Wayne Horvitz - piano
Ron Miles - trumpet
Peggy Lee - cello
Sara Schoenbeck - bassoon
Bringing together four uniquely defined voices of new music, jazz, and improvised composition,
Gravitas Quartet explores the depths of texture, sonority, rhythm, and ensemble fluidity available to masters with a broad palette.
Wayne Horvitz, Peggy Lee, Sarah Schoenbeck, and Ron Miles have been hailed as forerunners of
modern music - each journeying from their vast musical backgrounds to redefine the sonic
The ensemble has two CDs: Way Out East (2006) and One Dance Alone (2008),
both on the Songlines
label. The CDs are available at record stores, online, and here at the
What the critics are saying about the Gravitas Quartet:
Way out East is a beautiful and quietly moving and poetic recording; one that
will sound fresh and new decades from now. Horvitz and his players have shown that
'improvised' or 'new' music can be utterly lovely to listen to.
Thom Jurek, allmusic.com
Whether drawing upon the blues or a waltz, Horvitz is not simply manipulating a
template, but creating a time-warped ambience, in which the listener feels a stillness
that is languid and foreboding. The idiom-free improvisations provide ballast,
preventing the album from sinking into sentimentality. Peggy Lee, Ron Miles and
Sara Schoenbeck are exquisitely balanced, their every detail precisely etched. For
the most part, they are slightly understated in the improvisations; when they move to
the foreground, they are persuasive, as is Horvitz.
Bill Shoemaker, Downbeat
The Gravitas Quartet occupies a conceptual no man's land somewhere between nostalgia
and the future, where pensive, minor-key piano excursions are joined by stately cello,
regal bassoon, ghostly trumpet and burbling electronics. Way Out East
perfectly assimilates Horvitz's bittersweet melodies and sci-fi futurism into a
synchronous sound world all his own.
Troy Collins, All About Jazz