Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Share here little known masterpieces
User avatar
DarkestShadow
Posts: 372
Joined: Sat 21 Apr 2018 15:06

Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by DarkestShadow » Sun 26 Aug 2018 10:07

This might not become very well known amongst people who aren't already Two Steps From Hell or Thomas Bergersen fans and followers.
But here's Thomas' first symphony - which I'm replaying at an alarming rate. Very particular... 2 more to come!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DkTR0gKwp3c

Individual tracks/parts here (Prologue, Open Seas, A Great Expanse and Home of the Brave - favorites!!)
https://open.spotify.com/album/0sd2edGelOrOiRpNmcfv43

User avatar
Headshot
The Impartial
Posts: 778
Joined: Sun 1 Oct 2017 23:23

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by Headshot » Sun 23 Dec 2018 22:57

I enjoyed the prologue (thanks Johnny for the theme) but it quickly becomes painful. It seems that Thomas considers music as a kind of sport competition : not enough breathing, not enough silence.

For the most part, it's a more or less noisy version of Hollywood clichés (as almost everything I've heard from him) + a bit of classical music.

I see here a talented composer who masters orchestration and who throws in my face as many clichés as possible.
I don't think anyone who knows classical and film music well could really be impressed, amazed or moved by this.

IMO, it's nothing more than a very well written/produced stock music.

Basically the same criticism I made for The Race (sex doll)...please...go listen to the originals* instead of masturbating on pale copies !

*John Williams, Bruce Broughton, James Newton Howard, Alan Menken etc.

The main motif comes from here :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KKXUzOsJJUQ

User avatar
dingdingdong
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon 23 Apr 2018 08:54

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by dingdingdong » Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:07

"Symphony"

User avatar
Headshot
The Impartial
Posts: 778
Joined: Sun 1 Oct 2017 23:23

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by Headshot » Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:16

lol

User avatar
DarkestShadow
Posts: 372
Joined: Sat 21 Apr 2018 15:06

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by DarkestShadow » Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:39

I don't really want to decide for others what masterpieces are and what not, so I'm not feeling my post here. ;)

Well, as with "The Race" I cannot relate. Even if I knew the inspirations/originals - I have no problem with salutes. Although I do find that there should be more rest in between... well, now players will fear reading "Thomas Bergersen" on the score even more! :P

It's not in any music library at the moment so it's not literrally Stock Music. But I think it was an analogy, right?

By the way here is something Thomas wrote about American Dream.
"I am sure this music isn’t for the majority out there, but I didn’t have any control over what came out. I started writing it and during the 3-4 or so weeks it took to complete it I was like a zombie living in my studio 😂 I wasn’t sure whether to release it or not, but figured there’s always going to be a few people out there who can appreciate a composer geeking out."

I love the John Williams piece you linked - brilliant!! And major similarities! ;)
dingdingdong wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:07
"Symphony"
I made a mistake there... Thomas never called it a symphony but rather referred to it as a "symphonic suite". I guess he didn't quite want to call it a symphony either. But it's certainly "symphonic".

User avatar
Headshot
The Impartial
Posts: 778
Joined: Sun 1 Oct 2017 23:23

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by Headshot » Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:56

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:39
I don't really want to decide for others what masterpieces are and what not, so I'm not feeling my post here. ;)
No problem with that.
I just want you to realize that you enjoy a pale copy and that you should be interested in the originals.

Listen the great film scores FIRST (there are so many). Then go back to Bergersen if you want.

This is just an advice.

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:39
It's not in any music library at the moment so it's not literrally Stock Music. But I think it was an analogy, right?
Yes, like the sex doll.

User avatar
dingdingdong
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon 23 Apr 2018 08:54

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by dingdingdong » Mon 24 Dec 2018 11:09

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:39
I made a mistake there... Thomas never called it a symphony but rather referred to it as a "symphonic suite". I guess he didn't quite want to call it a symphony either. But it's certainly "symphonic".
OK! No harm done :)

Thomas is a talented guy and I've enjoyed a lot of his work since the early days of TSFH (and all his crazy good sample work prior). A bit of a shame that he seems to settle for such simple stuff (melodically/harmonically - that opening of the track just bored me out instantly), albeit well orchestrated and produced.

