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Carlos Santana - Carlos Santana & Alice Coltrane: Illuminations CD (album) cover


Carlos Santana


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.95 | 97 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars When we're talking Carlos Santana I have to mention two of my all time favourite records that he helped make special with his guitar work. Those would be "Caravanserai" and "Love Devotion Surrender", the latter with John McLaughlin. This 1974 release features Alice Coltrane who gets equal billing with Carlos. She adds piano and harp while Carlos is mainly guitar of course. Dave Holland is playing bass on four tracks and SANTANA member Tom Coster adds electric piano and Hammond mostly. Jack DeJohnette is on drums and we get flute and soprano sax along with tablas, tamboura and congas. And a lot of strings as in 3 cello players, 5 viola players and 7 violinists.

I'm not big on Alice's stuff for the most part, I mean I've just never been a harp guy. She certainly brings a different flavour to the table, a talented lady. This is a mellow album and I'm just not into it until we get to a song that has a pulse called "Angel Of Sunlight" where Carlos almost breaks a sweat and I love his playing. It opens sounding like an Alice Coltrane record with the tamboura before guitar, tablas and more join in. I like when the guitar starts to get passionate. He then steps aside as soprano sax leads the way before 6 minutes. Sounds like clavinet or some nasty keyboard leading in place of the sax 7 1/2 minutes in. Drums kick in too then sax is back before 10 minutes. Guitar a minute later then a calm 14 minutes in as it ends with tamboura, clashing cymbals and guitar. Man this song is incredible! The rest of the album is sub par, at least for what I'm into. A lot of strings.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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