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Penance Sentence
12-23-2015, 02:20 AM
People on this forum like MM, so why? It is for nostalgia, or other reasons? Besides MM, what do you look for in music? Dissonance, harmony, melody, rhythm, tempo, or combination thereof?

I love Classical Music, from true Classical period, but sometimes, so articulated music does not seem worthwhile, or even natural. Like a Japanese garden is far more to blend in with nature, than fancy European Chateau and Manor Gardens. Classical Music would be the beautiful European Gardens, with meticulous attention to tempo, melody, subtle rhythm, TEXTURE, and progressive dynamics.

A Japanese Garden would be more like Gavelan Music, perhaps some Indian Classical with droning emphasis, more dissonant emphasis, and layered texture, and interchangeable dynamics.

Rock Music (and Modern Pop) is somewhere between these two extremes, usually leaning towards either style, or sometimes combination of both. I believe Bowie did more Neo-Classical stuff in early career.

So, beyond nostalgia, what hits your spots with Music, and Why?

Penance Sentence
12-23-2015, 02:36 AM
Also, be curious to discuss things like repetition.

TMC
12-31-2015, 06:54 AM
I'm always looking for two things in music and art in general: something that makes it special, different from anything else and this specific mixture of darkness, sadness and nostalgia. Therefore I listen to multiple genres from classical music through jazz to rock, metal and all kinds of weird, alternative and experimental music as long as I find the aforementioned attributes. I can enjoy music that's driven by rhythm and does not posses these qualities, but it never becomes anything special to me.
When it comes to Manson - I fell in love in his music as a teenager when he seemed different from anything else, an artistic rebel who had something interesting to say. Nowadays I still enjoy his music, however I tend to listen to his dark, slow songs much more than the fast, rhythm-driven, fast ones. At the same time I discovered artists that inspired Manson which made me realize that he is not as innovative but rather very good at putting together different pieces that are inspired by multiple artists and writers.

Mercurius
01-01-2016, 10:53 AM
I usually look for music with dissonance, bombast, and a bit of theatricality. Apart from that, I am often drawn to tempo and a "heavier" sound, pithiness and vigor. I love it when music turns into a downright frenzy. Plus, I have a penchant for provocative visuals/ charismatic band members and concept albums. I also like a certain self-deprecation within the music. I never liked jazz for some reason, but I listen to a lot of electronic, classic and Revue music. Even though it is kind of "alack and fie for shame", I like a couple of musicals.
I got to know Manson through his Cabaret Voltaire art exhibition, and fell in love with his astounding aesthetical flair and the symbolism in his work. I don't find all of his music appealing- to me, "Man that you Fear" is one of the most brilliant songs ever written.
Repetition is kind of a double-edged sword to me- it can be both meditative and boring to me, depends on the context and the musical getup.

Penance Sentence
01-02-2016, 12:42 AM
^ Very, very interesting, Mercurius. Seems as if what we look for in music is nearly identical.
and yeah, I can get into just about every genre, but Jazz takes effort. Some of the Free Jazz isn't SO bad, but usually I cheap out, and listen to John Zorn as my Jazz. Not traditional, but fucking classy.

TMC
01-02-2016, 11:41 AM
^ Very, very interesting, Mercurius. Seems as if what we look for in music is nearly identical.
and yeah, I can get into just about every genre, but Jazz takes effort. Some of the Free Jazz isn't SO bad, but usually I cheap out, and listen to John Zorn as my Jazz. Not traditional, but fucking classy.

When it comes to jazz, there are certain things that I can's stand. One is generic jazz that you can hear playing in places where it can't distract people and another one is completely messy free jazz. My favorites in the genre are Miles Davis (especially his recordings from the early 70's including On the Corner and one of the greatest live albums I've ever heard, Dark Magus), John Zorn (whatever this man does turns to musical gold) and some modern Polish jazz.
I general I don't like messy music, for example noise music such as Merzbow. I understand that he may find it interesting to create such music, however I don't find it interesting at all as a listener. It's the same with some of free jazz which is mostly a bunch of noise and being extreme just for the sake of it.


