11.4.1969 Copenhagen

Like a lot of shows from the fall European tour, a tape of this excellent Copenhagen performance has been floating out in the ether for decades. Columbia crowned it with semi-official status back in 2010 by including video of the set in its mega deluxe Bitches Brew 40th anniversary package, then gave it a broader audience by posting the complete concert to YouTube a couple months back. Point being, if you haven’t heard or seen this show, remedy that stat.

There are a lot of parallels between this and the previous day’s barnburner in Paris. The set is once again bookended by supremely long excursions into “Miles Runs the Voodoo Down” > “Bitches Brew” > “Agitation” and “It’s About that Time”, but the groove doesn’t come quite as easy early in the set – to Miles’ visible annoyance, Holland and DeJohnette sound as though they’re trying to swing “…Voodoo”, and the quintet still appears to be sorting out the “Bitches Brew” intro. They’re firing on all cylinders by the time they reach “…About that Time”, with Miles pulling off a solo for the ages to kick off the tune. An incredible show for sure, but one that’s not without a bit of uncharacteristic awkwardness to offset those peaks.

Get the tape

1. Directions (7:06)
2. Miles Runs the Voodoo Down (9:24)
3. Bitches Brew (15:03)
4. Agitation (10:02)
5. I Fall in Love Too Easily (3:30)
6. Sanctuary (3:27)
7. It’s About that Time (18:21)

Miles Davis (trumpet)
Wayne Shorter (soprano, tenor)
Chick Corea (Fender Rhodes)
Dave Holland (upright bass)
Jack DeJohnette (drums)