For Ritzy Bryan, bumps and bruises all in a day's work - Omaha.com
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Ritzy Bryan of British rock band The Joy Formidable performs at Waterloo Records in Austin, Texas, for the South by Southwest music festival.(KEVIN COFFEY | THE WORLD-HERALD)


For Ritzy Bryan, bumps and bruises all in a day's work
By Kevin Coffey | World-Herald staff writer


Ritzy Bryan has a few injuries.

Sustained while The Joy Formidable frontwoman releases some of her boundless energy during performances, most are bumps and bruises. Many are from falling off stage — something that has put other musicians in the hospital.

For Bryan, the minor injuries are simply part of her job.

“I've had some pretty comical moments,” Bryan told The World-Herald. “You can lose yourself completely in the moment, and part of what goes with me is my coordination.

“Luckily, I'm quite at peace with laughing at myself.”

Bryan's energy goes hand-in-hand with The Joy Formidable's music, a shimmering and epic group of guitar rock songs.

“Wolf's Law,” the band's latest effort, was compiled while the group was on tour, and the songs are bigger and fuller than anything they've done before. The subjects are rather personal — the death of Bryan's father and the breakup of Bryan and bassist Rhydian Dafydd.

“I think when you tour a lot, you put yourself on hold on some level. There's that moment where you stop and you start to reflect,” she said. “There are a lot of difficult things that went into the record. At the same time, it talks about so many universal things.”

One of the most interesting songs on the record is the stripped-down “Silent Treatment,” which features only Bryan's voice and an acoustic guitar melody. Especially compared to the roller coaster of guitars on “Maw Maw Song” or the insistent beat and orchestral chorus of “The Hurdle,” the song feels incredibly quiet.

“There's a real dynamic range on the record — a lot of intimate moments and tracks that have grown into something orchestral. It's layered,” Bryan said.

“('Silent Treatment') felt like such a kind of a personal vulnerable moment. It didn't need much instrumentation or layering around the outside. We wanted to keep it in its raw, emotional form.”

Contact the writer:

402-444-1557, kevin.coffey@owh.com, twitter.com/owhmusicguy

If you go...

Who: Silversun Pickups and The Joy Formidable
When: 7:30 p.m. Friday
Where: Stir Concert Cove at Harrah’s Casino in Council Bluffs
Tickets: $25 at www.ticketmaster.com, the venue’s ticket kiosk, Ticketmaster retail locations or by phone at 800-745-3000
Information: www.stircove.com or 712-329-6499

Contact the writer: Kevin Coffey

kevin.coffey@owh.com    |   402-444-1557    |  

Kevin covers music, whether it's pop, indie or punk, through artist interviews, reviews and trend stories. He also occasionally covers other entertainment, including video games and comic books.

Read more stories by Kevin


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