BMA single review by Vince Leigh
The new single release for Australian singer-songwriter Susan Muranty is the lead track from her forthcoming album Fire Dove.
Ruby Ruby harnesses the allure of traditional world music, in this case, Celtic-inspired, and merges that with a series of similarly styled melodic inventions that exhibit a folk-pop veneer though eschewing a more typical pop song arrangement.
In fact, perhaps one of the most notable aspects of Ruby Ruby is this convergence; it relies on the tropes steeped in a rich musical history yet accedes to some characteristics of an accessible mainstream style.
There are two main melodic sections, which include the verses with variously altered forms of one cycle and another, which is generally viewed as a chorus but, in this case, becomes more of a mantra-like feature.
This arrangement is repeated with the lyric changing shape and becoming darker, if not more wistful.
If we examine the repeat lines featured in this chorus-like part, they appear to define the narrative focus, albeit in a poetically infused way.
The first invocation tells us, ‘sunset flames for one more night’ with the second, ‘sunset love in dead of night.’ The experience is bookended, with the fire of the first turned into a more replenishing aspect in the second.
Muranty is no stranger to accolades, which include awards from the Hollywood Music in Media Awards, UK Songwriting Contest, Songs Alive Australia, and the ASA Songwriting Contest, and her lyric writing abilities have scored the coveted Lyrics Trophy at the SCALA Festival of Original Music and the 2021 Tamworth Songwriters Association Lyrics Category and Australian Songwriters’ Association Spiritual Category.
Aligned with the earthy musical backdrop of Ruby Ruby is Muranty’s vocal approach, albeit governed by the melodic structure in some places; it possesses a vulnerable, almost tentative quality that works well, veering from low register to high with a measured attentiveness that accentuates the song’s narrative strengths.