John Coltrane, A Love Supreme: The Complete Masters, Impulse!

From 2015. A reissue to wallow in, and a completist’s dream to have every take and overdub from A Love Supreme, one of the greatest ever jazz recordings, available for the first time. Recorded on 9 December 1964, the classic quartet – Coltrane with …

Published: 28 Nov 2019. Updated: 2 years.

From 2015. A reissue to wallow in, and a completist’s dream to have every take and overdub from A Love Supreme, one of the greatest ever jazz recordings, available for the first time.

Recorded on 9 December 1964, the classic quartet – Coltrane with pianist McCoy Tyner, double bassist Jimmy Garrison and drummer Elvin Jones – are the players we all know from the original album but here crucially in the extra bits sax firebrand Archie Shepp and a second bassist, Art Davis, who came in the next day and recorded a different version to the opening part of the suite, are included.

More rough hewn, Shepp’s rasping anarchic style is barely constrained and if anything his contributions are the more obviously revolutionary but without the cool collected spirituality Coltrane’s style so magisterially projects on the classic album.

You’re getting nine tracks that haven’t been out before, mostly disc 2 and some mono reference masters on disc 1. The third disc (the super deluxe edition has this extra disc) feature the live performance at Antibes that was reissued 13 years ago.

Impulse have pulled out all the stops in terms of production and the CDs are issued in a longer CD box than usual with lots of period pictures and extensive notes by Ashley Kahn.

Fascinating minutiae of course and aimed at serious Coltrane fans who want to know every last detail there’s plenty of that here. Ironically, however, you might just return to the original album featured on the first disc and think this is all perfect in itself, sufficient unto itself.

Donate

Tags:

Partisans, Swamp, Whirlwind

From 2014. Back for their first album in five years Partisans re-invented jazz-rock on the UK scene in the late-1990s not that it was particularly apparent at the time. Hindsight, typically, is the only exact science. The four piece, co-led by …

Published: 28 Nov 2019. Updated: 2 years.

Next post

From 2014. Back for their first album in five years Partisans re-invented jazz-rock on the UK scene in the late-1990s not that it was particularly apparent at the time. Hindsight, typically, is the only exact science. The four piece, co-led by saxophonist/clarinettist Julian Siegel, and guitarist Phil Robson, with Thaddeus Kelly on bass, and Gene Calderazzo, drums, have in the space of more than a decade and a half put out four albums the last three By Proxy, Max and Sourpuss on Babel, with their self-titled debut in 1997 appearing on the now long-gone EFZ.

Refreshed with an even more complex sound than before and now moving to Whirlwind Recordings, Swamp was recorded in February over a couple of days at London studio Eastcote.

With four tunes by Siegel and four by Robson (including the title track), it’s not all jazz-rock by any means, the album opens with tense morse code-like percussion on ‘Flip the Sneck’ and a high-life Afro-Caribbean lilt to Robson's guitar line Siegel sinuously exuberant on his first elaborate foray.

The mood is mellow on ‘Low Glow’ Robson Sco-like with subtle development from bass and drums the plot thickening quickly. ‘Thin Man’ has more of a tortured ballad feel to it, Siegel on bass clarinet initially the shadowy foil to the main process of balladeering.

Title track ‘Swamp’ has a squally distorted wah-wah glaze to it, the quartet entering Wayne Shorter territory a little bit more, the tension gradually ratcheting up. 'Veto' allows Calderazzo to call the shots at the beginning, with a lively driving beat that then pushes Siegel and Robson on.

‘Overview’ has a Lionel Loueke-like impetus to it rhythmically via Robson while again Siegel shows his reflective side, with lots of tonal resource spilling out when he plays soprano saxophone here, Calderazzo carving the beat like a master carpenter. ‘Mickey’ and final track ‘Icicle Architects’ (the latter more a chamber piece) complete what is a very accomplished album with some world class ensemble playing throughout. SG

Donate