User avatar
DarkestShadow
Posts: 372
Joined: Sat 21 Apr 2018 15:06

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by DarkestShadow » Mon 24 Dec 2018 11:27

dingdingdong wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 11:09
DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 10:39
I made a mistake there... Thomas never called it a symphony but rather referred to it as a "symphonic suite". I guess he didn't quite want to call it a symphony either. But it's certainly "symphonic".
OK! No harm done :)

Thomas is a talented guy and I've enjoyed a lot of his work since the early days of TSFH (and all his crazy good sample work prior). A bit of a shame that he seems to settle for such simple stuff (melodically/harmonically - that opening of the track just bored me out instantly), albeit well orchestrated and produced.
Well, I think he is more interested in emotion in music rather than musical or harmonical interest. His most personal projects Sun and Illusions don't have that much orchestral sophistry, at least compared other work he has done.
I love all of it for it's qualities. His crazy diversity is one of the things I respect most about him.
I mean... those 2 tracks are from the same album!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2lQejw0OB8
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LpXyIshsOAs

User avatar
dingdingdong
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon 23 Apr 2018 08:54

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by dingdingdong » Mon 24 Dec 2018 12:20

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 11:27
Well, I think he is more interested in emotion in music rather than musical or harmonical interest.
Well, he could ad so much to that emotion, if he'd allow himself outside of the "pop-chords, no more than one chord/bar" -routine. That's the way I see it.

He often takes the same route as Verta and heavily underarrestimates his listeners, or doesn't know how to do it sophisticatedly (surprisingly). For example; Williams has written complex harmonies thourhgout his career, but he knows how to do it without confusing the listener to exhaustion, for example by accentuating the "simple stuff" simply by means of orchestration - which us peasants are able to pick up as ruling, simple harmony - and going places in between them to satisfy those, whos ears demand a bit more (and no doubt, to satisfy himself as an artist as well).

Still, a gifted guy who does great orchestral pieces with all kinds of synth stuff and he has some great gems in there which I return to listen to from time to time. Just simpler and easier to digest and there's really nothing wrong with that. I just think/believe that he could (and should) allow himself to do more than that and not just serve the average listener, for whom The Emotion is basically just that one feeling you get, when you go from D minor to a B flat major via massive swell by the orchestra... but if they'd have the ears and ability to get lost in what one can find in the music of Beethoven, Brahms, Sibelius, Stravinsky et all (and surely Williams as well).. then they'd know what The Emotion is. And that simpler stuff doesn't lead them towards that.

User avatar
DarkestShadow
Posts: 372
Joined: Sat 21 Apr 2018 15:06

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by DarkestShadow » Mon 24 Dec 2018 12:40

dingdingdong wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 12:20
DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 11:27
Well, I think he is more interested in emotion in music rather than musical or harmonical interest.
Well, he could ad so much to that emotion, if he'd allow himself outside of the "pop-chords, no more than one chord/bar" -routine. That's the way I see it.

He often takes the same route as Verta and heavily underarrestimates his listeners, or doesn't know how to do it sophisticatedly (surprisingly). For example; Williams has written complex harmonies thourhgout his career, but he knows how to do it without confusing the listener to exhaustion, for example by accentuating the "simple stuff" simply by means of orchestration - which us peasants are able to pick up as ruling, simple harmony - and going places in between them to satisfy those, whos ears demand a bit more (and no doubt, to satisfy himself as an artist as well).

