Friday, March 23, 2012
Vijay Iyer's Solid State Jazz
I frequently read scientific journals both as part of my scholarly work and because of a general interest in science. It is not often that I come across a reference to jazz in such publications. This week I read a short and fascinating article on pianist Vijay Iyer in Nature. It turns out that Iyer was working on a PhD in solid state physics and doing research on materials when his night job turned into a day job. I don't think the PhD ever happened.
Though I had heard of Iyer, it aroused my curiosity why I didn't have any of his recordings. In short order I developed a hypothesis. Most of my jazz collecting has been directed by the inestimable Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings, Eighth Edition. Iyer's entry occurs on page 679, but very on the right column of the page. I probably just missed it.
Well, I have been listening now and I am very interested. When my eMusic credits renew tomorrow, I will start to fill this gap in my treasury. Meanwhile I have purchased his latest album, Accelerando, from Amazon. I am playing 'Human Nature' from that album. Here is the trio:
I expect I'll be adding a lot more.