With the 1968 album Miles in the Sky, Miles Davis explicitly pushed his second great quintet away from conventional jazz, pushing them toward the jazz-rock hybrid that would later become known as fusion. Here, the music is still in its formative stages, and it's a little more earth-bound than you might expect, especially following on the heels of the shape-shifting, elusive Nefertiti. On Miles in the Sky, much of the rhythms are straightforward, picking up on the direct 4/4 beats of rock, and these are illuminated by Herbie Hancock's electric piano -- one of the very first sounds on the record, as a matter of fact -- and the guest appearance of guitarist George Benson on "Paraphernalia." All of these additions are tangible and identifiable, and they do result in intriguing music, but the form of the music itself is surprisingly direct, playing as extended grooves. This meanders considerable more than Nefertiti, even if it is significantly less elliptical in its form, because it's primarily four long jams. Intriguing, successful jams in many respects, but even with the notable additions of electric instruments, and with the deliberately noisy "Country Son," this is less visionary than its predecessor and feels like a transitional album -- and, like many transitional albums, it's intriguing and frustrating in equal measures.
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Performance CreditsMiles Davis Primary Artist,Trumpet
George Benson Guitar,Electric Guitar
Ron Carter Bass
Herbie Hancock Piano,Electric Piano
Wayne Shorter Tenor Saxophone
Tony Williams Drums
Technical CreditsBob Belden Liner Notes,Reissue Producer
Chris Albertson Liner Notes
Michael Cuscuna Reissue Producer
Arthur Kendy Engineer
Frank Laico Engineer
Teo Macero Producer
John Snyder Producer
Mark Wilder Remixing
Francis Wolff Insert Photography
Allen Weinberg Art Direction
Randall Martin Reissue Design
Jan Persson Insert Photography
Nicholas Bennett Packaging Manager
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Miles in the Sky [Bonus Tracks] based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
This album is just one step closer to Electric Miles. It features Herbie Hancock on the Fender Rhodes electric for the first time, and though he plays it beautifully, one can tell he is still mastering it. Very interesting as far as that aspect is concerned. The compositions are all excellent, including one by Tony Williams called "Black Comedy" which has much rhythmic intricacy, as can be expected from the drumming genius. This album is a must for Miles fans, especially if trying to track his progress towards electric.