So hey: Accelerando, the new album by the Vijay Iyer Trio, is really, really good. I wrote about it, with what I hope registers as sufficient enthusiasm. My hosanna joins a chorus of others, from my fellow critics Chris Barton and Peter Hum to, in an instructive comparative exercise, Patrick Jarenwattananon of A Blog Supreme. There's sure to be more of this; feel free to drop links in the comments.
And speaking of comments: one of the principal ideas in my notebook has to do with Iyer's creeping influence, which I suspect is already considerable. Do you have a story to tell about that? I'd be curious to read it. I'm thinking of something like this:
If you're seeking a more thorough fleshing-out of Iyer's story, I recently reread the JazzTimes profile I wrote back in 2005. Amazingly, I'm not embarrassed by it, though it does read a bit dated in some respects. (Shouts to the IAJE!) And here are a few more resources:
- Vijay Iyer in the Guardian: "Strength in Numbers" (PDF)
- Other Iyer writings, via his website. (Also video, etc.)
- Feature in the Riverfront Times; read past the overheated lede.
- Ben Ratliff reviews the trio, Nov. 2009 (c. Historicity).
Also, in the process of writing this piece I wanted to use the word "permutative" in a sentence, but wasn't sure whether it would pass muster with the NYT Style patrol. So I plugged the word into the paper's search engine to see about past usage. Looks like it appeared in the paper a total of three times since 1851 — and one of those instances was in this notebook by Robert Palmer, about the AACM saxophonist and composer Roscoe Mitchell. (Palmer uses it twice in one graf!) Obviously there couldn't be a more appropriate accident: one of the first times I saw Iyer in person was with Mitchell's Note Factory.