Denver musician Lara Ruggles will be releasing her new album Cynics & Saints on 2 October, and as you can hear on her stunning track “The Dove”, the 29-year-old combines Americana and lavish 1970s Laurel Canyon singer-songwriter fare with the confidence of a master. What starts off as a mournful blues dirge morphs into a gorgeous piece worthy of Carole King, and it leaves you craving to hear what the rest of the new record will be like.
“‘The Dove’ was the weird outlier on this album that I came into the studio fighting for,” Ruggles says. “I basically said to Mike Yach & Steve Vidaic at Immersive Records, ‘I don’t care what you say or whether you like it or not, this song is going on the album. It’s my one non-negotiable.’ And then it was the song that almost got kicked off. The arrangement we recorded it with just wasn’t supporting its emotionality and its natural sort of ebb and flow. So we kept taking things away until we were down to just the piano and vocals and a few ambient noises, and it became a song we loved again. At this point we were two and a half years into working on the album and I wanted so badly to be done that I said, ‘Let’s just scrap it.’
“But Mike stepped up and fought for it to stay, so we built it back up again piece by piece, more true to my original instinct. I’m so glad we did. This song has always been one of my personal favorites and every time I play it someone will tell me it resonated. I feel like it has something raw to say about our fear of how much we are capable of and how powerful we can be. I love that it came out unbound by structure. It wanted to be what it wanted to be and that true gift of songwriting is when you’re able for a moment to step back and allow something to come through you and take shape almost on its own.”