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The five stars is for the melody on the vinyl, not the item itself. I am not nearly as familiar with this kind of melody as some of the other folks you might look to for reviews, but I do listen to a small bit of everything and know when something stands out from anything and everything else. This is one of those albums that I initially place on to listen to while I cleaned and puttered around my apartment. I eventually got all the chores done, but there were several times where I just had to stop, sit down, and listen with all of my attention. I know I can't speak for everyone, but this is the kind of style and soul I want I could hear in just a tenth - scratch that - one hundredth of modern music. The sound is rich without becoming muddy, the phrasing is excellent, the dynamics of all the musicians playing (and not playing, which is just as important) are top-notch. The packaging is flimsier than I would like, but the vinyl itself is a amazing addition to any collection, in my opinion. I'm sure most, if not all of Coltrane's albums could use a proper reproduction, with packaging designed to support preserve the vinyls. Overall, this fairly reprint was an perfect buy. My only complaint is that the sleeve is very, very thin.
So I've been intensely listening to Coltrane for all of, what, three months now? A novice to be sure. First, A Love Supreme, followed by some amazing albums from the Prestige collection (e.g., Coltrane (Prestige 7105)) and some amazing later items too (e.g., Sun Ship). But, as famous an album as Giant Steps is/was, I was afraid to throw down eleven bucks on it. I thought from the descriptions that it might be mostly just a musicianship-showoff album. After being shaken to my core by "A Love Supreme" and moved to tears by Ballads and incessantly tapping my foot to "Prestige 7105" I did not wish to hear Coltrane just zipping through insane technical pieces for the sake of insane technicality. I feared that maybe this was Coltrane's "Facing the Animal" period album, so to speak. And ok, maybe Countdown is a small showoffy-for the sake of showing off, but it's short, and fun none the less. And the rest of the album is simply fantastic. Moving, impressive, fun at times, brooding at others. Incredibly accessible, too. Likeable/knowable from the first listen on. GREAT STUFF, Giant Steps, this.
Thought I should add this since the description is not complete and is misleading. The vinyl deluxe edition does not include any tracks. It is the single vinyl Rhino 180 gram stereo reissue by Kevin Gray done at AcousTech Mastering.Had to edit my review because my copy is going back to Amazon. The mastering sounds amazing but the pressing is not so good. Lots of little marks all over side two which can be heard. Hopefully the replacement is okay.
Giant Steps isn't shy- Coltrane leaves nothing in the bag with this very grooving tenor sax extravaganza that is pure immortality. How he's able to play so quick and with such precision is truly amazing. Several Coltrane staples are featured on this legendary album, such as the title track, COUSIN MARY, and NAIMA. Coltrane takes hard bop to another dimension and level with this not to be missed masterpiece. Essential. 10/10
From the first tune, you will not regret this purchase. Giant Steps is an wonderful and musically head popping experience. Every track shows Coltrane at his finest plowing through ridiculously difficult passages and beautifully constructed melodies. Every track is staggering, but 'Giant Steps', 'Syeeda's Song Flute', and 'Spiral' are unforgettable. A must have for any jazz listener.
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There was an earlier pressing of Giant Steps I had stumbled across at a local record shop, in latest weeks. Although, I wasnt prepared to it the first time around. The second time I had specifically gone back to look at it. Upon pulling it out of the jacket/sleeve, while not in poor shape I felt the was a tad high. I waited, I then went and at looked at the problems for this album on discogs and noticed Atlantic had released a mono remaster recently and knew I had to pick it up. While always weary about fresh reissues, I generally will consider them if they're overseen or done by the original label (especially in Mono). Today I recieved this copy and was blown away by it. The print on the jacket and the jacket itself is thick, glossy, and not a thin scan like some reissues tend to out on. The vinyl feels solid and of course the sound to me, sounds awesome on this pressing. While I'm far from an audiophile I have a feeling this pressing would create one proud. None the less, I'm extremely satisfied with this and hope Atlantic maintains this sort of quality control with all their records moving forward.
This album is a landmark jazz recording. It includes arguably the finest tenor saxophone solo in the tune "Giant Steps." Two versions are presented: the blistering first track that makes most amateur saxophone players feel inferior and is endlessly studied by jazz saxophone students at melody schools, and a more laid-back e remainder of the album showcases Coltrane's playing before he veered into more esoteric areas. There is much here for the jazz fan, and any saxophone player should hear this as an example of what the instrument can do.If you are fresh to John Coltrane's music, begin here. It is a very amazing album on which to hear him in his prime.
This pressing of this all-time classic sounds like absolute garbage and is a crime versus music. The quality on side two is inexcusable, and is particularly revolting during the attractive "Naima." It's honestly unlistenable. The brushed snare can barely be heard above the surface noise and the piano is horribly distorted. Buyer beware. (081227520311)