Casey Crescenzo
Amour and Attrition


4.0
excellent

Review

by Cultclassical USER (50 Reviews)
May 31st, 2014 | 39 replies | 6,538 views


Release Date: 06/03/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A midsummer day's dream..

14 of 15 thought this review was well written

I have no qualms or reservations calling Casey Crescenzo a modern musical genius. The man has proven through his young life he knows just how to squeeze the good stuff out his band, The Dear Hunter, and himself without devolving to gaudy theatrics. Banking on the notion that thousands more people felt this way, Crescenzo started a Kickstarter campaign in August 2013 to help him travel to the Czech Republic to compose and record his first symphony with the BRNO Orchestra. This endeavor has culminated in Amour & Attrition, a heartwarmingly lighthearted and whimsical four piece movement that feels right at home with Crescenzo’s other works.

Amour & Attrition’s first movement begins with a sunrise, an escalating concert of strings, piano, and woodwinds that really sets the tone for the entire symphony. Much of Amour & Attrition is driven by different variations of these three sections of instrumentation and really reminds one of what made Gershwin’s Rhapsody In Blue so enchanting and catchy. For better or for worse, Crescenzo largely projects a strongly jovial mood throughout the piece with only “Movement III” showcasing flashes of suspense (but bubbly suspense) through use of heavy punctuated blasts of percussion, tubas, and the harsh, sharp shrill of the strings. Interestingly, especially in today’s music landscape, Amour & Attrition, utilizes only traditional orchestral instruments, no ambient passages, no guitar, no electronic accompaniment of any kind. This traditional approach however really serves to draw the listener into the ambiance and mood the symphony exudes and does so quite well.

Attached to the perpetual lighthearted nature of this piece is a lack of dynamism. The aforementioned mood shift in “Movement III” while conspicuous, isn’t exactly moving or powerful as it retains the foul odor of a cheerful outcome. Crescenzo’s crescendos have some definite pop, but never quite reach the level of bombast that would have injected that feeling of awe Amour & Attrition could have benefitted from. This is not to say Amour & Attrition drags on, on the contrary, the music does a wonderful job of pulling the listener through its colorful imagery and warm atmosphere. Crescenzo’s placement of minor scales and the odd instrument change here and there ensures the listener’s attention is firmly in grasp. This is especially true for the symphony’s closing act, which paints a vibrant sunset to go along with the piece’s radiant daytime setting.

You can tell that Crescenzo stayed within his comfort zone with Amour & Attrition. It’s not genre defining, it’s not going to induce mind-breaking, sob-inducing epiphanies, but it’s a fine example of lighthearted classical music. At under 40 minutes, Amour & Attrition doesn’t outstay its welcome but conveys it’s intent with happy-go-lucky gusto. What we have here is the result of a man accomplishing his dream. And while the cries of “GIVE ME ACT 4!!!” will continue to be peppered throughout the internet forums and boards, Crescenzo should rightly be proud of what he’s created in Amour & Attrition. Hell, I am and I don’t even know the man.



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user ratings (12)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Calc
May 30th 2014



12133 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Classical music for newbs. Album was released to backers a few days ago so no stream yet.

Digging: Jizue - Shiori

Muisc4Life26
May 31st 2014



2603 Comments


good review man, i'm into some classical myself. It's nice to see this album getting reviewed

dimsim3478
May 31st 2014



4885 Comments


oh cool the whole classical thing actually panned out

Digging: Microwave - Stovall

YoYoMancuso
May 31st 2014



11006 Comments


whoa so this is actually good? nice i wanted this to be good

Calc
May 31st 2014



12133 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

thanks music4life!! and yes this is pre-good. just don't be expecting some epic, intricate piece is all.

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2014



19668 Comments


Really well-written review Calc. Possibly your best to date

Ecnalzen
June 1st 2014



6500 Comments


I thought he was going to release this under The Dear Hunter. Didn't realize it was a 'solo' outing.

Calc
June 1st 2014



12133 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

well thanks atari! and yep ecnal, he's even touring solo with a string quartet accompanying him

Ecnalzen
June 2nd 2014



6500 Comments


That would be pretty cool to see. I will be interested to hear this when it becomes available to the non backers.

Calc
June 2nd 2014



12133 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

that will be tomorrow!!

Underflow
June 3rd 2014



2554 Comments


Looking forward to this. Thanks for the heads up! Good review, too.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
June 3rd 2014



10064 Comments


I've missed them Calc reviews.

Digging: The Contortionist - Language

4N4LB34D5
June 3rd 2014



280 Comments


sweet i've been meaning to attempt to get into classical music lately, i just have absolutely no clue where to even begin. this sounds like the perfect entry point

Digging: Hawk Eyes - That's What This Is

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
June 3rd 2014



19668 Comments


nice feature!

RedSky
June 3rd 2014



283 Comments


Props on the related recommendations.

SpoonerMcgee
June 3rd 2014



58 Comments


I neeeeeeeeeeeeeeed to hear this.

ShitsofRain
June 3rd 2014



5854 Comments


i liked three so ill check

AtomicWaste
Staff Reviewer
June 3rd 2014



1986 Comments


Crescenzo’s crescendos


You sonuvabitch.

Good review!

Calc
June 3rd 2014



12133 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

thanks guys! I've been periodically looking for the stream since it's supposed to come out today but...nothing.

thelastsignal
June 3rd 2014



1334 Comments


Pos'd because Calc. Nice review, man. I hate myself for this, but I have just fallen off listening to Casey's stuff; I haven't even heard the color spectrum eps yet. I need to get on that.



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