Jazz Goggles: In A Silent Way

In a Silent Way is one of those records that totally changed my valuation of music. Essentially a day's jam session cut up by legendary producer Teo Macero, a cast of jazz monsters spontaneously expand over a grooving framework. This was Miles' first electric effort - am LP that forever changed jazz, paving the way for the infamous Bitches Brew.

“Shhh/Peaceful” comes in with a two-note bass line, Dave Holland letting the second note resonate through drummer Tony William's jazzy shuffle. Miles of course takes lead, stringing little melodic ideas together with total clarity. He leaves plenty of space for the electric organs and John McLaughlin's guitar runs to fill out the sound; all members together create texture that conjures images of a dark, smokey nightclub with the greatest man in jazz leading you down the rabbit hole.

The second half of the album “In a Silent Way/It's About That Time” is coloured with blue notes around a driving groove, bookended by serene guitar and organ with melodic horns floating on top. In these two tracks Miles again showed the world a new kind of jazz. This is a classic, genre-defining record.