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Miles Davis - Get Up With It CD (album) cover

GET UP WITH IT

Miles Davis

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.28 | 61 ratings

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Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
3 stars 'Get Up With It' - Miles Davis (5/10)

Miles Davis is one of my most loved artists in the vast world of jazz music. Treading through more genres and styles that you could count on both hands over the course of his career, Davis was an innovator, although as is the case with far too many geniuses, he began to fall victim to his demons. 'Get Up With It' is a collection of tracks that Davis and company recorded over the early half of the '70s, and although it is considered by many fusion afficionados to be among Davis' finest works, it seems to me that the man's ravenous drug habit was beginning to lead to some miscalculations on his part.

The most noticeable element of 'Get Up With It' is its sheer length; clocking in at over two hours in length, it would be considered a gigantic album even by today's standards. Length can be used in an albums favour somewhat often, but only as long as the music stays consistently interesting. 'Get Up With It' features long-winded improvisations and focuses mostly on the noodling skills of the musicians, rather than an immediate sense of composition. This is not a complete loss for the music, seeing as these are some of the most notable people in jazz playing, but especially when the ideas are dragged out over ten or even fifteen minutes, the noodling can wear thin on my end.

'Get Up With It' can be lauded for being able to tie numerous styles together, including jazz, post-bop and funk. The sound here is somewhat familiar to what I heard on 'In A Silent Way', featuring plenty of mellow, yet passionate improvisations over backing grooves. What separates the excellent 'In A Silent Way' from this and brings that album to the next level however is a sense of buildup; the feeling that underneath the improvisations, the music was going something really special. 'Get Up With It' is a victim of its own long-winded nature.This does work in the album's favour at first, with 'He Loved Him Madly'; an intimately quiet and mellow ambient track that spans half an hour. While it is my favourite track here, I would likely go mad trying to focus on every moment of it, as its effect tends to be one of lulling the listener into sometimes even forgetting they are listening to music. It takes a certain type of human touch to accomplish that, but as one might expect, some more structure and dramatic tension in the music would have done wonders.

'Get Up With It' shows the musical talents of these artists in great swing, and Miles proves he can really lead a jazz band, despite the addiction that was eating away at him. Although Miles Davis is a genius like no other, it is clear that even with his more acclaimed works, it will not always mesh with me, despite the talent that is obvious here. An album in need of some serious editing, I can only moderately recommend this album.

Conor Fynes | 3/5 |

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