Exposé Online banner

Mahavishnu Orchestra — The Inner Mounting Flame
(Columbia KC 31067, 1971, LP)

by Mike McLatchey, Published 2016-11-03

The Inner Mounting Flame Cover art

McLatchey's Second Tier

If Miles Davis was largely responsible for giving birth to jazz rock, the Mahavishnu Orchestra might have been the group responsible for evolving jazz rock into what we call fusion. In my opinion the first line up of this band started out white hot and then kind of folded back on itself before McLaughlin would refigure the line up. This happened pretty fast, in April 1972 at their gig in Syracuse, immortalized on video, the quintet of very fine and disparate musicians were doing a lot of listening but by the fall tour that musical fluency ended up sounding like the kind of shredding that would often be counted as a stigma on the genre moving forward. But when they started, they were fresh, original, and full of fire and the best of all of that was their debut The Inner Mounting Flame. On this album there was a great deal of balance and invention and the playing by all was truly telepathic. That sense of innocence and newness was lost by Birds of Fire, and while it was also a terrific album, I think this group was at their best when they were fresh and something of a left field surprise. In fact if you look at rock and fusion after this album you can see its influence on almost everybody from the Grateful Dead to Yes.


Filed under: New releases, 1971 releases

Related artist(s): Mahavishnu Orchestra

Latest news

2018-01-18
Christian Burchard RIP – Multi-instrumentalist Christian Burchard, who founded the seminal band Embryo in 1969, has died at the age of 71. His January 17 passing was announced on the band's Facebook page. » Read more

2018-01-05
Ray Thomas RIP – On Thursday, 4 January 2017, the world lost Ray Thomas, founding member of the Moody Blues. Thomas sang and played flute, and was responsible for writing a number of the band's most memorable songs. He was 76. » Read more

2017-12-22
Roswell Rudd RIP – Jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd, one of the distinctive players of his instrument in many strains of music, has died at the age of 82. With a career stretching back to the early 60s and over a hundred recordings featuring his playing, he leaves behind a substantial legacy. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2013. » Read more

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Bill Nelson - Whimsy – Keeping up with Bill Nelson is a difficult task. The man is so prolific that new releases seem to be a mere by-product of his breathing. Luckily he’s supremely talented, and apparently has hit upon...  (2004) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues