CD Reviews

MusicWeb International

Webmaster: Len Mullenger

[ Jazz index ] [Nostalgia index]  [ Classical MusicWeb ] [ Gerard Hoffnung ]


Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Steve Arloff, Nick Barnard, Pierre Giroux, Don Mather, James Poore, Glyn Pursglove, George Stacy, Bert Thompson, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf



BUY NOW
AmazonUK   AmazonUS

VIJAY IYER TRIO

Break Stuff

ECM CD 470 8937

 

 

1.Starlings

2.Chorale

3.Diptych

4.Hood

5.Work

6.Taking Flight

7.Blood Count

8.Break Stuff

9.Mystery Woman

10.Geese

11.Countdown

12.Wrens


Viyaj Iyer (piano), Stephen Crump (bass), Marcus Gilmore (drums)

rec.Avatar Studios, June 2014 [70:44]


This is another great disc from an intelligent musician who’s been making waves for a long time, well before I came across him when reviewing his disc Accelerando (ACT 9524-2) back in May 2013.

At times in my classical music reviews I’ve found myself writing that the pauses between the notes are often crucial and the length of them a vital component in making for a really enjoyable version of a particular work. Vijay Iyer obviously subscribes to a similar view for that is at the heart of the inspiration for this disc except that in jazz terms it’s about the break. His philosophy is that it is in a break that things come to life. It is the springboard into the next creative phase, like the split second before the big bang that created the universe.

Break Stuff is the trio’s third release on the ECM label, that crucible of a vast array of recordings of innovative music both jazz and classical. The fact that the trio has been working together for 11 years really shows with an instinctive feel to the music without any hint at the obvious refining that must have gone on to produce it. When playing the trio, despite having their own individual moments to solo, sound such an organic whole that listening is a real musical experience thus equal credit must be given to both Stephen Crump and Marcus Gilmore who so accurately interpret Vijay’s ideas that the whole enterprise is much more of a collective one than one man’s vision. All numbers are by Vijay himself apart from three by particular musical heroes of his, namely Thelonius Monk (Work), Billy Strayhorn (Blood Count) and John Coltrane ( Countdown) to all of which he brings his own very personal takes.

It was interesting to read his accompanying notes explaining that several of the compositions are deconstructs of other pieces starting with their rhythm sections, in other words they began as breakdowns. This gave rise to five of the tunes here or as he quotes poet and author Ishmael Reed they “jes grew.”

As I found with Accelerando Vijay Iyer’s trio punches well above its weight making a much bigger sound than you’d expect from only three musicians. Fundamentally the music is so, well...musical, without any hint of artifice. This is thinking man’s jazz that has something to say and which expresses itself perfectly.

Steve Arloff



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Altus
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Return to Index


You can purchase CDs, tickets and musician's accessories and Save around 22% with these retailers: