Broadcast Sessions 1958-1959
Thursday, November 20, 2008
This collection of previously unreleased performances by Miles Davis’ groups featuring John Coltrane, culled from live radio broadcasts, quickly reminds one of how inventive, imaginative and original Miles’ music always was. The 10 selections are remarkable for not only the transcendent spirit Miles’ groups always played with, but also how solid his chops were during this time period. Whether floating above his rhythm section, as on “Bye Bye Blackbird,” or locked in tight with his drummer, as on “Four,” Davis’ playing is always imbued with the heart of a poet.
The sound is not perfect, but while it might be hard to pick out the piano at all times that doesn’t take away from experiencing Davis or Coltrane’s interminable will in the live arena. Where Davis is whimsical, Coltrane is strong. When Davis is fiery, Coltrane is methodical. Their contrasts not only propelled the compositions forward but also set the standard for every small jazz group through this day.