ALICE COLTRANE — Universal Consciousness / Lord of Lords (review)

ALICE COLTRANE — Universal Consciousness / Lord of Lords album cover Boxset / Compilation · 2011 · Avant-Garde Jazz Buy this album from MMA partners
3/5 ·
snobb
A fresh re-release combining the first and third (final) of Alice Coltrane's trilogy albums, this is a great gift for fans of her music. Tagged as "Remastered" (I can't compare if there are any improvement as I never heard the original vinyl releases),this CD contains just the two albums mentioned above - no bonuses.

Although they are part of the same trilogy, both albums are quite different from each other. The first one, "Universal Consciousness", is an extremely complex and ambitious work, mostly pre-composed and perfectly played by Alice plus a rhythm section and a 16-piece string orchestra. By far not an easy listening experience, this album combines free jazz and modal elements and even if it is very different from Alice's earlier works, it stands as a monumental work, one comparable to the greatest examples of her legacy. Jack DeJohnette demonstrates outstanding drumming here as well.

The second album from this compilation is a quite different one. Still the same string orchestra is in collaboration, but the rhythm section is changed to drummer Ben Riley and Charley Haden on bass (changed from DeJohnette and bassist Jimmy Garrison on the first album), but the main difference is the music itself - the biggest part of this album contains pre-composed modern classical music with minimum to no improvisation. The album's central composition is Stravinsky's "Excerpts from The Firebird", and only the last two compositions return the listener back to more of a jazz sound. Heavily orchestrated and often very bombastic, this album sounds really far from Alice's lively jazz of her earlier works. With just a few nice moments, "Lord Of Lords" is really not the album for everyone's taste.

In all, even "Universal Consciousness" is not enough of a reason to own this release, if you still don't own it already. In all cases, this is not the best entry point for newcomers, more of a release for Alice's fans.

Share this review

Review Comments

Post a public comment below | Send private message to the reviewer
Please login to post a shout
No shouts posted yet. Be the first member to do so above!

JMA TOP 5 Jazz ALBUMS

Rating by members, ranked by custom algorithm
Albums with 30 ratings and more
A Love Supreme Post Bop
JOHN COLTRANE
Buy this album from our partners
Kind of Blue Cool Jazz
MILES DAVIS
Buy this album from our partners
The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady Progressive Big Band
CHARLES MINGUS
Buy this album from our partners
Blue Train Hard Bop
JOHN COLTRANE
Buy this album from our partners
My Favorite Things Hard Bop
JOHN COLTRANE
Buy this album from our partners

New Jazz Artists

New Jazz Releases

Joyride Post Bop
CASE KÄMÄRÄINEN
Buy this album from MMA partners
Aki Takase, Daniel Erdmann : Isn't It Romantic? 21st Century Modern
AKI TAKASE
Buy this album from MMA partners
soulpipe Nu Jazz
SOULPIPE
Buy this album from MMA partners
Jorn Swart’s Malnoia : Hello Future Post-Fusion Contemporary
JORN SWART
Buy this album from MMA partners
More new releases

New Jazz Online Videos

Here's the Light
CHES SMITH
snobb· 16 hours ago
Ganga
NOAH BLESS
js· 1 day ago
The Last Snowstorm
JORN SWART
js· 1 day ago
Disconnections (Official Video)
FINAL STEP
js· 1 day ago
More videos

New JMA Jazz Forum Topics

More in the forums

New Site interactions

More...

Latest Jazz News

members-submitted

More in the forums

Social Media

Follow us