PREMIERE: Ryan Downey - Me & Her

17 March 2016 | 12:28 pm | Staff Writer

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Melbourne-based indie-folk musician Ryan Downey is evidently not one to let a setback get in his way. When a broken arm threatened to derail his plans of releasing his debut full-length in late 2015, instead of balling up on the couch and binging Dr Phil repeats, Downey decided he'd construct an a capella mini-LP, Me & Her.

The result is a jaw-dropping set of gorgeously constructed voice work, and The Music is thrilled to be premiering the release ahead of its release early next week. 

You may have already heard early single Tidings (which we were fortunate enough to premiere back in November), but there are six other tracks to be unwrapped, including second single Only Time — one of a handful of covers appearing on the album, along with Chainmail Maker (Tiny Ruins) and On A Good Day (Joanna Newsom; performed as a duet with Lucy Roleff). 

There's a true joy in hearing Downey flexing his vocal prowess on Me & Her, particularly as the singer takes a few detours outside his usual baritone comfort zone, and it's easy, listening to the seven tracks contained therein, to forget why anybody bothers with instruments in the first place when we clearly have everything we need built into us to start with.

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Me & Her was mixed by Anna Laverty (Nick Cave, Cut Copy, Meg Mac) and mastered by Sing Sing Studios' Ross Cockle. It's out on Tuesday 22 March as a digital-only release, via Gaga Digi, but Downey will be launching the album with a brief interstate run of shows; he kicks off in Melbourne, at the Toff In Town, on 31 March, heading to Hobart for two shows on 2 April — the first, an afternoon performance at MONA; the second, in the evening at The Grand Poobah — and caps it all off at The Newsagency, Sydney, on 7 April.

For more details about the mini-LP or upcoming shows, head to Downey's Facebook page and swing him a Like.