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From the Inside Out

40 Year Old Bitches, New MilesTones & Others, Too

By Published: November 28, 2010
The previous year—in late 1969—Davis traveled to Europe for a two-week tour, introducing the music on his as-of-yet-unreleased double album with a mostly acoustic quintet (except for Corea's electric keyboard) that featured saxophonist Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
b.1933
saxophone
. Recorded Live in Copenhagen during the second week of this tour, this bonus concert DVD provides a pristine document of a Davis band rarely if ever seen on video, and proves as stunning and majestic as the bonus live CD.

Upon DeJohnette's downbeat, "Miles Runs the Voodoo Down," his trumpet playing off the drums and keyboards with the best of bad intentions. Shorter and Davis intertwine lines to turn "Sanctuary" inside out with shrieks of primal—almost animal—anguish, scorched by the formative furnace of jazz fusion when it was still more jazz than fusion. "Sanctuary" morphs into "It's About That Time," where DeJohnette's drums beneath the trumpet and tenor solos sound like a series of city blocks exploding. It feels like Davis had just begun to determine how to (barely) harness the power of his raging grooves.

But Davis' (mostly) solo version of the ballad "I Fall in Love Too Easily" is the beautiful, crowning gemstone of Live in Copenhagen, his romantic trumpet a reflecting pool of eternity, profoundly calm and deep.

Gerry Gibbs & the Electric Thrasher Orchestra

Gerry Gibbs & the Electric Thrasher Orchestra Play the Music of Miles Davis 1967-1975

Whaling City Sound

2010

Among other callings, drummer/percussionist and bandleader Gerry Gibbs serves as occasional "aural historian" of the mercurial music of Miles Davis. Gibbs' most recent tribute to one of the most controversial and notorious segments of Davis' career—fusion explorations that began to expand jazz with Nefertitti (Columbia) in 1967 and continued to stretch past even its most elastic points with Get Up With It nearly a decade later—honors Davis' artistic spirit, approach, and some of his most electrifying music.

Plays The Music of Miles 1967-75 was culled from four hour-long sets recorded during one 16-hour session, with Brian Swartz
Brian Swartz
Brian Swartz
b.1967
trumpet
(trumpet and electric trumpet) and Doug Webb
Doug Webb
Doug Webb

saxophone
(soprano saxophone) admirably blowing the horn solos. "We began playing the song that Miles opened every single set with for many years" (Joe Zawinul
Joe Zawinul
Joe Zawinul
1932 - 2007
keyboard
's "Directions"), Gibbs explains. Other musicians include guitarist Mike Hoffman
Mike Hoffman
Mike Hoffman
b.1955
guitar
, whose resume includes a band led by Tony Williams
Tony Williams
Tony Williams
1945 - 1997
drums
, one of Davis' hardest-rocking drummers, and inexhaustible bassist Brandon Rivas.

Gibbs' arrangements—more than twenty Davis compositions arranged into two CDs, each CD a seamless, 13-song suite—seem to unify and contextualize Davis' already legendary body of work. They become even more astounding when you press "play." In "Bitches Brew," his rhythms alternate between sharp jabs and roundhouse wallops before simmering down into viscous, murderous funk. His shimmering cymbals and whippersnapper snare gallop alongside Rivas' walking bass to honor "Nefertiti," in an arrangement that doubles trumpet with soprano sax to honor the original's Shorter-Davis frontline. This quickly slips into the shockingly electric "Black Satin," a showcase for keyboard and guitar solos which his snare rocks hard but keeps the groove slippery.

Highlights of Gibbs' second suite include "Right Off," with staccato drum and rhythm guitar tickling its stuttering underbelly before the arrangement seems to turn the music in two directions at one time, guitar chords crashing hard down into the beat while the trumpet soars upward and out. "Pinocchio," "Sanctuary," and "Nem Um Talvez" string together more light and roomy jazz. But in another direction, "Inamorata" illuminates the psychedelic influence—across the spectrums of rhythm, volume, and sound—that guitarist Jimi Hendrix
Jimi Hendrix
Jimi Hendrix
1942 - 1970
guitar, electric
unmistakably had on Davis' music of this period, fueled by drums which Gibbs beats like they stole something from him.

The Laya Project

A New Day—Laya Project Remixed

EarthSync India Pvt Ltd

2010

For two years, producers Sonya Mazumdar and Patrick Sebag journeyed throughout the coastal communities of India, Indonesia, the Maldives, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Thailand, collecting field recordings of these nations' most respected folk, religious and national music. They compiled these recordings and released them in 2007 as The Laya Project (Earthsync) to honor how the region's cultural spirit steadfastly endured the wake and physical aftermath of the 2004 Pacific tsunami.


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