I usually look for music with dissonance, bombast, and a bit of theatricality. Apart from that, I am often drawn to tempo and a "heavier" sound, pithiness and vigor. I love it when music turns into a downright frenzy. Plus, I have a penchant for provocative visuals/ charismatic band members and concept albums. I also like a certain self-deprecation within the music. I never liked jazz for some reason, but I listen to a lot of electronic, classic and Revue music. Even though it is kind of "alack and fie for shame", I like a couple of musicals.
I got to know Manson through his Cabaret Voltaire art exhibition, and fell in love with his astounding aesthetical flair and the symbolism in his work. I don't find all of his music appealing- to me, "Man that you Fear" is one of the most brilliant songs ever written.
Repetition is kind of a double-edged sword to me- it can be both meditative and boring to me, depends on the context and the musical getup.

That is in fact interesting because apart from what I wrote earlier, about looking for darkness and melancholy in music, I enjoy dissonance and contrast a lot. That is one of the reasons why artists such as David Bowie and Manson seem interesting to me - they do not play the same thing over and over again, but instead try to find a new way of expression every time. I never understood the point in finding a style and just staying in it because it feels safe. Any kind of creativity should to be risky and being a safe place is a sign that it's time to move on rather than to stay there.
Theatrics and concept albums are also very important for me, I can enjoy a band just listening to it, however in order to think of an artist or a band as special, it has to include some kind of unusual visual elements and a story to tell as well. That is why, again, Bowie, Manson or Björk are so special to me.
Repetition can indeed be very dangerous, because as much as it can make a song catch, it can get very boring. A good example is a big part of Born Villain where many songs were built around an idea that was repeated a couple of times instead of being developed somehow.

Penance Sentence
01-02-2016, 01:50 PM
^ See, I love Noise, but Free Jazz is harder for me to appreciate. I kind of get the feeling Free Jazz tries too hard, and ends up being contrived because TRYING to be extreme, as opposed to just experimenting with certain types of sound like Noise, but with lack of Artist vision unlike 20th Century Classical, like Iannix Xenakis. I love 20th Century "Classical," but Free Jazz definitely not as much.

Repetition CAN be beautiful. Some Vaporwave and Plunderphonics are amazing. Ever play a song, and constantly rewind to certain point? Well, what if you sample a collection of your favorite parts of music together, with other music that is fitting? Then, repetition is awesome. Music is fucking brilliant, but too many people let music be decided by the Music Industry and/or Academics, and that is the WRONG attitude to have. Music is nature. No one owns music, not even Artist, especially if they make it for others to hear.

TMC
01-02-2016, 02:16 PM
^ See, I love Noise, but Free Jazz is harder for me to appreciate. I kind of get the feeling Free Jazz tries too hard, and ends up being contrived because TRYING to be extreme, as opposed to just experimenting with certain types of sound like Noise, but with lack of Artist vision unlike 20th Century Classical, like Iannix Xenakis. I love 20th Century "Classical," but Free Jazz definitely not as much.

Repetition CAN be beautiful. Some Vaporwave and Plunderphonics are amazing. Ever play a song, and constantly rewind to certain point? Well, what if you sample a collection of your favorite parts of music together, with other music that is fitting? Then, repetition is awesome. Music is fucking brilliant, but too many people let music be decided by the Music Industry and/or Academics, and that is the WRONG attitude to have. Music is nature. No one owns music, not even Artist, especially if they make it for others to hear.

Putting together a repeated beat in the background with some interesting instrumentals being underlined in the foreground can also give great results (which happens a lot in trip hop). So of course repetition can be beautiful if used wisely. Otherwise a song can become boring as many pop songs are - you get a simple structure that's being repeated a few times and that's the entire song.
When it comes to noise - there are some cases which I can accept, however listening to a whole Merzbow album seems completely pointless to me, almost as listening to white noise on the radio. I can stand it, but I just don't see a point and I can't find anything to focus on in that music. It's almost as it is with paintings that are all black, all white etc. I notice their existence, however there is nothing there that would catch my attention. So, back to the point - I can accept noisy, extreme music if there is something in it that I can hold on to instead of just an unbreakable wall of noise.
I agree that 20th century classical music, such as Penderecki or Xanakis that you named is much more intriguing and much "deeper" than most of free jazz which is completely messy and pointless most of the time.

Penance Sentence
01-02-2016, 02:22 PM
Noise has meaning, in that it is very challenging to see patterns in, like a water fall, to take in the all of the sound dynamic of a water fall is a very challenging thing. "Noise" is not noise for me, but actual music with as much depth, if not more a lot of the time, than 20th Century "Classical," which on the other hand, is can be more challenging than "Noise"

Since you brought up Penderecki, look of "Threnody of Hiroshima", if you have not already, a more challenging, and demanding, and noisy piece than anything Merzbow has to offer.

