Commemorating its release in 1970 and profound impact on modern music, the 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition of Miles Davis' Bitches Brew are two CDs with the original 94-plus minutes of music plus six bonus tracks, and a third CD of a previously unissued performance at Tanglewood in August of 1970 featuring Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, Dave Holland, Jack DeJohnette, Airto Moreira, and Gary Bartz. If that isn't enough, there's a DVD of a previously unissued performance in Copenhagen in November of 1969, with Wayne Shorter, Corea, Holland, and DeJohnette.
Deluxe 71 disc box set that contains 52 single CD and double CD albums (which includes the previously unreleased full-length audio version of his 1970 Isle Of Wight performance). The essay is complemented by brief annotations written by Franck Bergerot, covering every single one of the 52 albums. The cornerstones of the box set are the studio and live albums that were released during his tenure at the label, more than 40 titles that he recorded in the 1950s, '60s, '70s and '80s.
This Collector's Edition presents a challenge to reviewers. There's so much of it. I could never do it any sort of justice if I approached this as if reviewing a smaller set. This, after all, comprises 37 CDs. As it is all I have been able to do is to sample, reminisce about known recordings and write around the subject. With this caveat stated, let's make a start.
There are three principal strands of Britten recordings. These are broadly tied into and defined by record companies, artists and eras. First we have Britten recording Britten for Decca.
This collaboration between electronic music whiz Robert Miles and percussionist Trilok Gurtu is its own curiosity piece. Full of lush, meandering soundscapes that employ everything from chilled-out jungle vistas to breakbeat and trip hop, from groove and creative jazz to the deep layering of traditional and popular Indian melodies from that country's classical, folk, and Bollywood traditions. Yet this set is hardly a mishmash: each of the record's 13 tracks are compositions as well as collaborations. Dynamics, textures, melodies, themes, and variations are all closely tailored for maximum effect…