Review: Pauline Frechette’s Song for Michael
By: Katrina Charles
Los Angeles-based Pauline Frechette is a seasoned composer, singer, and lyricist who has been making waves in the music industry for years. Frechette has spent her career performing under the moniker Raven Kane, releasing rock albums and performing with such talents as Paul McCartney, Cher, and Neil Diamond. In addition, she has written musicals that have been produced from London to California, and has had her compositions performed by the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra for an audience 17,000 strong. After years of accomplishment, she has decided to return to her roots and move forward under her given name. With this new beginning, she is set to release a brand new album of neo-classical piano compositions arranged by renowned composer David Campbell. One of these new compositions is her chill-inducing track Song for Michael.
In Song for Michael, Frechette crafts emotive imagery through dissonance and resolution, punctuating growing tension with brief breaths of relief. Primarily a solo piano piece, strings occasionally appear to accent moments as if highlighting words on a page. With hints of influence from classical greats such as Beethoven, Frechette effortlessly channels the classical music of yesteryear with the modern prowess of a musician who understands the soul of music itself. When the tension reaches a peak, the song cascades into a calming frenzy of notes; there is an underlying current of emotion while the surface remains tranquil as every note falls into its place. When the flurry comes to an end, the original melody returns, pensively revisiting the notes with new depth and reflection.
Song for Michael seems to have a life of its own; you can feel its pulse through Frechette’s mindful use of crescendos, tempo fluctuations, and open space. This beautifully crafted melody is nothing short of a modern classical masterpiece, and it is an indicator that Pauline Frechette is close to achieving “classical great” status herself.