Quick Review (LP): Love Is Hell by Ryan Adams

Ryan Adams
Love Is Hell
Lost Highway; 2004

My Rating: A- (81/100)

Best Tracks: "This House Is Not For Sale", "Wonderwall", "The Shadowlands", "English Girls Approximately", "Anybody Wanna Take Me Home"

Slows things down, starts to find his way.


  • Strong opener with "Political Scientist." Amazing lyrics.
  • Great atmosphere on this record. It’s a rainy day record, but its still got a big rock sound.
  • Love that guitar riff on "This House Is Not For Sale." Slowing things down helps quite a bit.
  • "Anybody Wanna Take Me Home" is a fantastic jangle-pop track. Seriously, it’s worthy of early REM, and that’s saying a lot from me.
  • The story goes that Adams’ version of "Wonderwall" is so good that Noel Gallagher just gave it to him one night. It’s solid, but I still prefer the Oasis version.
  • Good grief, "The Shadowlands" is gorgeous. One of his best.
  • "I See Monsters" has an amazing sound. It points towards some of the work he’d do on Cold Roses.
  • "English Girls Approximately" is a great little love song that I’m sure has launched a thousand mixtapes. The explosions of guitar echo at the end are the perfect way to close the track.
  • Not every track is brilliant, but even the lesser ones are pretty good. A major and much needed recovery from the disaster that was Rock N Roll.
  • The lushness of this record is one of its most appealing aspects. It’s very acoustic and lovely and ornate, jangly and hyper-melodic. I’m thinking it’s a masterpiece.
  • Overall, I think this record makes the case that Adams is a visionary, though an inconsistent and undisciplined one. Maybe he is more of a reckless genius?

Cohesion (5/5)
Consistency (4/5)
Concept (5/5)
Consequence (4/5)
Songs (4.5/5)

2 Responses to Quick Review (LP): Love Is Hell by Ryan Adams

  1. Pingback: Career In Brief: Ryan Adams « Sweet Georgia Breezes

  2. Pingback: Initial Reactions (2011): Feist, Ryan Adams, Still Corners, Beirut « Sweet Georgia Breezes

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