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Rob Luft | Riser

The wunderkind, award-winning London based guitarist Rob Luft delivers one of the best debut records in many years.

“So young and so talented! JAMIE CULLUM, BBC RADIO 2 (UK)

“23-year-old Londoner Rob Luft has delivered the most fully-realized and rewarding debut album from a guitarist-composer since Julian Lage’s 2009 outing, Sounding Point…he has concocted a remarkably original statement that highlights his prodigious chops and his singular gifts as a composer-arranger and sonic provocateur.” DOWNBEAT 4 ½ STARS (USA)

“Guitar virtuoso makes enticingly vivacious debut” THE GUARDIAN (UK)

ROB LUFT guitar
JOE WRIGHT tenor saxophone
JOE WEBB hammond organ, piano and harmonium

1. Night Songs 5.20
2. Riser 6.15
3. Beware 4.44
4. Slow Potion 2.33
5. Different Colours Of Silence 3.40
6. Dust Settles 5.04
7. Shorty 3.53
8. Blue, White and Dreaming 3.41
9. St. Brian I 5.57
10. We Are All Slowly Leaving 8.15

All music by Rob Luft except ‘Shorty’ by Rob Luft, Tom McCredie and Corrie Dick


Riser is the new album from London-born award-winning guitarist Rob Luft. A musician of incredible talent, depth and maturity, Rob Luft is set to become a name to remember. At only 23 years of age his proficiency as a guitarist and composer embodies a level of musicianship and vision well beyond his years. A winner of the prestigious Kenny Wheeler Music Prize as well as placing second in The 2016 Montreux Jazz Guitar Competition, Rob is already garnering praise from critics across Europe. The UK’s Jazzwise Magazine has highlighted his “obvious star quality” and Riser is an album that stands up to scrutiny as one of the finest debut records in many years in the burgeoning creative current UK Jazz scene.

Riser marks the first occasion on which I’ve released a selection of my original songs. I have always considered myself as being primarily a performer and secondly a composer” says Rob “and feel more at home standing on the kind of “Riser” that can be found in London’s jazz clubs rather than sitting at home writing music.”

Despite this characteristic modesty, Riser is full of hooky and deft tunes and affirms an overwhelming sense of joy and happiness, blending a visceral energy and potent pulse with strong melody and absorbing harmonic movement. The songs are all composed by Rob (bar one co-written with the band), establishing beyond doubt (or self-effacement) his writing credentials and combining intertwining, intricate phrases with a folky lilt, or a more urban ambient vibe and moving effortlessly between saxophone, guitar and organ. These songs are wonderfully fresh and invigorating.

Riser is full of the music of affirmation, perfectly matching creativity and collaboration. The band are some of the most interesting and creative young musicians on the scene with strong Edition Records ties. They demonstrate great facility and inventiveness and a mutual respect both for the music and for each others manifold talents.

Rob Luft is right at the beginning of his journey as a bandleader and what a mark he has made already with Riser! A visionary innovator, blending great humility with unusual maturity… Watch this space!


Recorded at Real World Studios from 9th – 11th January 2017 by Alex Killpartrick & Patrick Phillips
Mixed between 3rd – 31st May by Alex Killpartrick in London in May 2017
Mastered by Mandy Parnell at Black Saloon Studios, London on June 1st, 2017


The Kenny Wheeler Jazz Prize was founded in 2011 and is awarded each year to a young artist who demonstrates excellence in both performance and composition, selected from all graduating jazz musicians at the Royal Academy of Music. The prestigious prize includes release of the artist’s proposed recording on the Edition Records.

The judging panel consists of ­Edition Records boss Dave Stapleton, the Academy’s Head of Jazz Nick Smart together with Evan Parker, saxophonist and lifelong collaborator of Wheeler.

The Kenny Wheeler Music Prize winners are: Josh Arcoleo (saxophone) [2011] /  Reuben Fowler (trumpet) [2012] / Lauren Kinsella (Blue-Eyed Hawk) (vocals) [2013] / Misha Mullov-Abbado (double-bass) [2014] / Ralph Wyld (Mosaic) (vibraphone) ]2015] / Rob Luft (guitar) [2016].

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