A Love Supreme: Live in Seattle

Nov 15, 2021
Web Exclusive

By Austin Saalman


One of jazz’s great unprecedented recordings, John Coltrane’s 1965 masterwork A Love Supreme has garnered widespread recognition as both a classic and, more importantly, jazz age miracle, marking a triumphant turning point in musical thought and affecting an entire spectrum of listeners. The recently unearthed A Love Supreme: Live in Seattle possesses a wealth of sonic complexity and freewheeling creative expression, casting the game-changing saxophonist in a fresh light. This release, much like the studio album, stands as a genre landmark, reminding the listener of what is wholly right and truly good in modern music.

Recorded in October 1965 at Seattle’s Penthouse jazz club, A Love Supreme: Live in Seattle stands as a rare performance of Coltrane’s monumental work. Atmospherically, the album is raw, the soundscape punctuated with applause and the occasional cough, with Coltrane and his band maneuvering organically through each movement of the four-part suite. That this particular recording went undiscovered for nearly 60 years seems tragic, as it now ranks as one of jazz’s great live albums, showing Coltrane, though nearing the end of his life, still at the top of his game.

The burning energy of A Love Supreme: Live in Seattle is refreshing, its release a major moment in jazz music. John Coltrane is, as he claimed he one day hoped to become, a saint indeed, and the fact is just as evident here as it is on the studio recording. Jazz fans may rejoice, as this much-needed revelation is everything we’d hoped it would be. (www.johncoltrane.com)

Author rating: 9.5/10

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