After the release of the first single Miles Away, Lasse Passage lets his fans look expectantly to the release of the upcoming album in late summer. The Norwegian’s third work sounds fresh and moves between pop, folk with a pleasant warm summery touch.
Setting the Mexican sun to music
Do you know that moment when your heart starts pounding with the first song of an album? You listen immovably to every note and remain still in motion. Sunwards by Lasse Passage has this “falling in love” potential. When listening to the ten tracks you can almost feel the Mexican sun that accompanied the musician during the creation phase. The warm tones combine perfectly with the slight melancholy of the sound of Norway. Sunwards sounds light and full of joy of life, but the lyrics are deep and often bitter.
The first single Miles Away seems to be a sweet light summer song at first. But if you know Lasse Passage, you know that it doesn’t stop at these first four bars, which are catchy to the ear. The song covers the story of a relationship that is still going on, although it is actually already finished. Almost tragically the piano underlines the words: “You prove you got things going on”. The story, as sad as it may sound, is robbed of its pain by the soft guitar chords and there is no pain left for the listener.
Heavy themes in light notes
Lasse Passage has mastered the art of wrapping heavy themes in soft and light notes like no other. Whether you listen to “I Need A Holiday” or “300.000 Francs”: all songs seem to be about being left or being hurt. How does Lasse manage to make all these heavy themes sound so light and sunny and what made him write all these melancholic lyrics?
“Often, quite some time pass between the event that inspires a song and the actual writing of it. This helps me to work from some distance and look a little more objectively at what the song wants to describe. That’s one thing. But I also like to think that the music does not always have to follow the mood of the lyrics, in an illustrative way. Sometimes you can get the same point across better by dissociating the two. For example when I mix slightly sarcastic lyrics with a heartfelt musical expression, I hope the listener is able to discover a bigger complexity to both, and that a cheeky attitude can come from a vulnerable place too.”
Finely woven melodies
Lasse Passage has created his most accessible album with Sunwards. On his previous double album “Stop Making Sense and Start Making Success” (2015) he often presents pieces that seem almost experimental, like “I Am Too Sad To Tell You” or “The Lightness Of Moving On“. Sunwards on the other hand offers music that is almost suitable for radio. But the ten songs are still sophisticated, as they do without repetitive boring harmonies. They are peppered with little subtleties, like a breeze of blues or even soul every now and then. Exactly this finesse captivates me again and again and makes me listen to Sunwards several times.
Meet Lasse Passage in our Livetalk on 07.07.2020
At the moment no tour dates for outside Norway, but a release concert is set for Oslo 4 September. Because also for the own stage play “Panflutes and Paperwork”, all dates have been cancelled due to the crisis. But we look forward to see Lasse Passage with his repertoire soon on stage again.
Fotocredits: Header Lasse Passage by Kim Jakobsen, Profil by Jenny Berger Myhre