Ludwig van Beethoven
"Pathétique" Piano Sonata No. 8 in C minor, Op. 13


5.0
classic

Review

by Jake C. Taylor USER (90 Reviews)
July 3rd, 2008 | 20 replies


Release Date: 1798 | Tracklist


Following the footsteps laid by his earlier contemporaries, Mozart, and Haydn, Ludwig van Beethoven set upon composing his 8th piano sonata opus 13 in 1798, most widely referred to as “Pathétique (passionate/sorrowful).” The entitlement of the piece is thought to have resided in the mind of Beethoven himself; however it was actually named by his publisher, who sought refuge in the sonata’s wondrous resonance. Of all his sonatas, his 8th in C minor is one of his most treasured, even to this day. Like all Beethoven compositions in C minor, this work strikes definite moments of magniloquence, having a genuine feeling of his mastership along its outer edges, while also dividing the line between baroque and romantic themes, with a classical scalpel.

Conventional, yet daring, the sonata begins confidently, however somewhat held back behind the cloud of tonic chords. It speedily shifts form, following standard sonata convention, and enters Beethoven’s virtuosic realm. The two main the motifs within “Grave,” the slow chordal development, and the later quick paced torrent of defined notes, are one the finest examples of Beethoven’s catalogue of piano music. Often, this piece is disregarded amongst the public, most notably because it is overshadowed by the more popular Moonlight Sonata; the sonata that is used most frequently abused on cinematic soaps, and romances. While this issue will probably never become completely resolved, it makes the music from Grave much more tantalising for the first-time listener who probably hasn’t heard the diverse selection of music from the composer.

“Adagio cantabile” begins much more uncertain than is self-assured predecessor, and marks the well rounded apex of the work. The movement itself uncoils itself gently, slowly and romantically within a saddening melodic line, and delicate chordal accompaniment. Clearly later romantic composers must have made asylum with such a movement when composing similar stylised pieces, especially those of Brahms, Chopin and Mendelssohn. Adagio cantabile is later measured in the shallow bowl of “Rondo. Allegro,” where the composer returns back to the initial idea channel. Busy key modulations continually develop to maintain a strong binding force with the listener. Despite this, it probably marks the decline of the piece from an experiential perspective, but collectively it’s a wonderful finalising touch to an already captivating sonata, one that will acts as a unique standpoint on the composer’s purpose as a pivotal premeditated catalyst between the classical era, and later romantic eras.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
rasputin
July 3rd 2008


14546 Comments


No track listing? Great review as usual, here's hoping they'll make you a contributor soon, you're without a doubt a good enough writer.

taylormemer
July 3rd 2008


4917 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Huh, that's weird. I remember placing that tracks in... weird.
Cheers though for you compliments.

Pebster49
July 4th 2008


2992 Comments


hmmm...might need to check this out.

taylormemer
July 4th 2008


4917 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

You should.

Mendigo
July 4th 2008


2299 Comments


yessss
keep the classical reviews coming, man! I still need to check out a lot of classical stuff, I've only scratched the surface yet and there must be such a huge amount of amazing stuff within that genre.

Iai
Emeritus
July 4th 2008


3553 Comments


Contributer status happens automatically when a person's review have generated enough votes.

Jim
July 4th 2008


5110 Comments


i thought it was randomly bestowed upon you whenever a mod felt it fit
unless it's changed :/

taylormemer
July 4th 2008


4917 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Eh, whatever happens wont phase me.

foreverendeared
July 4th 2008


14678 Comments


while Beethoven is probably my least favorite classical composer, i still listen to his 9th symphony quite often.
really outstanding reviewThis Message Edited On 07.04.08

Smileyface
July 4th 2008


309 Comments


Good review.

DFelon204409
Emeritus
July 6th 2008


3995 Comments


Wow this is ridiculous! How did you find a recording by Ludwig van Beethoven himself??!!?

taylormemer
July 6th 2008


4917 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Didn't think he looked that similar... lol :p

toxin.
June 1st 2013


12479 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i remember playing the adagio movement years back. however, while i do love the adagio and rondo movements, i don't really get what makes this such a beloved sonata tbh

GiaNXGX
June 1st 2013


4867 Comments


late beethoven is really really good though

toxin.
June 1st 2013


12479 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ya ofc

Pheromone
October 28th 2013


3542 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yeah.

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Insurrection
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April 25th 2014


21227 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

perfect

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menawati
Contributing Reviewer
April 25th 2014


16026 Comments


string qts are where its at

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Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
April 25th 2014


21227 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

cant go wrong with any beethoven really

Jacquibim
Contributing Reviewer
April 25th 2014


14450 Comments


Agreed, will need to listen to this.

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