NSFW Reviews of Classical Music

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Leave it to Vice Magazine to dirty up what is otherwise the most straight-laced and coma-inducing genre of writing imaginable: reviews of classical music albums. But just because Vice has a potty mouth doesn't mean they don't take the music seriously, which makes for some seriously interesting reading, even for people who aren't flipping out over the latest recording of Richard Strauss by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra or whatever. Here are a few of my favorite reviews -- that we could print.

Saint-Saëns is back with a bang in every sense of the word. In this erotic expedition through three decades of composing, taboos shatter and personal boundaries get slathered in KY and splooge. Halfway into Sonata No. 2 in F Major, piano and cello basically hold an all-orifice orgy in a public parking lot. At one point husky Swedish pianist Bengt Forsberg even makes an appearance as a pizza delivery boy with a big surprise. Back in the day, Saint-Saëns’s contemporaries called his work dull. Now his contemporaries are all like, “Uh...” and Saint-Saëns is all like, “What’s up, bitch?” -- FRED SCONE

Ever see a fat kid jiggling down the sidewalk in a WHY BE NORMAL shirt and feel an overwhelming urge to pity-hug? Same deal here. Composer Havergal Brian cuts loose with a very-late-career “Comedy Overture.” There are pippy flute motifs, and a silly salute to Strauss’s Don Quixote. Symphony No. 11 undercuts its own adagio with some zany sleigh bells. Ease up, Patch Adams—my funny bone can only take so much. -- JANITT KLAMSTON

Vivaldi’s love of bassoons is a little weird. Sure, the instrument has a tremendous range of expression, especially for the kind of contrapuntal rhythms performed here. But there are times on this recording (especially in the C Major concertos) where it feels like something else is going on. Like if one day you visited Vivaldi’s apartment and discovered some bassoon-shaped nipple hasps or jelly dongs, would you honestly be that surprised? -- PETUNIA PROT

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January 14, 2011 - 6:16am
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