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Miles Davis - Live-Evil CD (album) cover


Miles Davis


Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.14 | 101 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars We all know that Miles Davis is one of the great figures in Jazz, but for progressive rock fans it is his 1969 - 1975 'electric' period that really holds sway. After Tony Williams Lifetime kick-started the jazz-rock boom in 1967 Davis quickly took control of the movement, producing the elegant classic 'In A Silent Way' and the extraordinarily-innovative and epoch-defining 1969 masterpiece 'Bitches Brew' before the decade was out. The next five years would see the release of a series of groundbreaking albums that twinned the trumpeters jazz origins with elements of rock, soul and funk - both in the shape of studio sets and live concert recordings - and a clutch of jazz-rock outfits from both Britain and the USA following Davis' lead(the likes of John McLaughlin's Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return To Forever featuring Chick Corea and Ian Carr's Nucleus to name but a few). Of Davis' electric period albums 'Bitches Brew' remains his defining statement, yet the likes of 'Jack Johnson', 'Big Fun', 'Get Up With It' and 'On The Corner' also showcased the great man's seemingly neverending quest into the realms of sonic experimentation. This quest would also find Davis and his hugely-talented ensembles taking their musical findings into the live arena, and between 1970 and 1975 no less than seven double-albums, all of remarkable quality, were produced. 'Live Evil', which alongside 1974's incendiary 'Dark Magus', is often counted amongst the finest of these concert recordings, and it's easy to see(and hear) why. Thanks to the album's hypnotic melange of funk, avant-psych jazz and rumbling rock ingredients, 'Live Evil' captivates immediately, drawing the listener into the dark, mystical and occasionally dissonant world of Davis' genre-blending explorations. Featuring - of course - a stellar jazz line-up which includes amongst many others the likes of Keith Jarrett(keyboards), John McLaughlin(guitar), Chick Corea(keyboards), Dave Holland(bass), Herbie Hancocl(keyboards) and Jack DeJohnette(drums) 'Live Evil' continuously pulsates with an impassioned yet controlled fury that proves utterly engrossing. From the swirling lysergic intensity of 'Sivad' to the muscular funk-drenched strut of 'Funky Tonk', the shrieking soundwaves of 'What I Say' and the deep, brooding, neon-flecked glow of 'Inamorata', this is Miles Davis and company performing at their free-form apex. Just as essential as any of Davis' great records, 'Live Evil' captures this band of jazz explorers in searing midnight mode, fusing Hendrix-whipped acid rock, hot-toned fuzz jazz, slick- dipped soul tinges and Family Stone-styled funk excess in a way no-one thought truly possible. The jazz traditionalists hated it; history has proved them horribly wrong. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2012
stefro | 5/5 |


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