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Final Gravity

Title - 'Birds Of Fire: Hybrid Multichannel SACD'
Artist - Mahavishnu Orchestra

For those not in the know, The Mahavishnu Orchestra was a jazz-rock fusion group led by John McLaughlin, active during 19711976 and again in 19841987 after major line-up changes.

The band's original line-up featured "Mahavishnu" John McLaughlin on acoustic and electric guitars, with members Billy Cobham on drums, Rick Laird on bass guitar (although Tony Levin was the first person McLaughlin called to join the band), Jan Hammer on electric and acoustic piano and synthesizer, and Jerry Goodman on violin.

This first incarnation of the ensemble was a multinational group: McLaughlin is from Yorkshire, England; Cobham from Panama; Hammer from Prague, Czechoslovakia; Goodman from Chicago, Illinois; and Laird from Dublin, Ireland. This group was considered an important pioneer in the jazz fusion movement. McLaughlin and Cobham met while performing and recording with Miles Davis during the Bitches Brew sessions.

McLaughlin was also influenced in his conception of the band by his studies with Indian guru Sri Chinmoy, who encouraged him to take the name "Mahavishnu" which means "Divine compassion, power and justice." or simply "Great Vishnu", an aspect of Vishnu.

The group's early music, represented on such albums as The Inner Mounting Flame (1971) and this newly-remastered Birds of Fire (1973), was entirely instrumental; their later albums had songs which sometimes featured R&B or even gospel/hymn-styled vocals. In the aforementioned two albums, the group goes from an energetic fusion of upbeat genres to very serene, chamber music-like tunes.

Birds of Fire was released in the first half of 1973 and is the last studio album released by the original Mahavishnu Orchestra line-up before the group dissolved. Consisting solely, as mentoned above, of compositions by John McLaughlin, this includes the track "Miles Beyond (Miles Davis)", which McLaughlin dedicated to his friend and former bandleader.

1. "Birds of Fire" 5:50
2. "Miles Beyond (Miles Davis)" 4:47
3. "Celestial Terrestrial Commuters" 2:54
4. "Sapphire Bullets of Pure Love" 0:24
5. "Thousand Island Park" 3:23
6. "Hope" 1:59
7. "One Word" 9:57
8. "Sanctuary" 5:05
9. "Open Country Joy" 3:56
10. "Resolution" 2:09

Also, for all the true fans out there, who must know this fact anyway, the back cover of the original LP featured a poem entitled "Revelation" by Sri Chinmoy.

Super Audio CD (SACD) is a read-only optical disc for audio storage, introduced in 1999. It was developed jointly by Sony and Philips Electronics, and intended to be the successor to their Compact disc format. Indeed, this SACD format can offer more channels (ie: surround sound), and a longer playing time than regular CDs.

CD Purchase Link

www.AudioFidelity.net





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