23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: The Shape Of Jazz To Come (Audio CD)
I always find it terribly irritating when people tell me 'owe yes, its a classic' about any album. What have they told me? Absolutely nothing, and so often this is the case with jazz 'classics'. The word 'free' is also often thrown at this album, but is infrequently explained. Well, it is a classic and the word free does have something to do with it. The music here is certainly not of the free jazz scene we see later, in artists such as Albert Ayler, Pharoah Sanders and in some of Coltrane's work to name but a few. The rhythm section thumps along with the thrust of a bop band, especially in tracks like 'Eventually' and 'Congeniality'. However, while Coleman's sax isn't screeching high and low, it is varying much more in improvising than others were doing at the time. It has the makings of a genre in it, but remains firmly attached to its own time.
Whats really fantastic about this album, is that it has that semi 'free' element to it, while maintaining the freshness of bop. There's something about the way its recorded, that makes it quite a breazy record. The later musings of free jazz officiandos tend to be brooding and dark, but this is much lighter on the pallet. A great album, could be a starting point, but be warned: if someone's told you this is free jazz, then you're in for quite a shock.