Miles Davis
Sketches of Spain


5.0
classic

Review

by Kingadamx USER (18 Reviews)
January 16th, 2005 | 20 replies


Release Date: 1960 | Tracklist


This is another masterpiece by one of the finest, if not the best, jazz musician ever. Released one year after Kind of Blue in 1960, this album is not quite as captivating as Kind of Blue but I assure you that the listener will not be dissappointed by this album full of beauty and power, and this really is not like Kind of Blue at all. This album has a very spanish feel to it, hence the name. But it is not as heavy as one would think, In Rolling Stone it says that they weren't out to play Spanish music but to "suggest" it. The man who is responsible for arranging and conducting the music on this album is none other than Gil Evans. Evans has collaborated with Miles on two previous albums, Miles Ahead and Porgy and Bess. And in fact this album could just as easily be credited to Gil Evans instead of Miles Davis. I guess that at the time Miles Davis was so big that the records would sell a lot better under his name.

1. Concierto de Aranjuez - The album starts off with an epic masterpiece. The horns weave in and out as the castanets climb down to bring you into a drifting peace. The light bass line is perfect along with the flawless trumpet playing. Clocking in at 16 minutes but never getting dull, The sheer ambience of the horns is just mind blowing. It almost feels like they have achieved musical perfection, it is very hard to explain.
Rating: 5/5

2. Will O' the Wisp - A muted trumpet sound over the strange feel of the percussion that is perfect. You can tell by what the song is suggesting the standout trumpet line is the wisp and it stands over the rest of the band as it leads you through the song. The main line of the song played by the horns is a little eerie sounding and it seems like the song is suggesting an almost depressing nature to the melody as it drowns out at the end of the track.
Rating: 5/5

3. Pan Piper - The flutes seem to bring a brighter mood as you come out of the last song. The flutes and woodwinds really bring out the beauty of this piece. When the rhythm section joins in the song just feels much more jazzier than the earlier part of the song.
Rating: 5/5

4. Saeta - There is a sort of marching beat at the beginning of the song with the horns playing an accompaniment to the drums as you hear the other trumpet playing a much more depressing tune and kind of bringing the rest of the band down with it as it eases to take the lead of the song. The trumpet playing is just so perfect and incredible as always.
Rating: 4.75/5

5. Solea - I would say that this is the most spanish sounding song on the album because of the backing rhythm and horns. It is a much more brighter mood than the other tracks. The rest of the band is playing at a dancable rhythm when Miles just takes you away on this incredible song.
Rating: 5/5

A fine album that is not quite jazz nor is it quite spanish music. One thing it is is an excellent album. I really would reccomend this to any fan of jazz music or to music in general. If you are new to Miles you would probably be best off starting with Kind of Blue. By the way, this album on CD actually includes three bonus tracks that I didn't include in the review. I don't review bonus tracks because I feel that if they weren't originally released with the album then they really aren't part of the album as a whole. But that's just my opinion.



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user ratings (351)
Chart.
4.1
excellent
other reviews of this album
doug (4.5)
“I'll play it first and tell you what it is later.” – Miles Davis...

Tyler Fisher EMERITUS (4)
Miles takes Gil Evans' arrangements and compositions and puts his own jazzy soloing over them. Back...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Bartender
Emeritus
November 25th 2004


826 Comments


I already said it once, but again; thanks for doing more Miles Davis. This isn't one of the albums of his I've heard (though that's hardly surprising since I've only got three), so I can't comment further.

Zappa
November 25th 2004


355 Comments


This is a good album, but I don't happen to like it all that much. I just simply like Miles' collaborations with Gil Evans less than virtually all other eras of his career.

I must say, this review does cover the material fairly well, but the fact that you don't mention Gil even once in the whole review shows that you didn't really do your research. It's as much a product of Gil Evans' input as it is of Miles', if not more.

Kingadamx
November 25th 2004


120 Comments


^Yeah, I'm gonna add him I actually did read the booklet. It was rather stupid of me to not mention him.

Iai
Emeritus
November 25th 2004


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This is my favourite Miles Davis record.

Go figure.

EddieVanHalen007
November 25th 2004


26 Comments


Someone has to review In a Silent Way and Bitches Brew! Good review, Zappa is right to say that you didn't credit Gil Evans enough. Classic album.

Kingadamx
November 25th 2004


120 Comments


^Yeah I was actually thinking about reviewing In A Silent Way Tonight. And I did go back and credit Gil Evans. I really didn't credit any of the players on this album besides Miles either, there were just too many people to list, I just tried my best to review the Music on the album.

sum1soiledMyBongos
November 26th 2004


19 Comments


One of my favorite Miles albums.
Good review.

br3ad_man
Emeritus
December 17th 2004


2125 Comments


My copy has a different looking cover:

[IMG]http://members.aol.com/bstpt/DavisSketches.jpg[/IMG]

Great disc, especially since it only cost me 10 bucks.

owlandtree
December 17th 2004


47 Comments


Great album. Good review.

NekrophiliaK
December 18th 2004


1 Comments


i like miles davis but i found this album a little slower...... still awsome..

Woodstock
December 18th 2004


154 Comments


I have Kind Of Blue, and I'd love to listen to this, but my listening site has a glich in this album.

Great Review though.

Kingadamx
January 3rd 2005


120 Comments


[QUOTE=br3ad_man]My copy has a different looking cover:

[IMG]http://members.aol.com/bstpt/DavisSketches.jpg[/IMG]

Great disc, especially since it only cost me 10 bucks.[/QUOTE]
Yeah, I actually bought this, Kind of Blue, and In A Silent Way in a box set for $20, I thought it was a pretty good deal.

Iai
Emeritus
January 3rd 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This has now been displaced as my favourite jazz recod by Porgy & Bess.

Still a classic though.

Woodstock
January 3rd 2005


154 Comments


I recently bought this, and it's great. Now that I've listened to it, I see what a great job you did on the review.

Grant
February 15th 2005


26 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Great review, this is one of my favourite albums. Someone has to review Bitches Brew and In A Silent Way!

pixiesfanyo
June 16th 2005


1223 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Good album.

Very epic, compared to Davis' other work.

br3ad_man
Emeritus
June 17th 2005


2125 Comments


This is a good cd to listen to while studying. I listened to the whole thing the other week while studying maths. Maths is usually a chore, but this album made it enjoyable.

Meteora3255
June 24th 2005


194 Comments


I don't believe Miles Davis is the greatest jazz artist ever. Several other artists are just as deserving of the title as he is, such as John Coltrane, Louis Armstrong, Chick Corea, Charlie "Bird" Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Buddy Rich, Count Baise, Marshall Royal, Thad Jones, Duke Ellington, and Tommy Dorsey. True especially late in his career during his exploration of jazz fusion with artists such as John Scofield, Miles did do things to revolutionize jazz, but so did all of theses other artists. Miles wouldn't even be here if these other artists didn't pave the way for him. Miles is a great artisit but the greatest in Jazz ever, that may be a little much. Also, this genre of music is most comprhensively classified as Latin Jazz.This Message Edited On 06.24.05

masada
June 24th 2005


2733 Comments


I got this at our library, and I thought it was perfect cinema music. I think I fell asleep listening to it, but that's a good sign. It's relaxing.

For some reason, I always thought that this was released in 1949.

Iai
Emeritus
June 24th 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This has now been displaced as my favourite jazz recod by Porgy & Bess.

Still a classic though.

Man, that must have been AGES ago.

3.5/5.



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