#654 Gustav Holst – The Planets

The classical work that launched a hundred film soundtracks and John Williams career (listen to Mars around from 4.47 and tell me that’s not the entrance of the Stormtroopers in Star Wars). From the ominous opening with the string players hitting their bows wood-side against the strings, to the brain-fazing vocals drifting off into space … Continue reading #654 Gustav Holst – The Planets

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#626 Joseph Haydn – Symphonies No 102 and 104

I don’t often listen to Haydn, I tend to prefer my classical music to be sitting at the modern end of the bench and somewhat discordant in nature. However, it was a joy to listen to this. I confess I didn’t listen to my actual CD, but on iPod and headphones where I immersed myself … Continue reading #626 Joseph Haydn – Symphonies No 102 and 104

#566 George Gershwin – Rhapsody in Blue (Chailly & Bollani)

Rhapsody in Blue is without doubt one of the defining classical works of the 20th century, and possibly the defining work of American classical music. It was as ground-breaking as the Rite of Spring, albeit in different ways, and although it caused no riots at its premiere there were plenty of detractors from this self-proclaimed … Continue reading #566 George Gershwin – Rhapsody in Blue (Chailly & Bollani)

#119 Beethoven – Missa Solemnis

My initial (ignorant) observation of this, not having listened to it for several years, is that’s its very long. Even by classical symphonic standards, it’s long. 80 mins long – you do always get your money’s worth with Beethoven. It’s a solid work in all respects, and one that Beethoven himself considered his greatest. Written … Continue reading #119 Beethoven – Missa Solemnis

#785 Gustav Mahler – Das Lied Von Der Erde

I’m not as much of a Mahler freak as my best friend, but I know a classic composer’s haircut when I see one. I am far more familiar with Mahler’s symphonies than any of his other works, and bought this CD on my friend’s recommendation, feeling that I really should try and delve a little … Continue reading #785 Gustav Mahler – Das Lied Von Der Erde