Recorded at the Converse Rubber Tracks Studio in Brooklyn, NY.
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It’s approaching 3 am and Bill Ricchini aka Summer Fiction isn’t on the windswept beach his moniker may suggest. He’s in a chilly basement echo chamber at Eve Studios—a 200-year old country house/recording studio just North of Manchester, UK. His wordless “oohs” bounce off the cinderblock walls overdubbing a tricky vocal harmony part Brian Wilson, part Jeff Lynn. A jangly guitar chimes in channeling The Smiths’ Johnny Marr—born just a few miles away.
Ricchini approached collaborator, Philly expat and UK transplant BC Camplight to co-produce the latest Summer Fiction record, Himalaya. Ricchini lived in Northern England for three weeks that chilly spring recording songs such as the Big Star power pop of “Perfume Paper,” the Pet Sounds carousel of “Lauren Lorraine,” the Nilsson/Bacharach melodic songcraft of “Religion of Mine,” and the Wednesday Morning 3 a.m. fingerpicking of ballad “By My Side.”
Himalaya was mixed in Brooklyn by Grammy-winning engineer Geoff Sanoff and mastered by Joe Lambert (The National, Sharon Van Etten, Deerhunter).
In 2015 and 2017, Ricchini completed successful tours for Himalaya playing for fans in Paris and all over Spain and releasing the tour single “Since You’ve Gone with That Boy” recorded at the Converse Rubber Tracks studios in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
The band recently released a multi-song performance film shot at Philadelphia’s beautifully haunted Divine Lorraine Hotel.
Ricchini’s early solo records (Ordinary Time, Tonight I Burn Brightly) as well as his more recent albums as Summer Fiction have received critical praise from New York Magazine, Vogue, NPR, KCRW, Spin, Magnet, and Rolling Stone.
Ricchini currently splits his time between Philadelphia and New York and is working on a new record. The band continues to play live, most recently opening for The Minus 5 (Scott McCaughey, REM’s Peter Buck, Mike Mills).
“Brian Wilson melodic levity meets Johnny Marr guitar jangle…effortlessly engaging.”
“Brilliant 60′s-esque AM pop.”
– New York Magazine
“Lovely, bookish songs.”
“World-weary yet heartwarming summer pop that sounds good anytime of year.”
“Perfect pop melodies and arrangements that may remind you of Pet Sounds-era Beach Boys.”
“Wistfully demur on the surface, delving into everyday matters of the heart with a icy pair of forceps, leaving all manner of collateral damage in its wake. ”
“Charmingly catchy heartache meets sun-kissed disenchantment.”
– The Philadelphia Inquirer
“One of our favorite discoveries this year.”
“Bill Ricchini has a splendid way with a melody that recalls the Beach Boys and The Left Banke. In the grand tradition of great pop tunesmiths he’s sometimes puzzled by the ways of the human heart, but you can imagine him getting a girl worth having.”
– All Music Guide