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Sunday, November 06, 2005

Of "The Basement Tapes" Robert Christgau wrote: "We needn't bow our heads in shame because this is the best album of 1975. It would have been the best album of 1967 too. And it's sure to sound great in 1983." The same could be said of "Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane at Carnegie Hall" Holy smokes, this is some side. Monk and 'Trane both stretch out, but what is really notable is how in synch with each other the members of this band sound. We are all familiar with this material, but it sounds fabulously fresh here. The sound is exceptional, the (extensive) liner notes are terrific, and I think I have a couple of new favorite versions of some of these songs.

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