“Why No Classical?” and Other Made Up Questions Serving As An FAQ

It’s a quiet Sunday afternoon.  Maybe you have questions.  I know I do.  I’m still thinking of how I want these “reviews” for lack of a better word to be, and what if anything might be of interest for apostle’s besides the daily review.  So I thought I’d put together a quick Q&A to serve as a bit of an FAQ.  These are questions I came up with sitting around organizing the albums for the next week of reviews, but if any of you have questions feel free to let me know and I’ll answer them in a future edition of this thing.

Well, it seems like an odd place to start, but since you titled the post with it…why no classical?

classical collection
My classical collection.  It’s small but weighty in good stuff.

I guess more than anything else it’s the one thing I love I still feel completely unqualified to talk about?  I have a small collection of classical music, and it’s something I love to listen to given the right set of physical and mental circumstances, but trying to get out in words what it is about, say, the Emerson String Quartet’s rendition of Bartók’s six string quartets, or why Bach’s Mass in B Minor as performed by the Monteverdi Choir under John Eliot Gardiner might be my favorite of music ever is beyond me.  I’m woefully under-educated when it comes to the intricacies of classical music, and though I can rattle over periods and terminology and composers and works (anyone can with a couple of general music classes under their belt and a good copy of the Penguin Guide to Classical Music boy their side), anything more would be a disservice to the music on my part.  One day, maybe…

Fair enough.  You got some good feedback from folks who thought this was a cool idea, but I can’t imagine you came up with this yourself?  So how’d this idea come about?

Well, the overall idea of better understanding myself through the media I consume has been around for years: it’s not only the major impetus behind the end of year lists I write for Nine Circles, but I’ve been trying to work out a way to get at this nugget as early as 2012, at least from an online perspective.  But the real tipping point to finally get this moving after a number of aborted attempts came from my friend, VHHP bandmate and metal co-conspirator Jonathan Petkau, who over on Instagram has been doing something similar for almost a year.  It’s called 1albumeveryday, and you should definitely check it out.  Jon manages to get as his life and experiences with music in a short paragraph each day, and it’s something I’m aspiring to do here.

And yes, he knows about this project and gave it his blessing.

Well, so far these just seems like normal reviews.  Where’s the YOU in it all, dude?

I’m trying.  It’s only been a week, and review-wise my brain is wired to crank them out in a similar fashion to the metal reviews I’ve been doing for the past 2+ years over on Nine Circles.  I’ll get there – the plan is to write a bit less per review but get more at my experiences with the music as opposed to simply summarizing the artist or album.  Give it a bit of time and I’ll come around.

OK.  Sorry if that came off a bit harsh, man.

It’s cool.

What are you listening to as you write this?

I went record shopping in Brooklyn a few days ago with my brother – he just got bit by the vinyl bug and we decided to feed our desires.  So I’m listening to some old/new acquisitions: Rush’s Farewell to Kings and now Steely Dan’s Aja.

How come you’re not reviewing this band?  Or that band?

Probably because I don’t have a physical copy.  There were a lot of years I just went digital to save space (and admittedly to hide the fact I was buying so much music from my wife).  Or it could be I don’t care for the band or album in question…who knows?  If you really want to know ask me and I’ll tell you the truth.

This thing’s already over 700 words and you didn’t even tell us about what you’re listening to everything on?  Where’s the lowdown on the gear?

Damn, you’re right.  Tell you what, we’ll do it next time?



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