I hope I’m still alive in the year 2026. Like last year with Duke Ellington and this year honoring the 100th anniversary of Louis Armstrong’s birth, 2026 with mark John Coltrane’s centenary. Coltrane, who bore so many musical descendants, will surely be pleased with the various tributes to come. One early contribution to that upcoming year is the spiritually driven Love Everlasting, released recently but recorded thirteen years ago. While you do the math, I’ll thank Medeski, Martin, and Woods’ drummer and Amulet label owner Billy Martin for releasing this session and also re-releasing Bob Moses’ classic free-psychedelic Bittersweet In The Ozone, with Dave Liebman, Billy Hart, Howard Johnson, Eddie Gomez, Randy Brecker, and Jeannie Lee from 1975.
The “wow” factor is elevated by the co-leaders Moses and Munoz tribute to post- Love Supreme Coltrane. Think of the Coltrane bands plus Pharoah Sanders and you have located this recording. Garzone and Bergonzi, two devout subjects, shoulder the front lines of this session. But it is the drumming of Moses and Ben Wittman and the propulsion of Munoz’s guitar that creates the character. Like Coltrane, the fury Moses and Munoz bring is not about anger, but love. It is a sacred creative music born out of improvisation and a search for beauty. In the last ten years it has been rare for a band to reach for these heights. Maybe it is the self-centered age in which we live or that the measuring stick placed by the great one was at such a high level. But 2026 is coming and let’s hope we are ready.
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