Jazz collective Graham Costello STRATA are back with a new single Lyra, taken from their forthcoming Obelisk album. The quartet – composer / drummer Graham Costello, Fergus McCreadie on piano, Joe Williamson on guitar, and Mark Hendry on electric bass, are all based in Glasgow but are making serious waves across the UK Jazz scene.
Of the track, Costello says “‘Lyra’, like our previous single “Cygnus”, is very much a bridge between the sound of our first album and where we’re going with our upcoming album on Gearbox. “Cygnus” conveys more the heavier influences to our music, whereas “Lyra” explores more of our groove-based sound and ways that we improvise and flow over a groove. STRATA play in both quartet and sextet formations, and “Lyra” is a composition for quartet. Like a lot of our music, it’s intricate and somewhat complex but must be played relaxed and with patience. One thing I really connect with in jazz is the concept of playing with total freedom and synchronicity together as a band, yet always maintaining focus in where you are and the trajectory of the music. My favourite music plays with this idea, and with STRATA we seek to explore the same energy.”
There’s a hypnotic energy about Lyra, which rocks back and forth across beats but allows all the component parts to have both the flow and space to express. There’s minimalist repetition mixed in with some incredible jazz playing throughout, from Costellos drumming to McCreadie’s frankly incredible solo on piano.
Check it out, here
Lyra is out now via Gearbox Records