Traditionally, when people think of the classical music, they associate it with the likes of old, boring, and antiquated composers of the 18th and 19th centuries. But if we look just a little harder, we will notice that the landscape and conception behind classical music written today is consistently changing. Today, if you open up newspapers and magazines, they are consistently writing encouraging words about the very best up-and-coming 21st century composers in amongst the Hip hop and pop artists. Record labels that release contemporary classical music, are ever increasing, including up and coming labels such as FatCat, Bedroom Community, New Amsterdam Records and Cantaloupe Music, the label that has had an unprecedentedly large influence over the musical landscape of today, in and out of classical music.
Another step down the ladder, in order of distribution possibilities and certainly not in order of artistic qualities, we find the independent composers who write, produce, and distribute everything by themselves. So who are these talented, courageous, and strange geniuses that are challenging the pop musical landscape of today as we know it?
Well one such being is René Puchinger, a Prague based self-taught composer of modern classical and orchestral music. He has been devoted to music composition since his childhood, and his current 2017 EP release is entitled “Emotions”.
This is an emotional and powerful recording of an emotional and powerful work. From this recording, one gets a sense of the full scope of this work, from its most intimate chamber-music-like moments to its most bombastic, expansive, quadruple-forte fury.
René Puchinger demonstrates that handled properly, writing for a full symphony orchestra is a supremely expressive and satisfying way to constructively deal with one’s feelings of loss, conflict, and anger. It would be exceedingly difficult to conceive of more emotionally potent pieces of music currently.
The 5 musical pieces, namely “Mission”, “Contemplation”, “Fade To Black”, “4” and “Defeated”, are each fairly short in length, The longest clocks in at 2 and a half minutes while none of the others reach the 2-minute mark. What does this mean in practical terms? None of the compositions overstay their welcome or ever get to the point of self-indulgence, a trap easily fallen into with so much dramatic, dynamic and bombastic sounding instrumentation at hand.
René Puchinger’s music is a breath of fresh air in the usually predictable classical music world, bridging the gap of concert hall type of writing and film scoring with excellence. Puchinger’s original music plays in some ways more like concert pieces in several places rather than a simple movie score.
His approach is of gentle and pensive lyricism mixed with challenging and slightly avant-garde orchestral techniques for suspense sequences, producing a work of strong dramatic arc and architecture. He creates a moody and ruminating musical world that envelope the listener with alternating sections of emotional thematic writing and bursts of suspenseful energy.
The end result is, as said above, more akin to a concert work although the composer ties everything together with recurring thematic constructs of which varying sentiments is the central one, both emotionally and structurally.