Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky (21 March 1839 – 28 March 1881) was a Russian composer, one of the group known as "The Five". He was an innovator of Russian music in the romantic period. He strove to achieve a uniquely Russian musical identity, often in deliberate defiance of the established conventions of Western music.
Many of his works were inspired by Russian history, Russian folklore, and other nationalist themes. Such works include the opera Boris Godunov, the orchestral tone poem Night on Bald Mountain and the piano suite Pictures at an Exhibition.
For many years Mussorgsky's works were mainly known in versions revised or completed by other composers. Many of his most important compositions have posthumously come into their own in their original forms, and some of the original scores are now also available.
This intriguing work was composed in 1880. It is mystical and dark, and reminded me of a spider's web in an ancient castle.
The fine transcription was done by Arthur Eaglefield Hull (1876–1928), and you can read more about him, his work, and his tragic suicide in the "comments" of any of my other "Russian transcription" uploads.
As I said, "Meditation" is very dark, but then, all of a sudden, a section appears that sounds "sunny and Italian" - if of course my "imagination" of sunny and Italian is a correct one!
I've worried about the fact that many people have said that my "Hereford uploads" are too soft. Part of that might be because some of the pieces ARE soft, but I AGREE that the volume is low.
I don't want to normalize and overly increase soft pieces, nor do I want to adjust the volume for each individual piece, as this will give a false sense of "relationship" of sound.
I've run the set at the default -10, but from now, I'll run at -8. This will allow FULL organ to just "hit" the red line, and I hope you will notice the changes! :-)
The transcription and original scores are attached, as well as photos of Mussorgsky and Hull.