There was something about the later phase of the 1970s that encouraged the creation of three progressive masterpieces consisting of at most two tracks: Tangerine Dream's RICOCHET, Steve Reich's MUSIC FOR 18 MUSICIANS, and Keith Jarrett's SURVIVORS SUITE. I own over 2,000 CDs, and I would unreservedly place all three of the albums in my Top 10.
I cannot add much to what other reviewers here have written about '18'. It is the most hypnotic piece of music I know. Despite its age, this is much the best recording. The audio separation of the instruments -- particularly the bass woodwind and the piano -- is distinctly superior to the Nonesuch version, for which I had such high hopes, only to be dashed by the slurry that emerged.
That ECM have produced it as a single track may infuriate MP3 rippers and home movie producers wishing to use an extract as a backing track for their video. And I have some sympathy for the view that listening to the whole lot in one sitting can prove wearing. You'll just have to work around this limitation. '18' is a brilliant album in so many contexts: listen to it in the car, or while you're working, or even to drive your parents away -- it's now 32 years since my Mum first complained about this repetitive music I was playing in my bedroom; and it still makes her mad!
You have to get this particular CD. No serious modern music collection can be without it.
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