Monday, March 31, 2008

Matthew Ryan- New album MRVSS

As singer/song writers go there may not be a better and more consistent guy out there over the last 11 years than Matthew Ryan. I first got turned onto Matthew's work back in 97' when i heard his song "Guilty" off of his (Mayday) album. Where some of Matthew's peers have let me down or veered off course over the years, Ryan it seems is getting better with age. It's not that Matthew hasn't taken his chances or evolved musically. His last album (From a Late Night Highrise)was probably his biggest leap away from his musical core. The album was much more ambient and electronic, but maybe his most personal, and in my opinion was his finest work to date.
Matthew is now out with his 11th album in as many years (Matthew Ryan vs. The Silver State). The album was recorded in Ryan's garage in the summer 06' and for the most part recorded live, giving it that raw edge. It's stated in the album notes that that they wanted to make a pure rock n roll record, and there's definitely more pure rock moments then on previous releases. "Killing the Ghost" & "Hold on Firefly" help set the heavier vibe, on "Killing the Ghost" Ryan sings "...I will carve you from my life. Couldn't care less, it feels alright".
Ryan is a pure storyteller, who wears his heart on his sleave and is at his best when capturing the mood & struggles of the everyman. It's the fragility of youth in "It Could've Been Worse", which is one of the standout tracks on the album, "... You promised her everything, not knowing what everything was" & "...Her blonde hair was the setting sun, her mascara was born to run". The angst & worry on "American Dirt" ... "I move through days like i were a knife, my eyes were blue, now they're bruises". As grim as Ryan might sound on the surface at times, there is usually an undertone of hope in his music. A perfect example is on the end track "Closing In" where he sings "... sometimes the weather can fall on you, and sometimes it breaks" then later "... maybe we'll never win, but were closing in".
In the uncertanties of today's world Matthew Ryan's MRVSS is a slice of life, capturing the climate of today's society, everything from the hopeless to the hopeful and all that's in between.
The album comes out on Tuesday April 1st on 2minutes59 in the US & on One Little Indian (UK), visit Matthew Ryan Online or check out his Myspace.

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