Ryan Adams & The Cardinals- III / IV


As an avid Ryan Adams fan I of course purchased his newest peice of work “III/IV” with his backing band The Cardinals when it came out last month. This is the 12 studio album from Ryan (yes… i mean TWELFTH) and the 5th album that he’s released backed by The Cardinals, and it’s not half bad. Honestly, I’d rather he just keep flying solo because it seems to bring out/force out more lyrical content in each song as opposed to the riff driven grooves that he seems to go for when thrown in with other musicians. But like I said, it’s not a bad album.

All of these tracks were recorded in 2006 during the same session that birthed Easy Tiger, which is on my perfect albums list, so it’s a bit shocking that I don’t love this one more than I do.

My favorite is without a doubt Typecast… I’ve tried to find out who the female vocalist is but I haven’t had much luck. So if anyone actual physical copy and want’s to see if it’s listed in the album sleeve then feel free to be my hero and tell me. I suspect our mystery vocalist is the bassist Catherine Popper, who has since left the group and later joined up with Grace Potter & The Nocturnals (a band certainly worth checking out). I think Ultraviolet Light and Happy Birthday are great songs too. And no, he isn’t singing you happy birthday, so don’t get excited…

My biggest complaint is that his vocals seem to be inconsistent and sloppy on some of the tracks. Maybe he was trying to be stylistic, maybe he was drunk, or maybe he just listened to a lot of David Bowie before recording… all are fairly likely possibilities. Musically there’s no doubt that they’re all very talented, lyrically it’s hit or miss from song to song, vocally I think there are less hits than misses but that’s just me. If you’re a huge Bowie fan then it probably wont bother you, but no offense to old DB I can’t hang with him for too long.

Out of 21 songs (two disc set) I’d say that there probably aren’t more than 8 of them that I would listen to on a regular basis. If that translates into “I should put this on my wishlist” then go for it. If not… well you may want to save your mullah for Iron & Wine‘s new album coming out on the 25th! (You can stream it HERE on Conan O’Brien‘s site… get excited!)

Typecast

EDIT: I have since learned that the female vocalist on Type cast is none other than the wonderful Norah Jones. No wonder I love it.

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Categories: Music Review

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