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Miles Davis - In a Silent Way CD (album) cover

IN A SILENT WAY

Miles Davis

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.37 | 402 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Most feel that "In A Silent Way" is the very first Fusion record ever recorded. Yet this isn't the fiery Fusion one would associate with that genre. In fact the title of this album is a hint of the style of music that is found on this disc. It's quiet, subtle, mellow,atmospheric and...well you get the idea. When I first saw the lineup that played on this record my chin was sore for weeks (jaw hitting floor). Miles Davis on trumpet and Wayne Shorter on sax take care of the horns. Joe Zawinul, Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock on keyboards, John McLaughlin on guitar, Dave Holland on bass and Tony Williams on drums. Of course Zawinul and Shorter would go on to form WEATHER REPORT, Williams would leave after this album to form TONY WILLIAMS LIFETIME, Corea would form RETURN TO FOREVER and Hancock his own solo project.

In the liner notes it says "For every member of this group, playing with Davis was a turning point". It was like this was university for them, and when they graduated with the completion of this record and having learned Davis' leadership style, they were free and capable to lead on their own. Dave Holland says "Miles knew if he picked the right person and just gave them enough room, he'd get fantastic music". He also says "Miles got involved and very engaged, but in a gentle way...people who played with him had the opportunity to do their thing, to do their stuff...that's all a musician ever wants...(He) never said much about what the music should be; he mostly created a setting and asked you to figure out what you were supposed to do. He had enough trust in you to do that". There are two side long tracks on this record.

"Shhh/Peaceful" opens with organ (Zawinul) as cymbals, keys, bass and guitar all do their thing. So much here to digest yet it's so gentle and unassuming.Trumpet before 2 1/2 minutes as Davis seems to lead and interplay with the organ for quite some time. Other sounds though are also doing their thing.The bass comes more to the surface before 4 1/2 minutes. Check out the electric piano (Corea or Hancock?) 5 minutes in. A change 6 minutes in as guitar and electric piano start to lead the way. Sax before 9 1/2 minutes. Piano sounds great 11 1/2 minutes in. A calm 12 minutes in as electric piano, cymbals, organ and guitar start to lead the way.Trumpet (before 14 minutes) and the organ are doing their thing again.

"In A Silent Way / It's About That Time" begins with gentle guitar and electric piano playing softly and slowly. Horns come in after 2 minutes. It changes after 4 minutes to the "It's About That Time" section.This is more dynamic with organ. It's hard not to move to the music 13 1/2 minutes in as drums become more prominant. It settles back before we get the opening section "In A Silent Way" back to end the last 4 minutes of this track.

4.5 stars. If your into early WEATHER REPORT you will want to check this one out. Heck if your into Jazz / Fusion you will need to check this out.

Mellotron Storm | 5/5 |

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