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Jazz isn't just music. If it were, half of jazz music wouldn't be considered jazz, it would be something else. Instead, jazz is an idea. It is an attitude, a way of life. It is, unlike classical music, highly improvisational and visceral, reacting (and shaping) the moment rather than imposing it's creators past mood upon the present. Unlike rock, jazz does not attempt to express emotions such as joy or rage. It instead shows what it means to be human, conveying a wide range of emotions within each note and every song. The musicians are not charactures upon a stage, they are humans telling you what it means to be human. It is in these senses that Trio of Doom Live truly succeeds. All of it's players are tremendously talented and tragic figures. Spiritually driven McLaughlin, eternally youthful Tony Williams, and doomed genius Jaco Pastorius blend there unique styles into a powerful and exilerating ride. McLaughlin's playing sears across the soundscape, scorching with holy fire as he battles against the demons that seek to destroy his carefully crafted musical refuge. Pastorius, who was to be struck down with one of his most legendary bouts of depression later during the set, feels particularly driven in his playing. Unleashing blazing, angular runs, unbelievably sensual groove, and greasy slithering fills througout Dark Prince, he slips into a more spiritual groove through his composition Continuum. Here his playing is respectful and even prayerful, trying desperately to hold on to his mind. Truly some of the legends most inspired playing. Williams provides the sonic answer to the spiritual whip driving the music forward with his perfect drumming. Alternatively thrashing on his cymbols while blasting his skins or laying down a pocket as deep as the sea, Williams threatens, prods, and entices the musicians (and the listener) throughout the set. The studio songs are simply tamer versions of the live set. In short, there has been no greater era defining collection of jazz musicians since the legendary Quintet at Massey Hall. An absolute essential listen.