[video] Matthew Ryan - "City Life"

Tennessee-by-way-of-Philadelphia singer-songwriter Matthew Ryan has very quietly built up quite a prolific back catalog since the blue collar hard-folk of 1997’s Mayday. Since then he’s slipped out stark, stripped-down records, like 2001’s underrated Concussion, as well as a few that dip their toes into more ethereal, modern sounds, such as 2003’s Regret Over The Wires and 2007’s From A Late Night High Rise. Though his gruff vocals have always seemed, to me, tailor-made for hard driving folk songs about heartache and hangovers he‘s never been one to rely on that limited approach to songwriting. Perhaps that’s why he’s never broken through to a larger audience - too willing to experiment with his sound for the Americana crowd and too earnest for the indie-rock world. The recently released Dear Lover, his twelfth record, finds Ryan once again able to avoid pigeonholing by leaning towards an almost folktronic sound on many of these songs, and even using a guest DJ on the decidedly dancy “Spark”. Overall though Dear Lover finds Ryan in a contemplative mood and mixing acoustic guitars with unobtrusive synths and beats over its ten new songs. The first single, “City Life”, is a solid representation of the passionate declarations and semi-ambitious arrangements Dear Lover strives for. Fans of Josh Rouse and Ryan Adams should take note - this album and artist would be right up your alley. The video follows the adventures of a little paper version of Ryan as he makes his way around the world, hanging out with fans, getting smooched, and taking in some breathtaking scenery along the way.

Stream :: Dear Lover (via Blurt)

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