8 Songs, 40 Minutes


The indie troubadour plots a new path filled with rapturous turns.


The indie troubadour plots a new path filled with rapturous turns.


Ratings and Reviews

Over the top

Das Boone

Over the top talented - Jazz pulse glide under currents, with an electric/acoustic mix of folk. And the guy can Pick It...Cool voice and words, Coltrane/Nick Drake/Sonny Sharrock/John Fahey all in one. Check all this music - unique in all regards...mb

About Ryley Walker

Ryley Walker is an accomplished fingerstyle guitarist, singer, and songwriter from Chicago. After a few years cutting his teeth on the city's indie and experimental music scenes, he began giving solo live performances with his acoustic guitar. The first recorded aspect of his complex musical persona arrived with the cassette-only EP The Evidence of Things Unseen, issued in limited edition from Plustapes in 2011. Its artwork was deliberately reminiscent of John Fahey's Death Chants Breakdowns & Military Favorites, and inspired by the American Primitive lexicon of Takoma Records. Later that year he released -- again via cassette on Plustapes -- Of Deathly Premonitions, a four-song collaboration with fellow fingerstyle guitarist Daniel Bachman. Walker's first widely circulated recording was a vinyl-only three-song 12" entitled West Wind from Tompkins Square Records in 2013. His debut album, All Kinds of You, was issued by the label in April of 2014.

After intensive touring and playing on others' records, he signed to Dead Oceans in the fall. Recording in Chicago with a cast of improvisational and jazz session aces (including cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm and vibraphonist Jason Adasiewicz), Walker completed Primrose Green, issued in 2015. It was the first of his recordings to feature his own vocals. Musically, it blurs the lines between folk, rock, jazz, and new music. After nearly ten months of touring Primrose Green, Walker returned to Chicago and set about writing and recording his third album. Inspired in part by the Windy City and local musical heroes Tortoise and Gastr del Sol, the eight-track album, Golden Sings That Have Been Sung, was released in August 2016. The following year he and frequent touring partner Bill MacKay issued SpiderBeetleBee, a collection of guitar duets described as "slide blues, baroque dance, percolating Latin and deep-focus space" tunes on Drag City. ~ Thom Jurek



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