Still, a gifted guy who does great orchestral pieces with all kinds of synth stuff and he has some great gems in there which I return to listen to from time to time. Just simpler and easier to digest and there's really nothing wrong with that. I just think/believe that he could (and should) allow himself to do more than that and not just serve the average listener, for whom The Emotion is basically just that one feeling you get, when you go from D minor to a B flat major via massive swell by the orchestra... but if they'd have the ears and ability to get lost in what one can find in the music of Beethoven, Brahms, Sibelius, Stravinsky et all (and surely Williams as well).. then they'd know what The Emotion is. And that simpler stuff doesn't lead them towards that.
Well, those are different emotions that are awakened by different styles, if you're sensitive for them. A piece like "Sun" by Thomas makes me feel very differently than "ET" or "Close Encounters" scores by JW for instance...

It's also important to note that Thomas is not writing music to serve the average listener but does what he wants... he would certainly be as passionate about his main style at the moment it wouldn't have that fan base. He also wrote a lot of Pop Music and publishes it now, despite most of his fans not really being hooked on that.
He also wasn't expecting much appreciation for American Dream, but still intensely worked on it and released - luckily. :D

User avatar
FriFlo
Posts: 148
Joined: Mon 16 Apr 2018 16:33

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by FriFlo » Mon 24 Dec 2018 12:54

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 12:40
Well, those are different emotions that are awakened by different styles, if you're sensitive for them. A piece like "Sun" by Thomas makes me feel very differently than "ET" or "Close Encounters" scores by JW for instance...
Yes, Junior! We know!

Image

Merry McChristmas to you, Junior! ;-)

User avatar
Headshot
The Impartial
Posts: 778
Joined: Sun 1 Oct 2017 23:23

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by Headshot » Mon 24 Dec 2018 15:34

FriFlo wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 12:54
Merry McChristmas to you, Junior! ;-)
lol
dingdingdong wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 12:20
he could (and should) allow himself to do more than that and not just serve the average listener, for whom The Emotion is basically just that one feeling you get, when you go from D minor to a B flat major via massive swell by the orchestra...
and lol again

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 11:27
Well, I think he is more interested in emotion in music rather than musical or harmonical interest.
Emotion doesn't have to be opposed to the technical aspect (the technical aspect/knowledge must serve the emotion).
Elaborate harmony and sophisticated writing are not an end in themselves, but a tool.

Simple chord progressions (nothing wrong with that) and "autistic" writing don't make music more emotional, but more accessible → instant moronic gratification.

Here is how an elaborate and elegant writing can bring a very simple and common chord progression to another level :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v1IvCAfnIu4

And here's the same tune/chord progression in the hands of a retarded (musically speaking) :





"I love hans zimmer because his music is soooo emotional"...lmao

User avatar
DarkestShadow
Posts: 372
Joined: Sat 21 Apr 2018 15:06

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by DarkestShadow » Mon 24 Dec 2018 16:37

I was thinking that Mr DingDong is referring to his Volume One and other similar tracks, which are complex and showcase a lot of orchestration skills.
Those obviously aren't very emotional mostly...

No idea what that Zimmer example provided is, but it just sounds odd to me. Very odd...
Patrick Doyle's piece is wonderful! It's of course as classical as it gets. Which has a different emotional character than a more modern and textural/synthetic approach with more simple orchestration for instance. And Thomas seems to be very attracted to that now, more so than the JW style pieces he was writing earlier.
For these pieces there is simply no need for complexity in the orchestration (although still present in some places) so - yes it wouldn't be unemotional, but also not necessary for these pieces on his bigger personal projects.

User avatar
Headshot
The Impartial
Posts: 778
Joined: Sun 1 Oct 2017 23:23

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by Headshot » Tue 25 Dec 2018 23:43

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 16:37
Patrick Doyle's piece is wonderful! It's of course as classical as it gets. Which has a different emotional character than a more modern and textural/synthetic approach with more simple orchestration for instance.
CHEESY
Definition (Urban Dictionary) :
This is an important word and nobody has it right yet. What it means is: Trying too hard, unsubtle, and inauthentic.
Specifically that which is unsubtle or inauthentic in its way of trying to elicit a certain response from a viewer, listener, audience, etc. Celine Dion is cheesy because her lyrics, timbre, key changes, and swelling orchestral accompaniment telegraph 'i want you to be moved' instead of moving you.


