A CD delicately placed in a beautiful fold-out gatefold digipak. With various words and phrases to clarify and confuse.
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To sum up, then, when listening to music on the sensuous plane, we focus on
a. the medium, i.e., what generates the sound: voice, instrument, ensemble, and so on.
b. the quality of sound produced, in terms of tone, uniformity, special effects, and so on.
c. the dynamics or the intensity of the sound, in terms of loudness, uniformity, and change.
When listening to music on the expressive plane, we try to determine how the music interprets and clarifies our feelings. Sounds evokes feelings:
a. a busy passage can suggest unease or nervousness.
b. a slow passage in a minor key, such as a funeral march, can suggest gloom.
When listening to music on the sheerly musical plane, we try to focus on
a. the movement of the piece, i.e., concentrate on its rhythm, meter, and tempo,
b. the pitch, i.e., in terms of its order and melody, and
c. the structure of the piece, i.e., its logic, design, and texture.
This means listening for the "planned design" that binds an entire composition. As Copland puts it, in shaping his or her material, the composer generates "the long line," which provides listeners with a sense of direction. A composer might employ the principles of repetition and non-repetition to give a long piece and a short piece respectively the feeling of "balance."
The composer also "shapes" his or her musical materials by "partitioning" the work, presenting in a number of movements (say). Fundamental forms include the fugue, the concerto grosso, the sonata, and the symphony, to name a few traditional forms.