My Mum and I Review Classical Music

Today we have something special, and something that involves someone besides me.

Say hello to my mum. Hi, ma.

Since I needed some original content to put up on the blog and since I’m running out of ideas, we decided to listen to a couple of classical music pieces together and see if we can come up with a decent review. Keep in mind that I am next to a noob in re classical music, and mum’s classical music knowledge is even lesser than mine. So I think we’ll have a nice little change of perspectives about how classical music is portrayed by the non-musical ear.

We’re doing this live, and we’re doing it blindly. Given that we have next to no knowledge about classical composers, this should be a pretty fair and unbiased review. We’ll be reviewing 5 pieces of classical music, and we’ll tell you how we feel!


1. Moonlight Sonata – Beethoven

Udita:

Okay, I know this piece. I’m currently learning this one on the keyboard. Are we still allowed to review it then? This was actually one of the first pieces I ever heard of Beethoven’s. I remember listening to it sometime in like, sixth grade, and thinking it sounded pretty morose. Now, because I’ve learnt enough about music theory and composition, I’ve come to appreciate it more than I would have expected. 7 out of 10.

Mum:

A mystical journey, with a person on a quest to find something. Very soothing as well as motivating. Like a soul string, it pulls at the right places and slows down at the right places

On days when you are searching for what’s bothering you, this piece can be a beautiful companion to arrive at the answer. 8 out of 10.


2. Prelude in C major – Bach

Udita:

The start seemed promising, with the upbeat tempo and all, then it sort of fell flat during the next two minutes or so. Definitely something I would enjoy listening to passively or in the background, but I probably wouldn’t pick this one out exclusively. Very light feel, though. I like it, just not enough. 6 out of 10.

Mum:

Filled with promise and hope. Like the clearing of clouds after a dark storm

Or an awakened mind after a bout of negative thoughts. The notes are strikingly similar to rays of light shining. 8 out of 10.


3. Eine kleine Nachtmusik – Mozart

Udita:

You’ve got to be kidding me.

Eine Kleine is so overused I might as well be listening to Justin Bieber at this point. That said, I can’t help but listening to it on repeat, I don’t know why. So happy. So cheerful. The fact that I’ve heard this tune since my Little Einstein-watching days means I’m comfortable around it and I don’t necessarily have the urge to fast forward every two seconds. I likey. 8 out of 10.

Mum:

It is a joyous celebration. Not meant for the light moments of reflection. It is filled with suspense, anticipation, thrill, and the calm of caution. It is a fun piece of extreme proportions. If someone gave me a million dollars and allowed me next to an ocean and mountains, I would play this music in my head. 7 out of 10.


4. Prelude Op.28 No.4 in E minor – Chopin

Udita:

Sounds like Chopin.

Instant 10.

Mum:

Too much of sharp notes that disturb the continuity of thought at the beginning. Contemplative mood, but not the kind that would allow you to come out through it. Music is not a companion. It plays on its own without adding any connection to the listener. 3 out of 10.


5. The Four Seasons — Spring – Vivaldi

Udita:

Vivaldiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!

Although this particular recording of Four Seasons seems slower than the original, I still love it. I have listened to a couple of orchestra recordings of Four Seasons and they all kill. Summer’s my favourite. Four Seasons on a whole, gets 7.5 out of 10. Spring and Summer both get a 9.

Mum:

Very exhilarating. Similar to piece #3. The lows and highs are intricate and build curiosity. Good for a day when the mind is free and waiting for good ideas to come. Not for a day when the mind is deep and needs reflection. 7 out of 10.


Well, there it is. I hadn’t expected the disparities between our reviews to be this polar, but it is what it is. Feel free to send in your own reviews in the comments below, we’d love to here what you have to say! Have a great day, cheers 🙂

Our Giant Robot Suits — Online Power is Still Real Power

Featured Image: Power Armour by Blitz-Wing


Patrick Rothfuss, the author of The Name Of The Wind, came up with a very cool analogy that I think is worth sharing.

In his imagination, all the people on the internet are in this strange place where everyone is talking, having discussions with one another, arguing, basically just living their normal life, except the fact that everyone is wearing a robot suit.

The robot suits have different sizes, shapes, strengths, colours and abilities. No two suits are exactly the same. And all this is cool, ’cause it just feels like a comic con on steroids, but here’s the catch:

You can’t see your own suit. If you looked at your hand, you wouldn’t see a robot glove, you’d just see your bare skin. You can only guess what your suit is like based on others reaction to it. You can’t see or perceive it in any way, but it’s very much real. And if you had a particularly heavy suit, you could be walking on the road, cracking the pavement as you move your feet. Or someone might be screaming at you in a desperate attempt to get your attention, but you might be wondering why this person wants to spit right in your face so much. Ok, that just feels like an extremely uncomfortable situation to be in.

Your suit might make you look extremely buff and super-powerful, and people might be tempted to throw rocks at you, thinking, “Oh, this ain’t gonna hurt her. It’s just going to chink her armour, eh?” When, in fact, you might feel like your head just got caved in. Ouch, right?

In retaliation, you might throw back what seems like a small rock to you, but in fact, is a large boulder, and you might end up seriously hurting the other person. Way more than you wanted to. Way more than you’ll ever fully realize. Your robot suit could hurt millions of other people, and could even hurt you.

But, come on, this is a robot suit we’re talking about! This is amazing! You get to live a life that you want to live, whatever it is, you get to broadcast your message to millions, make money off of it, change people’s lives, and most importantly, you get the chance to create history with power that you can’t even comprehend.

On the flipside, as mentioned before, you could do more harm to yourself and others than you will realize. And if you make mistakes that are public, people talk about you. Often in ways that you don’t like. They think that you’re strong enough to deflect any harsh criticism coming your way, and you can handle it, but in reality, you don’t see yourself as the cold, heartless monster that they do. You CAN’T see it. And the responsibility of constantly trying to do right by the people you’re visible can be a big weight for you to carry.

But the good stuff doesn’t come without the bad parts.

The power to do things that change the world comes from the same giant robot suit that also gives you the power to cause immense harm to others. This power, especially on the internet, is extremely volatile, and the people who attain it, equally so.

So, while genuinely asking everyone on the internet to peaceful, assertive and kind, we also need to acknowledge that powerful people have power, and they should know to use their power for the betterment of everyone online.

There is no single way to do this. But there is one thing that we need to remember to do, as said (rather eloquently) by Hank Green in his video on this:

Look in the mirror of other people’s eyes, and see your power for what it is. Let it give you the confidence to handle criticism without feeling victimized, even if that criticism is not kindly meant or kindly delivered.

And let it remind you to be more careful-not to stop moving, not to cease engagement-but to step lightly, take care, and be kind.

As my own online spotlight is growing (relatively, I mean. I’m still pretty small), I have started to think more about my own robot suit, and the power I have given myself through this blog. And I have started to see that in the future, my spotlight might get bigger and brighter. And with this increase in power, there’s going to be an almost disproportionate increase in the amount of effort I put into making sure that the image of myself that I put out into the world is the right image, not only for all of you but for me as well.

I thank all of you for letting me have some power over your life, even if that power just means that you read my blog every time a new post comes up. I promise that I will always use that power to build you up and make you stronger.