Crystals (album)

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Studio album by Sam Rivers
Released 1974
Recorded Generation Sound Studios, New York, New York on March 4, 1974
Genre Jazz
Length 40:30
Label Impulse!
Producer Ed Michel
Sam Rivers chronology
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars[1]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide 5/5 stars[2]

Crystals is an avant-garde/free-jazz LP by Sam Rivers on the Impulse! label released in 1974 in a stereo/quadraphonic format.


Jazz critic Thom Jurek wrote: “Musically, this is the mature Sam Rivers speaking from the wide base of his knowledge as a composer, improviser and conceptualist.”[3]


It had been over a decade since Ornette Coleman had worked with his Free Jazz Double Quartet, nine years since John Coltrane assembled his Ascension band, and six since the first Jazz Composers' Orchestra Association was formed and whose first records were issued (a couple of members of that band also performing with Rivers on this record) and the compositions for what eventually became Crystals were written between 1959 and 1972. They were finished as new elements came to him to fit them together conceptually.[4] The compositions were recorded by 14 musicians: 3 trumpets, 2 trombones, tubist Joe Daley, 5 reeds, bass, and 2 drummers. Other musicians listed in the vinyl liner notes were present in rehearsals but not the recording.[5]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Exultation" – 8:25
  2. "Tranquility" – 8:58
  3. "Postlude" – 2:31
  4. "Bursts" – 6:51
  5. "Orb" – 9:36
  6. "Earth Song" – 4:09


Crystals has been re-mastered and reissued in a Mini LP jacket featuring artwork and extensive liner notes from the original vinyl release.



  • Producer: Ed Michel
  • Publisher: RivbeaMusic (BMI)
  • Recorded at Generation Sound Studios, New York, New York. on March 4, 1974

External links[edit]

  • Jazz album blogspot [1]
  • Sam Rivers YouTube interview [2]


  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Swenson, J. (Editor) (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 168. ISBN 0-394-72643-X. 
  3. ^ All Music Guide to Jazz
  4. ^ All Music Guide to Jazz
  5. ^ Rivers and Rhythms accessed March 15, 2012