Harmonielehre | Short Ride in a Fast Machine | Blue Coast Music

Harmonielehre | Short Ride in a Fast Machine

San Francisco Symphony - Adams Harmonielehre | Short Ride in a Fast Machine - Cover

Harmonielehre | Short Ride in a Fast Machine

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II. The Anfortas Wound


III. Meister Eckhardt and Quackie


Short Ride in a Fast Machine:


Short Ride in a Fast Machine


When musicians see the title Harmonielehre, their minds leap to the daunting treatise written by Arnold Schoenberg in 1910-11 and dedicated to the memory of Gustav Mahler. All composers since then have been Schoenberg’s pupils, in a sense, whether they have embraced or rejected his principles. John Adams was fascinated by Schoenberg as he was coming of age, though in the end he would rebel against Schoenberg’s non-tonal precepts. This ebullient fortyminute symphony, proudly rooted in tonal harmony, meshes the poignant sentiment of Mahler’s sunset Romanticism with the exciting rhythms and timbral vividness of 1970s Minimalism. Wrote Adams: “It was a piece serious in its expressiveness, and the explosive energies and bright colors that inhabit its three movements do not strike me as anything other than the product of that particular time and place. If the work is a parody, it is a parody made lovingly and entirely without irony.” —James M. Keller, excerpt from liner notes

Mood Description:
Explosive energies and bright colors rooted in the rhythmic and total vividness of minimalism inspired by Schoenberg
John Adams