145

George Coleman, Mike Stern, Ron Carter, and Jimmy Cobb: 4 Generations of Miles

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
George Coleman, Mike Stern, Ron Carter, and Jimmy Cobb: 4 Generations of Miles In terms of star power, this record's got no shortage. Every player in this quartet is a great musician—not just good, but great. That and the fact that 4 Generations of Miles was recorded live should make it exciting just to open the case. Unfortunately, that excitement dissipates not long after you press play. The group is airtight, and each player plays articulately and lyrically, but in the end it just doesn't add up to much more than you've already heard. It seems that Miles Davis tributes pop up at an alarming rate these days... but for them to really work, they need to go beyond the Dark Prince. The trick is rising "above" the music and capturing its spirit within a new context of vision and invention. To name one example, the World Saxophone Quartet's '98 record Selim Sivad did exactly that.

For diehards, this record spans a nice range of styles and moods, mostly representing the late '50s/early '60s vintage (though "81" offers a bit of a backbeat for contrast). Titles like "Blue in Green" and "Freddie Freeloader" offer strong hints. It's certainly interesting to hear old-timers like Jimmy Cobb, Ron Carter, and George Coleman jam with fusion star Mike Stern (two decades their junior). Stern tucks in the edges, and he leaves absolutely zero doubt that he can travel straight-ahead with the best of them. He's by far the most interesting player on this disc, toying with convention when he's not hanging low comping harmony or playing heads. His solos dwell in the modal/scalar realm for the most part, though they scatter here and there. Stern blows with incredible energy on "Freddie Freeloader," ripping through changes and tossing in some nice blues licks along the way. That's the high point of 4 Generations of Miles by a long shot.

In the end, though, it's mostly rehash, so dig in only if you want to hear four veteran players enter the shrine. Take it or leave it—I recommend the latter.


Track Listing: There is No Greater Love; All Blues; On Green Dolphin Street; Blue In Green; 81; Freddie Freeloader; My Funny Valentine; If I Were a Bell; Oleo.

Personnel: George Coleman- tenor saxophone; Mike Stern- guitar; Ron Carter- bass; Jimmy Cobb- drums.

Title: 4 Generations Of Miles | Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: Chesky Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read BACHanalia CD/LP/Track Review BACHanalia
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Hallways CD/LP/Track Review Hallways
by Paul Rauch
Published: June 24, 2017
Read The Crave CD/LP/Track Review The Crave
by John Sharpe
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Chase The Light (Excursions in Soul, Reggae, Funk, and Dub) CD/LP/Track Review Chase The Light (Excursions in Soul, Reggae, Funk, and Dub)
by Joe Gatto
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Kickin' Child - The Lost Album 1965 CD/LP/Track Review Kickin' Child - The Lost Album 1965
by Doug Collette
Published: June 24, 2017
Read Towards Language CD/LP/Track Review Towards Language
by John Eyles
Published: June 23, 2017
Read "Adam's Apple" CD/LP/Track Review Adam's Apple
by Greg Simmons
Published: April 26, 2017
Read "From Here to There" CD/LP/Track Review From Here to There
by Mark F. Turner
Published: September 11, 2016
Read "Rebirth" CD/LP/Track Review Rebirth
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: March 4, 2017
Read "Billows Of Blue" CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read "Cómo Desaparecer Completamente" CD/LP/Track Review Cómo Desaparecer Completamente
by Geno Thackara
Published: October 13, 2016
Read "Colour And Movement" CD/LP/Track Review Colour And Movement
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: May 9, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.