Mogens Christensen: Busy Bees and Birds
01 June 2015
Richard WhitehouseFew countries can rival Denmark
when it comes to revitalising the contemporary recorder repertoire. From the current crop of composers Mogens Christensen (b 1955) is among the most significant – as attested by “Busy Bees and Birds”, in which Pernille Petersen is a dedicated exponent. She and the accordionist Bjarke Mogensen find a heady symbiosis in the duo Feuerspiegel, then she conveys an ethereal detachment in the seasonal traversal of Nocturnal Birds. And as a limpid poise the brief yet engaging Arie(s).She is joined by guitarist Per Pålsson
for the Dansebagateller that constitutes an unlikely “theme and variations” in which each piece is a variation on its predecessor – climaxing in the mesmeric tour de force of the sixth bagatelle. The final piece also gives this disc its title. Petersen joined here by the Messer Quartet in the compact but eventful “concerto” where the sound of bees mutates into that of birds thanks to a little electronic assistance. It ends an absorbing disc that takes the recorder to new limits.