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The Ransom Collective’s Muri drops new single ‘Afternoon,’ shares insights on journey across three cities

Establishing a name in a chosen career is challenging, and this might be particularly hard to deny in a highly competitive music industry. However, with the combination of skills, passion, and perseverance, reaching one’s dream may not be an impossible feat after all.

This has been proven to be true for violinist Murriel Gonzales, often referred to as Muri. Currently based in London and Paris, Gonzales officially started her music journey as a member of the indie group The Random’s Collective. The band shot to fame at Wanderland in 2014 by winning first prize.

But even now as a solo artist, considering as well that Muri started playing violin as early as 4th grade, her talent continues to grace the music scene, whether in the Philippines or abroad.


Ready to make a comeback after her debut single “Thunder” and 2022’s “Letters,” Muri releases her latest single “Afternoon,” today, June 7. This track, which is also part of her upcoming debut EP slated for release this year, delves into Muri’s experience as an artist navigating the music scene alone in a country far from home.

To provide fans with more detailed and inclusive insights into her journey as a musician, POP! connected with Muri herself. The conversation delved into the process behind “Afternoon,” her journey to going solo and forging her own path, juggling life in three cities for her music and professional career, keeping her roots and cultural values, and much more.

“Afternoon,” a poignant reflection of personal growth and resilience, captures Muri’s journey of transitioning perspectives and finding solace amidst change. As she describes it, the song “takes you through that journey, both the dark and the good that you find when you lean into your own reality differently.” The collaboration with Paris-based producer Sacha Arnaud added unexpected dimensions to the track, infusing it with a blend of mellow downtempo and vibrant, driving rhythms that enhance its emotional depth.

Muri - Afternoon

For Muri, whose life spans continents and cultures, music serves as a powerful means of self-expression and connection to her Filipino roots. Despite the challenges of living far from home, she remains grounded in her cultural identity, regularly returning to Manila to perform and staying connected to the local music scene. “Being Filipino keeps me grounded and it’s my strong roots to home and family that have helped give me strength to pursue all my endeavors,” she shared. This dual existence has not only enriched her artistic vision but also reinforced her core values and sense of self.


Transitioning from band dynamics to a solo career has been liberating for Muri, affording her greater creative autonomy and the opportunity to explore diverse musical styles. As both a vocalist and instrumentalist, she revels in the role of creative director, collaborating closely with designers, directors, and photographers to shape her artistic output. “It’s liberating because I have more creative freedom and agency to define how I write music. I get to experiment more,” she said.

As she reflected on her artistic journey, Muri emphasized the importance of courage in sharing one’s music authentically. “You can listen to others, but take in what you can and learn to have faith and trust in yourself,” she stated. She acknowledged the subjective nature of artistic validation and encouraged aspiring musicians to trust their creative instincts above all else.

The vibrant music scenes of London, Paris, and Manila have each left a distinct imprint on Muri’s evolving sound. From Manila’s introspective melodies to Paris’ disco funk influences and London’s eclectic indie-pop scene, these environments have broadened her musical palette and inspired her to stay true to her unique artistic vision.


During creative dry spells, Muri draws inspiration from a variety of sources, from poetry and literature to live performances and new music. These strategies help reignite her creativity and propel her forward during moments of self-doubt.

Looking ahead, Muri envisions expanding her presence in Europe’s music festival circuit while maintaining strong ties to Southeast Asia, where she hopes to perform at prominent festivals and iconic venues. With her solo career gaining momentum, she eagerly anticipates exploring new creative avenues and pushing the boundaries of her artistic expression.  “I’m really getting started on exploring my creativity as a solo artist and I’m excited to just experiment and create,” she expressed.


Muri’s musical journey is a testament to resilience, cultural pride, and the transformative power of self-expression through music. As she continues to evolve as an artist, her unwavering commitment to authenticity and creativity promises an exciting future filled with exploration and innovation in the world of music.

Details of Muri’s highly anticipated performances of her new songs in Europe and Asia this year are not yet available. In the meantime, music enthusiasts can listen to her song “Afternoon.”


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