So I have been listening to Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition and I notice something that is unusual to me in his promenades. It has a 4/4 feel but it isn't written in 4/4 at all, instead it is interchanging between 5/4 and 6/4. Usually when I see a time signature change in the middle of a piece, it is either clearly related(such as going from 3/4 to 9/8, clear triplet relationship or going from 2/2 to 4/4, clearly the same amount of notes per bar, just with a different accent pattern) or gives a sense of a complete loss of the original pulse at the time signature change(such as going from 3/4 to 4/4).
Mussorgsky is able to give an overall 4/4 feel to his promenades by changing between 5/4 and 6/4. How does he do that? How does the fifth simple beat of the first bar feel accented?
This is what I see in the sheet music
Here is what I feel in that music:
Each of those black boxes around the notes is an apparent 4/4 bar. It sounds and feels like it is 4/4 but isn't actually in 4/4. How is Mussorgsky able to pull off this 4/4 feel?
I mean here are the accent patterns in 5/4 and 6/4:
S w S w w or S w w S w
S w w S w w or S w S w S w
Neither of these are close to the 4/4 accent pattern of
S w M w
not to mention the fact that it feels like typically weak beats in their respective time signatures become strong beats and vice versa.
So how does Mussorgsky make the piece feel like it is in 4/4 when it is in 2 time signatures both unrelated to the apparent 4/4 and unrelated to each other?