Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Circle in the Round [2 Disc Set]
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Unavailable in the U.S.! Two CD collection of extended alternate takes and unreleased material spanning Miles' acoustic bands of the '50s through his electric bands of the early '70s. Features musical assistance from Wayne... more »
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Unavailable in the U.S.! Two CD collection of extended alternate takes and unreleased material spanning Miles' acoustic bands of the '50s through his electric bands of the early '70s. Features musical assistance from Wayne Shorter, John Coltrane, Cannonball Adderley, Herbie Hancock, Red Garland, Bill Evans, Chick Corea, Billy Cobham, Ron Carter, Jack De Johnette and many others. 10 tracks. Sony.
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A Miles Fan | Mill Creek, WA | 02/06/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I don't remember what led me to buy this CD, but I'm glad I did. Fans of Miles Davis should most certainly have it. It has this surreal, amorphous feel to it, if one can describe music like that... as if Miles is searching, probing for something. For those introspective moments we have, perhaps late at night, the collection of tracks here are wonderfully apt. And it really grows on you.
All the tracks are very good, but the last track, "Guinnevere," in particular, is alone worth the price of this double-CD set. It is a pretty long track (18 minutes and change), but not long enough..."
Odds and Ends
Dennis G. Voss Jr. | Lexington, KY USA | 12/21/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Miles Davis had many strengths as a trumpet player and soloist, but he was not alone in that respect. What made him unique -- and I use the term literally, to mean no one rivalled him -- was his ability to bring together talented musicians and get the best from them. Often the work they did for him outmatched what they issued under their own names. And as band leader Miles managed to craft recordings that reflected the popular music of the times and yet always rose above it. If you'd like to get a sampling of how Miles pulled off this feat, "Circle in the Round" might be for you.
But be forewarned: This is an album of scraps, recordings initially rejected for one reason or another by Miles and his producers. My point is not that the music generally falls below standards; sometimes tunes fell by the wayside for reasons that had nothing to do with their quality. My point is only that, because it recycles previous sessions, this album covers a wide time period and a great variety of styles. I suspect that, in this age of the CD, "Circle" doesn't have much use anymore. Casually interested people should buy the stronger and more-unified albums, and completists can find the recordings in better packages.
For those interested, though, I'll give you the breakdown of songs:
1) Two Bass Hit (mid 50's): An outtake from the early post-bop sessions with his First Great Quintet, which produced the album "'Round About Midnight." It's included as a bonus track on that album's recent releases.
2) Love for Sale (late 50's): An outtake from the sextet period, sitting right on the border between the post-bop hit "Milestones" and the seminal cool-jazz "Kind of Blue." An album called "'58 sessions" now includes this performance.
3) Blues No. 2 (early 60's): An outtake from the sessions that produced "Someday My Prince Will Come." Coltrane was in transition out of the band -- he's only on two tracks from the album -- and so Hank Mobley sits in the sax seat on this one. It's included as a bonus track on recent releases of that album.
4) Circle in the Round (1967): An early exploration with electric guitar while Miles still had his second great quintet together, "Circle" foreshadowed Miles' fusion period but wasn't released at first and then was chopped down for this LP. A highlight of the album, almost certainly held back because of its innovativeness rather than because of any flaws in the music, it's been restored to its full glory in the quintet's boxed set.
5) Teo's Bag, Side Car I, Side Car II, Sanctuary (1968): More leftovers from the transitional period between his 2nd acoustic quintet and the first electric releases, all with electric guitarists playing in a jazz style (rather than the rock style that would appear later). Decent stuff? Yes. Worthy of the tracks Columbia released at the time on "Miles in the Sky" and "Filles de Kilimajaro"? I don't think so.
6) Splash (1969): An outtake from the sessions that produced "In a Silent Way," sessions in which the electric presence was still emerging. Again, this version is chopped down; the master appears on the Complete Silent Way boxed set.
7) Guinevere (1970): Between the "Bitches Brew" recording sessions and the "Jack Johnson" recording sessions, both of which produced an energetic rock-laced fusion jazz, Miles experimented with a spacier, more laid-back electric sound. This cover of the Crosby, Still, and Nash song is one example; others appeared on "Directions" in the 1980s. Now you can get all of it on the Bitches Brew boxed set.
In sum, there's lots of good music on here, but if you really want more than the essentials, the music is much more satisfying in the context of the other tracks recorded around the same time period."
Christopher B. Aultman | Tampa, FL | 02/18/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Love For Sale" is one of my favorites and the rest of the CD is pretty good, if it is the style of jazz you like, but the only reason I own this CD is because of my favorite track anywhere, "Guinnevere". If you want to just relax and zone out, let Miles and Ravi Shankar take you on a trip for 18+ minutes. I have listened to this song hundreds of times and never tire of it. If you feel this song, check out Herbie Hancock's "Vein Melter"."