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Live-Evil [Limited Edition, Live]

Miles Davis Audio CD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
Price: £19.76
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by William Ruhlmann

Throughout a professional career lasting 50 years, Miles Davis played the trumpet in a lyrical, introspective, and melodic style, often employing a stemless Harmon mute to make his sound more personal and intimate. But if his approach to his instrument was constant, his approach to jazz was dazzlingly protean. To examine his career is to examine the history of jazz ... Read more in Amazon's Miles Davis Store

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Live-Evil + A Tribute to Jack Johnson + Filles De Kilimanjaro
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Product details

  • Audio CD (4 Aug 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Limited Edition, Live
  • Label: Columbia Legacy
  • ASIN: B00000881U
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 152,897 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description


This is where Miles Davis turned funk into jazz, rock into soul, and chaos into beauty. With a band featuring Herbie Hancock on piano, Ron Carter on acoustic bass, John McLaughlin on electric guitar, Airto Moreira on percussion, Chick Corea on piano and myriad other explorers, Davis kept up with the times--and surpassed them. He rocked harder than Sly, got funkier than J.B., and turned jazz inside out, slicing the music open till blood spilled on to the floor. Live Evil is more focused than Bitches Brew, which is all the more surprising since it is actually a piecemeal recording from various dates and venues--some in the studio, some on stage, but all very much l-i-v-e. --Robert Wilonsky

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
By Sebastian Palmer TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
Part live, part studio, the Live Evil album contains some of the best experimentation Miles' electronic circus put together.
'Sivad' is awesome: with a phat back-beat and bass-line (Michael Henderson, previously with Stevie Wonder). Airto Moreira's cuica adds colour. The piece morphs, via psychedelic guitar and keys into a stop/start groove, on which the band simmers for 10 minutes.
'Little Church', 'Selim' and 'Nem Um Talvez' are all similar, and feature Hermeto Pascaol, who adds to the Brazilian tinge. These pieces are mellow, with whistling and vocals following the long delicate trumpet lines. These are some of the best cuts on the album; sparse and magical.
'What I Say' is as hard and funky as Miles got. He was listening to Rock, Soul and Funk, and those influences are never clearer than here. John McLaughlin's guitar is fabulous, Miles gets something different from him again (compare this with his contribution to 'In A Silent Way', or his own Mahavishnu stuff). Miles briefly states the theme at the end, but it's a completely different beast; jazz, but with funk and rock in it's veins.
'Gemini/Double Image' is a spacey jam, with freedom of form and content; scratchy guitar, bubbling percussion, and far-out synths. Miles was evidently taking notes at the Santana gigs he'd been attending. 'Inamorata', is similar, it's a long (almost half an hour), sprawling live piece, with some rather dated narration near the end.
A patchy album, and not always an easy listen ('Funky Tonk', a great name, shame it veers towards free jazz cacophony), but it's still essential Miles, and in places, unique and inspiring.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
From the second that Sivad, the first track on Live Evil, kicks off, it is clear that this is an album of epic proportions. This is a resoundingly critic-defeating testament to Miles' trumpet playing and band leading ability which will always strike the heart of any musical soul.
A particularly interesting feature is the contrast between the short 2 to 5 minute tracks recorded in the columbia studios which are often claustrophobic but always beautiful and the 15 to 25 minute tracks taken from live sessions at the cellar door, washington dc which are live and raw, combining all the different music forms from the blues to hard rock in a brilliant fashion. The producing influence of Teo Macero, who worked with Miles at Columbia for many years is crucial to the success of utilising such a blend.
But the really crucial point of the album is to forget all the producing details and how the music is being made as often as possible, and just soak up the work of the best musician the last century had. A true genius who speaks to all of us as long as we care to listen. And longer.
As Gary Bartz says on the programme notes, 'Thank you, Miles'
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely as good as Bitches Brew 22 Sep 2004
Format:Audio CD
This album is beautiful, amazing, exciting and emotive. Nevertheless, there is still one minor fault I can raise which, if righted, would complete this album for me - the really obvious editing on Sivad where, after about eight or nine minutes, a climactic solo by Miles is abruptly ended by an applause.
Apart from this small complaint, I can make no criticism about Miles's playing - it truly is sublime and distinguishes him from any other trumpeter of the 20th century.
Buy it if you want to discover the height of Miles Davis's talents.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I can not add much to what previous reviewers have said about this album except that in spite of the apparent undisciplined approach it is, in fact well thought out and finds Miles in particular, in blistering form throughout. It is vastly superior to the live recordings of the time, ie "Live At Fillemore", "Dark Magus", "Pangaea" etc which are just aimless, formless (and ultimately boring) ramblings.
I obtained a brand new, 2010 version, replacement copy on Amazon for around a fiver and was delighted to find that Columbia have gone back to the good old jewel case with the packaging. The titles can now be found clearly on the back of the case, whereas with the cardboard folding version you had to pull out the insert (a fiddly job). Jewel cases are more durable too, so an improvement there.
All Miles devotees should have this recording, together with "Get Up With It" as they are the best of the 1970's output.
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