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Sketches Of Spain'
Sketches of SpainRanked 356/500 on Rolling Stone Magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Davis Third and Final Pairing With Arranger Gil Evans Yields Watershed Innovations
Sublime Sound: Mobile Fidelity Reissue Corrects the Dry Sound That Plagues Previous Editions
Flamenco-Themed 1960 Set Develops Synergy Between Orchestrations and Melancholic Jazz Phrasings
Urge by Davis to Develop Techniques Possessed by Forbearers Finds Him Expanding Palette, Spinning Webs of Lyrical Sound and Emotion
Kind of Blue, Milestones, Round About Midnight, Four & More, and In a Silent Way Also Available from Mobile Fidelity
Miles Davis and Gil Evans bridged styles and collaborated on high-concept projects a total of three times during their celebrated career. For their final act, they created Sketches of Spain, a peak moment in each luminarys career and a transformative album that weds Spanish themes, lush orchestrations, romantic timbres, and Davis increasingly lyrical methods in a tender ceremony that continues to resonate more than five decades after its original release.
Part of Mobile Fidelitys Miles Davis catalog restoration series, the genre-defying 1960 classic has been given the ultimate white-gloves treatment. Mastered from the original master tapes and pressed at RTI, this exquisite 180g LP significantly expands the soundstage that frames the orchestra and digs deep to eradicate a dryness that many critics have found as an anathema to its overall enjoyment. Here, at last, is the full-figured perspective long deserved by the woodwinds, strings, and percussion, all of which come alive with previously unheard definition and detail.
Indeed, in its three-decade-plus history, Mobile Fidelity has never been prouder to have the honor of handling efforts as important as Davis key recordings. Its why the labels engineers have taken every available measure to insert listeners into the space occupied by Davis, bassist Paul Chambers, drummer Jimmy Cobb, percussionist Elvin Jones, and the 18-piece orchestra. With both Evans and Davis attracted to the blues undercurrents permanently entrenched in the Spanish flamenco strains, listeners can finally wholly detect the myriad microdynamic tonalities, brooding ostinato devices, and minor pedal points that stamp the compositions with divine sensibility and goffered effect.
Multi-note motifs, brief improvisational solos, fanfare sweeps, and contrapuntal exchanges inform the flamenco-spiced pieces, but so do unconventionally voiced instruments that come into full relief on this reissue. Davis Harmon-muted trumpet is abetted by an assortment of bassoons and French horns that create pleasing contrasts and sounds (pp, mf, ppp) that get to the heart of Sketches of Spain: splashes of color. Seldom, if ever, did Davis ever so expressively and liberally paint with color. And in Evans, he has a likewise-minded partner to help draw out variegated shades, adamantine layers, and striated distinctions.
Whether its the somber mood piece of the standout Concierto de Aranjuez (Adagio), renowned forDavis flugelhorn performance, or the folktale-based Solea, Mobile Fidelitys enhanced Sketches of Spain transfixes with playing, ideas, and innovations that remain exclusive to this incomparable record.
This title is not eligible for discount.1. Concierto de Aranjuez (Adagio)
2. Will O the Wisp
3. The Pan Piper
5. Solea$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Sketches of SpainRanked 356/500 on Rolling Stone Magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Limited individually Numbered Edition!
The conception of ''Sketches of Spain'' in 1960, can be placed in the ''most melodic era'' of Miles Davis. It is one of his most accessible and less improvisational albums, some even outclassed it from the reigns of Jazz.
This is one of the four albums where Miles and Gil Evans (arranger & conductor) were together with a small orchestra of horns and percussion, and it was fueled by Spanish melodies that fascinated Davis to the point he needed to get into them and go beyond: El Concierto de Arajuez by Joaquín Rodrigo and El Amor Brujo by Manuel de Falla.1. Concierto de Aranjuez
2. Will O the Wisp
3. The Pan Piper
5. Solea$24.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP Mono - Sealed Buy Now
SPCO-SPE-0667xGil Evans Orchestra
The Gil Evans Orchestra Plays The Music Of Jimi Hendrix (Speakers Corner)
Critics find this album rather difficult to evaluate. Their judgement ranges from a colourful mixture to a successful cover album to a masterly fusion and an homage to an artist whose life came to an end far too soon - Jimi Hendrix. Jimi had long been gone when this album was recorded in 1974. But it is almost superfluous to look back to the legendary Hendrix if you focus on the great Gil Evans. After such milestones as Birth Of The Cool and Sketches Of Spain it isn't difficult to regard these late audiophile masterpieces as a logical development of Evans's exceptional skill as an arranger.
