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4.9 out of 5 stars20
4.9 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 12 June 2004
I've always believed that Miles' supposed 'comeback' (after, possibly, his worst brush with drugs) was his most fruitful period -- and this CD certainly represents some of the best work he ever produced in a recording studio.
There's also something purely magical about the work he did with Gil Evans; and, I feel, the larger ensemble seems, somehow, to support Miles in a way that, sometimes, a smaller group may not.
Anyone into Miles will already own this in some form or another... -- but, if you've always been intrigued by the myth that is Miles Dewey Davis III, then this (or the later 'Kind of Blue') is possibly the best introduction (...in my humble opinion!).
[A jazz fan dies and goes to heaven; and, when he gets to the Pearly Gates, St. Peter asks him where he'd like to go first -- so the guy says he'd like to go to a jazz club.
When they get to the one St. Peter recommends, there's all sorts of people sitting at the bar, listening to the music -- Dizzy, Duke, Bird, Cannonball, etc. -- but at the far end is a guy in a dazzling, well-cut suit, wearing shades and smoking.
"Who's that?" asks the guy.
"It's God," says St. Peter: "He thinks he's Miles Davis."]
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 9 October 2012
This 1957 album was the first recording collaboration between Miles Davis and Gil Evans since the 1949/50 recording sessions which fed into Davis' legendary nonet recording Birth Of The Cool (also released in 1957). For the recording of Miles Ahead, the pair put together a 19-piece (20-piece with Davis) band (or perhaps jazz orchestra) and recorded 10 compositions which Evans arranged and edited into a single unbroken suite. Whilst paying tribute to the approach adopted by the likes of Duke Ellington and Claude Thornhill on their earlier big band recordings, the sound of Miles Ahead brilliantly mixes Davis' exquisite solo flugelhorn playing with frequent orchestral blasts from the assembled horns, via Evans' superbly judged arrangements.

Compositionally speaking, Miles Ahead is very much a mixed bag, and its extreme diversity in source material merely serves to emphasise the high level of skill displayed by Evans in pulling together what is a thematically consistent whole. Whether it be band member John Carisi's opener, the exuberant Springville, Evans' own dynamically rich and haunting Blues For Pablo, Dave Brubeck's lilting melody which underpins The Duke, Ahmad Jamal's superbly judged and swinging New Rhumba or Evans' inspirational interpretation of French classical composer Léo Delibes' song, The Maids Of Cadiz, Miles Ahead is a joyous listening experience. However, if I were forced to pick one moment from the album which cannot help but pull at the heartstrings it is Miles' exquisite solo on Kurt Weill's My Ship.

In addition, on the 1997 version of the album which was remastered in stereo by Phil Schaap, there are four additional tracks, essentially different takes of four of the existing 10 album compositions.

If evidence were ever needed (which I would suggest it isn't) of the worth of Davis' collaboration with Evans, and its relative position in the pantheon of Davis' work with the likes of Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Bill Evans, Wayne Shorter, Joe Zawinal, Chick Corea, Marcus Miller, etc, then Miles Ahead demonstrates it in spades.
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on 21 February 2002
And much of the credit for that should go to Gil Evans. The balance between Miles and the other musicians (a much larger group than he normally played with) is superb. Some may find the changes of tempo and tracks seemingly falling into one another a little disorienting, personally I find them intreaguing and delightful. There is so much going on here, such an intricate web of tone, melody and tempo that each time I hear this album it sweeps me away. I highly recommend it to anyone.
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on 31 October 2013
The Miles Davis Mono vinyl reissue series is a must for any Miles fan. There is nothing left to say about the music - but of all the versions out there - CD or vinyl - this is the one you will keep going back to!
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on 16 April 2013
This recording, either in vinyl or on CD, should be part of every jazz lover's collection. The CD has the bonus of additional tracks not available on the original
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on 31 August 2012
The sultry experience of Miles Davis, and this a very enjoyable album. Backed up amazingly by Gil Evans and his orchestra. Who certainly made Miles the legend he is today. If you're new to Miles this is the place to start. It's the most accessible album of his that I have heard. Very laid back.
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on 24 March 2011
Loving the music of Miles Davis. bought a few of the classic albums and thought I'd finished buying when I saw Miles Davis at the Isle of Wight Festival recently on Sky Arts (TV) whereby they showed Miles and co. playing Bitches Brew and interviewing Herbie Hancock, Carlos Santana etc. and that encouraged me to buy some of the albums I hadn't got, Miles Ahead being one of several. Check out also "in a Silent Way, On the Corner, and ESP. Great listening!!!
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on 31 October 2013
My husband is an aficionado of Miles Davis - this particular cd is markedly fusion and not to my taste but he says you learn nothing if you don't push your own boundaries and LISTEN!!!!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 13 September 2013
More accurately Miles Davis and the Gil Evans Orchestra, Miles forsakes his trumpet for flugelhorn in a breathtakingly beautiful album. The 10 tracks here are a well chosen mix of originals and covers. On this release it is supported by the short1955 album 'Blue Moods' which fits well stylistically particularly on the simply wonderful 'Nature Boy'. Miles Davis has made many great albums, this is in the top tier.
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on 26 May 2016
It doesn't get any better than this, probably the best of his 4 collaborations with Gill Evans, although porgy and bess comes very close.
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