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At The Montreux Jazz Festival (VME - Remastered) Original recording remastered, Live

4.8 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, Live, March 24, 1998
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 24, 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered, Live
  • Label: Verve Records
  • ASIN: B0000069NC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,811 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
For all of you jazz fans out there who, unfortunately, think of Bill Evans as the lush, smooth, romantic stylist, this album will come in as a shock. Evans turns in an absolutely powerhouse, intense performance; he swings the hardest he ever did, and his melodic lines are more acerbic and biting than usual. His chording is also much more dry and tense; it's almost like he had been jamming with Herbie Hancock before the concert. Sometimes his solos are hysterically intense, as on "Someday My Prince Will Come." Of course, having Jack De Johnette's angular, disjointed drumming contributes mightily to this previously unseen element in Evans' style. This album should disprove the lingering image of Evans as the "cocktail pianist" among great jazz keyboardists.
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By A Customer on October 24, 2002
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
We are fortunate to have a wealth of fine performances by Bill Evans to enjoy. Standouts are almost all of the Riverside trio performances (including the benchmark Village Vanguard discs with Scott Lefaro and Paul Motian), as well as the superb "Turn Out The Stars" box set with his last trio featuring Marc Johnson on bass and Joe Labara on drums.
"At The Montreux Jazz Festival" ranks with these stellar recordings. Jack DeJohnette is, in my opinion, one of the finest drummers (and musicians) we have, and even at this early stage (1968)he is mature and musical like almost no one else can be. Gomez was at a career high, and Evans's playing exceeds his usual fantastic standards.
Verve did a fine job with the 20 bit remastering, and included the entire set list.
Any fan of jazz piano trios should have this disc!
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Format: Audio CD
There have been a multitude of recordings from the Montreux Jazz Festival over the years. This is one of the first I ever heard and it remains my favourite. From the introductions to the trio in French (which somehow adds to the magic of the recording) right through to the last notes this is a classic recording.

The trio with Jack De Johnette and Eddie Gomez only existed for a short period of time but you'd never guess it from these recordings. The recording quality is crisp and sharp, baring in mind its 40 years old and the selection of material is an eclectic mixture of standards with a couple of Evans own originals (One for Helen & Walkin' Up) thrown in for good measure.

Highlights for me are the wonderful solo Piano rendition of 'I Loves You Porgy', which is the finest version of this Gershwin classic I know regardless of music genre. You can hear Evans marvellous touch and beautiful phrasing throughout this track. Second favourite is a surprisingly fiery version of 'Someday My Prince Will Come'.

Be in no doubt there are no weak tracks on this album and highlights abound thoughout it. Only time prevents me from writing about every single track.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Bill Evans plays with some real firepower on this CD, then lays back into some sweet ballads. The quick, aggressive playing of Eddie Gomez and playful, dancing drums of Jack DeJohnette sit nicely with the upbeat numbers. Bill gets to take some ballads by himself as well. This is really some good stuff from monster performers. It left me wanting more - unlike some of my other Bill Evans re-mastered CD's, there are no bonus cuts on this one.

Numerous good points aside, it did surprise me that this album earned a Grammy from the Recording Academy. Listening to this CD as a recording enthusiast was frustrating to me. In the full band numbers, the most prominent sounds were the clicking of the bass and the stick hitting the ride cymbal. The tone of the piano and bass were kind of buried in the background. The state of the art in live jazz recordings was well beyond this point (listen to some of the live recordings of Charlie Parker and Duke Ellington on Ultimate 16:Jazz Cafe ASIN: B000BF0E00), so the sound quality falls short of my expectations. Also, as wonderful a bass player as Eddie Gomez is, I don't enjoy a lot of long bass solos, especially when they are difficult to hear. Finally, repeated listening suggests some rhythmic tugs-of-war between Evans and DeJohnette - neither one plays "wrong", but their "beat placements" (front of the beat, back of the beat) seem to diverge a lot.

These points aside, this CD is a fine effort by Bill Evans and his band that gives a better perspective on his broad range of expression than his more subdued works.
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Format: Audio CD
I was really looking forward to this album and music wise I was not disappointed .

What I wanted to make clear is the eccentric way it sounds - this may not be important to all listeners , but it is to me as a person who sometimes listens on headphones .

The rhythm section instruments move all over the stereo image from song to song and this takes me out of the experience of listening , immersing myself in it and enjoying it to the fullest .

It is very good - I thought it was worth mentioning and it may be something that cannot be remixed or altered .
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