“This is like finding a new room in the Great Pyramid” - Sonny Rollins
When the announcement of an unearthed lost John Coltrane album broke in the TTL newsroom, my first thought was “shit, I bet it’s some post-Meditations free jazz shit with Alice, Pharoah and Rashied” - not that that wouldn’t be a total blessing; it’s just that I’m still trying to work through his second quartet period output and wrap my head around it (haven’t made it very far). But imagine my delight to learn that the album in question was recorded on March 6, 1963 with Trane’s classic quartet (McCoy Tyner, Jimmy Garrison and Elvin Jones). Six months after Ballads and Duke Ellington & John Coltrane, the quartet booked the day at Rudy Van Gelder’s studio in New Jersey with Bob Thiele, just two days after Tyner recorded his Nights Of Ballads And Blues LP, and one day before the John Coltrane And Johnny Hartman album, all recorded in the same room. Both Directions At Once was shelved and the master tape was ultimately destroyed years later to cut down on Impulse Records’ storage space (yes, really). Luckily, Trane himself was given a spare copy, which has quietly remained in the possession of his first wife Naima’s family until now. On “Untitled Original 11383,” you can hear Trane chipping away at something new, hinting at the greatness later achieved on 1965’s A Love Supreme. Says Coltrane’s son Ravi, who helped prepare the release: “In 1963, all these musicians are reaching some of the heights of their musical powers. On this record, you do get a sense of John with one foot in the past and one foot headed toward his future.” Includes a stunning recording of “Impressions,” which was untitled at the time of this session and later became a jazz standard after a live recording on the album of the same name. Also includes an updated version of “Slow Blues” (previously recorded for the Lush Life album) and other Trane favorites which were later released on live albums: “One Up, One Down,” “Vilia” and Nat King Cole’s “Nature Boy.” This deluxe edition includes a second LP containing seven unused takes, housed in die-cut gatefold sleeve with printed inner sleeves, foldout inserts and extensive liner notes. Recommended.
- double vinyl pressing
- die-cut gatefold sleeve
- printed inner sleeves
- foldout inserts w/ liner notes
- release date: 06/29/18
- music label: Impulse! 2018
reviewed by nick nightingale 06/2018
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