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A brilliant example of true musical innovation...
on 31 December 2003
“Jazz-rock fusion”… a label that has inspired dozens of mediocre records! But here it is in its primeval and arguably never to be bettered form – a groundbreaking showcase for the talents of artists at the peak of their skills and an addictive and quite brilliant example of true musical innovation.
Like “Kind of Blue” a decade earlier Miles Davis assembles a stunningly adept peer group – including Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Jo Zawinul, John McLaughlin, Tony Williams, Chick Corea & Dave Holland – and then pushes their and his playing to previously undiscovered heights. The end result?… jazz improvisation at its very best, with nothing detracting from the unstoppable flow of the satisfyingly tight melodic structures, despite the enormous complexity of what is actually going on, and with the complete record merging into a gloriously unified whole.
“In a Silent Way” quickly draws you into its languidly ethereal atmosphere, driving poly-rhythms and wonderful extemporisations and, like all true jazz masterpieces, pays out enormous bonuses from repeat listening. One of the essential reasons why Miles Davis justifies his reputation and… a template for much future imitation and excess.