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Elevated


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Product details

  • Audio CD (13 May 2002)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Knitting Factory
  • ASIN: B000062Y8L
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 574,865 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. In The Arms Of Ali
2. Surfing Sahara
3. Elevated
4. Addis Ababa
5. Merle The Pearl
6. Calypso Minor
7. Lucky Charms
8. Anthem For No Country
9. New Blues, Old News

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By J. Higham on 18 May 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I can't agree more than the other reviewer - from Amazon.com - about the breadth of music on this record, quite astounding, and it's completely unified musically.

It's quite strange that Blake gets tagged as avant-garde, which I personally can't see how you could draw that conclusion. The music on this record, and many of his others (try his most recent In the Grand Scheme of Things, which is also excellent), are not so much jazz albums as great listening experiences where the leader so happens to play a saxophone. Michael's saxophone tone is fantastic, and he manages to balance the need for energy, in and out playing, just to the right degree. Very 'listen-able'.

If you like discovering contemporary rock music, jazz, world music or even classical, you'll probably enjoy this. It grows on you as the melodies sink in and the atmospheres, which the other reviewer talks about, become old friends.

You can view a sample of the group live (or you could when I wrote this) on YouTube under "Michael Blake's Elevated Quartet".
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Raising the Bar 9 April 2002
By Jan P. Dennis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Sounding like the soundtrack to a great but tragically lost Humphrey Bogart movie, ELEVATED, Michael Blake's third solo disc (fourth, if you count the Slow Poke project as his), marks a major step forward for this remarkable young jazz saxophonist and composer.
As with KINGDOM OF CHAMPA and DRIFT, it's all about atmosphere. Once again, the operative word is "noir," only this time we're in Casablanca, not elay. Smoky sax and play-it-again-Sam piano, spiced up by some way hip drumming and percussion, are the order of the day--or, rather, dusk, as this outing has a decided crepuscular feel.
From the opening hand drums on "In the Arms of Ali," the mood is firmly established--one of vast North African vistas, like what one might find outside Rick's Cafe. Things continue in the same vein with "Surfing Sahara," a high point consisting of an unlikely blend of Dick Dale and Rabih Abou-Khalil, if you can imagine that! Pianist Frank Kimbrough takes a mesmerizing solo on this piece that shows why he's one of the hippest, most-in-demand young keys guys on the scene.
The title cut is something special. From its lush opening soaked in gorgous Romanticism, it magically segues into a hypnotic bass figure that's doubled on Kimbrough's left hand, and ends with a kind of reprise of the first two parts in a beautifully haunting coda, throughout featuring some of Blake's most inspired sax work. Not known as a virtuoso player, Blake is much more concerned with establishing and maintaining the exact right mood, engaging in inspired conversations with his bandmates, and gracing the proceedings with smart commentary.
"Merle the Pearl" is a bit of hyped-up exotica fired by a tricky unison soprano sax and piano figure. "Calypso Minor," the only non-Blake composition (by the great South African jazzman, Abdullah Ibrahim), fits in perfectly, with the lads giving it a suitably noir treatment that feels nothing like the original, but nontheless brilliantly resonates with it.
With "Lucky Charms," we're smack dab in the middle of a Raymond Chandler novel. Dripping with the sleazy feel of a broke-down juke-joint at three in the morning, the song showcases a stunning Blake solo that's off the blooze charts. Check out as well the off-kilter bass solo by the remarkable Ben Allison, himself a bandleader of note.
The oddly titled "Anthem for No Country" starts out with some gorgous church/elegiac figures, then settles into a Vince Guaraldi "Cast Your Fate to the Wind" groove on uppers. Blake goes temporarily crazy on his soprano solo, bringing it all back home, underpinned by perfect arco bass, on the reprise of the opening.
The final cut, "New Blues, Old News," begins with some unsettling sax sounds that are either overdubs or pretty cool multiphonics. It then works its way into a rollicking piano figure that just kinda fades out, the perfect ending to an absolutely astounding sonic experience, one that you will by no means want to miss out on.
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