- Audio CD (21 April 2009)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Import
- ASIN: B0012GMV08
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Audio Cassette | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 72,229 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Between Nothingness & Eternity
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Hot improv virtuosos push the creative envelope live in Central Park with this set of metaphysical melodies that transcend time. Trilogy: Sunlit Path/La Mere de la Mer; Sister Andrea , and Dream.
Top Customer Reviews
Fans generally rate this album alongside `The Inner Mounting Flame' and `Birds of Fire' for musical passion, tight high-speed playing, improvisational virtuosity and musical complexity. BNAE contains only three extended pieces - `Trilogy', `Sister Andrea' and `Dream' - and if you've never heard it, it'll knock your socks off.
However, BNAE falls short in two areas: the musical compositions are neither as tightly arranged nor as punchy and distinctive as on the band's studio albums; and the sound quality, recorded in the open air in 1973, is far from exemplary and has a roughness you won't hear on the studio recordings. This doesn't diminish the music too much, which as always with this line-up (the best-ever fusion band in history?) is beyond excellent; frenzied improvisational genius at work with a passion which takes your breath away. The more you listen to it, the more you'll get to know it, the more you'll like it.
You can hear the (shorter) studio recordings of `Trilogy', `Sister Andrea' and `Dream' on `The Lost Trident Sessions' album where the sound quality is up to the standard of the band's other studio album releases and this makes a good complement to BNAE. Remarkably, TLTS wasn't released until 1999, but was worth the wait - so my advice is, get them both.
The longer piece "Dream" starts off well but tends to get a bit bogged down and messy here and there, however the guitar and drum interplay is amazing and goes a long way to salvaging it. The highpoint is John McLaughlin's solo on "Sister Andrea" which is brilliant. The whole album catches the Mahavishnu Orchestra on an inspired night and has breathtaking moments of emotional impact that just aren't captured on the other studio albums, it does have its flaws too but that is acceptable in a live concert.
It would be unfair to compare this album to the more recently discovered "Trident Sessions", this is just a different experience.
My take on this album is that the individual playing and group ensemble work is nothing short of phenomenal. To hear for instance John McLaughlin trading licks with keyboard player Jan Hammer is to know what real musicianship means. Other commentators have suggested that a remastering and the adding of extra tracks from the concert is surely due and I agree. The album with only three tracks in its current form feels too slanted towards extended improvisation. There is also a feeling that as the level of intensity grows there is seldom any room for the listener to relax. The live sound is a little muddy, which causes McLaughlin's guitar to sound lacking in tone on occasion. This is especially important as the great man is such a precise player that any lack of aural definition will obscure the subtly along with the power that he demonstrates in his solo playing.
So the album is a definite must buy for the fans of the genre even given its minor faults.
warning this is too fast for jazz! can they really do that that fast?
i recommend a trip without tripping, enjoy.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I HAVE HAD THE RECORD FOR YEARS(NO PLAYER)GREAT TO HEAR IT WITHOUT THE CLICKS AND POPS,I AM 75 AND MY SON THINKS I AM OFF MY HEAD STILL ENJOYING THIS TYPE OF MUSIC,EACH TO HIS OWN.Published on 12 Dec. 2013 by WRINCKLY
Wonderful jazz. For me a reminder of times past but it is, like all true jazz, right up to date.Published on 6 Jun. 2013 by R. Kauth
Either you like this sort of music, or it sends you running from the room. For me it is unique and I think exciting. Read morePublished on 12 Mar. 2013 by Lord John