PELLE GUDMUNDSEN-HOLMGREEN (1932-2016): Traffic for 18 Musicians, Repriser for Large Ensemble, Repriserer for Large Ensemble, 3 Songs to Texts by Politiken for Solo Voice and Small Ensemble (w/Anette Bod [mezzo]), Og for 17 Players.
Catalogue Number: 10S073
Description: Pieces for large ensemble from the fertile - and not infrequently zany - imagination of one of music's true mavericks. Traffic was inspired by the gift to the composer of a door from a red Skoda. From a cacophonous opening, suggesting a myriad cars at a busy intersection, all with their horns and radios blaring, the music then presents a series of episodes - some surprisingly consonant and tranquil, some jazzy, some raucous - and one, a fragment of the opening of Milhaud's La création du monde, endlessly looped. Why? Who can say? Repriser takes its cue from Samuel Beckett; the work's disconnected 'words' have to be savored on their own terms; they have very little connection to each other, some are bold and shocking, others are whispered, but they tell no story. The composer describes Rerepriser, from two years later, as 'a pretty ugly piece'. Composed of harsh, 'dirty' sounds, including those of an amplified prepared piano and two electric guitars, it nevertheless has an abrasive energy and more than a little soiled but recognisable tonality about it. The 1966 Songs reject the idea that poetry needs to be 'enhanced' or framed by music, by setting banal passages from the newspaper in a 'new simplicity' style full of monotonous little repeating gestures - deliberately antipoetic. Og - 'And' - much more recent, from 2012, was written for the 200th Anniversary of Kierkegaard's birth. Fragments of Mozart, providing a tonal basis, vie for attention with other material in layers and juxtapositions, a kaleidoscope of interlocking shards. Danish-English texts. Athelas Sinfonietta Copenhagen; Jesper Nordin and Pierre-André Valade.