Quartet for the End of Time Archive

Olivier MESSIAEN, “20th Anniversary Edition” – A Comprehensive Collection of the Works of Olivier Messiaen – Warner  Classics, 25 CDs

Olivier MESSIAEN, “20th Anniversary Edition” – A Comprehensive Collection of the Works of Olivier Messiaen – Warner  Classics, 25 CDs

Olivier MESSIAEN, “20th Anniversary Edition” – A Comprehensive Collection of the Works of Olivier Messiaen – Warner  Classics, 25 CDs [Performance credits below] (4/15/17) ****: Warner Classics has released an exceptional and comprehensive assemblage of Olivier Messiaen’s significant musical corpus. To honor this special release from Warner Classics, and the impact Messiaen has had on music in the 20th Century, Audiophile Audition is presenting an extended review (by a few genre), beginning with some personal reflections. Olivier Messaien – A Few Observations I first encountered the music of Olivier Messaien (1908-1992) with his 1933 The Ascension in a recording by Leopold Stokowski. The eclectic combination of sincerity, simplicity, religious devotion, ecstasy, and rhythmic complexity had a shocking effect, if only for the sheer vitality of the numinous visions. Messaien had been twenty-five-years-old at the time he created the piece; his having lived in the French musical world dominated by Debussy and Ravel – and to a degree, Stravinsky – it struck me how much Messiaen had gleaned from their individual sonorities while breaking free to impose his own sound-world. A little investigation on my part revealed the composer’s strong Catholic faith, his training by Dukas, his mastery of the organ […]