REVIEWS

RUBY MUSE live…

Last night I dropped by Stevie Jones’ excellent ‘Last Thursday of the Month’ [Wildfire] session at the Carpenters Arms in Irchester. It had been far too long since I’d caught up with Stevie and it was really good to see him, listen to his fine music and play a few songs myself. I also had the great and totally unexpected pleasure of meeting and being introduced to the wonderful music of Jools & Malcolm Heyes, who perform as RUBY MUSE. Playing a featured set of their own songs they were, from first not to last, the most perfect and mesmerising act I have ever seen locally. (I’ve no idea why I haven’t seen them before a they really do get about.) I bought a couple of their cds without hesitation and played one loud on the way home – taking a bit of a detour so that the journey took two or three tracks longer. They’ve very kindly agreed to be our special guests at a future live music session at the White Horse, Tilbrook, which I look forward to very much indeed. Tim Copping, musician and music promoter, August 2016

Red Guitar in a Blue Room Guit2-3741

R2 Magazine Emotionally charged and atmospheric songs that grow in stature on each hearing.

Get Ready to Rock RUBY MUSE Red Guitar In A Blue Room touches down on a range of styles including country, folk, jazz, blues and rock, and the quality control is set high throughout with some nice vocal work and plenty of neat guitar lines… as Sly Stone might have said ‘It’s a quality affair’. 

Blues MattersThe eleven enticingly original numbers here caressingly embrace a wide spectrum of sounds and genres – ranging from a swooning rich echoing sound that feeds on an alternate country style, merging of tranquil solitude and the rather refreshing brusqueness of the English countryside with the Americana of the open prairie (or even, the dense dark backwoods) accentuating the nuances and quirkiness of traditional English acoustic Folk-Rock ; a fine example of this is the arching, escalating ‘Zeppelinesque,’ The Climb, while also creating with Reverie (Blue Room Mix),  a sublime blues thread that is embroidered with an aching and lilting violin Jazz breeze. Overall a softly floating other worldliness is created by Jools huskily ephemeral vocals – especially so on the stinging ringing steel guitar-laden Can’t Figure You.  The mandolin led The Painter, adds an almost courtly feel to the proceedings.  The lush, rich-sounding violin and acoustic guitars that wend and wind through your mind evoke a magical mysterious atmosphere. The lazy Mr Horizon, is a very late night smoke filled slow Jazz fuelled candle burner. The album finishes with Cats Whiskers, an urging swinging violin, harp and fuzzy guitar led footstomper, sadly though as soon as you get into it… it’s gone. Indeed, a very, very interesting album.

Electric Ghost… Red Guitar In A Blue Room is the second album from Ruby Muse; a duo that hails from the heart of the British countryside and offers arrange of songs inspired by folk, country, blues, jazz and even classical music, whilst retaining one electro-acoustic sound that defines them. The opening track Cheat is a number that showcases some great vocal harmonies and well placed electric guitar, held together with a solid rhythm. Hints of southern rock are even detectable in this track, thanks to the bluesy slide guitar that winds between verses and choruses, courtesy of rock and blues man, Malcolm Heyes.  Red Guitar In A Blue Room also features some predominantly country songs too; Can’t Figure You being one of these.  Mr Horizon proves to be a particular highlight, with its laid-back lounge jazz style, interesting chord inversions and soothing melody. All the songs that feature on this album are, in some way or another, stories and are told fantastically with Jools Heyes lyrics intriguing and urging the listener on. Cultural influences are drawn on throughout the album too, with inspiration coming from Vermeer’s Girl With A Pearl Earring painting – and like any good poet, Shakespeare. Red Guitar In A Blue Room is an electro-acoustic album, sometimes reminiscent of Stevie Nicks-era Fleetwood Mac and draws inspiration from a number of different sources, both musically and lyrically… the whole record proves to be very easy-listening and very pleasant and will no doubt please listeners that are already fans of the genre.