When you listen - or rather experience - how the crystal-clear sound in Angel is heightened to an emphatic ballad on the saxophone, or how rich soulful vocals storm ahead in a funky style (Crosstown Traffic), or fluffy, cloud-like sounds are built up on the flutes in Castles Made From Sand, then it is no longer of importance who thought out the music. It is sufficient that it exists and is pleasing to all who hear it. It is also unimportant whether one reveres Hendrix's immemorable melodies or whether one pays homage to Evans's visionary soundworld: a recording such as this could only be born of the two.
- Gil Evans (arranger, conductor, piano)
- David Sanborn, Billy Harper (saxophone, flute)
- Billy Harper (saxophone, flute)
- Lewis Soloff (trumpet)
- Tom Malone (synthesizer, trombone, flute, bass)
- David Horowitz (electric piano, synthesizer)
- John Abercrombie (guitar)
- Don Pate (bass)
- Warren Smith, Jr. (chimes, percussion, vibraphone)
- Bruce Ditmas (drums)
Recording: 1974 at RCA's Studio B, New York City, by Bob Simpson
Production: Mike Lipskin
About Speakers Corner
At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Speakers Corner all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.
During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existant tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.
A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.
We should like to emphasise that Speakers Corner Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle. We have one digital recording in our catalogue (Alan Parsons / Eye In The Sky"), but even in this particular case we used the analogue tapes for cutting.
We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.
To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects - excluding the exception above - and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.1. Angel
2. Crosstown Traffic/ Little Miss Lover
3. Castles Made of Sand/Foxey Lady
4. Up From the Skies
5. 1983 - A Merman I Should Turn to Be
6. Voodoo Child (Slight Return)
7. Gypsy Eyes
9. Castles Made of Sand
10. Up From the Skies
11. Gypsy Eyes$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Milestones (Mono)Masterwork is Oft-Overlooked Link Between Round About Midnight and Kind of Blue
Vanguard Sonics: Mobile Fidelity Reissue Presents The 1958 Standard with Unparalleled Sound Quality
In MONO You Will Not Hear a Better Analog Edition
Only Record to Feature Davis Original Sextet, Including Rhythm Section of Paul Chambers and Philly Joe Jones
Title Track Stands as First-Ever Modal Composition Even as Blues and Hard-Bop Flavors Make LP One of Davis Most Explosive Affairs
Sketches of Spain, Kind of Blue, Round About Midnight, Four & More, and In a Silent Way Also Available from Mobile Fidelity
Miles Davis created just one studio album with his original sextet. He made every moment count. Pairing with Cannonball Adderley, John Coltrane, Red Garland, Paul Chambers, and Philly Joe Jones, the trumpeter not only laid the groundwork for the modalism that immediately followed but tailored a genuine modern-jazz masterwork laden with performances among the most explosive of his distinguished career. Due to its sandwiched position between the more famous Round About Midnight and epochal Kind of Blue, Milestones remains, for too many music lovers, an overlooked classic.
Part of Mobile Fidelitys Miles Davis catalog restoration series, Milestones has been restored to mono for the first time as to expose the records standing as one of the all-time great jazz efforts.Mastered from the original master tapes and pressed at RTI, this unsurpassed 180g mono LP edition grants each musician their own space in a well-defined, broadened soundstage. Colors, shapes, and dimensions appear in the manner they do when beheld from behind a studio-control rooms window.
Davis burnished trumpet? Rendered in three-dimensional perspective, coaxing his mates out to play with unburdened zest and commotion. Coltranes trademark saxophone? Witness it in life-size proportion, his solos working in tandem with and against the driving rhythms. Garlands swaggering piano lines? Visualize the 88 keys as he hits full stride, the chords and fills slithering around skeletal frameworks.
If anything, Milestones is as famous for its title track as the players that produced it. The launching pad for many of Davis (and later, his contemporaries) improvisational flights, the singular piece invites the tessellated explorations Coltrane would forever chase as well as the headliners argyle solo work, who broaches territories that far exceed what he had done with his bop-rooted past. Every song is a highlight, whether its the bravado No Jackle, featuring a hot-foot pace and bebop strains, or Sids Ahead, which continues the albums blues theme while tossing around edgy harmonics and inside-out structures.
