Before The Beatles were around, Jazz music had really hit its full swing. Miles Davis came along with some interesting, consistent, and unique listening experience, including this one. Named Sketches Of Spain after the fact that this is pseudo-Spanish music, it is a true classic in its own right and one which would influence others for many years.
Let’s take a listen and see how it stands out from other releases, track by track.
We begin with Concierto de Aranjuez: Adagio which starts with subtle yet racing instrumentation, before going into a slow and awesome Spanish Jazz experience. The lone trumpet which is expertly played here is really moody sounding. It’s something good, for sure. It’s totally different compared to other Miles Davis releases out there. There is no real percussion here, strangely enough, but this music does not demand it. Many horns make this piece come alive, fading in and out of one another. It’s a highly suspenseful piece to listen to. It slows right down in the middle of the piece, perfect for the trumpet solo here. It’s a sort of piece decidedly deliberately slow, but never boring. The horns really do tell a unique story here. It’s something you can close your eyes and listen to. This piece is full of twists and turns, surprisingly so, being over 15 minutes long. It almost sounds like something out of a Wild West movie. Great stuff to listen to.
Next is Will O’ the Wisp which is very short for this album, being under four minutes long. It sounds almost James Bond-like but is a great and short piece that is catchy. It just goes to show the real brilliance of Miles Davis, a true master of Jazz music. It sounds rather discordant at the end, which is unusual but interesting.
The Pan Piper follows. It’s another short and interesting piece to grace this album. Sounding very intense and moody, this piece is a strange sort of music to be made and listened to. Still, it is good and consistent listening, another piece of genius by Miles Davis. The repeated horn melody in it is excellent.
Saeta comes next, with its haunting melody to begin with, before a second melody arrives, sounding triumphant. It’s highly likely that this sort of music was an inspiration for some of the horn parts on albums such as The Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. It’s another unique and wonderful Spanish music piece to listen to. It’s short and sweet, another wonderful listen. It builds up with such wonderful ingeniousness towards the end, another great Miles Davis piece. It fades out very slowly the trumpet at the end.
Lastly, we arrive at Solea. It’s another longer than expected piece, being over 15 minutes yet again, so listen away. It is a great listening experience, as much of the rest of the album here. The melodies are cleverly well thought out. Some marching drums and double bass then come in, surprising us to the next section of the track. The multisectioned horn parts here are fantastic. It just goes to show how well Miles Davis understood what he was doing musically. The frenetic horns are just brilliant. Various instruments come in and out of this piece slowly and subtly, pointing to the brilliance of this all. Needless to say, the whole thing is brilliant and definitely worth your time. It builds up further into a crescendo, unique, and awesome to hear at the same time. It’s an A+ Grade sort of brilliance here and must be listened to be understood. It mysteriously fades out, before the second section goes bang into your ears. It’s a great way to finish this piece and album.
This album is one of the best jazz releases of Miles Davis, and of all time. It has inspired so many great works out there, one is compelled to listen to this particular album. If you have a passing interest or serious interest in Jazz music, check out this album. It’s a great listen for sure.