Pianist-‐composer Vijay Iyer’s career has moved on an ever-‐accelerating arc over the past decade and a half, with the Indian-‐American artist earning a slew of international honors for his intrepid, multi-‐hued vision of 21st-‐century music. The latest chapter of this compelling story in contemporary jazz comes with the Vijay Iyer Trio’s Accelerando, an album driven by the visceral, universal, intoxicating experience of rhythm. Accelerando sees Iyer and his telepathic trio mates – bassist Stephan Crump and drummer Marcus Gilmore – go both deep and wide. They light up material that ranges from a brace of bold Iyer originals and pieces by great jazz composers (Duke Ellington, Herbie Nichols, Henry Threadgill) to surprising interpretations of vintage and recent pop and funk tunes (Michael Jackson, Heatwave, Flying Lotus). Absorbing and infectious, this is jazz about not only the mind but the body.
With an advanced education in the hard sciences and his facility for complex music, Iyer could have been pegged as a “cerebral musician.” But, he insists, “I actually experience music on a visceral level, the way most people do. Dance is just a bodily way of listening to music – it’s a universal response. Jazz has always had some sort of dance impulse at its core. Bebop grew out of swing, which was a dance rhythm that became art music. I never want to lose that foundation of rhythmic communication in my work. That’s what Accelerando is concerned with, that physical reality of music. For me, music is action.”
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03. The Star Of A Story
04. Human Nature (Trio Extension)
07. Little Pocket Size Demons
10. Actions Speak
11. The Village Of The Virgins