The Major Works of John Coltrane

The Major Works Of John Coltrane


Over the course of two crucial discs, The Major Works of John Coltrane compiles the saxophonist's most important extended free jazz pieces from 1965. This is the material that made Coltrane a giant of the avant-garde, completely casting off the limits of melody, harmony, and tonality that he'd been straining against. All the performances feature Coltrane's classic quartet augmented by Pharoah Sanders and several others, depending on the session. Literally and figuratively, the biggest piece here is of course "Ascension," the album-length, 11-piece free improvisation that finally picked up the gauntlet thrown down by the release of Ornette Coleman's Free Jazz four years earlier. Present in both of its two takes, it's among the most frightening jazz performances ever committed to tape, pairing Coltrane's search for spiritual transcendence with a screeching ferocity (courtesy of five saxophones) that never lets up. Ascension was far more abrasive and visceral than Free Jazz, benefiting from four years of development in jazz's avant-garde, which helped make each individual player's voice more suited to this kind of chaotic, textural music. Not all of Coltrane's free work was this consistently extreme, but it did come close in isolated moments. The incantatory "Om" expands on Ascension by contrasting the same sort of passionate, banshee-scream ensembles with eerie, meditative passages, bookending the piece with poetic recitations. "Kulu Se Mama," based on a song by percussionist/vocalist Juno Lewis, further explores the ritualistic dimension of "Om" with subtle hints of danceability and Creole/Caribbean flavor. "Selflessness" is the most conventional of the pieces, starting out like a standard Coltrane Quartet piece before moving into the large-ensemble explorations. There's a lot to digest here, but as an encapsulation of Coltrane's freest and most challenging music, there's no better place to turn. ~ Steve Huey, Rovi

  • Condition: Used - Good
    HPB condition ratings
    • New: Mint condition or still sealed (SS). Absolutely perfect in every way. New.
    • Fine/Like New (EX): No defects, little sign of use, well cared for. Plays perfectly. Close to new. Not necessarily sealed or unused, but close. Could be an unopened promotional or cut item. Sometimes called: mint-minus.
    • Very Good (VG): Will show some signs that it was played and otherwise handled by a previous owner who took good care of it.
    • Good (G): Attractive and well cared for, but no longer fresh. Minor signs of wear, scuffing or scratching, but will play almost perfectly. For vinyl: barely detectable crackles or pops.
    • Fair (FR): This item is in okay condition. For vinyl: good is not so good and the record may have low level crackles or pops when playing. CD: one or more tracks may skip.
    • Poor (P): Obviously well-worn and handled. Most vinyl collectors will not buy good or below, but some tracks on CD or vinyl will play.
    Conditions Guide
  • Format: Compact Disc
  • Sold by: HPB Mesa
  • Seller rating:
  • Label: Impulse!
  • UPC: 011105011327


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Track listings

  • Disc 1:
  • 1. Ascension (Edition I)
  • 2. Om
  • Disc 2:
  • 1. Ascension (Edition Ii)
  • 2. Kulu Se Mama
  • 3. Selflessness
 
HPB condition ratings
  • New: Item is brand new, unused and unmarked, in flawless condition.
  • Fine/Like New (F): No defects, little usage. May show remainder marks. Older books may show minor flaws.
  • Very Good (VG): Shows some signs of wear and is no longer fresh. Attractive. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Good (G): Average used book with all pages present. Possible loose bindings, highlighting, cocked spine or torn dust jackets. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Fair (FR): Obviously well-worn, but no text pages missing. May be without endpapers or title page. Markings do not interfere with readability. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Poor (P): All text is legible but may be soiled and have binding defects. Reading copies and binding copies fall into this category. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
Conditions Guide
HPB condition ratings
  • New: Mint condition or still sealed (SS). Absolutely perfect in every way. New.
  • Fine/Like New (EX): No defects, little sign of use, well cared for. Plays perfectly. Close to new. Not necessarily sealed or unused, but close. Could be an unopened promotional or cut item. Sometimes called: mint-minus.
  • Very Good (VG): Will show some signs that it was played and otherwise handled by a previous owner who took good care of it.
  • Good (G): Attractive and well cared for, but no longer fresh. Minor signs of wear, scuffing or scratching, but will play almost perfectly. For vinyl: barely detectable crackles or pops.
  • Fair (FR): This item is in okay condition. For vinyl: good is not so good and the record may have low level crackles or pops when playing. CD: one or more tracks may skip.
  • Poor (P): Obviously well-worn and handled. Most vinyl collectors will not buy good or below, but some tracks on CD or vinyl will play.
Conditions Guide
HPB condition ratings
  • New: This movie is unopened and brand new.
  • Fine/Like New (EX): Near new. No defects, little sign of use. Plays perfectly. Not necessarily sealed or unused, but close. No skipping; no fuzzy or snowy frames in VHS.
  • Very Good (VG): Attractive and well cared for but no longer fresh. Minor signs of wear, but will play almost perfectly. For VHS: barely detectable distortion or very few fuzzy or snowy frames.
  • Good (G): This item is in okay condition and basically works well. There may be some minor distortion on VHS tape; slight scratching or wear on DVD.
  • Fair (FR): Basically plays, but may be obviously well-worn with some scratching or tape distortion.
  • Poor (P): Disc or tape is intact, but may be scratched or stretched. There may be skips or distortion or product defects.
Conditions Guide
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