Then theres Straight, No Chaser, the absolutely definitive rendition of Thelonious Monks signature piece. Coltranes marbled playing pulls at the tunes lobed borders, Adderley takes liberty with solos, and Davis dances around his mates, at one point quoting When the Saints Go Marching In while demonstrating his knowledge of tradition and eye towards the future. A milestone if there ever was. And now, in resplendent mono.
This title is not eligible for discount.1. Dr. Jackle
2. Sids Ahead
3. Two Bass Hit
5. Billy Boy
6. Straight, No Chaser$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl Mono LP - Sealed Buy Now
Sketches Of Brunswick EastSketches of Brunswick East, a collaboration with LA tripster troupe Mild High Club, is a chance to get to know King
Gizzard's sunny, playful side. Where previous albums have slipped down sonic worm-holes to explore distant
galaxies, this one is an examination of (and homage to) the Melbourne suburb in which King Gizzard write & record
in their own studio. A nod to Miles Davis's Sketches of Spain, this album sees the band further exploring a
Tropicalia element only ever previously hinted at.1. Sketches Of Brunswick East I
5. Cranes, Planes, And Migraines
6. The Spider And Me
7. Sketches Of Brunswick East II
8. Dusk To Dawn On Lygon Street
9. The Book
10. A Journey To (S)Hell
11. Rolling Stoned
12. You Can Be Your Silhouette
13. Sketches Of Brunswick East III$22.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
In A Silent Way (Awaiting Repress)Float Into the Ether: Gorgeous 1969 Experimental Treasure Among the Most Atmospheric Jazz Albums Ever Recorded
Delicate, Immersing, Dynamic: Mobile Fidelity Reissue Magnifies the Bold Textures, Soothing Ambience, and Transcendent Moods
Davis First Fusion Album Features John McLaughlin, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Joe Zawinul, Wayne Shorter, Dave Holland, and Tony Williams
Sketches of Spain, Kind of Blue, Milestones, Round About Midnight, and Four & More Also Available from Mobile Fidelity
Shhh. The command to be quiet is no just part of the title of one of the two sprawling compositions on this pioneering album. Its also an apt metaphor for the relaxed hypnotism and spaced-out atmosphere that define In a Silent Way, a record that pushes the boundaries of studio possibilities, artist-producer relationships, and rock-jazz chasms. Recognized as Miles Davis first full-on fusion effort and part of his electric era, the 1969 landmark claims a Whos Who lineup that sends the music into an ethereal stratosphere.
Part of Mobile Fidelitys Miles Davis catalog restoration series, In a Silent Way now immerses the listener in linoleate landscapes starlit by the intuition, suspension, and paradoxes wrought by a once-in-a-lifetime collective. Half-speed mastered from the original master tapes and pressed at RTI, this unsurpassed 180g LP edition lifts the veil on the cutting-edge assembly process that created the pair of lengthy suites. Helmed by three electric instruments, the beveled compositions melt away all preconceived notions of jazz, rock, and ambience, following a loose theory Davis dubbed New Directions.
Few albums are so delicately textured. And on Mobile Fidelitys meticulous analog reissue, such sulcate elements pour over ink-black backgrounds on a canyon-wide soundstage. In particular, Tony Williams inventive percussive touch he causes the cymbals to shimmer as a pieces of silver tend to do when exposed to sunlight is broadcast with lifelike three-dimensional qualities, the panoramic view extending to Davis nocturnal trumpet, Wayne Shorter's ribbon-unfurling saxophone, Dave Hollands extrapolative bass, and the mosaic of keys.
If the records only accomplishment is its introduction of guitarist John McLaughlin to the world, it alone would be enough. Yet In a Silent Way continues to bedazzle, puzzle, and inspire for myriad reasons not the least of which is the seemingly telepathic communicative methods employed by the groups members. The lineup is great on paper, but, if its even possible, the octet sounds even better in practice, with the instruments and tonalities conjoining in avant-garde communion like hyper-sensitive tentacles exploring the stippled landscapes of an undiscovered planet.
Diverting from expectation, tubular grooves twist, turn, and spin, sometimes piling atop of each other, always shying away from structure and melody. Ellipsoidal solos provide hesitant guidance, ranging from Chick Corea's Fender Rhodes phrases to Davis decorative spirals. And as color is the primary unit of currency on Davis Sketches of Spain, laidback episodes, geometric spaces, and quiet sensuality reign here, with the sets maverick reputation attained via musings on solitude rather than explosions of noise.
