Wow, what a way to kick this project off. The use of time on this album is fantastic. There is some fantastic sax work between Joe Henderson and Pharoah Sanders on the title track Ptah, the El Daoud. Both are hard panned in the mix. While a little jarring, it does allow you to process each artist’s style independently. I really enjoyed the jagged time in the solos. Turiya and Ramakrishna has a fantastic beginning with some sexy piano and bass throughout – probably my favorite on the album. The other standout track in my mind is Blue Nile. The arrangement features flutes and harp, really cool sound. The harp solo by Coltrane is, without exaggeration, unlike anything I’ve ever heard before. The closing track Mantra, like the first track, is free moving. The piano, bass, and drums give the impression of time rather than spell it out explicitly.
Though I played jazz growing up (and could fake it pretty well), I’ve always had trouble identifying with it. Ptah, the El Daoud is fantastic. Hopefully I can find more albums like this.