Two years in the making, Luke Ritchie’s debut album ‘The Water’s Edge‘ is testament to the amazing journey this singer-songwriter has been on. In Autumn 2009, Ritchie was approached by start-up label Angel Falls to make an EP. The Cover It Up EP was recorded and produced by Ant Whiting (M.I.A, Paloma Faith, Zero 7), however the deal fell through, and the EP was never released. Rather than quit at the first hurdle, Ritchie embarked on a personal challenge to continue doing what he enjoyed best. Recording a song a week, Ritchie created a series of podcasts for six months which were spread around through word of mouth, resulting in 8,500 downloads by the time he stopped.
Whilst playing in other bands, including The Golden Retrievers who supported Rumer on her Spring 2011 tour, and critically acclaimed folk singer Hannah Peel, Ritchie’s podcasts had reached some big names, including Leo Warner of Fifty-Nine Productions, who had just been working with Jonsi of Sigur Ros for his solo album. Through Leo, Ritchie was put in touch with classical composer Nico Muhly (Anthony and the Johnsons, Bjork), who’d also worked with Jonsi.
Nico composed pieces for five songs on the album, including opener Lighthouse, and played the piano and harmonium himself. The arrangements have taken ‘The Water’s Edge’ to another level, effortlessly building on Ritchie’s original works to create wonderfully rich melodies. This is reinforced even more so by the beautiful backing vocals from Nia Lynn (Jazz Vocalist of the Year nominee 2010, Gwilym Simcock) in tracks Lighthouse, Shanty and Butterfly
Ritchie finished recording ‘The Water’s Edge’ with winner of the Breakthrough Producer 2010 Award, Paul Savage (Arab Strab, Mogwai), at Chem 19 Studios in Glasgow, the pair began working together after the legendary producer was impressed with the songwriter’s demos, and he has played a pivotal role in the album’s production. Keep your eyes and ears open and make sure you take a listen to Luke Ritchie, as his exciting new journey is well and truly just beginning.
“Sky-scraping vocals” – The Guardian
“A taste of blues with a chaser of folk via John Martyn” – Tobias Hill
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