AIR Man JB Dunckel Releases Debut Piano Record Paranormal Musicality

JB Dunckel, a landmark figure in electronic music in both his solo career and as part of the French duo AIR, has released Paranormal Musicality, his first recording project as a pianist and composer. For Dunckel, who signed a recording contract with major classical music label Warner Classics last year, this album marks an important moment of personal reinvention.

JB Dunckel (Pascale Arnaud)

JB Dunckel (Pascale Arnaud)
JB Dunckel (Pascale Arnaud)

Paranormal Musicality embraces free, delicate, and ambitious forms of piano improvisation. Between 2019 and 2022, Jean-Benoît Dunckel carefully arranged a set of microphones around the piano in his studio and used them to record hundreds of spontaneous free performances. The 18 instrumental pieces on the album are formed from nearly 250 melodies captured in these sessions, with each work recorded in a single, unedited take.

Filled with images of a world where nature pulses and breathes, these works reflect everything the musician has ever written and loved. Primarily, the project celebrates the piano as an instrument that has accompanied Dunckel since his childhood. He formed a particularly close connection with his piano teacher from music school and continued to learn from her throughout his electronic career until she passed away in 2003. The very title of this album, Paranormal Musicality, is a tribute to her spirit and enduring influence on his music.

Check out the Andrei Proko-directed video for album opener Dolphin below:

AIR, the French musical duo Dunckel formed with Nicolas Godin, sold more than 4 million albums worldwide, with their best-known releases including their critically acclaimed debut album, Moon Safari (1998) and the score to Sofia Coppola’s cult classic, The Virgin Suicides (2000). These albums have since accumulated hundreds of millions of streams, with Moon Safari certified as Double Platinum in the UK and Playground Love racking up over 70 million streams on Spotify alone.

In 2024, Dunckel and Godin will embark on an anniversary tour celebrating 25 years since Moon Safari’s release, which includes a performance at London’s Coliseum on 24th March.

Paranormal Musicality is available now via Warner Classics on CD, LP and streaming platforms. Listen to the album HERE.

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