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Gateway Import


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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Universal
  • ASIN: B00005LL8L
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

1. Back-Woods Song
2. Waiting
3. May Dance
4. Unshielded Desire
5. Jamala
6. Sorcery, No. 1

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By os TOP 500 REVIEWER on 21 Oct 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
'Gateway' is an extraordinary testament to the idea that the disparate elements that make up jazz and rock,can in the hands of skilled and adventurous practitioners be made to make music that is at once driving and exploratory. Recorded in 1975 this album still sounds innovative and challenging.Where as the Mahavisnu Orchestra might be described as a jazz-rock band, this trio are definitely a jazz band but with rock inclinations.Tracks like 'Unshielded Desire' point to a band who can summon up speed and fury tempered with finesse and imagination. The album consists of a selection of powerful rhythmic vamps and a few 'composed' tunes such as the mysterious 'Jamalia' which is a little beauty. Yet this is not a 'jam' session. There are no wasted notes or over-long solos. Rather the music is about interplay and making use of the space that a trio naturally affords.

For those listeners new to John Abercrombie will hear a guitarist who has an immediately identifiable tone- thick ,floating yet also sharp ,and on occasion almost acerbic.His solos have a strong sense of purpose, always packed with unusual ideas and never relying on speedy licks for their own sake. Abercrombie is also interesting because he uses volume swells to create unusual tones and textures. This means that the music is always free to change direction or character as the particular tunes in question develops.Listen to 'Scorcery 1' with its wonderfully apocalyptic bass line that serves as a very solid platform for some of Abercrombie's most inspired and 'out there ' guitar playing.

In summary, a very good album -stunning playing, well recorded and as fresh and exciting as it was when first conceived.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mr. C. Warburton on 19 Jan 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
One of the first ECM albums that I ever heard, and still one of my favourites. Messrs. Abercrombie, Holland and DeJohnette probably need no introduction to a readr of this review, but what a combination. All are fleetfooted and can turn on a sixpence. As one of the "Touchstones" reissue series, this now represents an absolute bargain. Can not recommend this highly enough.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 17 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Fusiony Free Bop 1 Mar 2009
By G B - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Gateway really is an ECM touchstone - it comes from a time when the label produced dozens of albums that pushed the jazz envelope. In this case, you get a mix of guitar fusion, post bop, and free jazz.

The most obvious parallel is John Abercrombie's classic album Timeless, recorded the previous year, with Dave Holland replacing Jan Hammer. But Holland was a free jazzer at this time, and his presence pulls the group in different directions. Though the influences of Hendrix and McLaughlin loom large, there's a certain looseness and jazziness that was never present on the Mahavishnu Orchestra albums.

"Backwoods Song" is the obvious highlight here - a great tune and loping groove that seems like it could go on for half an hour at least. "Unshielded Desire" is a scorching duet between Abercrombie and DeJohnette, echoing Elvin and Trane on "Vigil" or "Impressions". And "Sorcery" - I guess you could call this a rock tune, except there is an avant-garde edge here that probably would scare most guitar fusion fans senseless.

The rest of the album has more subtle charms, the kind that I missed when I first picked it up as a McLaughlin/Mahavishnu fan. "May Dance" is a great freebop performance; "Waiting" is a solo feature for Dave Holland, a perfect showcase for his great sound; and "Jamala" is a short but beautiful enigma.

