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August 13, 2007 | by  | in Music | [ssba]

Ryan Adams – Easy Tiger

Once again Ryan Adams has perfected that sexy, tortured soul look on the cover of his new album, Easy Tiger. This is his ninth album in a seven-year solo career, and fans have unfortunately come to expect a certain level of inconsistency with the quality of each new release of his. He has recorded some truly brilliant albums such as the highly successful Gold but he has also released painfully long, unconvincing albums, such as 2006’s Cold Roses.

Easy Tiger lies somewhere in the middle of the Ryan Adams spectrum.

Easy Tiger could be criticized for simply being a consistent album that travels at the same pace throughout, lacking the oomph an upbeat single or two would give. At 13 tracks long it appears Adams has been more concerned about the quality of the tracks he has included, as this is reflected in each one having an original lyrical feel to it. Like any good country album, it unapologetically explores love and heartbreak at length. Adams has long been hailed as an accomplished lyricist and he lives up to that on Easy Tiger.

Tracks like ‘Tears Of Gold’ are reminiscent of early Neil Young, in fact it sounds more like Young than even Young’s own recent albums do. ‘Halloweenhead’ in which Adams sings about going to rehab due to his much publicized cocaine addiction, is the rockiest track on an album full of ballads.

One aspect of Adams music that I have always found satisfying is that he is a genuine alternative-country musician. All of his albums, including Easy Tiger, but possibly the exception of Love is Hell, have a very real country flavour to them.

Alt-country is a term so often misused just to describe indie bands that write a lot of ballads.

Adams’ country credibility is furthered by him producing the Willy Nelson album Songbird last year. Easy Tiger is a solidly good album. As a fan of his second album Gold though, it does still lack that spark of brilliance that songs like ‘Harder Now that its Over’ or ‘Tina Toledo’s Street Walking Blues’ had.


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