John Coltrane: A Love Supreme Live in Seattle review – a unique record from a historic band | Music

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WWhether you listen to the most intimate revelations of a soul mate or a stranger, the nuances of sound can convey as much as words, sometimes much more. The instantly identifiable, voice-like timbre of John Coltrane’s saxophone playing made him one of the most beloved artists in jazz – and in the last years of his short life he also gradually engulfed the models. more conventional narrative height and structure of his work. Coltrane’s non-denominational religious album A Love Supreme was one of the few best-selling jazz hits, but between that late ’64s studio session with his classical quartet (pianist McCoy Tyner, bassist Jimmy Garrison and drummer Elvin Jones) and that unreleased live recording from the following October, restless Coltrane had begun to let go of familiar cards.

A Love Supreme Live In Seattle album cover

A month earlier, Coltrane had hired saxophonist Pharoah Sanders (a 24-year-old developing the master’s own techniques to imitate saxophone chants, protests, and screams), a second bass player, Donald Rafael Garrett, and was looking for a role. more important for percussion. – changes that would soon disrupt his long relationship with Tyner and Jones. On this longtime amateur recording made at the Penthouse club in Seattle on October 2, 1965, an opening improvised bass duet immediately emphasizes a looser take on the Coltrane ensemble before the famous four-note hook d ‘A Love Supreme does begin to unfold in ever-changing tones.

Coltrane’s high-pitched, rolling theme statements and repeated whooping cough figures interchange with the shrill cries and ferocious growls of Sanders, the serpentine resolve receives flame-throwing horn practice, the bass duet interludes bring periodic tranquility, and the atonal figures of Sanders and a molten Tyner solo dominate the 15-minute chase before the leader’s magnificent tenor-saxophone soliloquy steals the show on the closing psalm. Elvin Jones’ elementary musculature is thunderous in the mix, and Tyner often looks like the man heading for the exit that he quickly turned out to be – but this is a single document of a group. history of the 20th century at a pivotal moment.

Also released this month

Italian jazz trumpeter and bugle Enrico Rava celebrates his lively arrival at the age of 80 with Edizione Speciale (ECM), and the group’s mischievous tale of the famous Cuban pop hit Quiz, Quiz, Quiz is a perennial star. David Bowie Blackstar’s sidemen, Donny McCaslin (sax) and Tim Lefebvre (bass) join American jazz singer / songwriter and imaginative keyboardist Rachel Eckroth on The Garden (Rainy Day Records), a texturally synthesized one-off, subtly vocal and instrumentally formidable. And Birmingham piano original Steve Tromans releases a moving solo piano return of personal obscurity full of patient motives, Jarrettish elisions, percussive power, and sometimes headlong glee on The Way: Doctor. Stephen Tromans (FMR).


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