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III/IV by Ryan Adams
Released: Dec 2010
Label: Pax-Am
Technically speaking, 2010's III/IV is a new album, yet every one of its 21 tracks were recorded three years prior, at the same time as Easy Tiger. Adams, for reasons that aren't entirely clear, made the record sit in the vaults collecting dust. A concept record about the 1980s, III/IV is a sprawling, if punchy, listen full of jangly vibrations and reverb-heavy backbeats. There are more than a few U2 moments, which makes total sense. The best tracks, however, channel the rootsy college-rock that was all the rage back then. "Wasteland," for example, feels like the rebirth of The dB's.
Justin Farrar