TMC
01-02-2016, 05:20 PM
Noise has meaning, in that it is very challenging to see patterns in, like a water fall, to take in the all of the sound dynamic of a water fall is a very challenging thing. "Noise" is not noise for me, but actual music with as much depth, if not more a lot of the time, than 20th Century "Classical," which on the other hand, is can be more challenging than "Noise"

Since you brought up Penderecki, look of "Threnody of Hiroshima", if you have not already, a more challenging, and demanding, and noisy piece than anything Merzbow has to offer.

I agree that Threnody to the victims of Hiroshima is highly challenging, however there is some structure in it while those of Merzbow's albums that I've heard seemed plain to me. That is another thing that I need in music and in all kinds of art - something to hold on to, some structure and change in dynamics. I like your comparison of Merzbow's music to a waterfall, that's exactly how I think about it - a constant moving mass of sound where you can definitely see some elements changing, but I see it as flat with nothing to focus on. On the other hand, perhaps I have never given noise enough attention to find a pattern to follow?

Penance Sentence
01-02-2016, 07:51 PM
"constant moving mass of sound where you can definitely see some elements changing, but I see it as flat with nothing to focus on."

Yes. If you are able to follow the dynamics, then there is structure and pattern, but you must have "trained ear." There's often more "structure" in Noise than 20th Cent because it is less contrived but without having no artistic vision/inspiration., but it is unrealized because it isn't academically-funded. That's really the only difference between certain electroaccoustic serialist type of music, and Noise. Comparison that can be made is MM, to Hardcore Punk, to Extreme Metal, to Noise/20th Century Class is a succession of dissonant music, which each example a bit more challenging. Point being, if you like dissonant music (which you do, because this is a MM site), then it should be known that if you focus on even more dissonant music, it would be the equivalent of going from, say, early David Bowie, to eventually Mozart.

Even though I love true Classical, it is too contrived and seems, unnatural, unlike Noise, in an ironic twist. Speaking of ironies, Classical is built around Nature, like Four Seasons, Chopin's Raindrops, but this music, while good, is so immediately-identifiable, even with structure and dynamics, which are more obvious and less challenging. It's ironic, because when I think of Nature sounds, Noise does a better job at describing it, than anything with more immediate 'structure.'

Penance Sentence
01-02-2016, 08:02 PM
Edit: You could say Noise is the most "progressive" and dynamic music there is.

Penance Sentence
01-02-2016, 08:16 PM
Edit 2: If we can agree Noise is like waterfall, than we can explain it with Brownian Motion, believe it or not. Xenakis even based his music on the concepts of Stochastic Process/Brownian Motion. The point being, true chaos doesn't really exist. Noise can appear as having 0 structure, but that is only because it is so complex that most human ears cannot tune in with its certain frequencies.

Mozart was once looked at as Noise. In Amadeus, the emperor of Austria remarks how there is so much complexity in Mozart's music that, you can't focus on it. Looking at Mozart as Noise, seems incredibly surreal, by today's standards. But, I'd wager culture defines how we view music more so than anything. And like I said, that is horrible way of looking at things, especially considering how brilliant music can be.

TMC
01-03-2016, 04:31 AM
Edit 2: If we can agree Noise is like waterfall, than we can explain it with Brownian Motion, believe it or not. Xenakis even based his music on the concepts of Stochastic Process/Brownian Motion. The point being, true chaos doesn't really exist. Noise can appear as having 0 structure, but that is only because it is so complex that most human ears cannot tune in with its certain frequencies.

Mozart was once looked at as Noise. In Amadeus, the emperor of Austria remarks how there is so much complexity in Mozart's music that, you can't focus on it. Looking at Mozart as Noise, seems incredibly surreal, by today's standards. But, I'd wager culture defines how we view music more so than anything. And like I said, that is horrible way of looking at things, especially considering how brilliant music can be.

It is an interesting point that what was once considered extreme seems completely normal nowadays (Mozart in the true classical music or Presley in pop culture), it is exactly the same with visual arts in which I have much more experience and theoretical background than in music. Almost all of the great masters were considered extreme in some way, nowadays they seem safe and it's hard to understand where the controversy came from. Picasso used to be seen as an extremist, but nowadays we understand his art much more and he doesn't seem so extreme anymore if compared to the radical abstract artists.
I think that noise music can be compared to an abstract artwork where it takes a certain amount of time to see anything more than just a plain surface in their works. As I said before, I never tried too hard to get into noise music so that may be the reason why I always considered it to be a constant wall of buzzing noise. On the other hand I do have some experience with such avant-garde artists as Ryoji Ikeda or Lou Reed and his Metal Machine Music. As much as I do respect them, it is definitely not the kind of music I would listen to and enjoy, it's rather, as you pointed out, a challenge to see something in it, some pattern, some hidden structure.

