Musical homes tend to breed musical people. The inspirations are found everywhere; the AM radio station that was always on in the kitchen or the car, the older brother with an incredible record collection, the random instruments scattered around the house. Growing up around music tends to provide that spark to create...sometimes moving more than one inhabitant of a musical home.
Such is the case with the band featured in our newest Dead Kitten Session. The Rua are a family trio who specialize in the kind of stirring songwriting that's chock full of inspirational stories, dramatic orchestrations, and unexpected, tonal trajectories. Through the three songs offered here ("Stand Out", "Fight for What's Right", and "Without You") and some thoughtful insight into their creation, it's clear to see that Jonathan, Roseanna, and Allana are on an exciting journey together. Though it started years ago in their childhood home, it's only now begun to blossom for the band. Get on board before The Rua supernova.
this road before] I want to be.] hold my head higher.] Help me to see what you can see.] Stand out if you understood.] To be all I can be. Be me.] back onto different memories,] of the future and what it used to hold.] hold my head higher.] Help me to see what you can see.] Stand out if you understood.] To be all I can be to be me.] and hold my head higher.] To be all I can be.] Help me to see what you can see.] my head higher.] Help me to see what you can see.] Stand out if you understood.] To be all I can be to be me.] - Stand Out, which is about a woman who was, basically, part of our family. She was the nanny for our aunt's children. But she was more than that. She was like and aunt herself. Like, she was family. She sadly died of cancer about five years ago. But she was just the most selfless person I have ever known and believed in people, that just believed in people and what they can do. And she was just so inspiring, so she was the inspiration for that song. - We performed Fight For What's Right and that song was the very last song that we wrote when we were doing the album. And that came about very quickly. We couldn't write, do one of the songs that originally we had planned to do. Then this one, we were told to write, "You've got about three hours. You gotta write a song. " And this came about for it. So, yeah, we like this, Fight For What's Right. you have your reasons to deny.] of complicating, I've had enough.] It's not a game of love and hate] and leave.] running from sight] Fight for what's right.] out of my mind.] On my own again.] believe what you say.] of disbelief. It's too much.] It's not a game of love and hate.] wait and see. Won't try again.] running from sight.] Fight for what's right.] Outta my mind.] On my own again.] Running from sight.] Fight for what's right.] Said goodbye again, outta my mind.] On my own again.] Running from sight.] Fight for what's right.] outta my mind.] I, personally, hope that people hear that we're musicians. We write our own stuff and that we actually want to make a connection with our songs. We write about actual things and feelings. And, I think, that's important. - And then we did Without You. Which is just knowing that you don't need--, like you--, that you can be independent. Like, you don't need your old school friends. - It's actually quite funny because it's a really up tempo song, but if you actually listen to the words it's actually, I can do without you. Whether it be that person you're in a relationship with or something like that, you will be okay on your own. You will get to know yourself. Alanna and I started that song, didn't we? - Yeah, that, again, was written quite late. It was before we went to record in Brussels. That was done just a couple of days before, beforehand. So the song is on the album. There's a range. So, like, how we were saying, there's some old ones and then you come back to them again, they're on there. But there are some that we recorded right-- - Before. - Right before. - Yeah. - And during. right. Got nothing to say] The memory is gone.] But I had it all yesterday.] that I'll be okay.] And I will never fall.] so long I'm suffocating.] without you. Without you.] there some day.] that you say.] without you, without you] on from my lonely days.] head up and walk on by.] But if hiding from yesterday I know I'll find my way No, I'm not lost at all.] waiting so long I'm suffocating.] without you, without you.] I won't hear a word that you say.] without you. Without you.] and that I'll be okay.] And I will never fall.] waiting so long I'm suffocating.] Without you.] hear a word that you say.] without you. Without you.]
The RUA a biography
You won't forget the first time you heard The Rua. It will be on a day such as this when nothing feels right and it seems like as good an idea as any to fill the silence with reason. Songs very rarely make you stand up and sing but Fight For Whats Right and Stand Out and Into The Crowd and Follow just might. And you could stand here all day and say that The Rua sound like this and The Rua sound like that but it wouldn't get you anywhere you'd still be standing up and singing.
Rua means essence of a group or at least, we found a meaning from the Hebrew word Ruah with an h at the end and we really liked it but we didnt like the h - and the essence of The Rua are all members of the same family: 22 year old year old chanteuse Roseanna Brown provides voice and guitar, 24 year old Alanna Brown is responsible for piano and backing vocals and 19 year old Jonathan Brown plays violin and guitar and provides vocals and backing vocals. Of course, a further investigation of rua reveals that the word has a myriad of Gaelic connections and certainly the band have Irish blood flowing through their collective veins. Having said that, The Rua all live in the same house near Windsor , England and yes, you guessed it, theyve spent most New Year and Xmas holidays back in the Emerald Isle. And, no, theyre not the new Monkees.
Aside from the fact they all live together, The Rua also have a theatrical background: Alanna has appeared in the film Closer as well as no less than four Harry Potter movies whilst all of them appeared in Stormbreaker and Roseanna - whos appeared in three Harry Potter films - also appeared in Snow White and The Huntsman and the Thor movie. And perhaps if we also mentioned that Jonathan appeared in one of the Harry Potters (as well as Dark Shadows) then we can understand why you might want to refer to them as HP4, HP3 and HP1. But were not going to do this. Ever.
The Rua are all classically trained pianists, violinists, singers - and their membership of many established choirs means that they have a standard and always listen to each other. Roseanna has a degree in Music from Royal Holloway - although all studied music at A Level and Alanna has a degree and Masters in Science - but before you start thinking that this must be some kind of operatic outfit lets get one thing clear: The Rua are an outlandishly-epic, indie version of bands like Fleetwood Mac and The Cranberries and the kind of band that hits the Coldplay/Snow Patrol nerve before youve even gotten as far as their exceptional choruses. So yes, we have to say it: theyre going to sell millions.
And so to the songs - which are all co-written - on the bands debut album Essence: opener Fight For Whats Right is about having a belief and letting people know youre going to stick to it; the colossal Stand Out is about a family friend who sadly died but throughout her illness selflessly encouraged the Brown enfants to be themselves and follow their dreams; Without You is about being independent and knowing that you can trust in yourself to get on with your own life; Into The Crowd is about those that surprise you in ways that you wouldnt think possible; and best of all, Follow, is a song about letting go of others who want to follow another path and, perhaps, if you will, a The Rua version of Fleetwood Macs 'Go Your Own Way.
In an era where manufactured pop is considered to be the height of creative ambition, a band like The Rua might be considered something of an anachronism. Except, of course, that if anything, The Rua beat the X Factor wannabes at their own game: they craft beautiful and epic tunes out of their own non-artificial artfulness. Live and on record the band are completed by ex Blondie bassist Nigel Harrison - co-writer of One Way Or Another and Union City Blues amongst other Blondie gems - and Portishead drummer Clive Deamer whos also drummed with Radiohead, Roni Size and Siouxsie Sioux amongst others. Naturally, apart from absolutely destroying the average age of the band, they provide a unique, possibly symbiotic backdrop to this essential rock group a band youre going to remember for a long, long time.