Last summer the video for Baby 126 seemed to come out of no-where, brimming with infectiousness and feel good, sun-soaked vibes. And if the concept of a Shakespearean sonnet delivered as a rapped vocal may have then been hard to imagine, this song proved that with the right ingredients – blue-eyed street soul vocals, breezy pop, slinky, jazz horns, easy dance grooves, not to mention the singers own force of personality – the only surprising thing about it was that it hadn’t been done before.
But if this three-track release shows anything, it is not just what a commercial success the lead track could prove to be but also the range that Ruby covers both musically and lyrically. If Baby 126 is the obvious clarion call for a party, the other tracks work in more subtle ways. Fire is built of darker materials, slow burning, raw, bluesy and confessional, and between the minimalist structures some of those hallmarks of the Lighterthief studio, squiggly electronica and warped distant atmospherics add interesting musical punctuation.
Azul takes a more traditional line; chilled, soulful and sensuous, its graceful and classic lines reflect a timeless style that has endured from Souls golden age through to the modern pop divas who still tribute its iconic style. It is testament to this track that it could exist anywhere on that timeline.
Baby 126 was the calling card, a colourful blast to grab your attention but now packaged with two very different songs, a much bigger and more interesting picture is emerging. As a taste of the full-length album, which is currently being recorded, this is indeed the most tempting of musical appetizers.
Available from – www.lighterthiefmusic.com