ETHAN IVERSON RELEASES TECHNICALLY ACCEPTABLE
NEW BLUE NOTE ALBUM FEATURING THE PIANIST AT THE HELM OF TWO DIFFERENT TRIOS
PLUS THE RECORDED PREMIERE OF HIS PIANO SONATA
IVERSON CELEBRATES THE ALBUM RELEASE JAN. 23-28 AT THE VILLAGE VANGUARD IN NYC FOLLOWED BY EUROPEAN & U.S. TOURS
“a welcome glimpse into Iverson’s wide-ranging genius”
"high modernism & cool minimalism, interweaving unexpected lyrical harmonies at every turn"
19 JANUARY 2024 (TORONTO, ON) — Pianist and composer Ethan Iverson has released his 2nd Blue Note album Technically Acceptable, a far-ranging new project full of twists and turns that finds Iverson at the helm of two different trios—with bass/drum teams Thomas Morgan/Kush Abadey and Simón Willson/Vinnie Sperrazza—performing a set of striking new originals plus singular new versions of Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly With His Song” and Thelonious Monk’s “‘Round Midnight,” the latter featuring Rob Schwimmer on theremin. The album concludes with the recorded premiere of Iverson’s Piano Sonata which is given a tour-de-force performance by Iverson himself.
“I'm interested in trying to wrangle these almost archaic forms in a modernist way,” Iverson says. “When I play a 12-bar blues with Thomas and Kush, it doesn't sound like 1944 in the slightest. It sounds like 2023. But at the same time, it is a serious throwback. That's where I connect to someone like Jaki Byard, who could play the most up-to-date creative music with Eric Dolphy or play behind a blues singer and be totally comfortable. And when he played solo or trio, it all came out at once.”
The history-spanning wealth of influences and eras that Iverson has investigated as pianist, composer and critic all emerge, in often surprising and delightful ways, throughout Technically Acceptable. In the past Iverson has used his leader dates as a way to connect with and learn from elders like Billy Hart or Jack DeJohnette, the latter who appeared on Iverson’s 2022 Blue Note debut Every Note Is True. Here he’s working solely with younger musicians who find ample space for freewheeling invention even within the concise forms of these short tunes, whose pop-like precision harkens back to his days with The Bad Plus.
Through a repertoire that alights on myriad points on the jazz and classical timelines in playful yet inventive ways, Iverson allows himself the credential that christens the album. “If I'm taking the measure of my own work: I'm on a journey, but I don't think it's finished yet. My first album was called School Work; maybe in another ten years I’ll create the album Flawless Masterpiece. For now, I’m Technically Acceptable.”
Watch Iverson, Morgan, and Abadey perform the lead single “Conundrum” live in the studio. The trio will be celebrating the album release at the Village Vanguard in New York City from Jan. 23-28 followed by European and U.S. tours. For more tour updates and full itinerary, visit ethaniverson.com.
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