Josh Ritter’s latest record flirts with Folk and Rock and leaves AltCountry in the dust, capturing the Idaho singer/songwriter whispering melodies over pianos and acoustics or getting a little dirty with organs and guitars. So Runs the World Away is one of his most lyrically dense records, with the reanimation-themed song “The Curse” leading the narratives.
In fact, released in April, the record is a nod to Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
Ritter references the Bard’s canon like it’s The Bible.
“As a writer, you run into a blank page and start thinking, ‘Well, what can get me started?’ You can flip anywhere in a Shakespeare work and get an idea,” Ritter says. “If you’re going to steal, steal from the best. He wrote love stories, but he wrote about being human. If he had bad guys, they weren’t purely bad."
Josh Ritter & the Royal City Band play 20th Century Theatre Wednesday. Go here to read Rich Shivener's full Sound Advice.