John Coltrane – Interplay

John Coltrane – Interplay / 2007 Prestige / 34 Tracks / /

This 5 CD set covers a 3 year period in John Coltrane’s career, when ey played with the Prestige Group; these fifty-year old recordings are given a 24-bit remastering from the original tapes. This remastering allows the recordings, feature also feature Kenny Burrell, Jimmy Cobb, Paul Chambers, and Red Garland, to shine in a way that they have never done beyond when they were first committed to tape all those years ago. More so than the actual recordings, there are a number of extra bits and pieces present that will allow individuals to get a better idea of what was happening in this period, and to construct the context in which the tracks on “Interplay” were originally crafted.

Of particular note during this set is the 64 page booklet that provides a number of photographs, so that individuals can put a body to the sweet tones that issue forth through all 5 of these CDs. Also, there are liner notes by the very well established historians of music, Lewis Porter and Nat Hentoff. Finally, for those individuals that regret not having the original vinyl, there are copies of the artwork and notes from the original vinyl reproduced in this box set. Throw in a very heavy duty construction, and individuals have something that they can proudly show on a bookshelf or other visible part of a room without anything in the way of embarrassment. There are good and bad thingsd here in regards to the amount of material present from these five albums: Prestige has included and deleted certain songs. For example, “Wheelin’ and Dealin’” has alternative takes of the title tracks, but there is a track missing from both “The Cats” and “Chattin’ With Coltrane and Quinichette” that removes some of the context in which individuals are supposed to take the entirety of the album.

Regardless of these exclusions, the rich sound that is present during each of the set’s 34 tracks will ensure that individuals will have months of enjoyment plumbing the depths of each of these compositions. Furthermore, for fans of Coltrane, this box set provides a great insight into what works would follow in the 9 or so years that were left of Coltrane’s life at the end of these sessions. More so than being insightful into Coltrane’s life, the set gives individuals information about what jazz was doing during this period and how it evolved from earlier forms and styles. Give this set a go.

Top Tracks: Dakar, Lyresto

Rating: 8.2/10

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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