John Coltrane only recorded one album as a leader for Blue Note, but it was the turning point of his career and one of his greatest hours. 31 at the time of 1957's Blue Train, Coltrane had been largely unknown just two years earlier. In 1955 he began a very important two-year stint with Miles Davis that gave him visibility and found him growing rapidly as an improviser. By 1957 when he left Davis and became a member of the Thelonious Monk Quartet for a few historic months, Coltrane had his own innovative voice.
He was at the top of the field along with Sonny Rollins and was considered a young giant. Coltrane's style, which often featured him, grouping together an explosive series of notes that were called sheets of sound, was unprecedented and years ahead of his contemporaries. Blue Train stands as proof of both Trane's originality and his dazzling style.
Heading an all-star hard bop sextet that included the 19-year old Lee Morgan (the brightest new trumpeter in jazz) and trombonist Curtis Fuller, Coltrane took an astounding solo on "Blue Train" (one in which every note in his long improvisation fits perfectly) and introduced what was arguably his greatest composition, "Moment's Notice."
All five performances on Blue Train (including a definitive rendition of "I'm Old Fashioned") are filled with memorable and classic moments. While Coltrane only worked for Alfred Lion on this one occasion, this very stirring set is full of timeless magic. After Blue Train was recorded, there was never again any doubt that John Coltrane was a giant.
This pressing is on SRX Vinyl. SRX stands for “Silent Running Xperience.” SRX is our own proprietary formula, conceived and developed by Rick Hashimoto of Record Technology and manufactured by Neotech. Its noise floor is fathoms lower than any other vinyl we know of out there past or present. Records pressed with it look like normal black discs until you hold them up to the light and see that they are translucent and smoky, silvery gray in color. The near-perfect silence of SRX Vinyl virtually frees the music from groove noise and draws you further into the listening space, setting it in relief so distinct, full and spacious it’s nearly sculptural. You hear more of what’s on the original tapes, not only of the notes played on the instruments but the experience of the event itself. That's why we call it Silent Running Xperience.
Like all Music Matters Jazz releases, this is cut from the original analog tapes, mastered by Ron Rambach and Kevin Gray at Cohearant Audio, and pressed at Record Technologies Inc (RTI). The gorgeous gatefold jacket is from Stoughton Printing in City of Industry, California and includes exclusively licensed photos from the original session inside.
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