Richard Ashcroft’s career has turned into quite the bittersweet symphony. He has found massive fan support and critical acclaim both as a member of 90s Brit-rockers The Verve and as a solo artist, earning himself a place among Brit-rock royalty with his friends Chris Martin and the Gallagher brothers. However, this success has been riddled with early childhood loss, bouts of drug abuse, and tumultuous relationships with bandmates.
Following the conclusion of The Verve’s 2007 reunion, Ashcroft’s bandmates Nick McCabe and Simon Jones stated that The Verve had run its course as a band and that Richard was just using the reunion as a vehicle to get his solo career on track. Since the band’s third break up in 2009, Ashcroft has formed a new band, United Nations of Sound, and the outfit is eying a March release date for its debut entitled Redemption.
Currently, only one track has been released from the upcoming album, and it is already accompanied by a music video on Ashcroft’s website. Appropriately titled “Are You Ready”, the song takes a slight departure from his prior work, possibly due to the production by No ID, who most recently worked with Jay-Z on his 2009 singles “Run This Town” and “DOA (Death of Auto-Tune)”. Hopefully, Ashcroft will stay clear of any Cornell-esque production misques.
While no tour announcements have been made, neither The Verve nor Ashcroft have shied away from festival appearances. And with a release date of late March, the album is due out remarkably close to the beginning of festival season.