Some note hovering between an F and an F# hovered over the Vijay Iyer Trio during their soundcheck before their performance Saturday, January 17th at San Antonio's Carver Community Cultural Center. Bassist Stephan Crump picked out the note, concerned it would float over the night's show like a phantom. Drummer Tyshawn Sorey, in for Marcus Gilmore who was currently in London performing at Gilles Peterson's Worldwide Awards (so he gets a pass), already had snark ready for Facebook later. However, the capable crew of the Carver soldiered through and solved the Case of the Wonky Mix, and a moderate, but dedicated crowd of jazz fans were among the first to hear and purchase the latest music off pianist Vijay Iyer's Break Stuff.
Pianist Vijay Iyer keeps making fascinating, innovative music and he's got the approval of the mysterious MacArthur Foundation to prove it. With his recent signing to the famed ECM Records, Iyer is poised to release Mutations, his nine-part composition highlighting strings, on March 4th. The release features violinists Miranda Cuckson and Michi Wiancko, viola player Kyle Armbrust, and violoncello player Kivie Cah-Lipman. More information about the album and a streaming track is available at the Mutations site at ECM. In the meantime, watch the EPK video after the jump.
Vijay Iyer once said he just likes making the things that he likes. Judging from the vast range he has shown in his body of work, that's a lot of stuff. Whittling the essence of Iyer into a single show is nigh-impossible. Fortunately, he'll have the chance to do so over a week of shows through a residency at Manhattan's The Stone from July 30th to August 4th. Iyer will be playing two sets a night at 8 & 10pm that week with different groups (none of whom are his standard trio of bassist Stephan Crump and drummer Marcus Gilmore who have continually wowed us with Iyer's trio albums over the years). The week of performances include a hodgepodge of folks including the likes of alto saxophonist Matana Roberts, bassist Harish Raghavan, drummer Justin Brown, rapper Himanshu Suri formerly of Das Racist, drummer/rapper/swagtorialist Kassa Overall, guitarist Rafiq Bhatia, the Tirtha trio of Iyer, guitarist Prassana and tablaist Nitin Mitta, and many others.
Hat tip to, well, Vijay Iyer for pulling up this recording of his trio (Iyer on piano, Stephan Crump on bass, Marcus Gilmore on drums) performing an hour set live in Salzau, Germany in July of last year. The set, which includes songs from the heralded 2009's Historicity and this year's equally (if not moreso) heralded Accelerando, recorded by Jazz Baltica is head-swirlingly good, so hunker down and watch.