Lyra release new single, ‘All the Same’, giving us deep grooves and endless sunshine
Sitting at my desk in Glasgow, staring out at the grey drizzled sky, I needed something. I needed something to remind me of the sunshine passed. Not something to warm my skin, but something to warm my soul. And after listening to London based Neo-Soul group Lyra, I got it.
Not to be confused with Irish singer “LYRA”, the more composed “Lyra”, take inspiration from a wide variety of artists (it’s evident in their track listing), but it is their ability to perform their music with a live band which really sets them apart. They’re tight, sensibly rhythmic and, most importantly, never too much.
Watch the lyric video for ‘All the Same’ by Lyra on Youtube:
Their most recent release, ‘All the Same’, is like a fresh pot of coffee brewing first thing in the morning: slow to simmer, but quick to boil. It’s the restraint in instrumentation that gives it the space it needs to build into the perfect song to have playing in your headphones as you step out your front door. About being in love with someone despite their imperfections, it’ll resonate with the coupled, and make the single restless.
But not to be pigeon-holed, Lyra have more in their bag. With more than the scent of Jamiroquai, the Sneaky Sound System-esque track, ‘Intentions’, has all you could want from some soulful funk: disco beats, bass grooves, pitch shifted vocals and lyrics about being at the club. This track takes me back to the early 2000s and hearing my sisters Ministry of Sound CD blaring from her bedroom. But again, never too much, the track sits nicely in that nook between bland and self-indulgent, retro and modern.
Watch the music video for ‘Intentions’ by Lyra on Youtube:
The rest of their discography is bracketed by these two extremes. Soul, funk, lounge, the music is comfortable and smooth and is unlikely to ruffle the feathers of many who listen to it. This can be a good thing, but it could also be the thing that hold Lyra back from moving to the next level in the industry. I said earlier that a strength of theirs is the ability to show restraint in their music, despite them being obviously fantastic musicians. But maybe, just maybe, to cut through in a crowded London scene, they could show some more dare, risk polarising opinion, and find a bit of edge in their sound that, in my opinion, is missing.
This of course, is not to say they aren’t a band worth following. The song-writing ability, the musicianship, the production, all the pieces are there. They’re a band that exudes sunshine and will warm your insides from the moment they hit your speakers. But a little rain always makes the sun shine brighter.
For more on Lyra, check out her website, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook or YouTube. If you enjoyed this article, check out more reviews and interviews from IAMUR. You might just find your new favourite artist!