One of my favorites from this period.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
No. 2 on the All Time ECM Hit List 29 Mar 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Yes, if avant garde jazz is your thing, this is the album for you. John Abercrombie is able to use his formidable pallet of sounds against one of the finest rhythm pairs on the market. DeJohnette and Holland mix it up for a framework that is just poetry. (For No. 1 ECM LP of all time, check out the original Rypdal/Vitous/DeJohnette recording).
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Let The Sorcerer amaze you 17 April 2000
By Pharoah S. Wail - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is definitely a cd worth buying. This is coming from a person who is admittedly not the biggest fan of John Abercrombie (or jazz with an electric guitar in-general). While I have to admit that I don't like track two at all, BACK-WOODS SONG, UNSHIELDED DESIRE, and SORCERY 1 are worth the cost of the cd. BACK-WOODS SONG just has an incredibly cool groove to it and Dave Holland's playing and acoustic bass tone on it get me every single time I listen to this cd. This tune is probably one of my all-time favorite jazz tunes.
DeJohnette's playing is stellar! He is just drenched in that hard swinging, power-rhythmic style that he has perfected, and he and Holland are fantastic together. As great as Abercrombie plays during his best moments on this cd, for me it is Holland and DeJohnette (and the tunes) who make this a cd worth visiting time and time again. If you don't know Abercrombie well, his guitar tone is "softer" than that of other "fusion guitarists" such as McLaughlin or DiMeola. Not as in a "smooth jazz" sort of way, I just mean that his sound isn't a screaming wall of stinging electricity. Actually, I don't consider this fusion really though. I don't like fusion... too many horribly dated sounds and bad synthesizer schlock. This cd is gloriously thick sounding acoustic bass, a master drummer who swings when called for and "goes out" when called for, and an ethereal guitar tone. For lack of a better way to explain it... John Abercrombie's guitar tone sounds sort of like some of Steve Kimock's better sounds, though Abercrombie is easily the more original of the two guitarists.
I had very strong reservations when I bought this cd. Electric guitar is probably my least favorite instrument in a jazz setting and I had quite low expectations but I let myself follow my curiosity. I am glad I did, the quality of the music on this cd surprised me greatly and I have since enjoyed many listens to it.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
The Lyrical Swing of Dave Holland 4 July 2004
By Jason Gubbels - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Somewhat rawer in both tone and composition than your average ECM mid-70s release, this first meeting between guitarist Abercrombie, bassist Holland and drummer DeJohnette grooves along with the fire of early fusion (Abercrombie's tone is usually clean, yet he's clearly capable of exploding into shards of noise, and just dig DeJohnette's peerless attack), yet remains true to the melodic & structural compexities of classic jazz. The highlights are many, yet it's the relentless swing of Dave Holland on the opener, 'Back-Woods Song' that continues to draw me in. Essential for electric guitar fans, and a good investment for any jazz enthusiast.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
The Dark Side of "Fusion" Guitar Music 1 Nov 1998
By Jeffrey Osier - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
John Abercrombie has developed into a far more conventional guitarist than anyone hearing this album in 1976 could have ever imagined. At that time, amid the ever-slickening technical wizards (such as DiMeola and Holdsworth), Abercrombie was featured leader or sideman on a series of inspired recordings for ECM. In retrospect, a lot of what JA was trying to do didn't work -- he would stray so methodically away from cliches (and sometimes even the harmony of the piece) that it could seem aimless and pointless. But the point was, at a time when post-Hendrix electric jazz guitar was being codified into its own set of cliches, JA was searching relentlessly for sounds that no one had ever heard before. This recording is the high point of that search. Bolstered by some great Dave Holland compositions and the incredible interplay with Holland and Jack DeJohnette, Abercrombie plays some of the wildest and most idea-driven guitar solos you'll hear anywhere. Listen especially to "Unshielded Desire" (a duo with drummer DeJohnette) and "Sorcery 1," where JA's out-on-a-limb approach has some of its most spectacular moments. "Jamala," Dave Holland's ballad, is a gorgeous Abercrombie/Holland duet. The only downside on this CD (big enough to cost it that fifth star) is the overlong guitar solo on "May Dance," where JA really loses focus and never regains it. Even here, though, you've got a magnificent Dave Holland solo to pull the song out of a nosedive. If you're a big fan of 70s fusion guitar or its influence on 80s rock guitar, you might hate this. But if you're a fan of the darker pathways of jazz improvisation, give this a shot. This is one of the deepest, most imaginative guitar trio recordings in all of jazz.
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