For Fans Of
For those who enjoy a darker, less country style Ryan Adams, his new self titled effort is exactly what you have been waiting a few albums for. Following up 2011’s ‘Ashes & Fire,’ which in many ways was the opposite of this new record, bright and acoustic, the newly married Adams at that point was obviously pretty chuffed. It seems as though a few years later he has faded back to his usual jaded and reflective self, the benefit for us being some pretty great music.
The record begins with some smoky rock n’ roll, laid back and drenched in blues, Gimme Something Good puts Adams in his full band rock setting with enough reverberated guitars and synth lines to conjure up some 80’s style alternative rock. The album, which Adams produced himself, sounds restrained whilst giving the right amount of attention to the instrumentation in the songs, it’s dynamically brilliant and works with the mood of the vocals extremely well.
The second track, Kim, is a true highlight, it sounds as if it could have been taken from the latest Gaslight Anthem record, a simple guitar line, a pacing snare and some sad vocals that are incredibly catchy. Less is more this time around with Adam’s proving he truly has mastered the art of song-writing.
The album seems to focus on the loss of love, especially on the acoustic number My Wrecking Ball, which sounds like classic early Ryan Adams, true singer-songwriter style emphasising its simple chorus line. Shadows is another stand-out, the smooth guitar tone which is cooler than most cool things, another simple drum line and a gradual build that never takes off like it probably should, which works perfectly.
The record closes with Let Go, a quiet little number that is driven by bass and a travelling snare with some fairly relaxed vocals and guitar work that give off possibly the brightest tone in what is otherwise quite a dark affair.
For those who like a little less country and a little more blues in their Ryan Adams, the self titled album is for you. Genres aside, enjoy the experience of the finest song-writers of our time.
1. Gimmie Something Good
4. Am I Safe
5. My Wrecking Ball
6. Stay With Me
8. Feels Like Fire
9. I Just Might
10. Tired Of Giving Up
11. Lets Go