All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

166

Jacques Loussier Trio: Bach: The Brandenburgs

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
With his trio, pianist Jacques Loussier has interpreted classical works in a straight-ahead jazz setting for over four decades. He made quite an impression in 1960 with the Play Bach Trio and has never looked back. Newer trios have developed under his direction, letting the practice of reinterpreting classical music in a jazz vein grow prolifically.

The music of J.S. Bach has much in common with modern jazz. There's considerable freedom, changes in mood and tempo, and a driving force. The spirit runs free. For the most part, the Brandenburgs offer light and carefree melodies with embellished, lingering phrases. J.S. Bach composed the six concerti for the Margrave of Brandenburg between 1708 and 1720. The central piece, "Concerto No. 5, was written for flute, violin and harpsichord. Loussier has always felt that it made the best fit for his jazz trio.

Piano, bass and drums negotiate the allegro passages of each concerto with ease and express ideas naturally with the slower portions. The piano's clarity remains the album's focus, as Loussier drives note for note what Bach laid down. When the trio improvises, those crystal-clear piano lines remain intact as the artists weave alternate ideas around each theme.

While the music seldom swings, it does provide a fairly enjoyable rhythmic stride in its interpretation. "Concerto No. 5 serves as the session's high point. The other concerti lack the emotional feeling that this one provides.

Loussier and his trio tackle "No. 5 with authority. Not by coincidence, it's also the longest of the concerto interpretations. With this favorite member of the Brandenburgs, we get plenty of swing, animated rhythmic action, a slow ballad middle movement, and a highly dynamic emotional environment. Loussier's interpretation closes with a hot allegro movement that sums up what he feels about keeping music such as this alive and well. Bach's music still holds many surprises, and Loussier's swinging trio is able to bring it into the 21st Century with determined clarity.


Track Listing: Concerto No 1 in F Major (I. Allegro; II. Adagio; III. Allegro); Concerto No. 2 in F Major(I. Allegro; II. Andante; III. Allegro Assai); Concerto No. 3 in G Major (I. Allegro; II. Adagio; III. Allegro); Concerto No. 4 in G Major (I. Allegro; II. Andante; III. Presto); Concerto No. 5 in D Major (I. Allegro; II. Affetuoso; III. Allegro); Concerto No. 6 in B-flat Major (I. Allegro; II. Allegro; III. Adagio Ma Non Tanto).

Personnel: Jacques Loussier: piano; Benoit Dunoyer de Segonzac: bass; Andr

Title: Bach: The Brandenburgs | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Telarc Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To CD/LP/Track Review
You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 24, 2018
Read We Out Here CD/LP/Track Review
We Out Here
by Chris May
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Best of the Bootlegs 2017 CD/LP/Track Review
Best of the Bootlegs 2017
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read The Asylum Years CD/LP/Track Review
The Asylum Years
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Solo Contra CD/LP/Track Review
Solo Contra
by Daniel Barbiero
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Ellipse CD/LP/Track Review
Ellipse
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 23, 2018
Read "High Time" CD/LP/Track Review High Time
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 26, 2017
Read "Cross-Platform Interchange" CD/LP/Track Review Cross-Platform Interchange
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 4, 2017
Read "Instinct" CD/LP/Track Review Instinct
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 12, 2017
Read "Oração Para Amanhã (Prayer for Tomorrow)" CD/LP/Track Review Oração Para Amanhã (Prayer for...
by Roger Farbey
Published: July 10, 2017
Read "Pocono Git-Down" CD/LP/Track Review Pocono Git-Down
by Richard J Salvucci
Published: March 14, 2017
Read "Moment Frozen" CD/LP/Track Review Moment Frozen
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 19, 2017