By Jason GonulsenJuly 10, 2007
Since Ryan Adams released Gold
in 2001, he has constantly endured rants on how he can do better. Complaints of Adams over-writing and filling his albums with average material were tired arguments that the 32-year-old singer-songwriter didn’t deserve. For whatever reason, the masses wanted a perfect Ryan Adams album, failing to remember that such feats are rarely accomplished, even if your name is Neil Young or Bob Dylan. So with the release of Easy Tiger,
Adams is once again faced with all the eyes and ears that want to be saved and awed by something more spectacular than his first solo offering, Heartbreaker
. My guess is that they’re not going to be pleased.Easy Tiger
is not a disappointment or a bad record, it just fails to take any kind of grip by playing it too safe. Minus the humorous rocker “Halloween Head,” Adams isn’t looking to raise any eyebrows on Tiger
; he plays it pretty with the acoustic “Two” and “Everybody Knows,” gets ballad-sappy on “I Taught Myself How To Grow Old,” and grows reflective on the country-tinged “Tears of Gold.” His vocals are superb on “Oh My God, Whatever, Etc.” and “These Girls,” but sound curiously strained on “Off Broadway,” a tune that sounded much sweeter on the demo version that surfaced on the Internet a few years ago. Perfect? No. Another honest Ryan Adams effort? You bet.