Combining the soulfulness of Solange with the dream pop of The xx, RYAL the project is an artistic vision of music with a unique style, an emotional vision, and a glittering inclusive world view. Ryal the artist is a passionate siren whose odyssey has taken her from the wilderness where desert meets disco to the city life of New York, where she currently makes her musical and creative home.
Whether looking up to role models like Bjork for style, Kendrick Lamar for lyrics, and Thom Yorke for DGAF attitude, or bouncing from foundational influences to current obsessions as guideposts along the creative way, Ryal has always had a deep love for electronic music, and is on a constant hunt to expand her melodic ideas.
Which is all part of RYAL the project, which spun out of Ryal’s restless creative curiosity. After a period where all she seemed to be singing about was lost love and heartache, she recognized that the next move for her to make was a dance step. It was time to pack up all that gloom and loss into a brighter lyrical suitcase, like the musical equivalent of wearing pink lipstick, using hairspray, applying just the right amount of glitter, and dancing like there’s no tomorrow.
Producer Aaron Nevezie was on the same wavelength, and saw the innovative possibilities in helping Ryal fulfill her desire to push and challenge herself into a new direction as a songwriter. He has been a part of the project since its inception, when Ryal holed up in a Music Building studio and started writing pop song after pop song. Cheerleader and sounding board, guide and fellow passenger, Nevezie is RYAL’s co-project manager, lending his considerable musical talents in the studio and on stage to help create a musical experience whose whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
Those parts? Classic and cutting edge. Inspired by the vintage electronic textures of pulsing modular synth bass lines locked to analog drum machines and keyboards, the music blends live guitar and drum kit for an experience that combines the minimalism of Eno with the energy of the club, where the venue becomes a live wire that dances with the electricity of the songs. Songs that are the best kind of disco-pop, which can go light and dark, frivolous and deep, and sweet and wounded—and always during the same song.
In a city with so many disparate music scenes, RYAL is dedicated to community over exclusion. If the scene is a room, then the community is the house, and it’s RYAL’s goal to get everybody in that house dancing together, no matter what room they’re in.
All of which illustrate Ryal’s belief that music is the most inclusive art form. Listen to it, dance to it, give in to its spell—music is a block party where everyone’s invited, and an all-are-welcome haven for the heaven that is dance.
Silver and gold