias. This `narrow' process opens itself to some of the freshest, newest, and best orchestration been done by anyone. The other element that makes the music/orchestration so good, is these people have been working with this ensemble for 25 years. One wonders how much more good music would be written if all composers had there own collective or ensemble--or all wrote for standardized ensembles (pre 20th C.)

The CD opens with the uber-intense Julia Wolfe title track, `Big, beautiful, dark and scary' which features a very scary, chromatic, metered, upward-progression over an omnipresent pedal. The orchestration is so much choking smoke and claustrophobia incurred by distortion, cymbal tremolos, fuzzy doublings and blurred canons.
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