This (last) week’s reviews: Ryan Adams, Delta Spirit, Interpol

This week was bare on new releases, but there were three notable releases last week:  Ryan Adams’ Ryan Adams, Delta Spirit’s Into the Wide, and Interpol’s El Pintor.


Ryan Adams – Ryan Adams (2014, PAX AM)

Out of all three albums, I found myself queuing up Ryan Adams‘ new album the most since last week’s release.

“Kim” has this very strange tempo but pulls together an interesting image of the person to whom the namesake belongs to. In “Am I Safe,” Adams desires security but wonders about the cost. “Feels like Fire,” “Tired of Giving Up,” and “Let Go” are three very good tracks as well.

This album, like his most recent releases, convey themes of uncertainty and this is where Adams’ excels.  He is excellent at spinning images of a flummoxed person, relying on introspection to get through the day.


Delta Spirit – Into the Wide (2014, Dualtone)

Delta Spirit‘s Into the Wide came in a close second. I am a huge fan of Delta Spirit‘s jangley, raw, booze-soaked rock. Their first two releases (2007’s Ode to Sunshine and 2010’s History from Below) are among my favorite albums of the last decade.  Delta Spirit, their self-titled release from 2012, was a toned-down but impressive album as well with catchy songs like “California” and “Tear It Up.”

Into the Wide starts off slow but then picks up. The most memorable tracks appear on the second half of the album. The only exception is “Take Shelter.” The third track is a piano-driven ballad. “Language of the Dead” addresses the pressure to be confident: “I’m not so self assured/ I can barely sing a word.” “War Machine” is one of those characteristic Delta Spirit slow-burn songs.

This latest album follows the lead of Delta Spirit.  It is a semi-subduded version of their earlier material. They continue to churn out good songs and Into the Wide is no exception.


Interpol – El Pintor (2014, Matador)

Interpol‘s latest album, El Pintor, is very much an Interpol album. It is 10 tracks long. Paul Banks’ presents brooding vocals and dark lyrics. The guitars are quick and the songs are paced well.  It is better than their self-titled album from 2010.  The opening track, “All the Rage Back Home,” and “Anywhere” were two of the better tracks.

There comes a point where one might need to accept that no Interpol will be as great as Antics and Turn on the Bright Lights. El Pintor has some fine songs but it is not as complete as those early-era albums. Interpol was one of the original New York City post-punk/garage-rock bands and they will always be remembered fondly for that.



One response to “This (last) week’s reviews: Ryan Adams, Delta Spirit, Interpol

  1. Pingback: A Look Back at 2014: Top 10 Albums of the Year | borrowed nostalgia·

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