Through Adversity comes Strength…or a really great album….

Breakup albums. I’ve got a fair few on my ‘Albums I Listen to Incessantly and Never Tire of’  list: Ryan Adams’ ‘Heartbreaker’ is one, http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/36-heartbreaker/, and Beck’s ‘Sea Change’ another, http://www.rollingstone.com/music/lists/100-best-albums-of-the-2000s-20110718/beck-sea-change-20110707 . I like these particular albums, not because I have schadenfreude tendencies, but because unexpectedly raw beauty has been created by two artists, neither of whom were previously known for their overly-sensitive sides. Beck sat on his twelve songs for two years not wanting to ‘strew his baggage across the public lobby.’ I suppose with track names like ‘Guess I’m Doing Fine,’ ‘Lonesome Tears’ and ‘Already Dead’ there could have been accusations of wallowing self-indulgence. Although the album is awash with lush string arrangements, the lyrics are so honest, so stricken yet delivered in a deadpan detached tone, that any hint of sentimentality doesn’t get a look in. Continue reading

Drop the “B” – it’s Ryan, not Bryan.

I have been carrying on an unrequited love affair with Ryan Adams for many years now. It all started in 2003 when I was listening to a Beth Orton song,  ‘Concrete Sky’. I found myself focussing on the voice supporting her. It was a voice I wanted to climb into, the perfect foil to Beth Orton’s quirky Londontown sound.

The track is here if you’d like to listen to it (try and hang in there until the 2min, 33 mark):

[spotify id=”spotify:track:3YztNqzvjF7MKI3Rm40qfo” width=”300″ height=”380″ /]
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