Saturday, 15 January 2011 Milestones: the Music of Miles Davis @ Gateshead Old Town Hall By “Bebop Spoken Here”

This wasn't just a tribute band - it was a hardblowing neobop sextet that stood firmly on it's own 12 feet.
It would be sacrilege to say that
Milestones was better than the original - without the original Milestones wouldn't exist! However, in the 50 + years that have passed since Miles and Co ruled the (Royal) Roost jazz has advanced and tonight's performers have absorbed those changes whilst still keeping within the unwritten rules.
This was arguably the best concert I have heard in Gateshead Town Hall since Sonny Stitt took it apart in the 1960s - Gateshead Town Hall and any other Gateshead venue come to think about it.
The music was based around Miles but at times the front-line came across almost like the Jazz Messengers with Graeme Flowers as close to Lee Morgan as he was to MD.
I wasn't complaining!
Alan Barnes is amazing - I've heard him do Johnny Hodges, Benny Goodman, Bird you name it, his technique is not only phenomenal but it is so adaptable.
I don't recall hearing Ian Price previous to tonight but I'll look forward to hearing him again he blew hard bop tenor yet, when the occasion demanded it, he could also do gentle.
Terry kept it all together on piano and had some great originals to complement the Milesian epics.
Boppin For MD really hit the spot and That's What was what it was all about.
Spike on drums Paul on bass - they did the business and did it good.
A very good turn out for driving straight down the middle modern jazz.
Is it a coincidence that tributes to Brubeck, Mingus and Miles have pulled better than average audiences? Is the jazz world getting hip to the 'Emperors New Clothes'?

Jan 27th 2011 Terry Seabrook's Milestones, Bonington Theatre by Alan Joyce, Nottingham Post

PIANIST Terry Seabrook's superb new band is a celebration of the music of legendary jazz trumpeter Miles Davis in particular his Kind Of Blue album, first released in 1959.
Seabrook was aided in his project by formidably talented British musicians who trod purposefully and skilfully in the footsteps of their illustrious mentors.
Trumpeter Martin Shaw, who came into the group at short notice, was outstanding in what could be described as the leading role in a band dedicated to Miles. His played with a full, fat tone on both trumpet and the mellower flugelhorn; his muted sound was hot and sweet.
Alan Barnes’ alto-sax had more than a hint of Cannonball Adderley's magic, while tenor-saxist Ian Price got very close to John Coltrane’s biting approach; his tone and technique were awesome.
The rhythm team headed by Seabrook's sparkling, inventive piano pivoted around Paul Whitten's huge finger sprung bass and Clarke Tracey's rapacious, intelligent drumming.
The music was a mix of note-perfect arrangements from the Kind Of Blue album, original material written by Seabrook and tunes associated with Davis – my personal favourite Freddie Freeloader, with its wide, turquoise blue harmonics, gave me the distinct impression I was listening to the original Miles line-up. Seabrook's Sketches Of Miles was a medley in two halves, which showed off the talents of all the soloists.
After the interval Seabrook turned over his imaginary Kind Of Blue LP and played Side 2 continuing with All Blue and Flamenco Sketches, in all highlighting Price's fluidity and attack; Barnes' scorching alto and Shaw's delightful muted trumpet. Flashbacks to the be-bop era and Miles' later experiments with jazz-funk were all spectacularly demonstrated by this tremendous band.

12th January 2011 Milestones at Scarborough Jazz Club by Dick Armstrong

Anyone interested in an evening of Miles Davis' music? Well, yes, rather a lot - resulting in a large audience at The Cask to hear Milestones. This sextet of top-class musicians gave a true celebration of the music and played their socks off! Interspersed with such classics as Boplicity, Nardis and Milestones were pieces from the suite Sketches of Miles written by pianist and leader Terry Seabrook. These were so cleverly written and arranged that they fitted seamlessly into the evening. All the musicians were deeply engaged with the music and obviously enjoying their involvement. The important trumpet duties were excellently handled by Graham Flowers, who was restrained and sensitive when necessary or confident and strong at other times. Ian Price on tenor sax ranged from gently lyrical on Three Miles High to impassioned on Boppin' for MD. Alan Barnes restricted himself mostly to the alto sax, playing the baritone sax on just two numbers - Boplicity and Seven Steps to Heaven - where he demonstrated a gruff elegance. On That's What, he produced a teeming alto solo that was the aural equivalent to the golden rain firework. When featured on Sideways, he was astonishing, going up a notch or two in intensity! Paul Whitten's bass playing was strong and assured throughout and Spike Lee's drumming was constantly inventive whether soloing or driving the band. My on-the-spot notes are littered with references to Terry Seabrook's piano playing: 'crisp', 'nimble','accomplished' and 'wonderful', all appear Suffice it to say that his playing was a splendid revelation and I'm ashamed that I know so little about him. The inner core of the evening lay in the playing of the celebrated five numbers on the revered album Kind of Blue. These were perfectly re-created with the musicians free to express themselves in the solo spots. Although it was notable that all three horns began their solos on So What by closely echoing their illustrious counterparts - Adderley, Davis and Coltrane - before taking their own paths. So, an evening of wonderful music beautifully played, fulfilled the promise of an evening of great jazz. Who could ask for more? Mike Gordon, who books the talent for Scarborough Jazz, should be a very happy man after this triumph.

Milestones at the Y Theatre, Leicester, Jan 26th 2011By Chris Beggs, Leicester Mercury

Although billed as Milestones play Kind of Blue, the feted Miles Davis LP from 1959, the Y Theatre actually heard a celebration of much more of the music of a man who was at the forefront of jazz for decades.
Some was Miles' own music and some from a suite dedicated to him by bandleader, pianist, and composer Terry Seabrook.
In the first set they played two Miles pieces, two from Seabrook's suite, and the first half of Kind of Blue.
Fine stuff, some great solos especially from Alan Barnes alto sax, and marvellous to hear those immortal works performed live, but it didn't quite seem to gel. Was it because Martin Shawhad recently taken over the trumpet duties for this part of the tour? Or were they treating the material too reverentially?
The second set blew away any concerns, as worthy became priceless. The second half of the LP opened with Shaw's muted trumpet on All Blues and was graced by a marvellously innovative solo from Barnes.
Flamenco Sketches had a soulful tenor solo from Ian Price, a notable solo from Seabrook, and a jewel of a performance from Shaw.
Seabrook's next four compositions were a revelation, especially Sideways, a tribute to Miles' funk rock fusion where Barnes was magnificent and Prince of Darkness – inspired by the 60s – embellished by an inventive drum solo from Clark Tracey. Victor Feldman's Seven Steps to Heaven featuring Barnes' baritone made a fitting end piece. This was special.