Based in the north coast of Spain, in a small village by the sea, Lucho González Suárez, who records as Lucho Ripley, deals in glistening tones and shimmering reverb cascading around dreamy melodies and majestic arpeggios. He started to record music in 2013, without musical education, totally self taught. His music, made only with guitars, is a melting pot of post-rock, dreampop, ambient and classical music, but the final work can’t be defined by any of these genres separately.
Lucho Ripley’s new album is an extremely focused set of instrumental compositions that seem to resemble a modern day song cycle.
Every recording of Lucho Ripley is made exclusively with guitars but not in an ordinary way. The music flows always free, far from any convention imposed by the instrument. His new record is not an exception, but a confirmation of his idiosyncrasy.
As the cover by master watercolorist Joe Cartwright seems to suggest, Mirakler is a study of light. The light outside and the light within. The light JMW Turner so incessantly pursued in his paintings. The light of extraordinary events or maybe the simple joy of a summer evening on a small seaside town. It’s for the listener to decide.
Lucho’s songs have often been described as “having a sense of wonderment”, equal parts childlike and zen. Mirakler probably builds the ultimate case for those kinds of statements: never before have Lucho’s painstakingly arranged layers of guitars sounded so radiant or the emotions so stirred. The compositions flow with a purpose that never lets go, from the tension-building, arresting “Poledouris” to the eternal return that is “Vostok 6”. In between those two, mysteries abound.
This is music for open spaces, bright watercolors and wind chimes. Go ahead. Bask in the sunlight.