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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Coltrane�s first solo masterpiece
Giant Steps was possibly the most consistently outstanding tenor solo statement since Sonny Rollins' Saxophone Colossus. Of course, Coltrane's own performance on Kind of Blue, just a month or two before, is now legendary, but he had shared the glory with soloists of a similar calibre, and furthermore the present recording contained nothing but his own compositions. Here...
Published on 2 Jun. 2001

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8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy
Back when jazz was just a wild mass of sound that I didn't understand, Giant Steps was the object I turned to for some sort of solace. It was the album I felt I could get my head around most from the genre, and finally hearing sax noises blaring from my speakers that didn't make me want to bury the CD in a far away forest was always a welcome sign of change. While the...
Published on 4 Oct. 2007 by 77


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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic, early Coltrane, 26 Aug. 2004
By 
Ian Thumwood "ian17577" (Winchester) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Giant Steps (Audio CD)
This is a justly famous CD by Coltrane and features some of his most reknown compositions such as the title track, "Mr. P.C", "Countdown" and the beautiful ballad "Niama". However, there are a few other lesser known items included on the disc that are worthy of mention. "Syeeda's song flute " illustrates the influence of Thelonious Monk and is, perhaps, the closest Coltrane came to recording a light-hearted composition. On the other hand, there is the sadly neglected number "Spiral" that never seemed to make the "jazz standard" reportoire even though I believe this to be one of his finest tunes from this era.
Whilst Coltrane had further to develop, this is a fascinating recording in the you can literally hear the confines of hard bop creaking as the saxophonist pushes at the boundaries of jazz. Pianist Tommy Flanagan, one of the very finest of his generation, can be envisaged literally hanging on as the music builds up momentum. My biggest criticism is that a very poor quality piano was used for the session and Flanagan's solos almost sound like they are being played on a marimba. Luckily, the saxophonist dominates proceedings and this is not too great an issue, even though a studio would not get away with letting a respected musician playing such a duff instrument today.
Although "Crescent" and the album with Ellington remain my favourite efforts by John Coltrane, this is an essential purchase. Needless to say, every record collection should not be without this disc.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing out of place, but it takes you there, 30 Oct. 2012
This review is from: Giant Steps [VINYL] (Vinyl)
I listened to this album in an old terraced garden in France. The village beyond the wall was still, the dog lay contemplating men at my feet, and autumn was touching up the trees in the breeze. Life, being perfect, swelled and held on in the grooves of Coltrane's Giant Steps.

I could not ask for more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic, must-have Jazz album., 20 Mar. 2014
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This review is from: Giant Steps (Audio CD)
If you like jazz that swings, rushes, leaps, swoops and is generally all round as cool and hot as a er.... weird refrigerator, then this is for you. Coltrane at his best, full of power and swinging like his life depended on it. Every track is great, all the musicians are great, just buy it!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Getting into Coltrane- very good., 6 July 2013
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This review is from: Giant Steps [VINYL] (Vinyl)
The music on this album is very warm and a great display of talent- however, I am not the best expert on jazz.

Just a minor point- the vinyl itself has rather sharp edges, so in the transport to me, it actually punctured the top of the sleeve (inside the actual packaging). This is only a minor cosmetic thing, just be conscious that this might happen.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Relentless Coltrane, 3 Nov. 2007
By 
S J Buck (Kent, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Giant Steps (Audio CD)
That is what Coltrane is on the title track of this album. At what is already a ferocious tempo Coltrane kicks into his first solo playing a double time solo where it seems every chord change has every possible note combination played. I was absolutely astonished when I first heard this. Ira Gitler used the term 'Sheets of Sound' to describe Coltrane's playing, and I'm sure it was this title track that gave him the idea. However don't misunderstand this album. This isn't the Coltrane of the mid 1960's onwards, where I do struggle to keep up with his more avant-garde playing.

The tunes on this album are very strong. 'Naima' is a beautiful slow number that hints at the ballads record he would record a year or two later. The vastly under-rated Wynton Kelly is the only musician to play a solo on this track. Its both lyrical and subtle and leads back to Coltranes repeated theme statement. 'Mr. P.C.' is a simple minor blues that belts along. Again though unless you are die-hard traditionalist there is nothing on this track that could be considered 'difficult'.

The other musicians are:
Lex Humphries, Art Taylor, Jimmy Cobb - Drums
Paul Chambers - Bass
Cedar Walton, Tommy Flanagan, Wynton Kelly - Piano

This is essential for any Jazz collection.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Fast , Powerful , Fearsome!!, 15 May 2013
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This review is from: Giant Steps (Audio CD)
Fast & powerful stuff from Mr C. Giant Steps is a massive landmark in jazz. Many people may shoot me for this but it just doesn't hit the same spot with me as "Blue Train" & "A Love Supreme". Never the less, still a fantastic record.
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4.0 out of 5 stars great Jazz, 2 Feb. 2013
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This review is from: Giant Steps (Audio CD)
These CD's made up from bits of live concerts are rarely completely satisfactory, but there are some great tracks. Its a nice addition to a jazz CD library.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Bopping good, 23 July 2014
This review is from: Giant Steps [VINYL] (Vinyl)
one of my Favourite Jazz albums I just love the Saxophone and bass playing on it and I just HAD to buy it on Record So I did it sounds great on record too
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8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy, 4 Oct. 2007
This review is from: Giant Steps (Audio CD)
Back when jazz was just a wild mass of sound that I didn't understand, Giant Steps was the object I turned to for some sort of solace. It was the album I felt I could get my head around most from the genre, and finally hearing sax noises blaring from my speakers that didn't make me want to bury the CD in a far away forest was always a welcome sign of change. While the title track and "Naima", a ballad composed for his wife, always seemed to be the picks for greatness from the jazz crowd, I was more drawn to "Spiral"; the opening melody takes the title literally, as it constantly curves downwards into a pit of jolted piano and drums, the latter of which has a lethargic swagger that I found completely captivating. Oh, and "Countdown" is just a crazed exhibition of skill, going from scattered rhythm to 100mph playing to undiluted melody all within two minutes. I can't say I understand why it's seen as the weakest cut on this record.

It wasn't the first jazz album I truly loved (that honour would have to go to the most overlooked masterpiece in the Mingus back catalogue: Pithecanthropus Erectus) but it was definitely one that I admired greatly, and I'll be forever in its debt for allowing me to edge closer to this new music world. I kept going; running past classic after classic until I managed to find myself a decent foothold in the genre. Ironically, this came in the form of free jazz, the artform at its most maddening and structureless.

Returning to Giant Steps after many months of Sun Ra, Charles Tyler and Pharoah Sanders, I find that it washes over me way more than it used to. More importantly, way more than I want it to. Man, it's still a technical tour de force, don`t get me wrong; some would argue that he never retained the hunger in his playing that he showed here, but I'm always gonna reach for Ascension when I want my monthly hit of Trane.

I guess I just find comfort in chaos.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Just like Miles, Coltrane will always be one the most ..., 15 Mar. 2015
By 
Rodrigo Luis Baptista Duarte Caldeira (Kingston Upon Thames, Surrey, GB) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Giant Steps (Audio CD)
Just like Miles, Coltrane will always be one the most outstanding Jazz performers. "Giant Steps" is a great CD!
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Giant Steps
Giant Steps by John Coltrane (Audio CD - 2002)
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