“Graham Costello sits at the forefront of this. Essentially viewing jazz through the prism of a noise musician, his new album 'Second Lives' is a tour de force, an astonishing piece of work that obeys no rules aside from its own.” - CLASH
Glasgow drummer and composer Graham Costello returns with his second STRATA album, 'Second Lives', out May 7th on Gearbox Records.
Second Lives spans Reichian minimalism, semi-free jazz à la Binker and Moses, polyrhythmic math rock, and pensive, cinematic ambience. The album was recorded straight to tape last summer at RAK Studios with co-producer and engineer Hugh Padgham at the helm, mixed at British Grove, and subsequently mastered in-house at Gearbox. The inspiration and wider themes of Second Lives sit with thoughts of identity, heritage, and Stoicism, as well as the theme of overcoming inner challenges - what you face and the process you go through to get to the other side.
The album features STRATA, an ensemble formed by Graham in 2016 which brings together stylistic elements of minimalism, jazz and noise-rock whilst channelling a strong DIY ethic. Made up of some of Scotland's most exciting musical proponents, the band features: pianist Fergus McCreadie, whose critically acclaimed new solo album just came out via Edition Records; guitarist Joe Williamson, who was named Young Scottish Jazz Musician Of The Year in 2018 and leads hard-hitting 5-piece Animal Society; rising Trombonist Liam Shortall, who also leads jazz collective corto.alto; renowned bassist Mark Hendry and rising saxophonist Harry Weir who also leads AKU!.
What they say about Graham and STRATA:
"unrelenting waves of cinematic imagery accrue an intensity that never seems to level off, even after the last note has faded.” - Bandcamp
Harry Weir - tenor saxophone
Liam Shortall - trombone
Fergus McCreadie - piano
Joe Williamson - guitar
Mark Hendry - electric bass
Produced by Darrel Sheinman
Co-produced by Hugh Padgham
Engineered by Hugh Padgham at RAK studio, London
Mixed by Hugh Padgham at British Grove studio, London
Mastered and cut by Caspar Sutton-Jones Gearbox Records
Cover photograph by Bernadette Kellermann and Graham Costello
Sleeve design by Alan Foulkes
Recorded and mixed directly to analogue tape.
Mastered using Decca valve equalisation and Telefunken U73b compression and limiting.
Cut on a Haeco Scully lathe with Westrex RA1700 series amps, Westrex 3DIIA cutting head.
This has become one of the most important albums of my life. It’s essence is indescribable. Every sound from the start of the record through the end is placed delicately and with care. The album cover is by Julie Mehretu. It’s absolutely an incredible release for which I shall be eternally grateful. Aniket