Jazz/Funk Band Afterglow Release Introspective Debut Singles
The year-old instrumental band from New Delhi also plot an album for next year
It seems New Delhi instrumental act Afterglow was a long time coming. The jazz/funk band was a natural progression following the many jazz collaborations that clarinet and saxophone player Rie Ona has been partaking in, even as she played club gigs in the city. “Our target was to perform and deliver our music to people and travel to other cities as well,” says Ona (who has previously performed with Ska Vengers).
The band, which formed in 2015, features Shivam Khare on keyboard, Sonic Shori on bass and Sreenath Sreenivasan on drums. Afterglow’s debut single “Spaces” carries brilliant dynamics that run right through the eight-minute listen, from the anticipative clarinet and skillful bass solo to the general gloom that envelopes the composition. The song was written by Khare five years ago when he was studying at the Swarnabhoomi Academy of Music in Chennai. He says, “The song expresses the longing we feel for people we love when we are divided by spaces; these spaces can be physical or emotional.”
Afterglow have also released two more singles, “From Shadows To The Stars” and “A Word Once Given.” The band will be putting out another song, titled “I Belong To Me” on October 22nd. Ona says, “We are releasing them every two weeks, to keep enough time for people to listen to each song.”
All four songs were recorded at T-Series studio in Noida. The tracks were mixed by Krishna Rao from New Delhi’s Lotus Tree studios and mastered by US studio engineer Don Grossinger who has worked on Grammy-winning records for veterans like Pink Floyd, Metallica and Miles Davis. Khare says, “Krishna got in touch with him and sent him our mixes. We were absolutely thrilled when he showed us a message from Don, where he said how good the band was sounding.”
Although instrumental jazz occupies a very niche space in the indie circuit due to scanty patronage from young listeners, Shori says that the time is ripe for the revival of the genre. “The future of jazz in India is becoming stronger as we now have a few schools that are focusing on jazz with a unique sound. And with so many musicians going abroad to study, India definitely has a thriving jazz scene,” he says. The band plan on releasing an album later this year and want to play live as much as possible.
Watch the video for “Spaces” here: