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Solo Import

4.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, August 31, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

By now, there can be no doubt that pianist-composer Iyer stands among the most daringly original jazz artists of the under-40 generation," writes Howard Reich in the Chicago Tribune. The American-born son of Indian immigrants, VIJAY IYER (pronounced "VID-jay EYE-yer") was described by The Village Voice as "the most commanding pianist and composer to emerge in recent years," by The New Yorker as one of "today's most important pianists... extravagantly gifted," and by the L.A. Weekly as "a boundless and deeply important young star." After the phenomenal success of The Vijay Iyer Trio's 2009 release "Historicity" - the `800-pound gorilla on year-end best-of lists' (L.A. Times), Iyer returns with Solo. The document of Iyer's continuing dialogue with history, both his own and that of the music to which he has dedicated his life, Solo encapsulates both Iyer's career and his distinctive approach to his instrument. The diversity of Iyer's experience infuses each note of Solo. The first section of the record centers on music of the past, presenting Iyer's interpretation of music from the jazz canon. In this way, the disc might be viewed as an extension of 2009's Historicity. His own compositions, dominating the album's second act, demonstrate how completely he has assimilated and brought his own vision to creative music. For Iyer, the new album embodies both departure and return. It is a monumental step forward and a defining moment in Vijay Iyer's artistic life. With this powerful, subtle homage to Monk, Ellington, Taylor, Hill, Muhal Richard Abrams and Randy Weston, Iyer joins the ranks of these and many other artists who have recorded great, enduring, original solo piano statements


A commanding one-man show. -- John Fordham, The Guardian UK, August 19, 2010

A much-lauded jazz pianist, Iyer plays nimbly in many ensembles and settings--but he really shines on Solo, his first unaccompanied recording, which comes out August 31 on ACT Music + Vision. Bursting with both emotion and intelligence, this album is a dispatch from the vibrant forefront of jazz -- Utne Reader, September 2010

Four Stars! -- Rolling Stone Germany, September 2010

If you want to know where Jazz is in 2010 and where it's headed, Iyer is among the first musicians to hear -- Chris Barton, LA Times, August 13, 2010

Solo is Iyer's first unaccompanied recording and it reveals one more thing that he does extraordinarily well -- JazzTimes
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 31, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Act Music & Vision
  • ASIN: B003PCL1A8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,569 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

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I thought Vijay Iyer's trio on his Historicity album of 2009 was as good as it could get for this new star, until I heard his newest work, Solo. This is not something to take in quickly, it must be savored as one would with any great work of art. Since I first listened I find that each time I devote some time to this masterwork it reveals some new bit of genius from Iyer. The recording begins simply enough with a beautiful song, Human Nature, that reminds me of Keith Jarrett at his best. Iyer then moves through stirring versions of Monk's Epistrophy, jazz standard Darn That Dream, and Black and Tan Fantasy, an ode to Ellington. While the first four songs nod to those that have come before him, there is nothing traditional in the way Iyer interprets them. Following the magnificent opening songs Iyer begins to stamp this recording with his own unique style, heavy with improvisation and emotion. My personal favorite is Autoscopy, although I find Patterns and One For Blount equally compelling. Whatever your taste, I will be surprised if any true jazz fan does not find much to love throughout this recording. If you enjoy listening to great jazz pianists like Monk, then this is a sure bet, can't miss purchase. I also recommend it to anyone who is a fan of musicians that are not only interested in perfecting technique, but in breaking new ground. We see so many very talented musicians that are great technical performers, but lack vision and fresh ideas. Vijay Iyer strikes me as a visionary and risk-taker that is not content with incremental improvements. This is why I believe he is someone special and worthy of the accolades he seems to be receiving. Buy this if you are a fan of the musicians that set a new standard and that others emulate. I have always admired Monk, Jaco, Parker, and Miles because I felt they redefined their instruments. I am beginning to think that Vijay Iyer is headed in that same direction. May he continue on to join the Greats of Jazz.
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Format: Audio CD
This solo piano CD by Vijay Iyer is fantastic, really rich and diverse. Lots of layers to the music. On first listen the Michael Jackson cover stood out more, which is not surprising given the really catchy melody he had to work with there. The cover is of course a bit sentimental, but its well done and not slavish at all. Mostly uses the original as a take off point and anchor.

The rest of the CD, while not as catch is better actually. On first listen it didn't grab me, but on subsequent listenings came to really impress me with its layers and quality. It's gentle music but it does require active listening to really get the most out of it. I dont think anyone looking for lounge music will find this to be the best purchase. I've listened to some Ahmad Jamal material where you could enjoy it on both shallow and deeper levels, but I wouldnt say Iyer was able to do that here other, than with the MJ cover.

The production quality is quite good, clear and crisp. I think there is double tracking with overlays on different channels, but not sure.

I actually liked this music better than I did the previous CD, Historicity, with Vijay in a Trio. Highly recommended.
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Format: Audio CD
Last Night, Dec. 8, 2010, in a small town here in Holland. Outside it was freezing cold, the ice was shining from the streets and the weather-expectations were.: More snow and ice...!
The Small Theatre, PARADOX in Tilburg, legendary jazz-impro-lab, once set-up by musicians themselves, was only containing about 30 people..
It is a small theatre anyway, but all the big-ones of Jazz have played there and found, once on stage, this very uplifting sphere, a spirit that is very warming.. many remindable concerts were given there.. ..
A double concert, this night, starting at 21.00..In the first program the group: SPOON 3 + 1 Fork: Avantgarde. Nice Jazz/crossings. Crazy, funny and sometimes deepdroning into the ear and brain.. Kneer on Bass is a miracle on itself..
Vijay Iyer had to be good to meet up with that level!!
Well, he did! Once seated behind the piano the magic started to roll.. Two hands make a concert.. Only two hands.. It is as if he produces these layers and tapits of sounding swimming tones in order to let them go in freedom on the one side and control them on the other.. I heard echoes of Satie, Glass, Debussy and ofcourse some standards.. But just echoes and pronounciations by giving some bright and harder tones trough the layers.. The only thing you can do, when listening to him life is: close your eyes and let yourself float-in.. The brightness of the sounds when sitting this close to the instrument... This was one of the best concerts of my life! The extra song of the concert was done in the honour of John Lennon and Vijay's grandfather..
What a beauty! Heart and sound became one and the love came trough in pure honesty with a little indian-spherical sound marvelling trough..
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One of the great new jazz pianists, Vijay never disappoints. This is s beautiful album, but not his best. I much prefer Historicity(2009) and Break Stuff(2014).
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