Matthew Ryan – Dear Lover

January 01, 1970

(The Dear Future Collective)


There are some artists who will likely never purvey an
upward glance, no many how much sentiment they indulge or what circumstances inspire
their creativity.  These individuals –
Leonard Cohen, Nick
Cave, Jeff Buckley and Tom
Waits being prime examples — have established such success with their overcast
designs, than any hint of daylight might subvert their MO and make them all but


Matthew Ryan isn’t nearly as well known as these kindred
spirits, but his ongoing series of twilight ruminations over the course of a
dozen or so albums have established him as one of the foremost purveyors of
downcast deliberation.  An insightful
artist with an intuitive ability to capture mood and emotion, he writes dirge-like
melodies that hang like a shroud, each draped in a dense atmospheric overlay. In
that regard, Dear Lover varies little
from that template, a haunting, eerily beautiful dissertation on the
intricacies of intimacy. A song cycle of sorts, it finds Ryan contemplating a
scenario that sprung from an emergency trip to the hospital and culminated in a
series of confessional encounters.  Hushed
and numbing, it finds songs such as “The World Is…,” “We Are Snowmen,” “PS,”
and the title track conveying a sense of naked introspection and an air of
despair that’s fraught with vulnerability and uncertainty. 


Yet, while the songs often begin on a sparse or tentative
note, most build and billow with ethereal ambiance.  Think U2 fraught with anguish.  Ryan’s tattered vocals combined with this
undulating instrumentation make for a pensive if compelling endeavor… and a consistently
mesmerizing one at that.


Standout Tracks: “We Are Snowmen,” “The World Is…,” “PS” LEE ZIMMERMAN


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