Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Difference is in the Details

Dan Visconti's "take" on the difference between classical music and "mainstream arena-rock" is one of the most insightful statements I have read on the subject:
Put simply, Big Ideas are more often than not also Vague Ideas—their size does not necessarily denote great intricacy. While much mainstream arena-rock is certainly detailed, it's more the combined sense of "surface details" that colors the music with edge and oomph. In other words, most of the detail is effective as a wash. On the whole classical music seems to be much more concerned with its details and nuances interacting on the molecular level, saying something less monolithic but more specific. So perhaps it's natural that rock's more homogenous and non-rhetorical use of detail should be a good fit for the very different demands of the arena.
You can read the whole post here.

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