Controversial for the period, the heavily edited production of In a Silent Way blew open the once-locked doors on what producers could attempt and how artists could assist them. Knitted together as one would construct a cross-hatched quilt, songs contain grafts of repeat passages that provide unifying structure and experimental continuity. What a statement.
This title is not eligible for discount.1. Shhh/Peaceful
2. In a Silent Way/Its About That Time$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
Four & MoreExhilarating and Immediate: Live Set Documents One of Davis Final Excursions With a Program of Standards
Hear the Interior of Philharmonic Hall at New Yorks Lincoln Center Come Alive: Mobile Fidelitys Fastidious Reissue Illuminates Venue Acoustics, Musicians Phrasings
Whirlwind Uptempo Pace Prodded by Tenor Saxophonist George Coleman and Drummer Tony Williams
Sketches of Spain, Kind of Blue, Milestones, Round About Midnight, and In a Silent Way Also Available from Mobile Fidelity
Given his gargantuan recorded output, Miles Davis seldom abandoned a conceptual vision in the studio, particularly after the turn of the 1960s. Which makes a live document such as Four & More all the more valuable for the manner in which it portrays the legendary trumpeter removed from thematic demands and interior confines, and instead letting loose onstage with a program of stellar material that hed soon abandon in favor of experimentalism.
Part of Mobile Fidelitys Miles Davis catalog restoration series, Four & More engages with electrifying speed and palpable punch, the effort now claiming vastly improved imaging, deeper soundstaging, and startling clarity. Half-speed mastered from the original master tapes and pressed at RTI, this unsurpassed analog edition teems with the urgency demonstrated by Davis and his band notes flooding the listener with an attack only possible from sound featuring full frequency extension, tremendous spacing, and you-are-there immediacy.
Recorded on February 12, 1964 in Philharmonic Hall at New Yorks Lincoln Center, Four & More bookends My Funny Valentine. Whereas the latter spotlights ballads, this thrilling souvenir is all about quick tempos, rushing solos, left-hook rhythms, and hard-bop grooves. Drawing largely on mid- and late-1950s material, Davis accompanied by bassist Ron Carter, drummer Tony Williams, saxophonist George Coleman, and pianist Herbie Hancock approaches standards such as So What, Seven Steps to Heaven, and Four with biting tenacity and furious passion, the individual themes racing by as the collective barges in to take rapid, punctuation-asserting solos.
Few, if any, live Davis performances match the hurricane-generating intensity and dynamic aggressiveness captured here. One reason for the vigor? Davis waived he and his musicians fees for the concert, taking place under the auspices of a political benefit, a decision that angered some of his sidemen. Whatever the cause, Hancock swings, Coleman flexes muscles, Carter bows instructive passages, and the 19-year-old phenom Williams throws down with breathtaking agility. Amidst the melodic tangents and galloping exchanges, the quintet retains gripping control, with eight-bar dialogues between the instrumentalists and positive vamps supplying cues and endings.
At last, these historic recordings are afforded the breathing room and acoustic perspective they've always deserved. For listeners that may be unfamiliar with this title, prepare to be blown away literally and figuratively. Aficionados know what to expect on the music front, but Mobile Fidelitys 180g LP reissue ratchets up the thrills by several levels. Don't miss this gem.
This title is not eligible for discount.1. So What
6. Seven Steps to Heaven
7. There Is No Greater Love
8. Go-Go$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Round About Midnight (Awaiting Repress)Hipness Personified: Davis Columbia Records Debut Highlights His Diverse Palette and Famed Quintet
Lifelike Sonics: Mobile Fidelity Presents This Standard with a Dynamic Sound That Allows You to Picture Davis Mouth as He Blows Harmon-Muted Trumpet
Blowing Cool and Hot Jazz: Quintet Plays Reflective Ballads, Pop Standards, and Fervent Bop on One of Eras Only Complete Start-to-Finish Full-Length LPs
Sketches of Spain, Milestones, Kind of Blue, Four & More, and In a Silent Way Also Available from Mobile Fidelity
Miles Davis first album for Columbia, Round About Midnight, represents both the beginning of a three-plus-decade relationship with the famed label as well as the start of an extended collaboration with then-unknown saxophonist John Coltrane. As one of the eras only complete start-to-finish full-length LPs, the 1957 set stands as a hard-bop benchmarka summation of the styles that came before its creation, an immersion into the periods cutting-edge strains, and a hint of the rivoluse modalism that would follow.
