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Miles Davis: Miles at the Fillmore—Miles Davis 1970: The Bootleg Series Vol. 3 (Columbia Legacy)

Apr. 30, 2014
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Miles Davis was at one of his several career peaks in 1970 when he played at the Fillmore East, the New York theater whose eclectic concert bills played to a rock audience. With the release of his groundbreaking album Bitches Brew, Davis had “crossed over” from jazz to rock, straddling both worlds in precarious, fascinating unbalance.

These live sets find Davis and band in fiery cacophony. The funky rhythm section of Dave Holland (bass) and Jack DeJohnette (drums) conjured the spirit of Sly Stone; percussionist Airto Moreira added an echo of Brazilian carnival; keyboardists Chick Corea and Keith Jarrett invoked the spaciness of Sun Ra; and saxophonist Steve Grossman fought for time with Davis’ elliptical trumpet playing. The music would soon be dubbed “jazz fusion,” but was light years away from the genre that coalesced in the ’70s around Davis’ breakthroughs.

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