- Performer: Donald Joyce
- Composer: Philip Glass
- Audio CD (September 14, 1993)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Alliance
- Run Time: 77 minutes
- ASIN: B000003EL3
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #273,420 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Glass: Organ Works
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
Why? Anyone who has heard the original recordings of Dance II and IV know that these peices are not only amazingly technical, but have a mathematical intricacy that only adds to their beauty (polyrhythms abounding). The problem, then, was that when played on a pipe-organ in a hall with quite large reverberation, much of that intricacy gets lost and muddled. Thus, it is hard to follow along during some of the more rhythmically technical parts of some of the pieces, and while the overall feel is still good, the detail gets lost.
This is not too bothersome in two of the pieces in particular: The finale of Satyagraha, and Mad Rush (though I must admit that the chord changes of Dance IV sound amazing in a hall). Still, I couldn't help coming away from the other pieces feeling like something - some of the details - were unjustly stripped (especially Dance II which is a favorite of mine in its original version).
So if you are looking for Glass's organ works with a new and more robust feel, this is a good CD to get. If you are not familiar at all with his organ works, check out "Dance 1-5" which will give you a good feel and get this CD, possibly, afterwards. But if you are in love with the mathematical precision and detail in Glass's organ works, beware that the production on this CD leaves much to be desired.
I also have to commend Donald Joyce for being able to play through these pieces. His technique and registration choices for the organ would be hard to improve upon.
To reach this arguable achievement, the music had to be moved from Farfisa portables to the Anton Heiller Memorial Organ (4861 pipes) at Southern College in Collegedale, TN. Which could be compared to playing Miles Davis solos on a tuba. What's going on here is an assault on the clarity of Glass' music. I'm not against that. If the intent - besides the Wagnerian/minimalist connection - is to hear this music differently, it succeeds. If the intent is also to entertain, it succeeds. I was more entertained by this "Contrary Motion" than I ever was by the original. The 24 minutes of "Dance II" danced by while I read a book. The transcription from "Satyagraha" had majesty. The effect of a pipe organ blurring, smoothing, & breathing makes these pieces into something new, perhaps more organic; probably not what Glass intended, but an experiment almost John Cageian in results. Glass might appreciate that. I wish Joyce had used more of the pipe organ's sound capacities. In fact, I might be even more delighted if he had performed these works on a restored vaudeville era Wurlitzer theater organ.
To those who like organ music, I would encourage you to buy this CD. This recording is not for everyone. However, to those who like organ music and the music of Philip Glass, this recording has much to commend it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Bear with me:
My first classical music review, and I find myself with almost no words to express the beauty of this recording--------of classical music in general, apart from... Read more
Another exercise in repetition transcends the highly methodical approach, as pipe organ fluctuations weave an intricate path formed from the simplest of transitions. Read morePublished on January 20, 2009 by IRate
Cada vez que me pongo a escuchar este CD, irremediablemente sólo oigo las pistas 2 y 4, es decir, Mad Rush y Contrary Motion. Read morePublished on March 29, 2002 by Henzo Alejandro Lafuente Ramos
Now if you know any of Phillip Glass' works, you have heard that repetative 1-1-1-1-2-2-2-2-3-3-3-2-2-1-1-1 (hopefully you understand) anyhow it is blended beautifuly in this CD... Read morePublished on October 17, 2000 by Anthony N. Moore