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Miles Davis - Tutu CD (album) cover


Miles Davis


Jazz Rock/Fusion

2.48 | 66 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars Tutu was originally planned as a collaboration album between Miles Davis and pop musician Prince, but since that didn't work out, this 1986 release eventually became a project between Davis and multi-instrumentalist Marcus Miller. Miller ended up writing most of the material for this album, as well as playing the bass guitar and a variety of other instruments. This collaboration may seem like something to get excited about, but unfortunately Tutu offers very little in the way of excitement. Even though Miles's muted trumpet solos are as impressive as ever and the musicianship is excellent, Tutu just isn't all that interesting of an album. Like You're Under Arrest, Tutu sports a rather generic eighties' jazz/pop sound that's marred by fairly uninteresting songwriting and a trivial production - I can't say I'm the biggest fan of either of those. Tutu is only recommended to fans of uninspired eighties' jazz/pop and Miles Davis die-hard collectors. Otherwise, this is one of his most easily skippable albums.

The music on Tutu is undoubtedly pretty similar to what Miles Davis did on his previous outing. This is fairly straightforward jazz/pop music with a strong emphasis on catchy melodic songwriting and trumpet solos. Although I'm not opposed to jazz/pop music on principle, it seems like Miles lost a lot of his inspiration when he began to explore this style - the arrangements are bland and uninteresting, and the songwriting (which is not entirely his fault) fails to captivate me. I'd even venture to say that Tutu is weaker than the heavily uninspired You're Under Arrest - aside from the excellent title track, the funky slap bass playing, and the great trumpet solos, there's very little here to make my blood boil. The production, while still sounding very professional, is simply too over- produced and synthetic for my liking. Tutu would've probably been a lot more enjoyable with a more organic production.

Even though Miles Davis wasn't exactly on a 'hot streak' when Tutu came out, this 1986 effort can easily be marked as one of the weakest albums throughout his long and illustrious career. There's simply not very much material here to get excited about, and I can really only recommend this one to die-hard Miles Davis fans. Since Tutu is just a tad weaker than You're Under Arrest, I'll have to play my 2 star card in this case. Even though not a total disaster in my opinion, this is very far from a great Miles Davis record.

J-Man | 2/5 |


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