Hayley Ross lives by the sea in Brighton, grew up in Walton-on-Thames, has spent time in the Caribbean, and is right now renovating a fishing trawler to live on in Newhaven. Fascinated by water, as a child she dreamed of being a mermaid, and there’s a distinctive watery theme running through her debut album, The Weight Of Hope. notably on tracks like Barracuda and Lay Me Down.
Recurring themes is just one of the many pleasures of immersing yourself in this evocative, allusive work. Self-effacing, but also rightly confident of her musical ability, she’s a perfectionist who also loves flaws… and she’s a bloody determined woman. Four years in the making, Hayley Ross’ debut album, The Weight Of Hope features everything but the kitchen sink, as she’s become a serial hoarder of unusual instruments: stylophone, cigar box guitar, Korg monotron, melodica, plus borrowed harmonium – and musical saw and crystal wine glasses played by Nick Pynn. “He brought the wine glasses to the stuiod filled with water to different levels, on a box that was plugged in. He only lives down the road, so he carried it down, but its still quiet impressive”.
Getting the legendary John Leckie to mix the album was another boost – especially as Hayley is a massive Stone Roses fan. Initially Leckie was only supposed to mix a couple of songs, but after hearing it he said he wanted to do the whole record – so he mixed all but one of the tracks. Mastering it at Abbey Road studios was yet another pleasant surprise.