Having traded her native Japan for the leafy landscapes of her adopted home in the South of England, Rie Fu has produced a record which encompasses many of the elements that her multi-faceted life has been building towards through her remarkable new album ‘Places’. Encapsulating the purity and fragile beauty of artists like Laura Nyro and Kate Bush, Rie has completed her odyssey exploring the dynamic differences between the two cultures, and is set to release her international debut in March 2019.
“The simple way to explain the title ‘Places‘ is that it’s about where I came from and where I am now” she says. “This idea was inspired by a documentary I saw recently about Yo Yo Ma’s Silkroad Ensemble, in which musicians with various geographical, religious and political background gathered to perform music. That made me realise more than ever that music is all about the journey between where you’re from and the exact moment when the music is being performed. I think where you live, and this beautiful countryside and nature in the UK, is so inspiring. I get off the train and smell the fresh air.”
Through her studies in Fine Art at London’s Central St Martins, Rie began to immerse herself in music along with her painting, as her releases all feature her distinctive self-painted cover art, which in turn became her binding trait. Following a torrent of songwriting, she had earned herself a recording and publishing deal with Sony Japan at the age of 19, earning herself widespread recognition with the release of her debut album at home. Subsequent albums followed, with Rie also becoming well known for sync placements of her music into Japanese film and TV, as well as her live performances across Asia. Rie relocated to the UK to pursue a new music scene in spring 2016 and has developed critical support throughout summer 2017 from numerous UK & US outlets for her two formative EP releases.
“Bewitching… a blissful four minutes of smooth pop gorgeousness” – The Line of Best Fit
‘Places,’ recorded at Urchin Studios in London and produced by Dan Cox, features Rie on lead vocals, acoustic guitar and the delicate piano that creates the spine of the album. Kenji “Jammer” Suzuki adds subtle electric guitar touches and Jo Quail’s cello heightens the classical and jazzy hints in this underplayed pastoral setting.