Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Guest Spot: MDS

A long-time friendly colleague of mine recently spouted happily about Ryan Adams and The Carinals' release "Cardinology". This Ryan Adams guy, I hear about him but I never *HEAR* him so I asked MDS to consider sharing his thoughts on the cd with me here.

By way of intro, I met MDS upon returning to work from my first maternity leave. He'd been hired in the interim and become friendly with some of my work peeps. Since there were like a hundred Kathys there and because my name is a mouthful, cBFF-A and the newbies decided to provide me with a less imposing and confusing moniker. I am, and have been ever since, KHM. Pronounced as two syllables, not three; repeat after me: kaaaaaych-M, kaaaaaych-M. NOT "catch-M"--long A. He was part of one of the earliest LunchBunches and we engaged in very many completely-ridiculous-and-perhaps-inappropriate-for-the-office lunch time chat fests. A self-described Intoxicologist, I know him professionally as a public health guy---one of the few who aren't gay (sorry, but you know; its true.).

Finally, MDS is married to a lovely woman and they are the parents of four children and he probably doesn't know this, but we never celebrate our Anna's birthday without thinking about his family and first son, in particular. MDS has an ear for music that's good so here's what he has to say about Cardinology:

Somebody once said, “People like change, they just don’t want to be changed.” Ryan Adams decided that he needed to make changes in his life. Now single, clean, and vegetarian, the singer’s new album, Cardinology, is an introspective mid-tempo joy ride.

Adams, one of our most prolific singer/songwriters, and the Cardinals took a full year to make the new album and it shows… this from a band that previously recorded 3 albums in ONE year and one was a DOUBLE album.

Half way through the album he pleads in CSN&Y fashion for the Lord to let us down easy and later (Sink Ships) he wonders aloud who in the world would be his partner (not just for a night!).

“Let us down, easy… Lord”

Fix It -- Ryan Adams
Sink Ships
Let Us Down Easy

I heard a popular music critic say,"I wouldn't say that Adams is the best song writer since Neil Young, Bob Dylan but I wouldn't say he's not..." That's a pretty large, if ambivalent, compliment. Adams' reputation is solidly Roots, Americana but I've yet to hear anything that made me believe he wasn't country. I've not listened much. And I haven't heard the tracks I'm posting here until after I push the publish button. Thanks MDS for taking the blog plunge here! Nicely done!


KHM said...

This is something I shouldn't have been overlooking. These three tracks sound great to me---but seriously, Ryan Adams sounds TOO much like Bono. It would be nice if he could find a way to make a distinction with his vocalizing. I mean, its not a bad thing but I think vocalists should have something unique in their tone/voice.

Maybe after I hear more I'll be able to make the distinction.

Lyman said...

I have his album "Heartbreaker", quite a few good songs on that one but I have to say I don't hear one remote resemblance to Bono.

KHM said...

Not to be pedantic or anything, but I've only really heard him on *these* three tracks and to me, he sounds SO MUCH like Bono. So is your remark that he sounds NOTHING like Bono based on your listening to Heartbreaker (which I ordered btw) or did you listen to these three--or any of them?

I've got nothing but love for your ear, cuz, but mine is pretty reliable, too....

Lyman said...

I was actually referring to the album I have and not these tracks. After listening closely to them I can see how you would hear some Bono in his voice.

Have you heard the story about him kicking out a drunk guy at one of his concerts who kept shouting "play 'Summer of '69'!"?

KHM said...

That's fantastic! No, hadn't heard that but when I asked Rob (oh musical resource that HE is what he knew about RA), he also made a lame Bryan Adams joke....