Mick Carlon has penned an absolutely terrific article for JazzTimes about the Miles Davis Quintet of 1955-1956. Carlon revisits the legacy of the trumpeter’s influential group with John Coltrane, Red Garland, Paul Chambers and Philly Joe Jones.
Here’s a snippet:
The quintet—or, as many critics referred to it: The Quintet—recorded their first-to-be-released album on November 16, 1955 in Rudy Van Gelder’s Hackensack, New Jersey studio. The resulting album, simply titled Miles, is relaxed and swinging. Highlights include a lovely version of the Ellington chestnut “Just Squeeze Me” and Benny Golson’s “Stablemates.”
Speaking of stables, critics have remarked how Coltrane at this point in his development sounds like a young colt attempting to stand on wobbly legs. However, I hear an adventurous young artist, closing his eyes and taking a deep breath before launching into passionate solos. Combined with Davis’ spare, less-is-more style, the effect is perfect.