About the review

Title: Aurora borealis
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Artist: Louigi Verona
Genre: Electronica: Ambient
Reviewed by: clones on May 23, 2008 (All reviews by clones)

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1Overall Description
This is music for transcendental meditation. Probably best served to an altered state of mind. Do not expect this music to come to you…. It took something like 2 and a half hours of listening to “get it”. There is more here then you might guess at a glance, but also less then there could be.
 
2Creativity Description
For all the skill Louigi has displayed in other pieces the drone scape is a difficult one to be developing. Compositional or performance expertise is not at issue. Everything is timing and texture and at this point I suggest that more interest could be developed that kept to the ambient mood and added even more interest in texture and color. I felt I had to go through an extraordinary effort to understand the piece even though I like and have written ambient pieces.
 
3Artistic License Description
The composition does not display a lot of newness excepting an intelligent use of dynamics – the whole piece seems to rely on that subtly.
 
4Arrangement Description
The arrangement uses the subtly in dynamics – there is a build that occurs with a very quiet rhythmic motif. This works and is really the entire focal point of the piece. It ends up being a quiet climax.
 
5Sound Quality Description
Sound quality is quite good.
 
6Does it work as a piece of music Description
For me this is a difficult question. It does, but may perhaps be best applied as background for a futuristic scene in a sci-fi movie. Even keeping to the idea of ambience and drone I think the style could be developed further to make it more accessible. There is obvious skill and design here – and a difficult genre – a more assessable work that kept this ethos would be a breakthrough.
 
Comments
May 23 2008 5:27 pm
by clones replying to Louigi Verona

To the contrary, after two and a half hours of listening I believe I figured it out. The point of my review is that you might be able to do more development in order to enable those not initiated in drone music to appreciate it better. You can reject that premise if you want –as I said it is your music and it is just my opinion after all. Nothing more.



May 23 2008 5:05 pm
by Louigi Verona replying to clones

I was just curious. And again, I am not against what you say or unhappy about your review and whatnot, just explaining what I meant by it and where does this form of music come from. While TiS is great for being able to reach a musician and tell him what ppl think, on the other hand a musician can speak to the audience. In this case, you are my listener. You said you did not understand the piece and it's slow development. Steve Roach is one of the pioneers of drone music. My works at the moment really resemble what he does, as it is very close to what I want. That is why I suggested him. Steve Reich has nothing to do with drone ambient, he is a minimalist and drone music often tends to be very maximalistic in the minimal sense =)



May 23 2008 4:54 pm
by clones replying to Louigi Verona

There are many composers - Reich is one I am familiar with. May I ask what outcome did you expect from a review? You see I also write classical music… in generally twentieth century classical style. It tends to be dissonant and I don’t expect many, if any, to get or appreciate it. So what did you expect when you put your piece up for review if it takes a certain listener to appreciate it?



May 23 2008 4:45 pm
by Louigi Verona replying to clones

Not Steve Reich, my friend, but Steve ROACH. A totally different composer. Well, from what you say, you are just not into drone ambient. Because 28 minute piece is a normal drone ambient and so is this. It is not even specific, just going along the style.



May 23 2008 4:33 pm
by clones replying to Louigi Verona

Two things - here was that twenty or twenty-five minute piece of yours that I just couldn’t get. At that time many agreed that taking the time to listen was a matter of respect for he composer. And I do respect you. Also, had I not taken the time I would have missed the subtly and I think you would have been disappointed with the review. At first listen it sounds like a filtered saw (?) with some noise that drifts in and out. Not much to hang your hat on. I am a fan of Steve Reich’s minimalist approach – his music subtly, but constantly, evolves over time. That approach might bring more wide spread appeal. Still in the end your music is yours to do with as you please. I am glad you appreciated the review. That makes the effort worth it.



May 23 2008 4:14 pm
by Louigi Verona

Nice review. One line caught my attention. "I felt I had to go through an extraordinary effort to understand the piece even though I like and have written ambient pieces". There was no need to go through any effort. Maybe it's just not your cup of tea. As for the statement that I can do better - well, I consider this work to be one of my strongest in the drone music style. As a reference check out Steve Roach's 50+ minute track called At First Light ;) Even less dynamics, but what power! It is very important to understand what this kind of music does. It shows you a piece of space, takes you to some place. From that point of feeling development or any sharp edge changes are out of place. And of course, not all people can listen to this. Not because this is "special" music, but simply because we all have different characters and thus different moods and needs. Since text can not pass the intonation, I am not offended or anything, just explaining that this is the kind of music which really leaves me satisfied ;) And I am very glad you reviewed it and spend so much time listening to it - getting a review from a person who goes to so much trouble is an honour.