Part of Mobile Fidelitys Miles Davis catalog restoration series, Round About Midnight now resonates with a physical palpability and emotional heft never before experienced. Mastered from the original master tapes and pressed at RTI, this unsurpassed 180g LP edition traces the individual paths each musician takes in contributing to the whole, whether its pianist Red Garlands left hand spinning actinoid chords or Coltrane infusing a tune with harmony-defying fills that suggest arabesque patterns. Recorded at three separate sessions, the music has never sounded so cohesive, immediate, or involving.
Historically, few jazz records claim the significance boasted by Round About Midnight. The albums creationand the assembly of Davis quintet, which also includes Paul Chambers and Philly Joe Jonesstems from the headliners rousing rendition of the title-inspired track, Round Midnight, a Thelonious Monk standard, at the 1955 Newport Jazz Festival. Stunning the audience with an interpretation that witnessed him personalize the composition with a brooding tone made possible via employment of his soon-to-be-trademark Harmon mute, Davis redefined perspective and possibility, taking ownership of the ballad as his own, and further improving upon its reach in the studio. It wasnt the composers only surprise.
'Round About Midnight thrives due to diversity and consistency, a rare combination epitomized by the first-rate selection and astonishing performance of pensive ballads, bebop classics, pop standards, and folk pieces. Witness the counterpoint exchanges during Ah-Leu-Cha and its Dixieland shades. Soak up the progressive drama and swinging tempos on All of You and Bye Bye Blackbird. Delight in the mÉlange of latticed textures and schematic moods throughout the sequence, here presented in gorgeous fidelity, zeroing in on Davis warm, plush, rich, and close-up trumpet timbres and how, by playing his instrument right near the microphone, he infuses the arrangements with the sort of daring intimacy embraced by two lovers.
Tension, suggestiveness, calm, mystery, nostalgia: All here. Gather now, Round About Midnight. Slip on a pair of shades, draw the curtains, slouch into a chair, and light a cigarette. This is Miles and Co. at their best. Hipness personified.
This title is not eligible for discount.1. Round Midnight
3. All of You
4. Bye Bye Blackbird
5. Tadds Delight
6. Dear Old Stockholm$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
Ole Coltrane (Mono Remaster) (Out Of Stock)Mono Remaster
The complicated rhythm patterns and diverse sonic textures on OlÉ Coltrane are evidence that John Coltrane was once again charting his own course. His sheer ability as a maverick -- beyond his appreciable musical skills -- guides works such as this to new levels, ultimately advancing the entire art form.
Historically, it's worth noting that recording had already commenced two days prior to this session on Africa/Brass, Coltrane's debut for the burgeoning Impulse! label. The two sets complement each other, suggesting a shift in the larger scheme of Coltrane's musical motifs. The assembled musicians worked within a basic quartet setting, featuring Coltrane on soprano and tenor sax, McCoy Tyner on piano, and Elvin Jones on drums, with double-bass chores held down by Art Davis and Reggie Workman. Added to that are significant contributions and interactions with trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and Eric Dolphy on flute and alto sax (although Dolphy's contract with another record label prevented him from being properly credited on initial pressings of the album).
The title track is striking in its resemblance to the Spanish influence heard on Miles Davis' Sketches of Spain. This is taken a bit further as Coltrane's combo stretches out with inspired improvisations from Dolphy, Hubbard, Tyner, and Coltrane, respectively. OlÉ likewise sports some amazing double-bass interaction. The combination of a bowed upright bass played in tandem with the same instrument that is being plucked has a sinister permeation that undoubtedly excited Coltrane, who was perpetually searching for sounds outside the norm. The haunting beauty of Aisha stands as one of the finest collaborative efforts between Tyner, the song's author, and Coltrane. The solos from Hubbard, Dolphy, and an uncredited Tyner gleam from within the context of a single facet in a multi-dimensional jewel.
- Lindsay Planer (AllMusic.com)>1. Ole (Mono Version)
2. Dahomey Dance (Mono Version)
3. Aisha (Mono Version)$21.99Vinyl LP Mono - Sealed Temporarily out of stock