Miles Davis - Relaxin' With The Miles Davis Quintet

NME.COM feature on Miles Davis - Relaxin' With The Miles Davis Quintet album including album review, artwork, tracks, listen now, tour dates, discography and more.

Release date: 02 February 2012

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Miles Davis - Relaxin' With The Miles Davis Quintet: Wikipedia Album Entry

2006 reissue. Rudy Van Gelder Remasters. RELAXIN' WITH THE MILES DAVIS QUINTET includes dialogue snippets taken from the original master reel. Miles Davis Quintet: Miles Davis (trumpet); John Coltrane (tenor saxophone); Red Garland (piano); Paul Chambers (acoustic bass); Philly Joe Jones (drums). Recorded at the Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, New Jersey on May 11 & October 26, 1956. Originally released on Prestige (7129). Includes liner notes by Ira Gitler. Red Garland's evocation of Big Ben in the opening chords of If I Were A Bell is a witty reminder that you're listening to the premier jazz combo of the 1950s, as Miles Davis once again plumbs the ravine of popular culture to come up with another engaging jazz classic. In this case, it's a dandy from Frank Loesser's Guys And Dolls, enlivened by Paul Chambers' perfect counter-melodies and Philly Joe Jones' supple brush work. Soon enough, Jones switches up with light stick work, as Chambers fires up his walk and Garland eggs things along with his light, sure, rhythmic strumming. A Harmon-muted Miles responds with delicate, bashful melodies, Coltrane digs in for a jitterbugging reveille and Garland mixes taut, pixieish single lines with velvety big-band chords; Jones defines the laid-back attitude with crisp side-stick accents on four. Laid-back is the order of the day on RELAXIN'. You're My Everything highlights the interaction between Miles and Chambers, but it's Coltrane's expressive clarity that's such a revelation. A year before he'd probably have laid out on such a fragile ditty. On It Could Happen To You, the band gently dances in cut time, while I Could Write A Book is taken at a light gallop (with superb Garland). However, a pair from Rollins and Gillespie are equestrian events. With his boyish timbre and floating phrases, Miles updates his classic arrangement of Oleo from BAGS' GROOVE, as the drums and piano drop out to allow him to body surf with Chambers. Gillespie's anthem Woody'n You offers one briskly syncopated fanfare after another.

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