David's Review Corner
, December 2007
Anders Brodsgaard was born in Denmark in 1955, at first looking towards a career as a pianist, then at the age of 31 returning to the Royal Danish Academy of Music to study composition with Rasmussen, Norgard and Abrahamsen. The two sides of his career come together on this disc of solo piano music coupled with the Piano Concerto, all of which derive from the period starting in 1990, placing them after his 'apprentice' years. His style is a curious mixture of tonality and experimental modernism, and as the booklet explains at length, these scores are driven by a mathematical formula we encounter in Joker, the disc's opening piece. I confess that I am always suspicious when such structures have to be spelt out in a programme note, if the music cannot speak for itself then best forget it. All seven of these solo works are then quoted in the Piano Concerto which enjoys a chamber orchestra accompaniment. At times it sounds as if it could become a minimalist composition but we are not so fortunate, the score a horrendously difficult for the soloist. I am full of praise for Rolf Hind, one of our great exponents of modern music, his lucidity in creating the structures the booklet explains having come from a depth of knowledge into the musical world of Brodsgaard. His complexity of mix with the estimable Esbjerg Ensemble must have taken meticulous preparation. Brodsgaard will no doubt create a devoted group of followers who will travel down his road of modernism. The disc comes on the Dacapo label.