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  SME Records -
  Miles Davis: Miles Ahead
  "Miles Ahead"

Miles Davis
Track listing:
  Single Layer
Recording type:
Recording info:

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Related titles: 34 show all

Reviews: 5 show all

Review by analogue January 31, 2012 (4 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
A good Miles Davis and Gil Evans collaboration from 1957. And as a Japanese import no less.

Unlike many Davis albums this is actually a big band album with Miles keeping the flow and rhythm together but not soloing very much. Also his playing is not as morose or introspective as per the norm. I guess one could describe the feel of this disc as upbeat and positive. Yes....even Davis could play this way.

This sacd was mastered dsd from the original master tapes. There is no compression. I can imagine on some stereo systems that this disc could sound very tinny or bright but it is dependant on the set up. Certainly the brass cresendo's will give your tweeters a run for their money so be forewarned.
Soundwise I like this Japanese sacd. The recording is not as close miked as many other Davis discs but then again as it is big band music its obvious the techs were after capturing the whole big band experience which is actually quite extensive. Soundstage is good...the bottom end (bass) is decent. I cant say this recording is the very best there is but it is quite good indeed. The brass sections are impressive.
Seven steps to heaven, kind of blue and my funny valentine are superior in the palpable realism and recording technique but this is still a good disc. It holds its own.

Musicaly this disc is more up key in feel and actually more joyous. The music is smooth and dynamic and rather refreshing. Its nice to hear the direction of Evans as he keeps things limber and energetic. This album is very much a group affair and Davis is for the most part kept in check. He accents here and there but its a real membership gig if you catch my meaning.

Not much more to say. Give this one a try if you like to hear Davis playing something out of the norm. And Mr. Evans was a hell of a band leader and creative force.

Recommended. A solid release.

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Review by vonwegen August 27, 2005 (1 of 1 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
I must respectfully disagree with the other reviews about the sound quality, just because of the drop-outs during key songs. This is a great album marred by the age of the original 2-track mixdown tape that Sony Japan owns. I do think the Japanese engineers did a good job to get the best possible quality out of what they had.

The first track Springville sounds wonderful, but starting with The Maids Of Cadiz and continuing intermittantly for the remaining songs, I can hear tiny dropouts, probably because of the many edits required to piece these performances together (over 200 tape splices, according to the biography of Gil Evans that I have). The most glaring example occurs during the song Miles Ahead, where the stereo imaging vanishes midway through the song and cunningly reappears some 17 seconds later--it's not that obvious when you listen through speakers, but it's really noticeable with headphones.

Also, there is a fairly noticeable level of tape hiss, especially during the quiet passages.

In short, great album--really a Desert Island Disc for me, but it would be nice to hear a restored version mixed from the original multi-track masters like Sony did with "In A Silent Way" and "Sketches of Spain".

Oh, and if you live in Europe, I strongly recommend ordering this direct from instead of paying 25 Euros extra to get it thru

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Review by stvnharr July 30, 2004 (1 of 1 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This has always been my favorite of the Miles/Gil Evans discs. The cd was the one of the box set that got a LOT of play. And now in JSACD sound it is just stunning!!!
Though Sketches of Spain has garnered more renown thru the years, Miles Ahead is just as deserving.
Highly recommended

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