Penance Sentence
01-03-2016, 04:49 AM
Good post.

It makes sense that visual artists too, would have the same effect, like I described with musicians. If people keep passing boundaries, and certain bizarre styles/people become more tolerable, then I wonder how long it will be until art (or, anti-art, maybe) leads to absolute anarchy. That is assuming, that most people don't have a threshold for what is acceptable as art, which I believe they do. I don't think Noise would ever become common, or even tolerable, but if it did, then true creativity would lead back to Nature. This is the reason I said art logically leads to Anarchy, if pressed to its limits.

And, yeah, Lou Reed was one of first for making Noise a more known style, but academically you can trace its origins back to the Soviets in the 1920's, even before Luigi Russolo's "Noise Manifesto."

Good discussion.

TMC
01-03-2016, 06:04 AM
And, yeah, Lou Reed was one of first for making Noise a more known style, but academically you can trace its origins back to the Soviets in the 1920's, even before Luigi Russolo's "Noise Manifesto."

Good discussion.

Good discussion indeed!
As far as I remember Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring has been considered extreme, noisy and blasphemous once it was premiered much earlier than 1920.



It makes sense that visual artists too, would have the same effect, like I described with musicians. If people keep passing boundaries, and certain bizarre styles/people become more tolerable, then I wonder how long it will be until art (or, anti-art, maybe) leads to absolute anarchy. That is assuming, that most people don't have a threshold for what is acceptable as art, which I believe they do. I don't think Noise would ever become common, or even tolerable, but if it did, then true creativity would lead back to Nature. This is the reason I said art logically leads to Anarchy, if pressed to its limits.

It is very interesting to see how borders of what's acceptable are being moved all the time. Both when it comes to visual arts, music and even in social issues.
For example, It would never occur to anyone to call Pollock an artist a century earlier. Of course there were many who didn't consider him an artist even in his time, mostly people who were too old and conservative to accept his work as the next, more liberal generation did. Since then we mostly agree that Pollock was an artist but we have new ones that we discuss and even fight about nowadays, yet they will probably be considered artists in 50 years without even discussing the subject too deeply.
I agree that noise will probably never be widely accepted, however it is not as shocking now as it used to be. Bands such as Sunn O))) (which is more drone than noise, but still quite extreme for most) play on rather big festivals which no one would think was possible just a few years ago.
What is it going to lead to? Well, either complete anarchy where everything goes or perhaps going back to a more conservative kind of art. Perhaps there is a point at which people decide that going further is pointless and it's time to appreciate more conservative artists, the ones that are influenced by the old masters.

Penance Sentence
01-03-2016, 01:22 PM
About Stravinsky, I think that was a pejorative, I don't think that is what it was going for. I meant, intentionally-made Noise as style.

Yeah, it's definitely interesting how perceptions change within time within art, how art is timeless, is always changing its meaning to people even after original artists are dead. And yeah, it is probably not as shocking, because a lot of people seem to even know who Merzbow is these days.

And about "conservative art", that is brilliant, because there is not much else that can be done in pushing boundaries. I thought about it too before, and it seems "conservative" would be shocking, in that it would be sudden change of aesthetic appreciation. Also, you can find anything transgressive if you look hard enough. Christianity, Willy Wonka, and modern Pop (like I mentioned in another thread), has some quality of being transgressive.

Although, there are always going to be outliers, and truly-individualist people who spit in the face of more common things.

Shangri-LIE
01-06-2016, 04:40 AM
Music isn't meant to be analyzed. It's meant just to be heard and felt. The only thing that you need to know about music is how it resonates, the math and strategy behind it without questioning it and how it adds a nuance to your life. Music plays the role of a tender to your "Spiritual" Topiary, a drug or a seed that once swallowed can come with either surprising or very unpleasant and unexpected side effects, or either keeping you above or below ground. You choose. Just listen to what "Feels right".

Penance Sentence
01-06-2016, 02:26 PM
Yeah, I agree for most part.

Do you analyze your emotions, feelings? Emotional understanding/intelligence, knowing yourself?
If you love something, it's only obvious. But yes, music should be left to imagination, because after all, it's the creation of all art.