In a moment of lucidity, I wondered: when you’re dealing with the most miraculous body of human creation in all the arts, when are you ever ready? Life is short. Bach himself was not prone to procrastination. He produced a quantity and quality of music some consider literally unbelievable. Fred Thomas
London-based multi-instrumentalist Fred Thomas presents J.S. Bach’s exceptional keyboard music in new and exciting guises on this innovative disc. Performing on the piano, Fred Thomas’s insightful interpretations of Bach’s music are enhanced by an approach pioneered by Glenn Gould: the use of the recording process itself as an independent, creative art form. Using ten microphones in different combinations, placed near or far from the sound source depending on each movement’s character, Fred Thomas has sought to give each piece on this disc the space to inhabit its own, unique soundworld. This process remains relatively under-explored in classical music recording, but has been used on this CD as a meaningful interpretative tool.
Fred Thomas brings to this disc his wealth of musical experience in different genres. Projects include The Beguilers, a quartet that interprets Thomas’s song settings of poetry in English; a duo with his violinist father, Peter Thomas; a sextet with Martin Speake that explores polyphony in jazz improvisation; and a tribute to Richard Wagner with jazz pianist Liam Noble.