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Ryan Adams - Easy Tiger Album Cover

Ryan Adams - Easy Tiger

Reviewed by
8.6
Ryan AdamsEasy Tiger
Release Date: June 26, 2007
Record Label: Lost Highway/Island Def Jam Records
This review was written by an AP.net staff member.
I just realized Ryan Adams is my hero. Mr. Adams is releasing his 9th solo album since 2000. And though there have been (much debated) minor missteps, the majority of his work has been critically and commercially enjoyed. This level of output and excellence is something I wish to attain (or, depending on who you ask, keep intact). Easy Tiger keeps the best parts from prior releases, while constantly forging new ground. And when the quality is this good, why whine about the quantity? Someday they’ll say that about me.

Easy Tiger is an album of mini-albums. What I mean is that each song is completely different than the last, but the mood of the overall release isn’t sacrificed. I only have to detail the first two tracks to prove my point. “Goodnight Rose” is based in a twangy electric guitar and Adams’ voice wavers to make lines like, “If you get scared, just hold my hand,” sound all the more convincing. Once the soulful blues has finally sunk in, “Two” softly begins. An acoustic guitar and piano accompanies the delicate vocal harmonies between Adams and Sheryl Crow. It shouldn’t work, but it does.

Despite the loss and pain in the lyrics, Easy Tiger oozes with confidence. That’s bound to happen when you’ve been around as long as Adams. This almost seems like a conflict of interest, since it’s much easier to picture him with a lone rose in hand and a half empty bottle of Whiskey. But just when you feel the worst for the songwriter, “Halloweenhead” blasts through. Immediately, it’s obvious that this is a carefree song. The pace picks up and the full backing power of The Cardinals is felt. Life! Joy! Love! Sniffle? “Tears Of Gold” knocks us right back down. Slide guitar and a serious southern accent carry this song, while a simple snare points Adams towards his windswept chorus. Inevitably, nostalgia takes over.

No song raises a reaction out of me quite like closer, “I Taught Myself How To Grow Old.” Adams flirts with a falsetto, but the soulful female vocals and painfully long harmonica notes evoke an astounding sense of loss. It’s almost unbearable. It’s almost too beautiful.

Poor little rose beaten by the rain / In the wind, in the gale, thunder, and the hail / Sometimes I feel like I’m going insane / Without the numbness / All the pain, so intense to feel / Especially now, it added up through the years / And I taught myself how to grow / Without any love and there was poison in the rain / I taught myself how to grow / Now I’m crooked on the outside and the inside’s broke.

Powerful. And Adams knows it, too. Easy Tiger ends with a single harmonica, playing for what feels like forever. Just enough time to let such words sink in.

Recommended If You Like: Whiskeytown, Gram Parsons, hopelessness, Wilco, picking up the pieces
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 29
10:03 AM on 06/13/07
#3
steve l
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Gosh I so can't wait for this album.
10:07 AM on 06/13/07
#4
Blake Solomon
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Nice review, considering the inflated scores of some albums on this site "ahem..Saosin" everything this man has ever put out should be 100%.



I havent heard the Saosin album, so I can't comment on that. However, this album is really quite refreshing and really knocked me on my ass. The dude really knows how to put his feelings to words, and it's something I envy very much.
10:12 AM on 06/13/07
#5
Brandon Allin
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Great review, Blake.
10:21 AM on 06/13/07
#6
thesacrament
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I want this record more than anything right now. Awesome review!
10:23 AM on 06/13/07
#7
LiquidHeaven
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How long have you had this album? I got it two days ago and I don't think 2 days is enough time to give a proper review. I realize it happens all the time though. His albums just take a little time to truly sink in for me.
10:25 AM on 06/13/07
#8
Blake Solomon
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How long have you had this album? I got it two days ago and I don't think 2 days is enough time to give a proper review. I realize it happens all the time though. His albums just take a little time to truly sink in for me.


I was in the studio with him.
10:44 AM on 06/13/07
#9
tm decomposer
KEMBA WALKER 4 PREZ!!
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Great review Blake, I waiting for this to get released before listening!
11:04 AM on 06/13/07
Throwback
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How long have you had this album? I got it two days ago and I don't think 2 days is enough time to give a proper review. I realize it happens all the time though. His albums just take a little time to truly sink in for me.
I agree. I still haven't fully realized the beauty that is Love is Hell and its been one of my all-time favorite records for awhile now.

Anyway, great review and I am super pumped for this record. Goodnight Rose is such a great song.
11:59 AM on 06/13/07
vandalroyale
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How long have you had this album? I got it two days ago and I don't think 2 days is enough time to give a proper review. I realize it happens all the time though. His albums just take a little time to truly sink in for me.

I was in the studio with him.

ha Blake ftw
12:57 PM on 06/13/07
average_jane
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Quote:
I just realized Ryan Adams is my hero.

haha. I agree, actually.

I'm so glad you think it's good. I love Ryan Adams and I'm totally stoked for this album.
01:08 PM on 06/13/07
megancecelia
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i can't wait to hear it. i've been listening to him a lot lately..luckily there's a lot to choose from.
01:53 PM on 06/13/07
drudo182
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I am so pumped. Thanks for the review!
02:55 PM on 06/13/07
meeotch
...all we fight for
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Very well-written. Pretty excited for this.

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