photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin

Richard Ashcroft

For United, Richard Ashcroft recruited hip-hop producer No I.D., best known for Jay-Richard Ashcroft singles like "D.O.A." and "Run This Town." At its best, it kind of sounds like Big Audio Dynamite, and mixes up Jigga-worthy beats, noisy guitars, and cinematic strings courtesy of Barry White arranger Benjamin Wright.

That hip-hop ethos came through in New York, as Ashcroft -- wearing a hip-hop-appropriate puffed out, multi-pocketed jacket and backed by a crack outfit dubbed the United Nation of Sound -- uncorked the thick, rattling rhythms of new songs like "Are You Ready" and "Born Again" with excitement. Sometimes too much so, actually, as there were many instances of him making awkward b-boy hand gestures (aggressively pointing to the crowd, pointing to his eye, and then pointing up wards) while performing. -[Spin]

Richard Ashcroft played a sold-out Bowery Ballroom last night (3/23) with The Postelles, a day after he performed his new single "Are You Ready?" on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. In addition, the former Verve frontman recently made a stop at RXP for an in-studio performance.

Ashcroft's new LP, United Nations of Sound is out now and currently streaming in full.

More pictures from Bowery (including the setlist) and video from Fallon & RXP, below...

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Richard Ashcroft "Are You Ready?" on Jimmy Fallon, 3/22/11

Richard Ashcroft at RXP