Mobile Fidelity - UDSACD 2147 - SACD Hybrid Stereo -
Mastered by Kreig Wunderlich from the Original Master Tape at MFSL
Numbered Limited Edition - Plays on All CD Players -
Mastered on the Mobile Fidelity GAIN 2™ Mastering Technology for Ultradisc UHR™ SACD
Miles in the Sky reflects the intriguing curiosities and rainbow possibilities suggested by the album cover. Miles Davis’ fifth and final album with his classic second quintet is kaleidoscopic in sound, forward-looking in structure, and contextually grounded in approach. As the legendary leader’s first venture into what would become fusion, it’s historical for containing the premier appearances of electric piano, bass, and guitar on a Davis effort. Laden with rich textures and style-bridging elements, Mobile Fidelity’s SACD brings the aural magic into focus.
Mastered from the original master tapes, this collectable audiophile version of Miles in the Sky joins the ranks of eleven other essential Davis sets given supreme sonic and packaging treatment by Mobile Fidelity. Afforded the benefits of higher resolution, Davis’ burnished trumpet resounds with utmost clarity, and the soundstage seems to extend for days. Reference-caliber separation and imaging give each musician their own space, allowing every passage to come across without any sonic limitations.
The album’s wide-open soundscapes soar. As do the fluid contributions of Davis’ mates. Tony Williams’ percussion, central to every composition here, transpires before your eyes. Herbie Hancock’s piano hovers and fades with sublime purity. And George Benson, who sits on “Paraphernalia,” blows the equivalent of smoke rings with his bluesy guitar, which here takes on brilliant tonality and definition. The acoustic material that occupies the second half of the record is equally transparent and full-bodied.
Granted enhanced production and a greater field of audible information, Miles in the Sky can finally be perceived as belonging to the same upper echelon as Davis’ ubiquitously acclaimed Nefertiti and Filles de Kilimanjaro—the albums that precede and follow, respectively, this watershed title. Commonly branded a “transitional” work, Miles in the Sky showcases Davis already at ease with electric instruments and eager to venture into uncharted territories. Doubling as organized jams and bridges between jazz and rock, both the rhythmically challenging “Stuff” and frisky “Paraphernalia” glancing toward the future while keeping solid footing in the past.
Similarly, so do “Country Boy” and “Black Comedy.” In his original review for jazz authority DownBeat, Larry Kart observes: “Davis takes material from his earlier days and darkens its emotional tone. His opening phrase on ‘Country Boy’ recalls a fragment from his “Summertime” solo on the Porgy and Bess album, but here it is delivered with a vehemence that rejects the poignancy of the earlier performance. Even on ‘Black Comedy,’ his most straightahead solo here, the orderly pattern of the past is displaced and fragmented.”
Flavored with humor, bossa nova, country, and even ballroom phrases, the compositions on Miles in the Sky explodes with creativity, purpose, and color.
Miles Davis, trumpet
Wayne Shorter, tenor saxophone
Herbie Hancock, piano, electric piano
Ron Carter, bass
Tony Williams, drums
George Benson, electric guitar on "Paraphernalia"
3. Black Comedy
4. Country Son
Mobile Fidelity believes that mastering systems should be neutral and transparent. The essential idea is to unveil all the detailed musical information on the original master recording without adding deterioration, coloration or other sonic artifacts.
It is worth noting that Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab stands out as one of few record labels that independently invests in research and development of audio technology. With proprietary innovations such as GAIN 2™, general music enthusiasts and audiophiles alike have reaped the benefit of a higher consumer audio standard without investing in costly new hardware. Mobile Fidelity is pleased to work with a variety of engineering legends and companies including Tim de Paravicini, Ed Meitner, Pass Labs, Theta Digital and Sony Electronics.
Our joint efforts to seek out the ultimate audio experience, has resulted in significant advances for the technology of music reproduction.
GAIN 2™ Mastering Technology for Ultradisc UHR™ Hybrid SACD and Ultradisc II™ 24kt Gold CDs
For over twenty years, Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab has continually searched for the ultimate audio experience. During this search MFSL engineers and associates created The GAIN™ System, a proprietary mastering technology which brought warmth and ambience to the compact disc format. A few years ago - with higher resolution formats on the horizon - the vision of GAIN 2™ began. As it stands today, GAIN 2™ is one of the greatest technical advancements in analogue and digital technology in the last ten years. It consists of a series of critical modifications and new components to Mobile Fidelity's proprietary mastering chain.
We feel that GAIN 2™ has come extremely close to meeting this goal. The key accomplishments of GAIN 2™ System are 1) the ability to extract all the musical information as possible through the Ultra High bandwidth analogue tape playback system with proprietary custom tape playback heads, reproducer electronics and 2) transparently capturing and storing that information with the Direct Stream Digital recording system