Bach, Corea, Purcell, Rameau et al.: Night Passages / Fröst, Dubé, Pöntinen
Gramophone Award-nominated artist Martin Fröst uses every recording as an opportunity to look at repertoire and performance through fresh eyes. His latest album for Sony Classical brings the extraordinary alchemy of a specially formed ensemble to the public with highly original arrangements for the first time on record.
With acclaimed pianist Roland Pöntinen and legendary bassist Sébastien Dubé, Fröst’s new album Night Passages charts a nocturnal journey through the mystical and the melancholic, the playful and the profound.
Reimagining favorites from the Baroque, while touching on jazz and folk music the album’s atmosphere carries with it the vibe of late-night improvisation and deep conversation between friends. From Rameau to Richard Rodgers, it invites listeners to eavesdrop on a musical union.
All nineteen tracks on the album were arranged by Fröst and his fellow trio members for their own instrumental lineup of clarinet, piano and bass. Scintillating Scarlatti keyboard mingling with touching Handel, virile Purcell, aerated Bach and works by Rameau that sound with new exotic allure.
Despite the quiet intimacy in works such as Richard Rodgers It Never Entered my Mind and Bach’s Jesu, meine Freunde, there is virtuosity, stamina and athleticism on display too, not least in a strident arrangement of Vallflickans Dans by the Swedish composer Hugo Alfvén – a piece close to the heart of any Swede.
The album further includes the trio’s light-footed take on Chick Corea’s Armando’s Rhumba and Fröst’s own cadenza-like Prelude to the traditional Swedish polka Dorotea, which is full of his trademark improvisatory fluidity. The same qualities appear to stop time in a heart-rending take on Purcell’s Music for a While. The result is a unique fusion of music past and present, and a snapshot of a three-way musical friendship like none other.
Domenico Scarlatti: Sonata in D Minor, K. 32
Chick Corea: Children’s Song: No. 15
Johann Sebastian Bach: Jesus bleibet meine Freude BWV 147
Henry Purcell: "Music for a While" Z. 583 (from Oedipus)
Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart: "It Never Entered My Mind"
Jean-Philippe Rameau: Air pour les Sauvages
Antonio Cesti: "Intorno all'idol mio"
Johann Sebastian Bach: Sinfonia No. 5 in E-Flat Major, BWV 791
Chick Corea: Armando's Rhumba
Henry Purcell: Hornpipe in E Minor, Z. 685
George Frideric Handel: Suite in B-Flat Major, HWV 434: IV. Menuet
Domenico Scarlatti: Sonata in D minor Kk.1
Jean-Philippe Rameau: Musette tendre en rondeau
Hugo Alfvén: Vallflickans Dans
Johann Sebastian Bach: Sinfonia No. 15 in B Minor, BWV 801
Martin Fröst: Prelude to Dorotea
Traditional: Polska from Dorotea
Jean-Philippe Rameau: Tambourin en rondeau
Gordon Jenkins: "Goodbye"
Martin Fröst, clarinet
Sébastien Dubé, bass
Roland Pöntinen, piano
Release Date: April 22, 2022
Catalog Number: 19439917402
Number of Discs: 1
Performer: Martin Fröst