Right out of the box, my first thought when I saw Rock Symphonies by David Garrett was, WHO ARE THEY TRYING TO APPEAL TO? I mean hard core rockers don’t usually give a darn (being demure) about violinists and classical and I don’t know too many people who love classical music that want to hear their favorites bastardized.
As a reviewer (especially when I review on The Review Broads), I try to keep an open mind. Add to the fact that I am a Woodstock-era child of the 60’s and 70’s PLUS I went to college to dance (ended up going for dance therapy), so I love me some Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, or Ravel.
I got in the car (which is where I do my serious listening), popped in the CD and headed off for a little shopping (knowing that the Mall I wanted to go to was about 50 minutes away in the Palm Beach area). I was greeted with a moving opening to “Smells Like Teen Spirit”. Wait, I know what you’re thinking. Nirvana on violin? Seriously.
Garrett is a classically trained violinist who has kept one foot grounded in the world of the masters, while stepping out with the other in the hardcore world of Rock. He easily transitions from classical style violin to fiddling as he moves from Bach (Toccata) to Aerosmith (Walk This Way). While I can’t say that I enjoyed EVERY song, I fell in LOVE with his rock arrangement of Beethoven’s 5th (The 5th), which I found particularly compelling. As a matter of fact I enjoyed each of the updated versions of classical symphonies. On the flip side (side “B” of this review), I have to say that I found songs like “Walk This Way” and “Live and Let Die” somewhat hollow.
My take is that this is a mixed bag of music and I’d MUCH rather listen to him play classical with a rock twist. Most modern music just doesn’t have the depth that it takes to make this work. Still, I’m keeping my eye (er, ear) on David Garrett. He’s a VERY talented violinist.
A child prodigy born in Germany, Garrett has been amazing fans around the world since he was a young boy. By age 12, Garrett was playing on stage with the London Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Russian National Orchestra. His self-titled debut album, David Garrett, debuted in the states at #1 on the Classical Crossover Chart and held the position for 31 solid weeks in 2009
- Smells Like Teen Spirit
- November Rain
- The 5th
- Walk This Way
- Vivaldi vs. Vertigo
- Master of Puppets
- 80’s Anthem
- Live and Let Die
Rock Symphonies is available for purchase on Amazon.com or at your local CD retailer.
Thank you to Music Moms for providing this CD for my review. I was in no way compensated and all opinions are strictly my own.
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