1/  Spiritual Eternal                          (Coltrane)                    2.55
  2/  Wisdom Eye                                 (Coltrane)                    3.07
  3/  Los Caballos                               (Coltrane)                    11.22
  4/  Om Supreme                                 (Coltrane)                    9.33
  5/  Morning Worship                            (Coltrane)                    3.30
  6/  Spring Rounds (from Rite Of Spring)        (Stravinsky)                  5.59

          Recorded August-October, 1975 at the Burbank Studios, California
          Additional recording at the Coltrane home and Westlake Audio, Los Angeles
          Mixed at Westlake Audio, Los Angeles
          Engineered by Baker Bigsby, with the assistance of Frank Jones, Andy
            MacDonald and Bob Hacken
          Produced by Ed Michel, under the direction of Alice Coltrane
          Disc mastering at Kendun Recorders, Burbank
Alice Coltrane: organ (1,3,5,6), harp (2), Fender Rhodes electric piano (4), tambouras (5), tympani (6), cymbals (6); Charlie Haden (1,3,5,6): bass; Ben Riley: drums (1,3,5), bass drum (6), gong (6); A Friend (Carolos Santana): timbales (3), small percussion (5); Armando Peraza (3,5): congas; Paul Vorwerk, William Yeomans, Edward Cansino, Susan Judy, Jean Packer and Deborah Coomer (4): vocals; Paul Hubinon (1,6): trumpet; Oscar Brasher (1,6) : trumpet; Marilyn Robinson (1,6): french horn; Alan Robinson (1,6): french horn; Charlie Loper (1,6): trombone; George Bohanon (1,6): trombone; Tommy Johnson (1,6): tuba; Fred Jackson (1,6): flute; Hubert Laws (1,6): flute; Jerome Richardson: soprano saxophone (1), alto flute (6); Jackie Kelso: tenor saxophone (1), clarinet (6); Terry Harrington: tenor saxophone (1), clarinet (6); Don Christlieb (1,6): bassoon; Jack Marsh (1,6): bassoon; Vince Derosa (6): french horn; Art Maebe (6): french horn; Gene Cirpriano (6): oboe; John Ellis (6): oboe; Ernie Watts (6): english horn; Julian Spear (6): bass clarinet; Joann Caldwell (6): contrabassoon; STING SECTION (1,6) - Murray Adler (concertmaster/string contractor), Sid Sharp, Gordon Marron, Bill Kurasch, Nathan Kaproff and Polly Sweeney: violins; Rollice Dale, Mike Nowack and Pamela Goldsmith: viola; Ray Kelley Anne Goodman and Jackie Lustgarten: cello.

Track 6 transcribed and conducted by Alice Coltrane

          1976 - Warner Bros. (USA), BS 2916 (Vinyl)
          2001 - Warner Bros., 9362-47899-2 (CD)


Within the first 30 seconds of "Spiritual Eternal," the opening track on Alice Coltrane's final studio album, Eternity, the listener encounters the complete palette of Alice Coltrane's musical thought. As her organ careens through a series of arpeggiated modal drones, they appear seemingly rootless, hanging out in the cosmic eternal. And they remain there ever so briefly until an entire orchestra chimes in behind her in a straight blues waltz that places her wondrously jagged soloing within the context of a universal everything - at least musically - in that she moves through jazz, Indian music, blues, 12-tone music, and the R&B of Ray Charles. This is the historical and spiritual context Alice Coltrane made her own, the ability to open up her own sonic vocabulary and seamlessly enter it into an ensemble context for an untold, unpredictable expression of harmonic convergence. While many other players have picked up on it since, Coltrane's gorgeous arrangements and canny musical juxtapositions never seem forced or pushed beyond the margins. Perhaps, as evidenced by "Wisdom Eye," "Om Supreme," and the "Loka" suite, it's because Ms. Coltrane already dwells on the fringes both musically and spiritually, where boundaries dissolve and where everything is already inseparable. But this does not keep her music from being strikingly, even stunningly beautiful - check out the killer Afro-Cuban percussion under her soloing on "Los Caballaos," which is rooted in a harmonically complex, diatonic series of whole tones. In numerous settings from orchestra to trio, Ms. Coltrane finds the unspeakable and plays it. Nowhere is this more evident than in "Spring Rounds" from Igor Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring," which closes the album. Her faithfulness to the material with a complete orchestra under her control is one of shimmering transcendence that places the composer's work firmly in the context of avant-jazz. Her control over the orchestra is masterful, and her reading of the section's nuances and subtleties rivals virtually everyone who's ever recorded it. Eternity is ultimately about the universality of tonal language and its complex expressions. It is an enduring recording that was far ahead of its time in 1976 and is only now getting the recognition it deserves.

Thom Jurek (courtesy of the All Music Guide website)