Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Settin the Pace
Genres: Jazz, Pop
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Unfairly obscure accessible Coltrane disc...
William E. Adams | Midland, Texas USA | 05/05/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Settin'" was recorded on a single day in March of 1958 at the now famous Rudy Van Gelder studio in New Jersey. For some reason, Prestige apparently did not release this on vinyl until 1962. Perhaps that's why this title seems so little known in the Coltrane catalogue. The four songs here take 41 minutes to unfold, and all of them are enjoyable. Like his "Soultrane" and "Lush Life" releases, from the same era, the saxophone genius was mostly doing standards written by others, and being creative with his horn while not detouring into dissonance or the avant-garde mode which was to come six or seven years down the road. If, like me, you like this tamer Coltrane, don't hestitate to invest in this CD if you can afford it. It starts off with a nearly 10-minute version of the slow lovelorn lament "I See Your Face Before Me." That song got some attention in that era because Sinatra included it in his legendary album of 1955, "In the Wee Small Hours". Earlier this week I played Frank's vocal a couple of times, then Coltrane's instrumental. Both are high art. One wishes John and Frank could have been paired for at least one record the way Coltrane and Johnny Hartman were a few years after "Settin' the Pace" came out. Really, friends, the whole CD is nice and worth owning. Not a landmark like "Giant Steps" which is total excitement, but I rate this romantic release a little better than "Lush Life" and a tiny bit below "Soultrane." Red Garland and Paul Chambers and Art Taylor each have nice moments with piano, bass and drums here as well."
Spreading his wings
Tyler Smith | Denver, CO United States | 08/25/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This release captures Trane during a key year of development, 1958. Like the great release of the same year, "Soultrane," "Settin' the Pace," shows how far his playing had come during three years of work with Miles Davis, and it probably deserves an extra half star above 4. While it is not quite as impressive as the 5-star "Soultrane," it still provides plenty of self-assured and passionate playing from one of our greatest artists.Trane's unswerving command of his instrument is demonstrated most effectively on Jackie McLean's Monkish "Little Melonae." The 14-minute ride is kicked off by a fine piano solo from Red Garland, and then Trane takes off on one of his incredible "sheets of sound" improvisations, spurred on not only by Garland's comping but by the muscular bass of Paul Chambers. Terrific performance.The mellower side of Coltrane is also in good supply, particularly on "I See Your Face Before Me." Trane treats this gentle ballad with respect, producing a lovely sound while he carefully lays out each note with clarity. It's romantic music for grownups: full of genuine emotion and meticulous attention to a beautiful melody. Red Garland's patented block chording adds to the beauty of the performance.Coltrane's Prestige discography is large, and some of the recordings are much better than others. If you are adding his Prestige stuff to your collection, "Settin' the Pace" should be one of the first choices."
One of my personal favourites...and the sound...
douglasnegley | Pittsburgh, Pa. United States | 10/14/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This time, I get to follow Mr. Adams and to say that I may like this a little better than he does! I totally agree that this is an underrated, relatively too-obscure, and completely accessible Coltrane recording. Coltrane with Red Garland's trio is nearly perfect. And the recording is SO good, it sounds like it was already re-mastered. That's Rudy Van Gelder. Something about Red Garland and the rhythmic setting (even when another horn is present) seems to bring out the best in Trane, to my ear: always romantic, accessible, and sharp - never too far out there. Yes, this is a pivotal year for Trane - 1958 - but there is no restlessness on this one. For those who are discerning Trane lovers, this one is right on the money. His next recording - "Standard Coltrane" - is also 5 star."