Bill Evans – Montreux II

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A distinguished member of the Better Records Jazz Hall of Fame.

Both sides here have the kind of solid, full-bodied tonality that’s really crucial to making sense of this music. There’s plenty of space and ambience here as well!

TRACK LISTING

Side One

Introduction
Very Early
ALFIE
Skidoo

Side Two

How My Heart Sings
Israel
I Hear A Rhapsody
Peri’s Scope

AMG Review

Bill Evans’ second recording at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1970 was a highly anticipated concert, finding the pianist in peak form, accompanied by bassist Eddie Gómez and drummer Marty Morell. His originals include the rhapsodic “Very Early,” the turbulent “34 Skidoo,” and an aggressive rendition of “Peri’s Scope.” His introspective take of Burt Bacharach’s “Alfie” is played at a leisurely tempo, while his take of Earl Zindars’ “How My Heart Sings” simmers slowly to a boil. His driving setting of Johnny Carisi’s “Israel” has an intense Eddie Gómez solo and a lively exchange with Morell as its centerpiece.

While this is a terrific live performance, there are sound problems, including what sounds like bleeding of the stage monitors into the mix, and there are muddy spots in the recording as well, particularly during some of Gómez’s solos. Master engineer Rudy Van Gelder tackled the remastering of this CTI LP, but there was only so much he could do with what was preserved on the original tape, so the CBS CD reissue, which strangely contains no bonus tracks, does not sound that much better than the original record.

[Naturally we take issue with the sonic assessments above. We did not hear any of the problems the reviewer described. If you buy this record and you do hear them please let us know. Of course as always you may return the record for a full refund if you are not happy with it in any way. We think it sounds great!]