Home Read Now Hear This: Ric Robertson | ​Strange World​

Now Hear This: Ric Robertson | ​Strange World​

I'm getting caught up on the good albums that have come out lately. Like this one.

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THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Ric Robertson​’s​ ​Strange World ​EP ​drips with syrupy trance-funk like an intergalactic spacecraft rising from swampy waters at the far edges of the galaxy, crash-landing in the middle of Frenchmen Street. Where his 2018 full-length debut The Fool, The Friend​ channeled the lovesick wryness of John Prine, Randy Newman and Paul Simon, ​Strange World leans into the rhythmic enchantment of George Clinton, Sly Stone, and Dr. John. Through touring with ​Rhiannon Giddens​, playing with The ​Woods Brothers​, and as a member of ​Lucius​, the North Carolina native’s multi-pronged approach to music crystallized in the barrooms and sidewalks of New Orleans.

For ​Ric Robertson​, songwriting and rhythm are two distinct musical muscles. “There’s trance music, the visceral dance approach to playing, like the old-time fiddle music I grew up playing or New Orleans funk, and then there’s the crafted narrative and poetic storytelling of a song,” he says. “I really am equally into both and they’re different muscles to exercise. But to really turn to New Orleans, in terms of the one thing that I get out of the Cajun and zydeco music, New Orleans funk, and R&B, is this rhythmic trance element that I find to be completely parallel with old-time fiddle music from North Carolina and Virginia and where I grew up.”

T​the four-track EP was co-produced and mixed by ​Dan Molad​ (Lucius). The first single, Louisiana Love Thing, features a video directed by photographer and dance choreographer ​Bobby Bonsey and Cameron Scoggins​, where the first three tracks on ​Strange World​ will be accompanied by an 11-minute stop-motion animated video narrating the thrust of the themes on ​Strange World.​ Directed and animated by ​Robertson and Nick Miceli​, with characters designed by New Orleans artist ​Nick Shoulders​, the short film brings the songs to life in a technicolor sci-fi New Orleans inhabited by robots and monsters as they fight for freedom from an overbearing industrialist force seeking to dismantle their creativity and keeping them on its profitable assembly line. With levity, color, and rhythm, ​Ric Robertson ​helps to articulate the creative risks needed to face the challenges of being an artist in this Strange World​.”