Easy listening, easy emotion, instant gratification, cheesy etc. all these notions are connected to retarded writing and common chord progressions.

What I'm trying to make you understand is that there is a scale a value between feelings/emotions. I know...that kind of statement is not very fashionable in our degenerate era...but just because someone is moved by something, just because someone enjoy something doesn't mean that person feels a high-level emotion : intensity is not synonymous with value (or authenticity).


Just because a guy loves MacDonald to tears doesn't mean he experiments with rich and subtle flavors. A chef's tomato sauce is considered superior to ketchup because of its refinement (due to the know-how and the food freshness/quality).

Subtility is always considered superior to coarseness. This truth is deeply rooted in human beings who value everything that is subtle, refined and pure.

Why ?

Not just because of the quality of the experiences but also because subtle and refined things are more rare or difficult to create.

That's why the masterpieces are in museums, that's why diamonds are the most expensive stones, that's why classical music goes through centuries etc.

What produces Zimmer is weak. His recipes are simplistic and many artifices are used to hide the lack of artistic substance.

Therefore, "his" limited music just can't bring you the best.

By "the best", I'm not talking about crying while listening to Now We Are Free, I'm not talking about slimy sentimentality, I'm not talking about cheap feelings that fit and feed the pathetic and inauthentic value system of our time :"hate is bad, love is good"..., I'm not talking about a "retarded excitement" caused by aggressive drums and 32 horns...I'm talking about high-class feelings that can only be experiemented with high-class music.

DarkestShadow wrote:
Mon 24 Dec 2018 16:37
Patrick Doyle's piece is wonderful! It's of course as classical as it gets. Which has a different emotional character than a more modern and textural/synthetic approach with more simple orchestration for instance.
Not only different, but SUPERIOR.

My example above was not well executed. Here is another try.

As for the cook, knowledge allows to refine and improve the raw materials in order to offer the most subtle and rich experience possible :





https://youtu.be/XO9XxaafSX4

Image

User avatar
DarkestShadow
Posts: 372
Joined: Sat 21 Apr 2018 15:06

Re: Thomas Bergersen - American Dream (40 Minutes Symphony)

Post by DarkestShadow » Wed 26 Dec 2018 00:49

Mr Doyle's Haute Cuisine hangs a little heavy on my right ear and the mid to low parts are bit static IMO... not sure why. Guess I should keep listening with laptop speakers as I did the first time haha...

But certainly still well done (heard much better string writing).
The raw materials example is of course not so interesting...

Hach TBH I have no idea what that refers to ATM. Hans Zimmer? I'm not in defense of all music he has written - the music you've referenced on the older and the recent example I won't defend...
I was actually talking about Thomas Bergersen's more "modern style" pieces (which have little to nothing to do with the HZ examples or the "raw materials) compared to his older more JW-style and orchestrally complex ones - as a response to Mr Ding Dong.

And cheese does not at all depend on style. When I think about cheesy music I think about extremely predictable and crystal clear and thus boring harmonies played primarily by a string ensemble.
Or something patriotic with cheesy horn lines and affirmative percussion accents. Or many Christmas songs for instance. Or a bunch of religious music... and then maybe some HZ style or modern Thomas style pieces that are cheesy. Depends on the piece not the style. I've heard cheesy stuff in many genres.
Neither does subtlety. Is Patrick Doyle's piece subtle? I don't think so at all. It's screaming at me "THIS IS EMOTIONAL!! SOARING HIGH VIOLINS, BUSY AFFIRMATIVE CELLI!!!"


On the "high-class feelings" pass me to an extent that I can't even comment on it... won't ever put feelings in a hierarchy (unless we're talking about morality - little to do with being excited or touched by music). That topic died on me before it even quite reached me. :P

Post Reply