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Miles Davis - Bitches Brew CD (album) cover

BITCHES BREW

Miles Davis

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.24 | 368 ratings

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Sinusoid
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Logical continuation of IN A SILENT WAY, but taking it a bridge too far. Still, I didn't get this album for the longest time writing BITCHES BREW off as a slight mess of overlong jams. I still say the length of the tracks is the weak spot of BITCHES BREW, but the additions to the lineup and the noticeably different sound are strong suits.

IN A SILENT WAY is more atmospheric in approach and had more textural goodies; this is more aligned with funky grooves, experimental structures and slight rock leaning (this is hard to hear). The title track is one of the more avant-garde fusion pieces out there; it fiddles with a few dissonant chords before settling into a long groovy pattern. This takes time to get acquainted with, especially those not into jazz or avant-garde pieces.

The more vibrant pieces are the opening ''Pharoah's Dance'', ''Miles Runs the Voodoo Down'', ''Spanish Key'' and the short ''John McLaughlin''; each piece has its own little groove that can take you away if you let it. They give the album character and the musicians involved really showcase their talents without overdoing it.

One part of me enjoying BITCHES BREW is the acquisition of woodwind player Bennie Maupin, later a member of Herbie Hancock's entourage. His bass clarinet lines are the most soothing things I've ever heard, easily the instrumental highlights of the album. McLaughlin is also more noticeable in the sound, especially in the tune named after him.

This is a rough album to get into because of the track lengths, the structures and the pretty busy lineup. Comparable to Soft Machine's THIRD album; hard to crack open, rewarding when that happens.

Sinusoid | 4/5 |

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